Before and After: Flat Flop to Top of the Pops

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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Bradley Van Der Straeten Architects have performed something of a miracle within a block of maisonettes that were constructed from reinforced concrete in the 1950s. Speaking about the project, they said, ’We have redesigned the interior of a two bedroom maisonette. The first phase, which is complete, included a new walk-in shower clad entirely in natural slate. The second phase, currently under construction, involves making the existing kitchen open plan onto the main living space. The kitchen is to be clad in grey MDF externally and lined with natural bamboo internally (floors, ceiling and doors). The natural material is complemented by stainless steel worktops.’

What we are about to show you is a triumph of modern styling and classic good looks and you'd be forgiven for not being willing to believe that this cutting edge home can be found in an old fashioned block of maisonettes. Have we piqued your interest yet? Then let's take a look!

Before: As it was

Let's start with the positives, shall we? This is a relatively nice sized room, with a good amount of light, but that is essentially all we can say in defence of the space. There is nothing special about the room itself and those sofas are making it look much smaller and very dated. 

The floor seems a little too dark and, instead of giving the flat a touch of class that we assume was the intention, it just seems to further shrink it. What a decorating mistake this whole room is!

After: As it should be

What we find really interesting about this transformation is that while other areas of the flat have been modernised, as you will see, this spot has been thrown into time warp mode. The funny thing is that it works wonders!

A lighter floor, some Scandinavian retro wall units and fabulous seating has all brought this fantastic room to life. It feels cool, trendy and far out, while also offering a lot more available space. We love the nods to the past as it really ties in with the age of the building. How groovy is that?

Before: Terrible tiles

We aren't always opposed to mosaic tiles in the bathroom but we think there needs to be slightly more thought and consideration than we see here. While we understand the tiles are being used as splashback areas, the random spots of bare wall simply look disjointed and weird. 

Though blue is a classic colour to use in a bathroom, we think this space looks cold and uninviting. Perhaps something warmer and a little earthier would be a good idea? Let's be honest, it probably can't be any worse!

After: Scrubbed up

What a phenomenal difference a warm colour scheme can make. Not to mention the use of luxury tiles and materials. Those grey slate wall tiles look absolutely amazing and have made seemingly easy work of totally transforming this formerly cold bathroom.

A huge wall mirror helps to enlarge the space, while warm wood has also been put to great use as the sink housing and to create a shower shelf. This is a room that says 'use me' and what a dramatic turnaround that is!

Before: Cramped kitchen

Galley kitchens will always hold a special place in our hearts. Perhaps because they remind us of our university days but nobody wants a tiny, hard-to-navigate and even more difficult to use kitchen when they grow up, surely? We know we don't.

Awkward, unused space is making this kitchen a nightmare and, while there seems to be ample cupboard space, with a little more thought it could be increased exponentially. That colour scheme really needs looking at, too!

After: Warm and wonderful

Just like with the bathroom, this room has been dramatically adapted thanks to the embracing of a far warmer and more welcoming colour scheme. The rich wood, offset with brushed steel, looks not only modern with a touch of retro styling, it also seems to have enlarged the kitchen.

Opting for a timeless and classic design, this kitchen will not date, therefore giving it plenty of scope to look this good for years to come, which in a vintage apartment block is no bad thing and could see a generous return in the event of a sale.

For more transformation inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: A Wonderful Flat Transformation.

Would you love to create a retro flat? What era would you choose to emulate? Leave a comment and let us know your ideas!
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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