With its tall elegant rooms, abundance of windows and original features, this Victorian terraced house surpassed the expectations of this owner who had been searching for a property in the part of southwest London he loved. ‘It was in a quiet spot tucked away but conveniently close to the high street,’ he says.
The house had been renovated by a developer and was structurally sound, which was an important consideration as buying a property that needed major building work wasn’t an option.
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Although the owner had a broad idea of what he wanted, he recognised that he would benefit from professional advice and an architect friend recommended interior designer Gemma Gordon-Duff from Gordon-Duff & Linton.
An important aspect was that the colour scheme should connect the rooms throughout but also that each room should have its own vibe so moodboards were created for each room, which formed the basis of what was to come.
As the space that creates the all-important first impression to visitors, the sitting room had to be just right and with a look that was ‘calm, elegant and sophisticated’.
The talking point here is the pink portrait that sits royally above the mantelpiece and is a quirky counterpoint to the restful wall colours and rich furnishings. Gemma was able to fit the artwork perfectly into the overall scheme while allowing them to shine.
The family room is pretty unique, too. With its L-shaped modular sofa, cosy rug and tasteful blue-themed furnishings it follows the lines of a conventionally sociable space but the nook at the rear of the room is what some might term a ‘man cave’.
A voluptuously curved armchair and footstool are flanked by glazed lightwells and overlooked by a neon Las Vegas sign.
The children’s bedrooms were a priority and the look that has been achieved is both beautiful and practical.
The owner’s daughters themselves, who both loved being part of the creative process. In one room a den was built combined with a bunk bed that has playful touches such as the portholes on two sides.
In the second bedroom the idea was to create a “castle in the sky”, which inspired magical touches like a fairy-lit voile awning and a made-to-measure dressing table and mirror encircled by starlights.
As a starting point for this theme, the owner’s collection of wristwatches was used for inspiration with a chest of drawers that incorporates his watch winders. ‘As a piece of furniture, I’d like to think it’s one of a kind,’ says Gemma.
Even in the outdoor dining area, style wasn’t left out in the cold. A barren square patch was landscaped to provide a sociable area where cool cushion fabrics coordinate with the elegant taupe table and chairs.
Even in such a small space, it has been possible to create a delightful haven that has become a favourite summer spot.
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Heather Young has been Ideal Home’s Editor since late 2020, and Editor-In-Chief since 2023. She is an interiors journalist and editor who’s been working for some of the UK’s leading interiors magazines for over 20 years, both in-house and as a freelancer.
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