This home can be considered an interior designer's vision of the little black dress for a residential space. ELIZA HAMIZAH speaks to the homeowner-slash-I.D. behind this modern monochrome abode.
Sherlynn used stained birch wood for the pegboard wall, in a departure from the many matte black surfaces throughout the home.
WHO LIVES HERE
A couple and their two dogs HOME A five-room HDB flat in Bukit Batok SIZE 1,220sqf.
While there is a rise in the popularity of all-black interiors, there are not as many homeowners who would commit to this colour scheme as boldly as Sherlynn Low and her husband, Brandon Chen, did. What sets this home apart is the oversized alcove built into the living room which Sherlynn, the founder of interior design firm Millimeters Studio, cladded entirely in dark finishes. The dark ceiling and its cove lighting frame the living room, making quite the visual impact.
The decision to stick to a single colour was a simple one: The designer of 12 years prefers not to work from home, and a cosy ambience would help her keep to that intent. With that as her objective, the rest simply fell into place. Sherlynn tells us more about her abode, and how she pulled off the all-black look.
Q HOW DID YOU WORK WITH THIS COLOUR SCHEME?
I like things simple, but with a bold or unexpected detail or twist. In a similar vein, no one area in the house is entirely black. I complement black with shades of grey, add colour to every corner with plants and accessories, and play with different textures, such as the birch wood pegboard and tiled panel at the entrance. These give the home more life, and break the monotony of a monochrome interior.
Q YOU SPENT $103,000 ON RENOVATION. WHAT DID YOU SPEND MOST ON?
That would be the extensive customisations done and quality materials used, including the anti-rust and anti-corrosion galvanised steel used for the front gate, kitchen island legs, and all the square grid features you see throughout the home. I also opted for the anti-scratch and anti–bacterial Fenix laminate for the walls and ceiling of the living room “box”, and waterproof vinyl flooring. And, for a clean and seamless look, I concealed all light fittings and casings with false ceilings. This is a liveable showroom to show my clients, so I don’t mind spending more on materials that will last.
Homeowners Calvin Chan and Zoe Luo.
Full-length glass panels allow plenty of natural light to fill the indoor spaces during the day.
The light colours of the interiors help to make the open kitchen area look spacious and warm. Sherlynn was unfazed by the all-black colour scheme, as elements such as neon lights, design books and hanging plants help to brighten the interiors.
Sherlynn and Brandon have similar styles in fashion and design, so the renovation process was “super easy" their ideas did not clash at all.
The kitchen wall was hacked away to make space for a long kitchen island, which is useful as the couple entertain often. The island also features an induction cooktop and a downdraft hood.
Sherlynn took a bold approach in the design of her home, as she sees the space as a portfolio of sorts.
Accents come in the form of colourful accessories that adorn the shelves, counter and tabletops around the home.
The triangular sink was a steal. The couple found it at a clearance sale in Ubi, and paid only $80 for it.
The headboard cum bedroom dresser was inspired by the layout that many new hotels have adopted, says Sherlynn, who has experience in the hospitality industry.
Q WHAT ARE SOME SIMPLE YET CLEVER FEATURES YOU’VE DESIGNED?
I wanted to mask the joint lines of the laminates, so I decided on a linear pattern for the alcove walls. I also designed an angular vanity (instead of a long rectangular one) in one of the bathrooms. I needed more countertop space, but did not want to take up too much floor area.
Q WHAT’S IMPORTANT TO YOU IN A HOME?
Versatility. I can change the look of my pegboard wall any time and the furniture pieces I’ve chosen are minimalist and timeless. Furthermore, all the customised metalworks, such as the toilet cabinetry, as well as my wardrobe pole system, can be unscrewed and re-used in a future home.