With drama in its design DNA and innovative ideas bouncing off the walls, there is nothing tame about this family home
A semi-detached Victorian terrace, built around 1860, in north London. The ground floor comprises a kitchen-diner, studio and snug. On the upper-ground floor is the entrance hall, reception room and library. On the first floor, there is the master bedroom, walk-in wardrobe and master bathroom, while the children’s rooms and another bathroom occupy the two upper levels.
Most of us love a touch of drama in our lives, but in this north London home, a stellar performance is practically oozing from the walls. And at every turn, in every corner, there is something spectacular going on. Whether it’s a collection of rare vintage jelly moulds in the kitchen, some art piece from a burgeoning young talent or an anatomical photo of a bumblebee’s nether regions, the overall effect (designed by interior consultant, Graz Darken) is simply stunning.
Get the Look: The fireplace was constructed using Fired Earth’s white Portland tiles for a modern effect. The concrete ledge below is a bespoke design by experts at White + Reid. Alongside is the more traditional bird-covered wallpaper – you can buy similar from House of Hackney. The vintage wooden coffee table is by Reynolds of Ludlow. You can buy a similar sofa from The Conran Shop. The rug is an antique Berber rug from Morocco.
Each room is designed with a sense of humour, even though the joke occasionally dips its toe in darker waters. A striking blend of textures and shades makes this distinctive room intriguing on the eye.
After collaborating with designer Irenie Cossey and Emmett Russell Architects, the property was gutted and a rear basement extension and a four-level side extension was added. With the lower back section of the house transformed with floor to ceiling glass, the dingy basement became a light-filled family gathering space.
Get the Look:The table was custom-built with reclaimed oak from a French barn and positioned on a steel frame. The DSW Eames chairs are from a vintage dealer. The industrial lights were once part of Heathrow’s Concorde hanger and sourced from Trainspotters. Graz and Nick specially designed and commissioned the leather bench seating.
The design for the kitchen was created around the wall clock. The owners had the clock first and wanted it to be a feature, so the stainless-steel island by Bulthaup was specially positioned to highlight it.
Get the Look: The Eastern European train station clock is from Trainspotters. The Fifties bar stools are by Frank Guille for Kandya. The exposed concrete floor is by Lazenby.
Mid-century design features here as it is the owner’s favourite eras for style.
Get the Look: The antique Murano crystal glass chandelier is from Atomic Antiques. The green leather sofa is a Fifties Danish design from a vintage dealers. A series of mid-century Italian screenprints hang over the fireplace. The white and stainless-steel chair is by Cees Braakman from Atomica. The medical torso was discovered at a French university. The Womb chair and ottoman is by Eero Saarinen for Knoll, while the oil paintings behind are by Jasper John. The antique Murano crystal glass chandelier is from Atomic Antiques. The green leather sofa is a Fifties Danish design from a vintage dealers. A series of mid-century Italian screenprints hang over the fireplace. The white and stainless-steel chair is by Cees Braakman from Atomica. The medical torso was discovered at a French university. The Womb chair and ottoman is by Eero Saarinen for Knoll, while the oil paintings behind are by Jasper John.
All busy families need a chill out area and this is where this bunch go for some peace and quiet.
Get the Look: The tulip-wood parquet flooring is from Architectural Forum, reclaimed from the former Commonwealth Institute in Kensington. The portraits on the wall were found in an antiques shop. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball’s Railings estate emulsion. The rug is from House Doctor and the Kennedee sofa is by John-Marie Massaud for Poltrona Frau.
The designer, Graz, loves to pick pieces that make people stop and ponder.
Get the Look: The side table is from made.com. The crow is from Pitfield London. The artwork is an antique microscopic slice of a bumblebee penis by Slices London.
Exceptional and quirky accessories give this room a unique edge.
Get the Look: For a dramatic backdrop, the walls are painted in Fired Earth’s Mercury matt emulsion. A graphic bedspread by Custhom and bedside lamps from Atomic Antiques with custom-made fringed shades add to the inimitable effect. The Prom Queen 3 painting is by Sara Berman.
The owners love art and other things that make them smile, although they admit they have a slightly warped sense of humour.
Get the Look: The French anatomical chart is a vintage find and the fibreglass RAR rocker is by Charles and Ray Eames for Vitra.
Textural marble is used as a statement feature when balanced against white walls and warm stained oak floorboards.
Get the Look: The freestanding Ottocento bath is by Agape. The Offcut stool is by Tom Dixon.
As a home created for dramatic effect, this north London showcase stretches the boundaries of interior design so things get that bit curiouser and curiouser.
Get the Look: This specially commissioned wall art was created by graffiti artist, David Nash (gnashermurals.com).
Photography / Paul Massey