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With her father a property developer and her stepmother an interior designer, the owner of this modern Georgian home grew up with dinner table talk focused on house renovations and home decor trends.
Unsurprisingly, she followed in the family footsteps and set up her own interior design company, Shere Madness.
One of her recent projects has been the top-to-toe revamp of the fixer-upper that she and her husband bought two years ago, in a Surrey Village, to share with their daughter and Siberian cat. ‘It was a wreck,’ the homeowner says of the house, which dates to around 1800.
‘When we viewed it, the estate agent turned the handle to a lean-to at the back and the door came off in her hand! But my heart skipped a beat with the potential I could see.’
The sitting room
To create a moody feel for evening entertaining, this grey living room has dark painted walls and twin bar stations.
The family was unfazed by the major modernisation, from total re-wiring and re-plumbing to replacing that lean-to with an extension to enlarge the kitchen. Having fallen for the period features and elegantly proportioned rooms, the couple were thrilled to uncover the original fireplaces and so set about painstakingly restoring the crumbling ceiling roses, in their modern Georgian home.
The monochrome scheme is timeless and if lifted with the pale pink kitchen units that feel fresh and unique in the modern Georgian home. The units have been painted in Chateau eggshell, £68 for 2.5ltr, Zoffany.
The dining space
The new extension that replaced a lean-to offers a bright and modern dining space, so the family can eat together at meal times.
They also made changes to the layout, replacing a downstairs bathroom with a utility room and converting one of the bedrooms upstairs into a luxuriously sized dressing area for the main bedroom suite.
‘We felt it was more important to enjoy the space that we had to the full than to worry about having a second guest bedroom used once or twice a year.’
The utility room
Plenty of storage- including space for coats and shoes- plus a handy worksurface and sink combine in this immensely practical design. The Cabinetry and panelling has been painted in Pigeon modern eggshell, £77 for 2.5ltr, Farrow & Ball.
When it came to decorating, the homeowner opted for classic monochrome, so painted the walls white throughout. ‘I did worry that I was being boring,’ she admits, ‘but I also knew it would be the best way to accentuate the natural light and allow our paintings and prints to sing.’
The home office
This desk is made from drawer units bought on eBay, which were sandblasted, waxed and topped with a glass sheet. Each drawer holds a swatch board for the homeowners interior design projects, so they are always at hand.
The couple have an extensive collection of artworks, gathered over years. ‘They express our taste and make the house feel individual and totally ours.’
To make the white work, Charlotte introduced contemporary contrasts and interest in the white hallway, for example, accents of dark grey add drama, while half-height panelling prevents the white walls looking flat and dull.
Border tiles accentuate the rug-like effect on the floor, so it has a feeling of grandeur.
When the budget was tight, or they simply couldn’t find the furniture they liked, the couple resolved the problem creatively. They made wardrobes for the dressing room from Ikea frames with doors in sheets of MDF, then applied beading and handles before painting. And unable to find the right kitchen table, they took a junk-shop base, made a plywood top and wrapped it in a sheet of zinc to create a piece reminiscent of a vintage French design.
The main bedroom suite
Soft textural cushions and throws add depth and luxury to a white scheme, while mirrored bedside cabinets bring a touch of glamour.
The homeowner repurposed a vintage sideboard with a custom-cut marble top for the vanity unit in the ensuite, perfect for their modern Georgian home.
The kids bedroom
The blue-painted ceiling draws the eye up to the chandelier, so the room feels larger. The bespoke tone matches the charming Scandinavian wallpaper around the original fireplace, which was uncovered during the renovation.
‘There are no rules,’ says the homeowner. ‘Have courage of your convictions and it’s amazing what you can achieve.’
Additional words: Amelia Thorpe