With a soft-industrial core, this home is a lesson in redrawing the lines of Victorian architecture with a contemporary, artistic eye.
Three storeys of a large Victorian villa in southLondon. The lower ground floor has an open-plan area with kitchen, dining area, play room and seating, plus a separate study, office, guest bedroom suite and two WCs. The ground floor of this contemporary London home has the living room, a child’s bedroom and bathroom and a WC. Upstairs is the master suite (bedroom, bathroom, living room and dressing area), and a second child’s bedroom and bathroom.
From the outside, this stucco villa is pure posh Victoriana: all pillars, balconies and tall sash windows. But step inside and the core of this three-storey home has been opened up and spun right round with an ultra-contemporary staircase that reinvents its architectural character. The staircase connects everything and makes the spaces work. Without it, the three levels would feel shut off from each other.
The owners approached Dyer Grimes Architects, who they worked with to achieve the right balance between strong industrial and light and airy. The colours of this home take a cue from the staircase, the linchpin of this project, and its heavy-yet-light, soft-industrial heart: palest greys, steely blues, clear glass and black stained floorboards. But the home’s key textures are still firmly rooted in nature, with fossil-studded volcanic stone in the kitchen, and the feathery, ethereal lighting pendants that bob around amid the high period mouldings of the Victorian ceilings.
Volcanic stone is the star of the kitchen island. Although substantial and weighty, it doesn’t dominate and up close you can see tiny fossils, shapes and the veining in the rock.
With masses of natural light and generous seating, this is a family room that’s designed to be used and enjoyed every day.
The modular shelving has been put up, taken down and then put up again, in each of the family’s previous three homes. Every time it somehow fits the space perfectly.
There’s a dazzling array of kids’ wallpapers out there, but Westwood simple but ingenious design hits the spot here.
MASTER EN SUITE
Tactile tadelakt and lava stone tiles wrap around this bathing space that’s both efficient and indulgent.
Solid marble and antiqued mirror glass create a grey-toned sanctuary. The ageing effect results in blackened edges that endow the mirror with a natural ‘frame’.
Metal-framed glass doors divide the bedroom and living room sections of the master suite.
MASTER SUITE LIVING ROOM
There’s an other-worldly quality to the Zeppelin chandeliers that hang in the master suite.
Photography Paul Raeside