Mad About . . .

Monday Inspiration: A Georgian Apartment in London

3rd February 2020
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Something a little different for you this Monday as we have a whole apartment to look around and it makes a lovely contrast to the somewhat more colourful apartment we looked at on Friday. This is an 18th century Grade II listed building that has been renovated by architecture and design studio Red Deer.

Now I’ve said it before, Georgian buildings are the Kate Moss supermodel of the architecture world. Square rooms, high ceilings, panelling and moulding, it’s pretty hard to make a Georgian house look rubbish. As long as you let its natural features stand out it can take any furniture. Like I said – put Kate Moss in a bin bag and she still looks good.

The architects stripped the building back to its 1750 shell. Downstairs there is an open plan kitchen, dining living space with the master bedroom and bathroom as well as an outdoor terrace while upstairs there is a second bedroom overlooking the terrace.

Now while they reconfigured the layout to suit a more modern life style (narrowing the hall to accommodate two smaller bathrooms) the designers went to some length to source period fireplaces and restore original mouldings and plasterwork.

The colour palette was deliberately kept minimal black, white and wood to allow the brass details and building’s features to stand out. And the whole thing is, indeed, really restful but it would be easy enough to add colour if you wanted to by replacing the white sofa ( a bold move by anybody’s standards) and choosing more colourful pictures to hang on the wall.

Here’s an interesting detail though – it looks like – above and below- the vintage rug is laid on a plain white rug underneath. There are several possibilities for this given that one assumes there was enough money in the budget to buy what they wanted. But that opens up ideas for the rest of us who might not have…. if you fall in love with a rug that’s too small for the space, can you lay it on top of another plain rug/carpet that then creates a border all the way round the edge and makes the whole thing look bigger. So it’s not rug on carpet but rug on rug making interesting design border. What do we think?

Moving into the bedroom and it’s a feast of panelling and plasterwork. This only works because it’s original. If you added this much to a room that wasn’t meant to have it it would look terrible. Don’t try this at home. Pick one or the other.

You can see also as you wander through these rooms how the gold velvet cushions pick up on the brass detailing on shelves, lamps and light switches. You can disguise cheap furniture if you pay attention to the details. Spend money on the touch points and the bedding and you can hide an ordinary chest of drawers (or paint it) and plain side tables.

Still haven’t made my mind up about this bedroom yet. Normally I love a half-painted wall but I think this one doesn’t go high enough. I would aim for a two thirds/one third split rather than half way up but that said I love how the paint has completely wrapped the room from window frames and door to the alcoves as well.

And to finish a show stopper of a bathroom. All those brass touches come together in one large glorious splashback which is also a reversal of the more usual brass taps and plain walls. Here the taps are black and the wall is brass. Practical? I imagine it will acquire a patina with time and can be sealed to stop it getting damaged.

What do you think? I think it’s rather fabulous and, for me, easier to live in than the stronger colours from Friday. Join the debate below.


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  • Hilary 27th February 2020 at 9:46 am

    Gorgeous apartment – totally agree the 1/2, 1/2 bedroom paint just doesn’t work and would drive me insane!
    However, where do you get bedding like that from, as it’s LUSH!

  • Charlie Kingham 11th February 2020 at 4:33 pm

    Such a stunning home! Georgian properties really are elegant and homely all at once.Totally in love with the white and light walls too – a perfect blank canvas for all the quality and quirky furniture pieces and art!

  • Annie Sorenson 5th February 2020 at 5:38 am

    Lovely & extremely livable. I like the layered rugs, though I agree with ‘Longden Life’; I wouldn’t use white! The half painted wall in the bedroom would give me nightmares. I don’t mind it in theory, but in a bedroom; in this bedroom, it’s way too fractured. I lust after that bathroom.

  • Rebecca 3rd February 2020 at 9:08 pm

    Oh, that bathroom! How fabulous!

  • johanne tremblay 3rd February 2020 at 7:15 pm

    I love it, i love it, it is fabulous.

  • Susan 3rd February 2020 at 2:59 pm

    Absolutely gorgeous! Thinking of purchasing a similar style flat in Rome and this would be perfect. A great blend of dark/light, old/new, and modern with enough patina and texture to reference history. Well done.

  • Longdenlife 3rd February 2020 at 2:24 pm

    Like the rug idea but can see myself tripping headfirst over the edge of one of the rugs onto the white sofa, probably with a glass of red wine my hand!

  • Jane Will 3rd February 2020 at 1:56 pm

    I love Georgian and I love the colours. But I just don’t warm to all of this. Too self-conscious, too mannered?

  • Anna 3rd February 2020 at 1:33 pm

    A good one to look at Kate. To my mind it’s rather masculine in appearance and almost impossible to emulate, (it’s in Harley Street after all!!)

    Red Deer followed the mint theme with their design of Lina Stores by the way.

  • Sarah Gilmore 3rd February 2020 at 12:56 pm

    Very cool and very elegant. I liked the alternating colours on the kitchen units – nicely done.

  • Kay Robertson 3rd February 2020 at 11:13 am

    Gorgeous, my favourite so far. I must live in the only Georgian home with incredibly low ceilings!

  • Kay Robertson 3rd February 2020 at 9:43 am

    My favourite in a long time! Love it. I must be living in the only Georgian home that has low ceilings!

  • Jade 3rd February 2020 at 8:16 am

    Wow, it’s beautiful and I adore it. I can’t say I’m too keen on the white rug border, not so much the idea but the colour. It would be grubby within 24 hours in my home. Not keen on the painted wall either, I think it would look stunning if they’d kept it white. The grey looks dull and unnecessary. I’ll be keeping an eye out for red deer from now on. The kitchen and bathroom are what dreams are made of.

  • Essjay 3rd February 2020 at 7:58 am

    Absolutely stunning. So many amazing ideas and the flow can be felt throughout the house. Not sure about the bedroom grey paint on the walls ending the middle.

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