Looking at the photos of this four-room condominium apartment near the Bukit Panjang area, one would not guess that it is home to parents with two young children. The design has a sense of cool masculinity and a certain discipline about it.
And then there’s that dominant colour running throughout the house: white – usually a nightmare to keep pristine near curious young minds. It might scare us but not this family, so kudos to the interior design that makes managing their home a breeze.
AT A GLANCE
Who lives here: A couple and their two young children
Type of home: A 4-room condominium apartmentSIZE
Size of home: 1,400 sq ft
ID: KNQ Associates
The brief called for plenty of common spaces to mingle and play in and storage space to keep things uncluttered. There were also considerations for the family’s existing furniture brought over from the previous home. A larger kitchen was also stipulated as the owners love to cook and found the existing kitchen too small.
Tasked with renovating the unit was interior design studio KNQ Associates. “The homeowners’ love for the cottage style underpins the design direction,” says the design team, preferring to speak in the collective. “The general colour scheme is kept neutral with white as the main colour, plus greys and blacks to maintain a clean look reminiscent of traditional American homes and in line with the owners’ tastes.”
The traditional American home-style KNQ refers to specifically is the Shaker style, which is characterised by simplicity and bare, functional minimalism. It emerged in the 1800s and is practised to this day by the American community of the same name, dubbed as the world’s original practitioner of minimalism for their beliefs in making every element of Shaker construction and form, especially furniture and homeware, as simple, unadorned and durable as possible.
“We aimed for a wholesome look with every element in the house integrated cohesively. Once inside this home, you are transported into another world. We wanted it to feel like an old family cottage from the suburbs that’s a little bit classic and a little bit vintage,” explains KNQ.
This homage to the Shaker style can be seen in such areas as the living room with its simple wall trimming and wood panelling that conceals the husband’s man cave-cum-home office for when he needs to get away from the children.
It even has a bathroom dressed in a darker colour scheme.
The dark, wenge wood- looking WPC (wood plastic composite) flooring is uniform throughout the home, creating a seamless visual flow between areas while providing contrast to the white walls.
The furniture is a mix of old and new. “Most of the pieces are not overly expensive, but they suit the look,” says KNQ.
“Many, including a few pieces from Ikea, have been sourced locally. As with most of our projects, we source the furniture for owners, but we love to work with what they already have, too.”
Of course, there were a few architectural alterations made to the unit’s original plan. For instance, an existing toilet at the back was removed to make room for the kitchen’s expansion, and what used to be the yard area is now a storeroom.
Then the wall separating the master bedroom and master bathroom was hacked and the latter’s size was reduced by 25 per cent to make room for a sit-down dresser the lady of the house wanted.
The master bedroom features a white and light grey colour scheme.
To accommodate this, the original bathtub was replaced with a shower area. Clad in off-white, the bathroom may now be space-efficient but it still feels luxurious. It is also one of the owners’ favourite spots in the house, where they can rejuvenate after a long day.
Another favourite part of the home, as told by the design team, is the cosy living-dining area where the family can catch up and bond while enjoying the view of the greenery outside.