Tuesday 16 June 2015

Brit Decor: Livingetc House Tours/ Concrete Cool

All images / Copyright Mike Ahern

Last week was manic for so many reasons, but having Friday to look forward to, more so than usual, helped my focus to remain positive all week. Following an early morning drive from Bath to London, it was time for brunch at Made bar & kitchen with Hannah and the fab Arlo & Jacob team, and of course, some awesome bloggers - Style Juicer, Little Big Bell, Block Print Social, Museum Mum, Yes Please, and later in the day - My Interior Stylist, now that's a line-up!

Morning social aside, we had gathered together for a VIP version of the Livingetc House tours and subsequently we were whisked off by private coach to snoop, snap and survey a total of seven stylish homes across the capital.

Of the seven properties, one of my favourite homes is this four-storey cube house. A haven of contemporary cool concrete and mid-century modern furniture pieces, bold blocks of colour, and equally vibrant canvases, all seem to fuse together with an overriding sense of family. With an architectural style that is frequently associated with a cold and minimalist 'look', creating a family home in this context is no easy feat. However, I love how the homeowners have made no effort to conceal their kid's toys, which only adds to the character of the building and helps to create that important lived-in feel.

Similarly, the addition of vintage furniture pieces, rather than the obvious minimalist pieces, and copious amounts of books all help to embrace a sense of 'home'. It's also surprising how visually powerful the vases of freshly cut flowers look in contrast against the concrete wall panels - a material often associated with  brutal functionality.

Due to an open full height cross-section in the centre of the house, natural light floods down into the building, and with large windows in each of the rooms, this house seems much larger than it actually is - clearly with this project the architect understood the importance of maximising the sense of space. There is also something incredibly calming about the smooth grey concrete, which made this final home feel very tranquil.

Thanks again to the Arlo & Jacob team, and to Natalie from Block Print Social - thanks for being my #BusBuddy for the day!
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