open plan mezzanine

East London home tour: ‘We achieved so much on a small plot’

December 10, 2020

Joe Stuart, an architectural designer and Passivhaus consultant lives in this two-bedroom self-build with his wife Lina in east London. The couple wanted to find a way of living affordably in the capital and bought the plot in 2012 with a total build cost of £330,000.

Joe and Lina Grand Designs

Joe and Lina’s home featured on Grand Designs. Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott

First-floor mezzanine

The main living/dining/kitchen area provides access to the sheltered roof terrace, which is perfect for the relaxed stargazing and entertaining friends. Joe’s design created give ‘half floors’ so that landings can be used as rooms, which was inspired by previously living in cramped, converted Victorian terraces.

open plan mezzanine

Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott

Monochrome kitchen

This open-plan multipurpose area includes cabinetry in veneered ebonised ash, which contrasts beautifully with the blonde-wood breakfast bar and concrete flooring. ‘We love raw materials and wanted a space we could shape to our style,’ says Lina.

monochrome kitchen

Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott

Minimalist bedroom

Bespoke full-height wardrobes ensure that the main bedroom is serene and clutter free. The open-plan staircase beyond leads up through the house, and continues the raw wood aesthetic the couple love. Minimal contemporary furnishings such as hanging bedside pendant lights are teamed with crisp bedlinen and tactile soft furnishings.

minimalist bedroom design

Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott

Seamless wet room

The en-suite wet room has been finished in soft, calming shades to maximise the available light that filters down from the central staircase. ‘As our house is open plan, we had to think about the holistic understanding of the interior and make sure that we didn’t have, for example, a pink room,’ Lina explains. Modern black fittings create a contemporary look that suits the rest of their minimalist home.

modern london self build

Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott