A full design project sitting within the bones of a heritage restoration.
Brief: manage a heritage restoration and create an organic oasis on the edge of the city, create vertical internal gardens and landscape exterior courtyard, renovate kitchen and bathroom, add an adjoining new glass-roof atrium, transform the attic into a sitting room/office with a Parisian-style, rooftop balcony and custom joinery.
This heritage three-storey Sydney sandstone terrace had been somewhat neglected but had great bones. The client had a long wish list and wanted solutions that would work within the heritage build whilst updating the space to suit a modern, dynamic lifestyle that breathed individuality.
Every surface within the terrace was either handcrafted or revitalised in order to create a unique, contemporary space. From the hand-finished mirror frames to the bespoke, oversized brass latch. From the studded frame for the rear gate to the exquisite traditional carpentry. From the delightful curved ceiling to the loving restorations undertaken by skilled stone masons.
As the client was a passionate cook, the kitchen needed to make a statement as well as being functional. A bar cabinet was needed to show off her whiskey collection. Neolith was used on the bench tops and the kitchen was fitted with state-of-the-art Blum fixtures to maximise the use of the smaller space and storage. For the bar area, a moodier ambience was created by dark timbers and a bronze mirror splash back.
The interior sandstone and rendered walls were repaired and brought up to current building codes, along with the balconies and balustrades. The living room and bedroom ceiling lights were positioned to highlight the dramatic texture of the sandstone walls. Beautiful feature pendants, wall lights and lamps were selected, not only for their ambient qualities but also to enhance the heritage aesthetic.
A jewel box of colour was created with beautiful vases, vintage stools, throws and cushions in shades of copper, bronze, gold, deep red and dark Jaguar being used to enhance the sandstone. Bespoke convex mirrors were placed above the living room’s two fireplaces. The distortion from the mirrors created a playful illusion and showed off the handcrafted staircase and artisan-restored balustrade. Large-scale key pieces were selected for the sofas and armchairs and were complemented by art works to create a generous feel within the relatively small space.
In the rear courtyard, an organic garden evoking the magic of Marrakesh was created.
Perfect for entertaining, with multi-functionality achieved by having the hardwood timber screens and a bench sofa on castors. This enabled the owner the option of moving furniture around and allowed her to park her car in the courtyard when needed. Privacy was enhanced by layering the garden.
An internal vertical garden featured descending rows of succulents in various tones of green, blue-green and burgundy that set against the six-meter high stone wall created a dramatic sense of scale and spaciousness within the courtyard.
Photography Felix Forrest