1,238 sqft ︱3-bedder apartment
'Monochrome Midas' is set in a private residence redefined by its striking balance of light and dark, meticulously crafted by Studio lead, Cher, and interior designer, Zerick. This unique habitat, inspired by the homeowners' monochromatic fashion sensibilities, showcases a perfect blend of luxurious minimalism and practical elegance. The designers delve deep into the creation process, highlighting the personal styles and intimate details that transform this living space into a sophisticated reflection of its dwellers' contrasting yet harmonious personalities.
Q: Who are the clients, their lifestyle, and the brief they shared?
Zerick: The clients are purveyors of the monochromatic and quiet luxury aesthetic. They have a discerning eye for quality balanced with their conscious consideration for practicality. They highlighted the importance of natural light and openness in a space. However, one prefers the dark and edgy style while the other prefers the light and airy aesthetic. They do not cook often but love to host big groups; often involving wine & charcuterie boards.
We had the chance to visit the clients’ previous apartment to observe their lifestyle first-hand. We noticed that almost all the apparel they own were either black or white, meaning they truly embody the monochromatic aesthetic even with their personal styles. While an monocrhomatic interior was apparent in the previous apartment, they desired for it to be further curated to reflect their individual personalities and required more well-thought elements such as a sizeable dresser and substantial storage spaces.
Q: What was the design proposition?
Cher: We wanted the space to reflect their sense of personal styles and especially the duality of dark and light which symbolises the harmonious and complementary nature of their partnership akin to the perfect balance of yin and yang. We were also keen to display monochromatic travel photographs taken by our clients to establish for them a deeper connection to their space.
We drew inspiration from the monochromatic projects by French interior designers — Guillaume Alan and Christian Liaigre. The clients are loyal customers of the luxury brand, CHANEL, and shared with us references from one of their head offices. We sought to translate the high-end elegance and sophistication into a more liveable and welcoming residential environment.
In addition, the subtle inclusion of brushed gold accents was aimed at tying in the notions of luxury and refinement without overwhelming the design. It serves as a delicate, yet impactful, nod to opulence.
Q: Were there massive changes to the original layout?
Zerick: When planning the layout, we were focused on enhancing the flow of natural light and maximising storage space.
In the yard, the toilet and its enclosing wall were removed and replaced with functional countertops and cabinets totalling to a good 3.7 metres. The yard and now fully opened kitchen are separated with a steel-framed glass door.
Two bedrooms were unified into a private space with distinct areas: one dedicated for rest, while the other transformed into a spacious walk-in with an attached bath. Custom-made steel-framed glass sliding doors replaced the hacked wall and timber door into the rest area while a concealed sliding door into the walk-in was proposed to minimize disruption for the users. Within the walk-in, a lengthy 2.1-metre dual dresser table and ceiling-mounted mirrors were strategically positioned to take advantage of the natural light coming in from the massive windows and the decision to install only full-height day curtains further adds a touch of softness and grandeur.
Q: What are some of the key materials selected for the space?
Zerick: For materials, we took a strategic approach to flooring and opted to stain the existing wood flooring in the bedrooms to black resulting in a dramatic counterpoint to the original light marbled flooring in the living area thus; emphasising the transition between spaces.
We also incorporated subtle gold brushed stainless steel elements throughout the space notably the legs of the dresser table and kitchen shelving, which brought a sense of opulence and refinement to the overall ambiance.
The contrast between the hard lines created by the structural build and the softness of the furnishings is another aspect that we find particularly appealing. This interplay of elements adds depth and dimension to the space, creating a dynamic visual experience that is both intriguing and inviting.
Q: What are feature highlights you are particularly proud of?
Zerick: We think there are two outstanding areas - firstly, the dual dresser and secondly, the “portal” between the walk-in wardrobe and attached bath.
We understood that our clients hold sacred their morning routines to start their day right. While the couple enjoy each other’s presence tremendously, they require the utmost comfort of their personal spaces. The dual dresser table and mirrors allow the couple to connect while engaging in their activities simultaneously without getting in each other’s way. We envisioned they’d be sharing with one another their dreams the night before or the schedules they have ahead of them. At Studio Metanoia, we start with formulating good intentions for the spaces we craft and one of them we greatly believe in is spaces with the intention of enhancing connections between people.
With the “portal” connecting the walk-in and the bathroom, our clients embraced wholeheartedly the unconventional concept of doing away with a bathroom door but instead a custom carpentry frame that acts like a portal. On top of that, we are particularly happy with the steel-framed wardrobe with glass shelves that was inspired by a store display within CHANEL’s retail environment. We took the time to research on the design language and materials aligned with their commercial projects and eventually designed an illuminated display that showcased some of the couple’s prized possessions tastefully and allowed for convenient access to daily wear and self-care products just outside the bathroom.