The interior of this open-concept home for one was inspired by small, contemporary Japanese homes.
When it comes to breathing new life into an old space, extra thought and attention to detail is required — the home of primary school teacher Ler Yumin is a good example. Her 43-year old flat in the Tanjong Rhu area was given a stylish update by designer Chris Huang of Bowerman Interior Planner, in a renovation that took three months to complete, and cost $60,000. Drawing inspiration from the small contemporary homes of Japan, he gave this home an open-concept studio-like feel, and added bespoke elements that suited Yumin’s requirements perfectly. Here’s what distinguishes it.
An entrance foyer with a platform
With a genkan (or foyer where you remove your shoes) of a Japanese home in mind, Chris raised the floor level of the living area slightly, and clad it with honeyhued engineered wood flooring from Goodrich Global. The entrance foyer itself was left bare in a concrete screed finish. To further highlight the feature, concealed lighting was installed beneath the raised portion.
A streamlined open kitchen
Chris designed an open pantry-style kitchen that is sleek and understated in appearance, with a white glossy finish. “The carpentry was designed to match the Gorenje Ora-Ito oven and induction hob from Hafele, which Yumin absolutely wanted!” he shares. The kitchen was also shifted from the back of the flat to the front, to become part of the open-concept living area.
Paintings from Ode To Art, such as the large one behind the sofa, give pops of vibrant colour to the home. Most of the furniture pieces are in neutral shades.
A small concrete screed foyer is set before the raised platform, which marks the entry into the living area. Between the entrance and kitchen is the cosy craft corner that also functions as a breakfast bar.
As it wasn’t needed, the second bedroom was demolished to accommodate a larger living area that is brighter due to the sunlight from the windows.
The bedroom has a restful feel and is kept simple with a low bed, white walls and warm woodtone flooring.
The folding doors with glass panels and wooden frames, that separate the bedroom from the common area, were made using solid timber, stained and sanded down to look rustic and reclaimed!
Located at the back of the flat, the open vanity area features pebble flooring with inset tile strips, just like that of a Japanese Zen garden. It adds texture and contrast with the adjacent floor finishes.
A craft corner by the window
This nook by the kitchen is ideal for the artistic homeowner, who hosts art sessions and parties at home. A simple ledge was installed under the window that looks out to the common corridor, and the area is decorated and personalised with curios, plants and decor objects.
A low bed
Chris tore down the wall of the second bedroom, making way for a stretch of built-in wardrobes in Yumin’s bedroom. The focal point, however, is the low bed, reminiscent of a futon bed that is typical in Japanese homes.
Pebble flooring in the bathroom
As rocks and pebbles are a feature of Japanese zen gardens, Chris used pebbles in the semi-open bathroom, visible from the entrance and living area. This not only adds an element of nature to the space, but also zones the area without having to construct partitions.
WHERE TO GO
Bowerman Interior Planner, tel: 9487-9324