A Charming Country-Style Home for a Family of Four
Different country-inspired elements serve as delightful conversation pieces in this simple yet elegant house
As guests step inside this modern country-style house, the first impression they will likely get is how clear its vision is. The interiors breathe, and various country-style elements liven up and give character to each area.
Ironically, this clarity of vision can be credited to the compromises made by the husband and wife regarding the look of the house. The wife wanted a country-style aesthetic, while the husband preferred an airy space with less clutter. The task of marrying these two visions fell on the hands of interior designers Tala Singson and Dagny Madamba, who had to sort through tons of pegs of country-style homes shown to them by the wife. "It helped that we were involved from the start," says Tala. "We were able to refine our clients' vision, and plan the spaces properly."
The family used to live in a cramped townhouse that they "outgrew," so the 300sqm lot proved to be a godsend. The new house has to accommodate the family of four and their two maids. To facilitate free-flowing movement inside the house and encourage interaction between family members, an open layout was implemented, leading to spacious interiors that benefit from natural light, thanks to wide windows and sliding doors.
The wife knew what she wanted for the house, even details such as tile designs and color choices, which proved to be both helpful and challenging. "It's always challenging to find the perfect items for every home, especially if we don't want to compromise quality and style," says Dagny. "We were fortunate enough to have a homeowner who was very hands-on and knew the style she wanted from the get-go."
The result is a house that knows what it is and shines in its subtleties. With architectural elements such as barn doors, shiplap walls, and ceiling trusses complementing the understated yet elegant interior design, the house is everything the owners had hoped for, and more.
The house has a predominantly white color scheme. The ground floor living area, the first area visitors set foot in upon entry—sets the tone for the rest of the house, with its fresh, clean look punctuated with wood accents and colorful trinkets. "The lady of the house initially wanted a house with mostly neutral colors, but we were able to persuade her to add a bit of color here and there," says Dagny.
Keeping the look consistent are the console and center tables from Pottery Barn, their wood surfaces introducing a raw texture to the otherwise clean space. Patterned tiles decorate the risers of the stairs, adding to the country-style feel.
Just past the living room is the dining area, where a round table surrounded by Windsor chairs takes center stage. The whole set is customized, with the table built at Tiendesita's and the chairs custom-made by carpenters. "Tala and Dagny were very particular that the table be round, because it goes well with the square space and maximizes the area," says the wife.
The small chandelier hovering over the table, bought from Philips, adds an industrial touch to the space. Sliding glass doors open to the garden outside. The window glass is from Andersen, which helps lessen the heat that enters the house.
On one side of the dining room is one of the husband's favorite possessions—a dark brown liquor cabinet from Mav Furniture, where he keeps his liquors and wines.
With natural light streaming in through the windows, the kitchen is quite a tranquil space during the daytime. Subtle elements give the kitchen a country-style feel, such as the lighting fixture from Vintage Hardware, the custom-made bar stools, and the patterned backsplash. "Dagny and I bought [the backsplash] from Tagaytay," says the wife. "What's funny is that it's the exact same pattern as the peg I showed [the designers]!"
Find similar tiles at La Europa Ceramica, Booth 70 And 74 Ortigas Home Depot, Julia Varhas Ave, Ortigas Town Center, Pasig.
One of the challenges that Tala and Dagny experienced was looking for a farmhouse sink, which they felt would fit perfectly with the house's theme. They couldn't find one, so they settled on a porcelain dual sink from Kohler to complete the look of the kitchen.
Find Kohler pieces at Sanitec, Main Showroom, 236, E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue, Barangay Don Manuel, Quezon City.
Second Floor Family Area
Upon ascending to the second floor, the family area is the first space to come into view. Being the space where all the bedrooms converge, the family usually spends time in the space to watch TV or listen to music together.
This area was mostly designed for the husband, a music lover and liquor enthusiast. Tala and Dagny made room for his audio equipment and placed a small bar area beside the couch, creating the perfect atmosphere for the husband to kick back and relax. On the floor, are small poufs from Abre Linea, a group that provides livelihood to Typhoon Yolanda victims in Tacloban.
Second Floor Family Area
Adorning the wall are three Manuel Baldemor paintings of Laos. A bigger Baldemor painting of cherry blossoms in Japan hangs on the living room wall downstairs. "We like to travel as a family, so we like his work," says the wife.
More country-style elements spruce up the master bedroom. A spherical chandelier made of metal hangs over the bed, and a wooden barn door opens to the walk-in closet.
There is so much space inside the room that Tala and Dagny were able to fit a reading nook—with an armchair from Mav Furniture—and a work desk in one corner.
A wooden barn door leads to the master bathroom. To make the most of the available space, the designers were able to incorporate a compact work nook and wall-mounted shelves as well.
The bathroom uses up space wisely with the bathtub and shower area sharing the same space with no divider between. According to the lady of the house, the area takes inspiration from Japanese hotels.
The husband didn't want a cabinet inside the master bedroom, so a walk-in closet was needed. Keeping within the home's color palette, it's kept bright and airy with white drawers and mirrored closet doors.
The layouts of the children's bedrooms mirror each other, but each one has a character of its own. The youngest wants blue to be the dominant color of his room, which Tala and Dagny executed through simple accents as seen in the bed sheets, lighting pieces, and a blue toy chest custom-made by Urban Abode.
Since he wants to be a pilot one day, an aeronautical theme is also present in the space, seen in the plane-shaped coat hangers and desk lamp.
One of the wife's requests was for her two boys' bedrooms to be connected to each other, so a sliding door was put as the main divider of the spaces. "I wanted them to see each other still, because when they have their own rooms, they'll have this tendency to shut themselves in," says the wife.
The eldest son's main request for his room was an L-shaped writing desk where he can do his homework in. A steampunk-inspired desk lamp from Papemelroti lights up the room at night.
The children's bathroom is one long continuous space bridging the two rooms. There are separate sinks on both ends, with a shared toilet and shower in the middle.
Beside the children's bedrooms is their study room. "That's my youngest son's space, because he's quite messy with his things," says the wife. Shelf space was another request of the owners, for which to store all their books, clothes and other belongings. The chairs, brought from Ashley Furniture, were chosen for their distinct country-style aesthetic.
Among the pictures the lady of the house showed to Tala and Dagny was of a shelf wall she found on Pinterest. The designers couldn't find space for it until Dagny suggested creating a storage room on the attic, with the dividing wall converted into a bookshelf.
The move freed up space for a game room where the children can play table tennis, foosball, and video games.
Aside from using the shelf to hold different books, it can also be used to store their DVD collection and other personal belongings.
Ready for your own makeover? Get in touch with interior designers Dagny Madamba and Tala Singson through email at dagnymadamba[at]yahoo.com and talasingson[at]yahoo.com.
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