Warning: the interior of this fantastic period home in West London, complete with ultra-cool and ultra-current extension, may lead to uncontrollable feelings of envy and desire. This beautiful home comes to us thanks to Simon Whitehead Architects, who carried out its renovations.
This angle is the best one for showing off the diversity of styles at work in this building. From the outside looking in, the space we can see is brightly modern and very welcoming. In the background, though, we can see that the original part of the house – just as welcoming in a different way – is still very much a part of things.
The decision to go with such a simple style for the exterior of the extension – it’s essentially a box with glass elements – only serves to highlight the charming complexity of features that tends to accompany period homes.
The doors open the wall up completely, maximising light flow and minimising the distinction between outdoor and indoor spaces.
This lack of distinction is played upon in subtle ways. The use of garden furniture for an indoor space is one of them, and the choice of green lampshades may also be a reference to the hybrid nature of this space. The large skylight that makes up a significant portion of the roof also makes the room feel like it could in fact be outdoors. There are few decorative items to be seen here, they aren’t really required; the beautiful brightness of the space itself, as well as the promise of the garden beyond, are all the ornamentation required.
Things are far less consciously understated here, although it’s fair to say that the space is still a fairly restrained one. Nonetheless, there’s a distinct homey feel about this living room; one which perhaps springs from the use of textiles, the psychologically warming presence of the original fireplace or the books and art on display. There’s a lot more to look at in this room, including a greater variety of different types of style.
The gramophone, globe and comfy quilted sofa with its multicoloured buttons all serve to add heaps of individuality to the space.
In the bathroom it’s back to the stripped-back aesthetic we’ve already seen in the kitchen. Again there are the unequivocally modern sunken ceiling lights that also appeared in the extension, but by far the sleekest and most stylish feature of this room is, of course, that attention-grabbing bathtub. Just like the bathtubs that would have been in use when the original body of this house was built, this one is freestanding; but that is where its traditional elements begin and end. With its smooth, curving lines and utterly uncomplicated form, it could almost be an oversized sink (but an unusually stylish one).
If you’ve ever been in doubt about the potential impact of statement wallpaper, this is surely the room to change your mind once and for all. The study itself is, of course, an absolutely beautiful one; it’s very hard to go wrong with dark wooden floorboards and a wall entirely lined with books. The pretty, old-fashioned chair helps a lot, too. But it’s obvious that that striking wallpaper, covered in multi-coloured birds chattering away to each other, is the piece that makes this space.