The Chic Home

Elegant vibes with wood

The look of the living area may be part minimalist and part vintage, but when brought together, harmonise to form a cosy and inviting interior.
The look of the living area may be part minimalist and part vintage, but when brought together, harmonise to form a cosy and inviting interior.PHOTOS: MUSEWORKS
The wood-toned laminate panel is a row of three "doors" hiding the laundrette and two rooms.
The wood-toned laminate panel is a row of three "doors" hiding the laundrette and two rooms. PHOTOS: MUSEWORKS
The homeowner opted for a stylish bar area next to the dining room to entertain family and friends.
The homeowner opted for a stylish bar area next to the dining room to entertain family and friends.PHOTOS: MUSEWORKS

A 30-year-old terraced house gets a modern makeover with sleek design features and a clever mix of vintage and contemporary furniture

Go heavy on wood and what comes to mind is a dim interior with perhaps an overbearing feel or one with a country-house atmosphere.

But the stunning transformation of this 30-year-old, two-storey terraced house in the east proves otherwise.

From the owner's retro and vintage furniture collection to the interior backdrop, dark wooden tones dominate.

But a smart living room and kitchen layout, sleek design features and clever mix-and-match furniture choices by interior design company Museworks' Shawn Shum give the 2,800 sq ft space an elegant, contemporary look.

The renovation took seven months and cost an estimated $30,000, including carpentry. The owner, an eye specialist in her early 40s, moved in at the end of 2017.

Emphasis was placed on the kitchen design, given the owner's fondness of cooking.

The original big column in the middle of the space was removed to allow natural light to flood in from the living room.

The kitchen boasts a professional industrial hob and a breakfast/tasting table next to the island countertop.

Mr Shum, the interior designer, also created a small garden on the property, which is visible from the kitchen, so that the owner, who is single and lives here with her pet dog, gets a view of greenery when having breakfast or preparing meals.

The glossy-looking kitchen is in contrast to the large expanse of heavy walnut-toned wood laminate applied across the wall opposite the hob.

The entire panel is a row of three "doors", hiding the launderette, the room of the owner's mother and the domestic helper's room. The owner plans to have her mother and helper move in shortly.

The protruding frames serve as door handles to the rooms.

Wood also features significantly in the living and dining rooms where the owner's collection of wooden antique and vintage pieces take pride of place alongside contemporary pieces and colours.

Echoing the retro touches that permeate the home are the customised black-metal railings of the staircase. And tucked elegantly below the stairs are a wine showcase and cellar.

On the second floor, the master bedroom boasts a sliding glass door with aluminium frames powder-coated in black. Blinds lend privacy.

A glass partition was chosen as it brightens up the space, as opposed to keeping the wall that once separated the master bedroom from the rest of the rooms.

The room is also decorated with the owner's collection and antique panels were embedded into a false wall to create the headboard.

Details matter to Mr Shum, so he chose black tiles embossed with motifs for the bathroom in the master bedroom. Under bright light, the designs etched on the tiles "pop up" and shimmer against a black backdrop.

He also reconfigured the layout on the second floor and moved the common bathroom to just outside the master bedroom, with the study area taking over the former spot of the bathroom.

A "third storey" was also added to the structure - an area just beneath the pitched roof that serves as the attic and entertainment room.

During the day, light streams in through the roof all the way to the common bathroom on the second floor - just one of the ways that natural light is introduced into the different corners of the home, for a brighter, more spacious interior.

•This article first appeared in the July issue of Home & Decor, which is published by SPH Magazines.

• Get the August issue of Home & Decor now at all newsstands or download the digital edition of Home & Decor from the App Store, Magzter or Google Play. Also, see more inspiring homes at www.homeanddecor.com.sg

The wood-toned laminate panel is a row of three "doors" hiding the laundrette and two rooms. The homeowner opted for a stylish bar area next to the dining room to entertain family and friends. The look of the living area may be part minimalist and pa
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 24, 2019, with the headline 'Elegant vibes with wood'. Print Edition | Subscribe