By using a palette of soft, Scandi shades, Anja Inderst brought her vision of a cool, contemporary scheme to life.
Positioned on a corner plot, the Victorian end-of-terrace that Anja and Andreas Inderst fell in love with and bought in 2007 had a unique footprint: the rooms were all quirkily shaped and it had a garage – a rare commodity in London’s competitive housing market. ‘It just oozed character,’ says Anja. ‘I loved the double-fronted layout, but like many houses of that style, the rooms were a bit small and the corner position meant those on one side weren’t very deep.’
To gain extra space and create a large, open-plan kitchen and dining room, the couple applied for planning permission to demolish the garage and extend out to the side, and then knock through to the existing kitchen and playroom. ‘We didn’t design the new space to fill the full width.’ Anja explains. ‘I wanted to save some of the area at the side for a walk-in larder and an outdoor storage cupboard for bikes and garden paraphernalia.’
The charm and simplicity of designs from companies such as Plain English really appealed to Anja, and local company Kitchens Upon Thames was able to interpret her ideas: ‘I wanted a light, bright family space that could double up as a place for entertaining in the evenings,’ she says, so when it came to the island design, Anja knew exactly what she was after. ‘It had to be adaptable for many uses,’ she explains, ‘I didn’t want to break up the space with a hob or sink. It’s an ever-changing surface – when the girls are home from school they can sit here and draw while I prepare dinner. And when we throw a party it becomes a bar, serving area and social space for adults to gather around.’
Underfloor heating not only keeps the room warm and inviting, but it also has an aesthetic bonus: the couple didn’t have to spoil the clean lines of the walls with radiators. A smart range cooker is one of the scheme’s statement pieces, and to add subtle colour and texture to the understated palette, Anja choose wood-effect ceramic tiles in muted tones. ‘I wanted the tiles to be as long as possible to replicate real wood planks and shopped around until I found ones that were right,’ she says.
Anja is delighted with the end result: ‘I’m so pleased with the new look; I didn’t want it to be stark or too clinical, but the floor links in all of the other elements, pulling the whole room together.’
Photography: Fraser Marr