Style Lessons From An Ultra-Modern Monochromatic Apartment

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It was pretty much an unexpected twist of events for the conceptualisation of this apartment in central Singapore. Through a friend’s recommendation, homeowners Serene and her fiance, Eugene, approached the designers from Mesh Werk Studio for the design of their marital home. “We initially wanted a brighter colour palette for our apartment,” reveals Serene. However, the design team responded to their brief with the exact opposite of dark hues that played up the modern Parisian style which they had also specified. While the dark colours took them by surprise at first, they warmed up to it and then it stuck. “We were sold on this dark-coloured theme,” she says.

Compared to most modern couples around their age, the style preferences of professionals Serene and Eugene, are a refreshing departure from the usual trending themes like Scandinavian or industrial. “It did not appeal to us as we wanted something timeless that leans towards European-style influences,” explain the couple, who are in their late 20s. Another thing that distinguishes them from their peers is their preference for natural materials like marble and granite. That led the Mesh Werk designers to propose a bold modern European theme which eventually won them the approval of the first-time homeowners.

The other reason why the couple felt they were in the good hands of Mesh Werk Studio is because of their clever approach to odd-shaped spaces. “Our second bedroom has this semi-circle space because of the development’s clover-shaped facade,” says Serene. “The designers proposed to convert this corner into an additional wardrobe and storage area. The function resonates with us since this apartment does not come with any storeroom.”

For the home’s main design features, the design team proposed dark stone surfaces to helm different areas of the home and as a visual connection. “The marble slabs, which we cut down to around 12 large pieces, have been meticulously bookmatched and slipmatched for the main living and dining wall,” reveal the designers. This shows off its natural veining in the best light.

Adding function to the splendour of this gorgeous black marble feature with riveting white veining is a stainless steel shelf structure. It functions as a compact workstation plus display showcase. With its lightweight presence, there is minimal visual bulk unlike a traditional workdesk. This functional centrepiece also works as a visual demarcation to segregate the dining space from the living. With all these marble surfaces, the designers proposed to clad the balcony in artificial grass instead of wood decking. “As these marble surfaces have a cold-looking exterior, it would be good to introduce a touch of green to balance the entire setting,” they add.

In the master bedroom, which has proved to be the biggest challenge for the designers, the old layout was improved by changing the positions of the bed and wardrobe, as well as the ducted air-conditioner system. “We hacked away the old wardrobe and custom-built a brand new L-shaped wardrobe,” says the team of the alteration. This improves the spatial flow greatly as compared to before. Serene adds: “This repositioning of the bed beside the window allows the morning sun to peep through.”

As the saying goes: “Wear the clothes, don’t let the clothes wear you”, the transformation of this living space was not shaped by its unique layout, but rather by the timeless modern European style proposed by the designers. With that, Serene and Eugene can embark on a new chapter together in their stunning starter home and with its flexible design features; starting a family in this future-proofed space will be effortless.

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