Interior designers are well versed in making the most of a given space. We speak to Dennis Cheok of Upstairs and Carmen Tang of Wolf Woof to find out how they tackled the toughest of projects to make them work.
Design: Wolf Woof
For Carmen, it is all about thinking outside the box when it comes to space amplification, starting with some ingenious storage tricks. One solution that she found for a client living in a petite condo in Everitt Road was to store his bicycle halfway up the stairwell wall; it can be accessed by a series of pulleys, and makes for an arresting talking point as well.
For another client, she created an eye-catching feature wall, with six panels sliding over three separate tracks. “The homeowners could change the look of their living room in an instant by showing certain panels and hiding others,” explains Carmen. “And, in the meantime, the panels also serve as a stretch of cabinet which offers immense storage space.”
Design: Wolf Woof
She also advises being practical, when it comes to working with smaller homes, and encourages clients to really think about what they need and what they can do without. “For one project, we were restricted by the tininess of the living area, so I proposed that the clients opt for statement furniture pieces instead of regular bulky items. In the end, we went with a lounge chair as the main furniture piece.”
For those who own a tiny terrace or mini apartment, Dennis highly recommends starting with multifunctional furniture. In a recently completed project, he introduced:
- a kitchen island that also serves as a dining table, bar area and food prep station
- an entertainment console in the living room doubles as a bench
- a bed frame in the master bedroom that can be used as a dresser
- and a powder room which contains the tiniest possible shower unit for the occasional overnight guest.
There is also a dressing room which functions as a utility room and a study-cum-junior room for when the family expands. By remaining flexible, the home feels as though it is twice its size.