While we mostly feature Australian homes on the site, you know I can’t resist a look at what’s happening around the world, especially at the sort of heritage homes we just don’t have here. So today, let’s go on a tour of a gorgeous five-storey Victorian terrace in London’s leafy Highgate, which has been transformed into a modern family home while keeping its period charm.
LLI Design recently won an award in the United Kingdom Property Awards for the total redesign and refurbishment of the terraced townhouse and we can see why.
Historic Highgate is filled with beautiful period family homes and this one was no exception. Perched at the top of Highgate Hill commanding enviable views across London this 1860s house forms part of a terrace. Although the brief was to keep the period feel of the building, it also required that a contemporary individual aesthetic should be overlaid in order to create easy open plan living spaces that worked for a modern lifestyle.
The house was tall and narrow but had the advantage of being quite long front to back. A major design problem which had to be addressed in the overall scheme was how to make the property feel visually more expansive laterally. The existing layouts required a total redesign, with careful consideration required to how the dynamics and flow of the spaces would feel. The direction adopted throughout was eclectic with elements of mid century, contemporary, industrial and traditional styling all coming together.
Lower ground floor
On the Lower Ground Floor, a boot room was created by dividing off a section at the front, which allowed for plenty of storage for everyday coats and shoes. It also had the advantage that it could be accessed from the street via the basement light well, making it ideal for everyday family use.
The boot room connected to the open plan kitchen, dining and family living area, which in turn opened onto the garden at the rear of the property.
Upper ground floor
The Upper Ground Floor was completely reconfigured by way of removing the corridor between the rooms which freed up valuable space width wise.
A smaller entrance hall was created which opened onto the formal living/dining room that led onto a new contemporary conservatory, for which planning permission was sought and granted to replace the existing conservatory.
The footprint of the Upper Ground Floor was increased by extending out over the Lower Ground Floor where the building returned. The traditional sash window was replaced with a full height, full width, fixed window allowing for long views onto the garden. The impact of extending this small area allowed for better flow in the dining room making the space feel more comfortable and cohesive.
The First Floor was reconfigured into a master suite, consisting of a master bedroom, dressing room and ensuite bathroom.
The Second Floor was reconfigured to create two bedrooms, a family bathroom and featured a clever laundry cupboard.
The Third Floor was reconfigured with a guest bedroom, home office and a shower room.
By way of reconfiguration, clever use of colour and lighting together with bespoke joinery elements, this property was completely transformed from a traditional layout, five-storey Victorian townhouse into a contemporary family living space.
The design stayed true to the Victorian bones and features of the original, but at the same time was able to offer the elements so desired of 21st Century living, being open plan, multi-functional spaces with large windows offering inside/outside living.
LLI Design offers a comprehensive design service, creating beautifully crafted interiors for discerning clients. The creative team is led by design director Linda Levene. Her background as a fashion and textile designer is reflected in her love of form, texture and colour.