Belsize park- Edwardian family home transformation

Caitlin Hughes Caitlin Hughes
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This Edwardian property in Belsize Park; a popular area of London nestled between edgy Camden and fashionable Primrose Hill, is a delightful family home spread over four floors. The décor is modern and fresh, while retaining classical elements that make it look truly timeless.  All original architectural features have been retained and emphasised using a calming, neutral palette that compliments the interior style. Letting in as much natural light as possible was a priority for designers Hélène Dabrowski Interiors: a London based studio that specialises in creating effortlessly sophisticated, comfortable and timeless interiors which look lived in and have “a certain je ne sais quoi”. The layout of this property utilises light and creates a sense of space and freedom, whilst providing enough division between living areas for a traditionally ordered and functional living space. The design is practical but beauty is also an important consideration, with great attention paid to the finer details, from the light fixtures, to soft furnishings and ceramic vases in the bathroom. 

Elegant lounge

Everything from the gold and pearl coloured porthole mirror, to the shimmering blue and silver vases, emit understated glamour and good taste. Each piece of furniture has been carefully selected to create a balanced living room that also retains an individual feel: the dark wood and black detailing of the cupboard is slightly out of kilter with the light timber coffee table and its white central panel. However, the effect is pleasing and the opposition makes the room look exclusive rather than ill matched. 

View from the patio

The lounge opens out onto the patio and garden area, and as you can see here, the line between indoors and out has been emphasised by a very unusual feature. Pebbles are visible under blue-tinted panels of glass as you make your way out into the yard, giving the room a fun, quirky edge. One of the great things about this house is the underlying rebellious attitude that filters into a few of the design details. The classic, elegant design pervades, with just a hint of subversion—we love it!

Lounge opening out into the garden

Here you can see the garden which seems to be an extension of the home due to the fully opening patio doors. The lush green of the outdoors offsets the neutral colours used in the lounge, and the overall impression is bright, fresh and uplifting. The filigree detailing along the ceiling edges are a nice period feature that have been retained and subtly integrated into the modern design. The red and orange cushions, and the African-inspired decoration in the vases and ornaments, bring warmth and vibrancy to the room. These rusty, warm colours extend into the next room, creating a flow across the whole ground floor. 

Modern dining room

The sliding wooden doors allow this dining room to become separate for intimate dinner parties, and opened up for casual lunches. It also encourages the flow of air throughout the house: yet another benefit of open-plan living. The worn, reddish-brown chairs match the tones in the lounge, and also give a lived-in, welcoming feel to the room. The dining room should be a place for sharing meals, a few bottles of wine, and having a good laugh with friends: the interiors should therefore reflect this, and not be overly formal or leave guests worried about breaking something. Simple furnishings with just a few ornamental features is enough to create a stunning and usable dining area. 

Calming blue hues

The use of a duck egg blue colour in this bathroom gives it an instantly calming vibe. This bathroom is the perfect place to have a long soak and let all of the stresses of the day drift far, far away. The freestanding bath is a popular choice nowadays, assuming the bathroom is big enough. Space certainly isn't an issue in this house, which boasts a number of bathrooms to choose from. The silver wall radiator is a modern feature that blends perfectly into the chic design and offers the chance to get your towels nice and toasty—total bliss. 

Second bathroom

Having a window seat in your bathroom probably hasn't occurred to you before, but look how quaint and charming it looks! The floral cushions and French shutters bring an element of shabby chic to this bathroom, but the white suit is modern and understated. The toilet is free standing which makes more sense when it comes to cleaning the floors, and you'll notice there's no bulky cistern ruining the clean lines and neat finish of the design. 

Master bedroom

Blue is clearly a favourite for the owners of this property, with the powder blue shade making another appearance in the Master bedroom. The décor is kept to a minimum and the walls are entirely white with no wall hangings or wall art, and this is probably due to the extravagant design of this King size bed! The mirrored headboard and pewter coloured posts in each corner are glamorous and indulgent without being too excessive. 

Guest bedroom

This tastefully decorated guest bedroom employs a purple and cream colour scheme, and houses a more traditional bed with a metal headboard and wooden base. Decorating rooms with slanted roofs such as this can be a challenge, but the designers have negotiated it effortlessly, incorporating spotlights above the charming Edwardian windows for extra brightness, and sticking to white walls for maximum reflection of light. We particularly like the barrel bedside table and stitched lamp which lean towards a more rustic style. All in all, the design of this house merges effortlessly and is both classically beautiful and refreshingly modern. 

For similar properties take a look at this basement extension in Chelsea and stunning London mews conversion.

Would you choose similar interiors for your family home? Let us know what you think in the comment section below
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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