Choc-a-bloc with Style

Choc-a-bloc with Style

Who A couple and their two children
Home Three-and-a-half bedroom condominium unit in the East
Size 1,800sqf

Most people would be apprehensive about having their home designed from a concept that revolves around blocks, for fear of it looking too bulky, rigid or even comical (think Lego bricks).

But with some creativity, a keen eye for detail and a good sense of colour and material combinations, you can achieve a truly inspired and unique-looking style - just as William Chan of Spacedge Designs did for the home of Derek Lam and Susie Fong.

The designer went with a repeated motif of "blocks", using different wood tones, colours and textures to emphasise the shapes in various spaces. "A structured design also helps save cost, as there is minimal wastage of materials, compared to curved designs," explains William of the $60,000 renovation cost. We look at the different ways in which structured, geometrical forms became cool elements of design in the couple's condominium apartment.

1. As "intersecting" forms

Next to the dining area, William built a large Peacock-blue cuboid that disguises storage space and the domestic helper's room.

On closer inspection, the groove lines that mark out the storage panels for tableware become visible. A glossy, bright orange rectangular plane slices into this "block", creating a sharp contrast between the colours and forms. This horizontal surface acts as the dining table, which is more than large enough to accommodate the family of four. Stools can be neatly tucked away underneath the custom-designed structure for a clean look.

2. For a 3-D pop-out effect

Instead of a typical TV console, Derek and Susie were open to one with an unconventional design. "Floating" boxes of different sizes and depths house video and audio equipment under the TV set - William customised the cabinetry to fit the pair's equipment perfectly. Different laminates were used for each box to ensure a variety of textures and tones, in this simple but attention-grabbing design.

3. To create a feature wall

The floor-to-ceiling feature wall not only acts as a visual point of interest in the living area, but it is also a space divider which sections off the study area.

The design of the structure plays with negative space, as it seems to have blocks "cut out" from the solid form. It also offers both hidden storage space for books and stationery, as well as an open display for decor accessories and travel souvenirs.

To enhance the colour-blocking effect, the wall is finished with three laminates on the side of the living area - a solid cream and two wood tones; while the other side is clad in sunshine-yellow laminate. This bold colour choice extends to the study room.

4. As part of the built-in cabinetry

The "blocking" continues in the private spaces of the home.

The master bedroom features a dressing area with fully mirrored door panels, a surprising variation of the solid colour planes throughout the home. One wardrobe door is hinged such that it rotates almost 360 degrees outwards, revealing a handy compartment for the neat storage of handbags and accessories. The design of the sleeping area also follows the same rectilinear language. The headboard is created by two asymmetric backlit shapes, complemented by bedside tables of different heights.

Where to go
Spacedge Designs, Tel: 6438-3760

1. Home & Decor, published by SPH Magazines, is available in print and digital editions. Log on to to subscribe now!

2. Check out more stories at Home & Decor online,

Also, check out the Sept 2014 issue for these stories:

a) The Right Spin
Learn how to plan your laundry area right, so that even the tiniest nooks can store all the cleaning supplies and look great at the same time.

b) Kitchen Zones
Browse the latest appliances and accessories for the preparation, cooking, and washing zones in your kitchen.


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