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Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

March 1, 2017
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"It's not just a house, it's a home where we can relax and be ourselves."

At A Glance

  • Akshaya (27) and her husband Addy (30) - Research and banking industries respectively.
  • Location: Hougang Street 11
  • Size: 116 sqm/ 1248 sq ft
  • Renovation Duration: 6 weeks
  • Cost of Renovation (with furnishings): $55,000
  • Interior Design Firm: Inspire ID Group
  • Interior Designer: Aiken
Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

"It's an unfussy, mish-mash of looks," describes Akshaya about her New-York style industrial abode. Avid travellers and passionate art and furniture collectors, she and her husband Addy wanted an adaptable space that could incorporate their eclectic pieces and changing needs.

Aiken from Inspire ID Group took up the challenge, transforming their resale condo into a homely space bursting with character. We sat down with Akshaya to learn more about their renovation process.

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

Qanvast: What was the inspiration behind your home?

Akshaya (A): We actually didn't have a hard and fast rule of what style we wanted. It's also because me and my husband have different preferences; He likes more of a minimalist look, while I'd go for something more cluttered and cosy.

However, there were features that we determined we wanted in a space. We wanted a real, brick wall, and we wanted a place to hang our paintings. The both of us have been collecting furniture since forever, so we also needed a look that could allow us to incorporate those pieces nicely.

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

(Q): How did you guys come to use Qanvast for ideas?

(A): Prior to my renovation, I did some research, flipped through many magazines and went online to check out some websites. I felt that Qanvast was the easiest to use, as I could search for ideas based on the IDs and location. At that point, we were already meeting some IDs ourselves, but we thought it wouldn't hurt to get more quotes from Qanvast!

(Q): Out of all the IDs you both met, why Aiken from Inspire ID Group?

(A): We weren't keen on having too much in-built components, as we like to move our furniture around, but the other IDs that we've met kept proposing more built-in stuff into the design, overlooking our needs.

Aiken stood out for us, in a way that he listened to our needs and came up with the closest design we had envisioned. This was why we chose to work with him.

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

(Q): How did Aiken help you both out during the renovation?

(A): Aiken was very open to our ideas, very accommodating. One instance was when we were working on the design for the bathroom. We didn't really have an idea what we'd like to do, except for the louvred doors. So, he advised us on the other bathroom fittings, like which vanity table for maximum storage, how to manage our tiny bathroom space, and so on.

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

(Q): Were there any hiccups in your renovation?

(A): Not really, I'd say! Addy and I were really hands-on throughout, constantly checking in and communicating with Aiken about the renovation. I think it gave him a shock at first! So everything was pretty smooth sailing; It was great that Aiken even managed to complete the renovation 2 weeks ahead of schedule!

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

(Q): Which is your (and Addy's) favourite space in the house?

(A): For me, it'd be the kitchen. I love cooking, so I basically took it upon myself to design the space to my liking! I wanted an industrial feel, with a pop of colour - that's why we chose to pair the black subway tiles with colourful Peranakan style floor tiles.

Both Addy and I love our living area; He reads a lot, so the space was designed to look like a cozy cafe, with plush furniture and bookshelves. But for me, the best thing about my living room is that it features many of the artwork we have collected through our travels - it really gives the home a ton of character.

Renovation Journey: A Globe-Trotters' Sanctuary

(Q) Finally, how would you describe your house?

(A): It's a mix between an industrial New York apartment, cafe and a cosy sanctuary! We love visiting different cafes when we are travelling, so that really influenced our aesthetic.

In summary, what we are going for is a look that you'll want to come back to; Nothing fussy, but a place that you can relax, unwind and be yourself - a home.


Check out Inspire ID's Group portfolio here.

Love Akshaya and Addy's industrial-eclectic style? Here's how you can steal their look for your home! Simply drop us a free quote request, and we'll match you to 5 interior professionals based on your style and budget.

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