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House of the week: Wairarapa off-grid

• http://www.stuff.co.nz, JILL WILD
 They nutted out a plan for their off-grid home one night over a few glasses of wine with a draughtsman friend, deciding to do the foundations themselves.
"We would never do that again," admits Anna Marie. "It took us a long time and a lot of effort to do something we then realised a digger could have done in a moment."

The 300 square metre corrugated iron-clad house has three bedrooms, a loft and a huge central living space measuring a massive 15 metres by 5.5 metres. The central living space has a multitude of uses - as a classroom for their home-educated son Allen, an art studio for professional artist Anna Marie and a studio workshop where she runs art courses.
"I never wanted to be shut away in a studio," she explains. "I love working in the middle of the house near the calendar and the phone, I don't need quiet when I paint, and because my paintings are large I actually do have to spread around."

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