The furnishings of this Madrid apartment, although certainly charming in a fairly understated way, are not anything especially out of the ordinary. What makes them work so well in this space by Estudio Cinco Cinco Uno, and what makes the interior as a whole come together so cohesively, is the inspired use of light of all kinds – but in particular natural light – throughout the home.
This space is designed in a simple, classic style that steers clear of falling into the trap of faddish design likely to age badly. The functional necessities of a living and dining space are all here, but there is so little beyond those that the room seems almost like a room in a model home – a blank canvas waiting for someone to make it their own.
Despite this, however, the contents of the room are far from utilitarian. The plush upholstery of the sofas and dining chairs is very inviting indeed, and including room for books always adds colour and personality to any room. The most distinctive feature of this space is, however, its brightness, accentuated by the whiteness of the walls.
In the hallway area we can get a better sense of exactly how this room has managed to trap so much light so effectively. Not only does the open plan space have additional tall, thin windows not seen in the previous shot; there is also a huge interior window that allows light to circulate more freely throughout the property.
An interior window such as this one is one potential solution to the common problem of uneven light distribution within the home. Many homes have areas where windows to the outside world are very few or are in fact completely nonexistent. This is often the case with hallway areas, which tend to be flanked on all sides by rooms that hog all the access to natural light. Inserting an interior window between a hallway and one of the brighter public rooms such as the kitchen or living room can be a great way to spread that sunshine around.
In the bedroom, a dark accent wall serves to break up the prevailing whiteness. Clever concealed storage behind the bed itself help keep this room as minimal in its furnishings as the living room.
A walk-in wardrobe is a fantasy for plenty of people, but as the neatness of the room in the previous photo demonstrates, it’s a fantasy that actually serves an extremely practical purpose. Taking clutter – whether that’s in the form of clothes or anything else – leads to a more streamlined, neater, sharper interior.
In this child’s room, although bright colours are used and natural light again plays a major role, the main appeal of the space comes from that lovely big chalkboard, ideally placed to encourage creative play.
The key to using a potentially abrasive colour, such as this hot pink, in your child’s room is always to dilute its effects by including a fair bit of white. If the entire room was painted such a bright shade of pink, the effect would probably be quite headache-inducing; but by keeping that colour for a statement wall and giving the rest of the walls over to white, this room stays true to the feel of the rest of the home.