There are bold decor styles, and then there are nuanced approaches to home design that form lasting impressions through subtlety and attention to detail. Taking the middle ground, black-and-white chic has proven time and again to be a flexible design medium, capable of giving rise to daring interiors and tranquil domiciles alike.
Dan Wu, founder and namesake of Singapore-based interior design firm, Dan’s Workshop, is the man in charge of giving this four-room resale HDB apartment its stunning monochromatic makeover. A veteran designer who has over a decade of experience in bringing his clients’ vision to life, Dan’s philosophy of creating simple, high-quality living spaces was a perfect fit for the homeowner.
“It all started when one of my previous monochrome-themed projects caught the homeowner’s eye, after which she contacted me to create a similar look for her apartment,” explains Dan.
Appreciating the owner’s preference for a black-and-white aesthetic, the designer set about creating a high-contrast living space accompanied by plenty of strong, clean lines for an ultra-sleek appearance. Featuring an open floor plan, the living room also comes with striking homogeneous tiles in black and white that visually bisect the space in two.
Adding storage functionality to the front section are several platform shelves – arranged to form a house-shaped display that is at once playful and practical. Along the same stretch of wall, Dan added a series of space-savvy floating shelves and wood pegs, which serve as ideal storage options for a collection of books, bags and ornaments.
As a way of inviting warmth into the apartment’s austere setting, Dan took a page from Scandinavian-style homes by incorporating plenty of wood tones and natural greenery – design elements that are capable of accentuating a neutral interior with a rustic touch.
“The living room’s sofas, which are both from Mountain Teak, were included to punctuate the monochromatic surroundings with their wooden frames and raw details for a cosier, less intimidating look,” he says. “The same goes for soft, textured furnishings, such as brown cow-hide and textile cushions as they stand out against the sitting area’s smooth white background.”
For the kitchen, Dan made sure that the monochromatic theme would not be too overwhelming by making thoughtful structural and decorative changes. “Other than relocating the common bathroom and adding new cabinetry, the kitchen was also given a sliding door entrance with sheets of laminated glass that allow natural light to enter and brighten up the space,” the interior designer shares.
Visual consistency is achieved between the dining and cooking areas by a series of seamless fixtures dressed in black laminates that convey moody modernity. In the former, a compact half-table also provides sufficient seating for four despite its small footprint, making it an adequate spot for hosting small dinners.
As for the master suite, Dan merged two bedrooms into one to create a generous sleeping zone that accommodates a walk-in wardrobe. Notable new structures found within the combined boudoir include a black partition wall that mounts a trim TV screen and a neatly terminated platform bed wrapped in grey wood-effect laminates.
“This combination of soothing neutrals and subtle wood textures was specifically chosen as it would give the master bedroom a sophisticated warmth – a quality that is exuded by each and every part of the home,” the designer notes.
This was adapted from an article originally published in the July 2017 issue of SquareRooms. Photo credits: Dan’s Workshop