Bold colours and warm textures breathe life and personality into this once stark two-bedroom new-build home in Chiswick

Lara Sargent, Houzz Contributor
First published on Houzz
Lead image: Edmunds House by Zulufish

Houzz at a Glance
Who lives here A single professional man
Location Chiswick, west London
Property A new-build flat
Size 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
Designer Caroline Milns of Zulufish

New-build, city centre apartments are often functional and efficient, but can be devoid of personality. This was precisely the problem the owner of this compact London flat faced when he bought it, so he called on interior designer Caroline Milns of Zulufish Interiors to pep up the space.

“The owner wanted a warm, nurturing abode where he would feel cosy and at home after a hard day’s work,” explains Caroline. “He briefed us to create a cool pad where he could entertain his friends, but that would eventually be soft and feminine enough for a future partner to share.”

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishLook for contemporary living room design inspiration
Wallcovering, Élitis. Artworks, Bold & Noble. Casa medium deep sofa; Era coffee table in leather and iron, both Camerich. Light fixture, Buster & Punch. Rug, Modern Rugs. Sheer curtain fabric, Designers Guild

When Caroline Milns was tasked with the job of redesigning a lacklustre, fifth-floor city flat, she was confident she could transform the modern, functional space into a home for relaxing and entertaining.

“It looked like a white box, and we needed to create a cool bachelor pad that oozed laid-back, industrial chic with a polished edge,” says Milns. “We clad all the walls in textural vinyl wallcoverings and created a luxurious dark palette with accents of burnt orange and teal.”

It looked like a white box, and we needed to create a cool bachelor pad that oozed laid-back, industrial chic with a polished edge

The 80 sq m open-plan living space is contemporary yet cosy, with a mix of deep, low-slung chenille seating, industrial lighting and bold accessories.

The windows in the open-plan living and kitchen space are dressed simply with sheer fabric and, as the fifth-floor flat isn’t overlooked, offer adequate privacy.

“The industrial, brass lighting and copper accessories add a metallic glow, while the low-slung sofas complete the feeling of laid-back living,” explains the interior designer. “The orange accents were governed by the rich engineered oak floor, installed by the developer.”

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishBrowse mediterranean terrace photos
Furniture, Bamboo plants, Capital Gardens

Big, double, sliding doors lead from the living space onto a private balcony. “It’s flanked by floor-to-ceiling bamboo and furnished with sleek, outdoor furniture and oversized lanterns,” says Milns.

An two-seater opposite transforms the balcony into a private snug for enjoying the outdoors in the city.

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishSearch contemporary living room design ideas
Sideboard, Mobilfresno

A low sideboard is peppered with metallic and orange accessories to tie in with the overall colour scheme.

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishMore contemporary living room ideas
Flora chair, Camerich. Chicago floor lamp,

The lounge chair becomes a statement piece upholstered in orange cotton chenille.

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishBrowse contemporary kitchen ideas
Dining table, MD House. Industrial leather dining chairs, Rockett St George

The neat, compact kitchen, installed by the developers, is open-plan to the main living space.

Minimal, bare-bulb lighting and a retro-industrial dining table (in iron and black lacquer) with black leather chairs contrast with the simple, white gloss door fronts.

“We sourced all of the furniture,” says Milns. “The owner didn’t have anything.”

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishMore contemporary hallway and landing ideas
Wallpaper, Élitis. Console table; mirror, both RV Astley. Wall lamps, Buster & Punch

The warm, luxurious mood continues in the hallway, where crocodile skin-effect wallpaper and low lighting create a gentleman’s club ambience.

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishSearch contemporary bedroom design ideas

Textured, teal wallpaper, rich velvet curtains and opulent metallics create a cosy, boutique-hotel look in the master bedroom.

“We chose the colour palette together,” says Milns. “Again, we went for a low-slung Italian look with a dark and cocooning feel.”

Zulufish designed and made all of the joinery throughout the flat, including the master bedroom’s built-in wardrobes, clad in faux-wood melamine.

“All the paint colours were chosen around the variety of wall coverings throughout the flat,” adds the interior designer. “Also, all the doors were spray-painted so the interiors flowed into one another, and all the electrical sockets were changed for smart satin chrome ones.”

Edmunds House
Photo by ZulufishSearch contemporary bedroom design ideas
Bedding, Zara Home. Wallpaper, Élitis. Lamp,

The guest bedroom is a serene space in gold and neutral tones.

“It needed to be simple and non-gender specific,” says the designer. “It’s easy and relaxing for any guest.”

A backdrop of textured wallpaper adds depth to the guest room.

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Find out how to make open-plan living work in any property
Browse a range of console tables for your hallway
Discover clever built-in storage ideas for you bedroom