House Tour: An eclectic look for this personalised 4-room HDB flat


All images: The Straits Times

When married couple Leon Luo and Gwen Chiong bought their four-room Housing Board flat in 2013, they knew they wanted an eclectic style for their new home. And a variety of textures, colours and patterns is what one will find in the 1,000 sq ft Sembawang flat. The design and renovation was helmed by Mr Luo, an interior designer.


On one side of the living room is a red-brick feature wall. Mr Luo, 33, chose the bricks from four suppliers so he could get varying tones and textures. "The bricks go nicely with the orange teak-wood floor," he adds.

A long black wooden cabinet is built at the bottom of the wall and acts as a television console and display space.


At one end of the wall is a cement tree structure that stretches up to the ceiling. The TV is mounted on the "trunk" while bare bulbs hang from the "branches".

The other side of the living room boasts a different style. The wall, splashed in purple, has a hole with dramatic curves carved out to create an entrance to the dining room. "We wanted to break the monotony of the wall that separates the living and dining rooms," says Mr Luo. "Some people see the shape of an apple, while others see that of a peanut. It's interesting how people perceive the curves differently."


In the open-concept kitchen, the play with textures and patterns continues. The floor is paved with dark and light grey tiles; the cabinets are made of beige plywood; a countertop is overlaid with bricks; and part of a kitchen wall is laid with black- and-white Peranakan tiles.

These wall tiles are one of the couple's favourite design elements in the home. Ms Chiong, 32, a marketing manager, says: "I didn't have much of a hand in the design process, but I helped to pick out the patterned tiles. They add vibrancy to the home."


Peranakan tiles are also found in the master bathroom, providing a colourful contrast to the other grey tiled walls. The master bedroom is a cosy space with minimal furnishings. The bed is positioned against a black wall, which allows a colourful art piece hanging above it to pop.

Such striking pieces of art decorate the walls in the home, including a print of martial artist Bruce Lee that the couple picked up while on holiday in Bali. The renovation, which cost $80,000 with furnishings, took four months to complete.

The couple, who have no children, spend most of their time in the living room, where they watch television or chill out. It is also where they display soft toys and trinkets they have collected from their travels. "The living room is where we feel the most at home," says Mr Luo.


Adapted from The Straits Times.