Renovation Journey: Home On Display
At a Glance
• Gary, his parents, and their dog
• Size: 126 sqm / 1356 sqft
• Location: Reflections at Keppel Bay
• Cost of Renovation: $42,000
• Interior Design Firm: Schemacraft
• Interior Designer: Martin
Having accumulated a lot of stuff, Gary wanted many space-saving storage options for his new place. Thankfully, his interior designer, Martin, came up with just that and his items were neatly tucked away or displayed around the home.
Qanvast: Why did you decide to engage an interior designer?
Gary (G): As this is my second home, my colleague recommended it since I was already investing money on the renovation. I felt that it would be well worth the money as my home would have nice designs that also met my needs.
Qanvast: What was your brief for the home renovation?
G: Though I didn’t have a particular theme in mind, I knew I needed a lot of storage and space, to display my art work and display pieces, to be incorporated into the design concept - I have a collection of Playmobil figures I wanted displayed.
Qanvast: Why did you decide to go with Martin from Schemacraft?
G: I presented my brief to three interior designers in total – Schemacraft, Third Avenue Studio and Metamorph Design. When they came back with their designs and quotes, I felt that Schemacraft could achieve the most with my budget.
Qanvast: How about the other two firms?
G: Metamorph Design came up with a radical, modern design, and the bulk of their designs concentrated on the dining area - I didn't want to spend most of the budget on that small area only. Their quote was also the priciest, quoting me an amount exceeding $50,000.
Actually, I liked what Third Avenue Studio’s designer proposed. He made use of the long wall in my living area and proposed a sliding panel so the TV could be hidden from sight. However, their quote was higher than Schemacraft’s and I wasn’t sure they would be able to accommodate my tight timeline.
Qanvast: In what way did Martin’s designs stand out from the others?
G: Martin’s designs showed his understanding of my brief and an ability to visualise it. His designs had the right combination of storage space and display space.
His feature wall also really caught my eye. Although it looks simple, I felt it was practical and could meet my storage and display needs.
Qanvast: How did Martin help you with the renovation?
G: Martin proposed the colour scheme of blues and greys which suited my tastes. I would also seek Martin’s opinion for my furniture. He brought me to one of his regular contacts to look at the lights and the fans, and helped me to choose what suited the design.
He also found a way to accommodate the altar table tastefully into the overall design. With some feng shui considerations for its orientation, Martin found a practical spot for the table which was easily accessible for my mom.
Qanvast: How else did Martin impress you?
G: He understood my urgency to move in and accommodated to my request, delivering within that short frame of time. After my key collection, he came over immediately and started to put the concept together.
I really appreciated his dedication to my project and my tight timeline – especially because I knew that he was also handling a few other projects.
Qanvast: What were some unanticipated challenges that came with your renovation journey?
G: The electrical rewiring took a longer than expected since as I added more power points to suit my needs. Martin managed to get it done quickly though the rewiring was complex.
Another challenge was that the managers of the condominium had some specifications on the type of lighting installed – something I didn’t know about and would be good for other homeowners to note.
Qanvast: What tips do you have for homeowners who are shopping for an interior designer?
G: While homeowners should have a design idea or concept in mind, they should also be open to the suggestions of the interior designer and be comfortable with exploring new concepts.
Qanvast: So you would strongly recommend homeowners hire an interior designer?
G: Absolutely. Put aside your budget and just do it; it’s a worthy experience. You will learn new things in the process. Martin taught about the concept of lighting; how to position the light to showcase my art work and display pieces and how to fully utilise the colour scheme to draw in the light.
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