Nature Meets Luxe In This Timelessly Chic HDB Flat


The approach to this flat’s design is simple enough; it’s all about improving the lives of its homeowners through good design. “Honestly, there is no specific style,” answer the Mesh Werk Studio designers when asked to pinpoint a theme. Instead, they worked with pure designer instinct. “We do know the homeowners like it spacious and clean-cut”, say the designers. That explains the streamlined design flow and a slight reconfiguration to the kitchen and bedrooms.

To maintain a spacious visage, the dining area has been left out of the floor plan. “The homeowners didn’t need a proper dining area,” the design team says. This frees up plenty of floor area in the communal zones and this minimalistic approach shines the spotlight on the unique and premium materials utilised in this home. One of which is veneer, which has been lavishly used as wall coverings and on the carpentry works and custom-made furnishings.

“The woodgrain effect is natural and as close as it gets to the real deal,” say the designers of the veneer. “This is something laminates can never achieve.” These veneers which have been imported from Taiwan are stripped off from the same tree, and the layers have been matched using a butterfly technique. This renders a distinct woodgrain pattern that is one of a kind.

The veneer wall coverings do more than just bring an understated beauty to the space; it conceals the unsightly such as the bomb shelter. It also conceals the entrances to the bedrooms and brings a seamless order of well-defined woodgrains.

Enhancing the streamlined backdrop is a special type of cement flooring which has been used throughout the communal zones. Unlike the heavy and gritty look regular cement has, this unique flooring emits a sleek and sophisticated sheen that draws out a larger expanse of space.

Without a proper dining space, the homeowners diverted their dining needs to the kitchen. All the boundary walls were taken down and the open-concept kitchen is now fronted by a counter. Topped with a quartz worktop which wraps around the veneer-clad base, this multi-purpose counter becomes a hardworking space for food prepping, cooking and of course, dining in. It is more than breakfast bar as the counter is large enough to accommodate four to five seats.

Another change to the original floor plan was turning the master bedroom into a walk-in wardrobe and study. A wall of wardrobes now lines the space and the sophisticated material palette of laminates with gold accents and tinted black glass marks a departure from the usual woodgrain textures. Recessed lighting has also been installed within the wardrobes to illuminate the homeowners’ selection of clothing with flair.

An L-shaped desk had been built into the other wall. This neat alignment is enhanced by a large mirrored panel, which appears to stretch the illusion of space as well as the number of windows. Of this symmetrical setup, the designers explain, “We were inspired by architectural lines when we designed this. The veneer layers have been book-matched.”

Good design can emerge in many forms, and with this home it’s all about the understated material pairings. The designers’ emphasis on clean but strong design lines adds to the overall polished aesthetics. Most of all, it delivers a spacious and timeless appeal – a significant design trait that feels like home for the inhabitants.

This was adapted from an article originally written by Disa Tan published in the February 2018 issue of SquareRooms. Photo credits: Mesh Work Studio 

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