Under the interior design umbrella, the concepts of “oriental” and “grunge” don’t usually go hand-in-hand. But for the bachelor living in this 8-year-old resale unit, those two design themes were exactly what he wanted for his new home. “To meet the homeowner’s request, we blended modern-contemporary elements with oriental aesthetics and sensibilities,” says Rebekah Lim, the interior designer from local firm Eightytwo who was commissioned to oversee the renovation project. What resulted is a stylish space that captures the personality of the inhabitant perfectly.
Right by the home’s entrance, the shared living and dining spaces come into view. “It was important for us to create a distinction between the two spaces, yet do it in a way where it can still be viewed together as one composition,” explains Rebekah. This then gave rise to the designer’s predominant use of wood tones and grey finishes within the area. Additionally, the relatively simple profile of the space also allows it to function as a backdrop for the owner – who is a designer – to display and curate his collection of artworks whenever necessary.
While the free-flowing communal areas feature black slate-textured vinyl tiled flooring, an architecturally-inspired feature wall draws the eye and frames the living space. Made from a series of pine wood strips, the tactile effect of the natural material successfully creates a dramatic statement while maintaining a streamlined look within the home. Over in the eating zone, the custom-made dining table and accompanying chairs are backed by a wall that has been painted over with concrete-effect performance paint. Through the use of these materials and textures, not only does the entire space feel warm and cosy, but it also exemplifies and fulfils the oriental-grunge aesthetic that appeals to the homeowner.
Leading into the owner’s private chambers, natural light fills the corridor, which was achieved by knocking out the original partition wall to the study room and replacing it with a series of glass panels. By doing so, the narrow walkway now feels spacious and airy. Opposite the study, the entrance to the guest bathroom was swapped out for a wood-laminated sliding door. But what makes the fitting truly unique is the die-cut motif towards the top of the door. “It was designed by the owner himself, and it gives the home a more personalised touch,” adds Rebekah.
Entering the study room, a suspended table comes into view. Additionally, floating shelves that are mounted atop the desk and on the alcove adjoining offer the owner a dedicated space to display his personal items. Although not immediately noticeable, this space can actually also double up as a guest room. Situated behind the suspended desk, the bay window was converted into a platform bed, complete with storage units beneath. This way, not only is the bulky pre-existing built-in fixture fully maximised, but the sleeping space is also completely shielded from prying eyes by the workstation.
To create a meditative space, fixtures in the master bedroom were kept clean-lined and unassuming. Similar to the study, in order to reclaim the under-utilised footprint, Rebekah built a platform bed with integrated storage along the height of the bay window, with the warm shade of brown used injecting a sense of cosiness into the sleeping zone. However, unlike its counterpart, the structure here extends up on to the walls and ceiling to create a cosy pod-like structure. At the foot of the bed, a simple desk was added to make the room more functional.
Elegant and sophisticated, the black homogeneous tiles overlaid on the walls and flooring bring a sense of tranquillity into the master en suite. Meanwhile, the bay window settee within the wet shower was also overlaid with Peranakan-patterned tiles as an accent, effectively adding some visual interest into its muted surroundings.
When all is said and done, this apartment’s overall aesthetic may be decidedly unfussy and masculine, but it is clearly the carefully crafted details, creative space allocation and clever multi-purpose fixtures that define this cosy and functional home.
This was adapted from an article originally published in the April 2019 issue of SquareRooms. Photo credits: Eightytwo