Before we started, this unassuming and tired looking townhouse had a layout found in countless similar properties around the country – two floors of bedrooms stacked above a ground floor lacking in spatial connectivity and unfit for modern day-to-day life with compromised space to entertain, relax or socialise.
The brief from our clients was therefore very straightforward – provide us with generous living areas, a sense that we live in a three-storey house, and with connections to the garden.
Our idea was very simple, we moved the centrally positioned stair at the ground floor to one side and left the void where the old stair used to be open to the floors above giving a sense of connectivity between the floors. This allowed us to open up the ground floor from the previous warren of rooms to a single open plan social kitchen/dining/living space that further extends out into the garden both visually and materially. The new dining table occupies the niche left by the old stair and becomes the heart of the house. We are excited to have also designed the table itself, made from the same Danish timber boards used for the floor and the new stair.
No grand gestures, just simple space planning with a high attention to detail and material choices, put together beautifully by the team at Pask Construction. We love it!
The new stair is considered as a piece of furniture, crafted from the same timber used to the ground floor and with the base painted an ink black. The existing stair from the first to the second floor is retained and overhauled with details painted black providing visual connections between the floors. The void left by the old stair at the ground floor gives a sense of drama above the dining table and the new layout completely opens up the shared living spaces to the garden which, on warm days, becomes an extension of the living room.
White lye stained Danish Douglas Fir, birch plywood, exposed brickwork and carefully selected ironmongery create a warm, muted, elegant combination of materials that will stand the test of time.