Fiona and Tim Peregrine’s impressive basement extension is now a stylish multipurpose space for all the family
A London couple boosted the size of their basement to create a stylish, open-plan family space
When Fiona Peregrine and her husband, Tim, viewed this five-bedroom Victorian semi in west London, they knew they had found a home with the potential to give them the comfortable family space they had always dreamt of. ‘There was a basement, which housed the utility room,’ says Fiona, ‘so Tim and I came up with a plan to extend this under the entire house and into part of the garden.
It took a year, but we got exactly what we wanted: a huge area containing a large family room to share with our girls Anjali, 7, and India, 5, plus a study/ bedroom, bathroom and utility room. On the ground floor we added an open-plan kitchen-diner and painted the Shaker-style cupboards in a daring black-blue. The island has a fabulous wood veneer and wide drawers – perfect for storing food.’
Dark woods and metallic finishes combined with warm blues and greys have given the kitchen and new basement extension a sophisticated, masculine feel. A colourful patterned rug framed by an L-shaped sofa in teal velvet enhance the modern aesthetic in the family space. In the rest of the house, floral paintings by Australia-based artist Marcella Kaspar and Russian Natalia Tsvetkova lend a softer note.
‘I never imagined I’d have a pink sitting room,’ says Fiona, ‘ but the artwork influenced the pastel tones we chose for the curtain and armchair fabric. I think the shade works really well with the buttery hue of the leather sofa.’
Over the years, the couple has amassed an eclectic collection of furniture and ornaments from different eras, sourced mostly from ebay. ‘I’m a working mum so I don’t have the time to browse flea markets, even though I would love to,’ says Fiona.
The couple’s finds mix together harmoniously. Mid-century style prevails in the dining area, where original Ercol Butterfly chairs are paired with a Robert Heritage table. A 1990s Matthew Hilton Balzac sofa in the sitting room blends in with a pair of 19th-century Howard & Sons armchairs. ‘They’re timeless so make perfect partners,’ says Fiona.
‘ We’re delighted with our home – it’s even better than we thought it would be,’ she says, ‘and we still get great pleasure from looking at all the things that make it unique to us.’
design advice‘ It’ s best to use striking patterns or texture sin moderation so you can really experience their full, glorious effect’
KITCHEN The pippy oak drawers and brass accents contrast beautifully with the deep blue of the cabinets. Cabinets, price on application, adam Elliot Bespoke Kitchens & Furniture. Granite worktop in Taj mahal, around £900sq m, Granite London
FAMILY ROOM French windows opening onto a small courtyard help to enhance light levels. Bancroft corner sofa in Velvet azure, £ 4,500, Sweetpea & Willow. Crucial Trading Fabulous rug in Ruby Narrow, £106, Designer Carpet Remnants