With a penchant for Mid-Century Modern furniture, as well as colour, this couple put their passion on show when they designed their own home.
Photography DARREN CHANG art direction DON TAN & LIM YI LING
This contemporary loft is given character and warmth, thanks to wood tones and vintage furniture the couple have collected over the years.
This reading nook is the perfect place for an Isokon Penguin Donkey (made to house Penguin books) and the wife’s collection of crochet animals.
The homeowners opened up the space visually by taking down the walls of the mezzanine level and removing the banisters. Working with the high ceiling, Fadly chose a Haiku fan with an extended rod, which lowers the fan into the space.
When they moved into their Sky Terrace @ Dawson loft apartment, Fadly Salleh and his wife knew exactly how to decorate the space. The creative duo – he is a wedding photographer and she is an avid crocheter – are fans of the Mid-Century Modern style, and have been collecting eclectic furnishings for their future home even before they got married. The couple had no intention of moving out of the wife’s parents’ spacious executive apartment, until they heard about the new HDB flats in Dawson – it was too good to resist! The new flats include a mezzanine floor and a connecting studio apartment so couples can live beside their parents. After the $50,000 renovation that focused on visually enlarging the flat, they were able to achieve the charming vintage look they wanted though furniture and furnishings. This is what they did.
The vintage wooden cabinet is home to figurines, old cameras, and items the wife makes, such as crochet coasters. Flowers by Floral Magic, tableware from Stylo Deco.
Painted on a zinc sheet, this artwork from Vietnam ages beautifully because of the patina the sheet takes on over time.
The homeowners own three Marimekko fabric panels – two are placed in the bedroom, and one in the bathroom.
The common bathroom is kept minimal, with a simple faucet by Grohe and a copper–framed mirror that was bought online.
They sought out vintage styles
Already familiar with brands that carry Mid-Century Modern styles, the couple selected key pieces such as the classic George Nelson bubble lamps from Pomelo, a curved sofa from Lorgan’s, and a vintage Danish sideboard from Noden. The sofa on the mezzanine level, upholstered with an army green canvas from the 1940s, and gifted by a relative, has a more rugged vintage character. “We like things from the past, such as the 1970s’ wooden bookshelf, and the 1960s’ copper lamp in the dining room,” says Fadly.
A vintage camera and terrariums from Australia-based decor label West Elm form a vignette on this sideboard from Noden.
This bookshelf from the 1970s houses a range of old items – the wife’s extensive book collection (including the first book her father gave her), board games and a vinyl record player.
They decorated with travel finds
The couple travel frequently, and the house is filled with unique finds from their trips. From Japan – their favourite country to shop in – are Orla Kiely cushion covers, a set of three Marimekko fabric panels, and tea towels, which they framed (the towel cost $10, and framing was $100, says Fadly). A floral painting done on a zinc sheet, from Vietnam, adorns the living room wall; and a rug with exquisite dragon motifs from China now sits in the living room.
They were confident with colour
Warm citrus tones are spread out throughout the space, such as the yellow-painted gate and a lime green rug in the living room. In between are punches of bold and pastel hues; a turquoise bicycle rests against the wall of the home office, a baby blue Smeg fridge brightens up the kitchen, and a red Kartell Componibili cabinet in the bedroom complements a pendant lamp in the same siren red shade.
“We call the mezzanine our second living room. My wife likes to sit up here and crochet but, somehow, I never think to look up here when I can’t find her!” says Fadly.