ROOM MAKEOVER’S & SMALL WORKS

OUTLINE BRIEF

This now re-energised home was one of those gem house finds that our client had coveted for years as a young man walking past on a daily school commute and has romantically revisited many years later to pluck this rough diamond from the clutches of dilapidation and restore above and beyond its former glory.

The original grand home was initially commissioned by the family behind the successful Greenhall Brewery company. It then passed under the Church’s ownership before being abandoned around the late 1980’s. Decades later our client decided to pluck this almost ruin from extinction. Desiring to fully restore the Georgian Grade II home and give something back to the community.

He turned to The Design practice by UBER to provide a full turnkey solution that involved gaining a 150% extension through planning, together with total design and project management of every single detail inside and outside the home.

Focusing on the dining room, it was both in need of restoring to its former splendour as well as injecting something of a modern update. The interior design needed to have sympathetic formal grandeur and symmetry to reflect the original Georgian proportions. However, where possible, modern subtle updates to create a fresh lifestyle proposition.

UBER hand-picked contractors whom we know and trust, and can work to the exacting standards and level of detail that we require. For this was a project where no stone would be left unturned to achieve an outcome we knew was possible.

Innovations & most important aspects

With an emphasis on restoring and renovating as many elements from the splendid Georgian structure as possible, the main focus was agreed to be the ornate wall arch which was to be the new modernized focal part of the room, without detracting from any of the Georgian design points.

The rare window design had a distinctive pattern framework with unique features. It was a particular credit to the team who had to recreate the exact listed design yet offer modern advances with regard to construction and insulation. They were tasked to deliver the savings of economy associated with modern glazing, whilst not compromising on hand-crafted aesthetics of a bygone era. Pleasing both planners and client initially seemed to be two opposite spectrums. However, using a mixture of technology and craftsmanship the result was a cutting-edge ultra-thin triple glazed pain and a hand finished look exactly matching the decayed original. The hardwood framework was scanned and recreated by robotic technology then finished by hand for an authentic look... yet with all the modern benefits.

The original fireplace had long since been removed and a current rundown 1980’s fireplace was in need of replacement with something more sympathetic.

The ceiling coving was in need of replicating and restoring. The archways and flooring all in a desperate state and much in need of reworking to create the bare bones of the original splendor. The doors required re hanging in alternative direction to create a better flow through the house. Sadly, salvation for most of these elements was not achievable and authentic details had to make way for modern alternatives whilst utilizing as much authenticity as was available to be salvaged. Our master craftsmen undertook an incredible labour of love to replicate many of the features recreating all details to exacting levels.

The Design Proposal

Accessed from the elegant entrance hall with light colours, there needed to be a change of pace: a solid dark wood herringbone pattern floor, contrasting with the softest of cream silk rugs. The room takes in a wealth of natural light from two aspects via the large restored windows flanked by majestic drapery and is accessed from symmetrical doors either end of the room.

Design Practice

The centrepiece is breathtaking, a highly lacquered dining table which is completed with two-tone upholstered chairs in cream leather with striking backs in blue material complementing the artwork and embellished with mother of pearl handles. This imposing arrangement is set off with a rock crystal chandelier and matching wall lights which reflect beautifully in the shot silk wallpaper.

To the feature arch on one wall we added a ‘cold applied metal’ which gives a bronzed effect to a wall, creating a real juxtaposition of classical and contemporary style. This included a bespoke shagreen sideboard, completed with horse sculpture and flanking table lamps.

Design Practice

The centre fireplace was then replaced in a Portland stone and modern classical grate to rebalance the grandeur but with a subtly modern twist. The spiraling “Camilla’s hat” Christopher Guy mirror above to finishes the room.

Overview and reasoning behind design

Overall it is a classically elegant room satisfactorily restored to a respectfully formal standard in keeping with the period. Yet it has an injection of modern character with luxurious touches at every turn. What is more the room feels approachable, usable and very comfortable.

Further Key Features

  • Exterior windows: Full and painstaking reconstructions of the unique design. To include modern double-glazing efficiencies, yet with a hand blown finish to the panes for authenticity.
  • Space planning – carefully considered to reflect the Georgian proportions whilst injecting a better flow to day-to-day living
  • Cold-applied liquid bronze to the feature wall- arch in the dining room set off by a fully wrapped sideboard in shagreen.
  • Symmetry and balance of layout to complement the original Georgian architecture.
  • Classical colour palettes with vibrant deep splashes to complement the artwork. For example, the vibrant blue chair backs in the dining room, embellished with mother of pearl handles. Or the deep blue velvet sofas in the drawing room.
  • Textures: elegant, touchable and effortlessly lavish.