FULL OF SURPRISES
Not settling for the usual furnishings, this couple sourced bold and edgy décor accessories.
Glass doors abound on the ground floor, brightening the expansive space.
NOT SETTLING FOR RUN- OF- THE- MILL FURNISHINGS, THIS COUPLE WENT ALL OUT TO SOURCE ACCESSORIES THAT ADD A BOLD, EDGY KICK TO THEIR HOME.
After handing the keys over to their interior designer, Mark Yong of Museum, David Bell and Lydia Yee jetted off to Bangkok to shop for their new place. And boy, did they shop. From dining chairs to statement lighting, the couple filled a container’s worth of furniture and accessories for their future home. After living in a rented place for some time, David and Lydia were ecstatic to put their first home together, so they couldn’t resist indulging.
Home was to be a 27-year-old bungalow nestled in a quiet corner in the east, and they had engaged Museum to give the house a contemporary industrial makeover. After a six-month renovation, which included a few tweaks to incorporate the couple’s buys into the interiors, the place is now a dandy pad that is cosy and dramatic at the same time.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that David and Lydia have mastered the art of shopping for their home. Buying things online, in town (Lydia bagged the armchairs in the living room for $300 at last year’s International Furniture Fair Singapore) and around the region, the couple managed to furnish their pad with wellmade items, minus the inflated price tags. “It was amazing how many bargains we managed to get,” David says. Due to the couple’s offbeat choices, which are quirky yet on trend, every corner features a talking point.
One knock-out piece David and Lydia acquired on their trip in Bangkok is a surgical lamp-inspired lighting fixture that drops 1.85m from the living room ceiling. It commands an industrial cool that not only pulls together the space’s masculine palette, but also sets the tone for the entire home. The double front doors made of wood (each weighing a hefty 150kg), balcony decking, dining set and the entertainment room’s sofa were also shipped over from Bangkok.
LYDIA DECLARES THAT THE KITCHEN, WHICH SHE DESIGNED WITH DAVID, IS HER FAVOURITE PART OF THE HOME.
“It started off from a few brochures and referrals from David’s friends. We also bought many pieces from a two-storey building called Crystal Design Centre. We were a bit apprehensive at first because it looks really expensive from the outside. But we soon realised that their prices were really reasonable,” recalls Lydia of their sourcing trip to Bangkok.
RESHAPE AND RESHUFFLE
Towards the back half of the ground floor is the kitchen and dining area, which now enjoys a healthy dose of natural light thanks to some adjustments. The area was opened up by knocking down the maid’s room which used to be adjacent to the kitchen, and using glass doors to merge the indoor and outdoor areas. “The kitchen is the heart of our home,” Lydia declares. “We do a fair bit of cooking, so we designed it ourselves so that it could fit with our habits.” The result is a fully tailored kitchen that is both ultrastylish and a breeze to work in.
The master bedroom used to occupy the second floor (now turned into a home theatre), but because its windows looked out onto the main road, the couple decided to shift their bedroom up to the third floor for more privacy. Their personal haven is now an open-concept sanctuary that was crafted by merging two of the three bedrooms on the top floor. The shared washroom now sits in the middle of the master bedroom, flanked by a utilitarian bed and an open bath area.
It takes good synergy between the homeowners and the interior designer to produce amazing results. Lydia and David thoroughly enjoyed the process, and Mark was glad to have quite a free hand when it came to design and material choices. “I only did the basic renovation works so that they could fill it and truly make it their home,” he humbly states.