Offbeat Novelties Come Together in this Creative Couple’s Townhouse

Dondi and Esmi Limgenco have managed to build a creative space despite their polar opposite tastes

Original Article: Paula Bianca Abiog Photography: At Maculangan Pictorial Direction: Coni Tejada

While Esmi prefers her space clean and streamlined, Dondi – who collects anything odd and unsual, has always been drawn to creative knick-knacks and visual arts. Given this, it comes as no surprise that their townhouse has gone through a series of motifs over the years.

From buying pieces from garage sales to having an IKEA phase, their home was filled with plastic furniture-tables, monobloc chairs, and metal and glass pieces. These days, the couple’s home fixtures and furnishings are going back to basics: wood. “I'm moving towards more natural materials. I guess because everyone is moving towards organic, so the furnishings have also moved toward that," Dondi says.

A townhouse doesn’t offer much space, so keeping clutter at bay is always a challenge—particularly for Esmi. Her advice? “Edit, edit, edit!" She continues,"A lot of our stuff is hidden away under the stairwell, which we converted into a bodega. Kapag nagsawa na, we just change the stuff up, and keep the rest in there. As you can see, Dondi likes visual references, and he collects everything and it's everywhere in the house. If his mantra is to reveal, mine is to conceal.”

Original article by Paula Bianca Abiog. Pictorial direction by Coni Tejada. Photographed by At Maculangan.

Read the original article (“Homework”) in the July 2010 issue of Real Living Magazine. To download a digital copy of Real Living Magazine, visit Summit Newsstand at

Living Area The leather couch from Dimensione is the perfect backdrop for a living area peppered with bursts of color and quirky finds. According to Esmi, the beauty of the couch is that “it's like three La-Z-Boys stuck together. They all recline individually.”
Creative Space Both Esmi and Dondi are creative people, as evidenced by their “receiving area” where flea market finds mingle with garage sale buys and are updated by cheery pops of color. The checkered, translucent curtain is a clever way of making use of natural sunlight, while at the same time diffusing the “cluttered” feeling of the space.
Small Space Tip The Limgenco’s living and dining areas are separated from the kitchen by a black divider from Play and Display tacked with colorful photos and postcards. Acting as a screen for the kitchen, it also displays the postcards and photos that the couple collects and takes.
Dining Area Detail The drop-leaf table from Play and Display was the perfect solution for the couple. Its footprint is small when folded away. The chairs also fold away and can be stored in a caddy under the table.
Kitchen Detail The Limgencos’ kitchen may be small compared to other families’ but they’ve managed to make it cozy and homey with personal touches such as novelty coffee mugs, one-of-a-kind ref magnets, and the like.
Wall Art A great way to brighten up a home is to mount framed book art and movie posters on a nondescript wall. Dondi’s much-loved flat-screen TV set atop a wooden coffee table is a great play on things old and new.
Dondi's Office Dondi’s space at work reflects his penchant for the odd and unusual. As Esmi says, Dondi is a very visual person, and draws inspiration from whimsical stuff. His office cube houses a magnetic wall—the perfect canvas for trinkets picked up here and there. The couple likes the idea of having little bits of art. Dondi sees postcards as small artwork.
Chairs In the workstation, different kinds of chairs are seen: from office chairs to metal stools - even colorful ones!
Books Books are kept at bay near the workstation.
Inspiration Board The wall near the workstation serves as an inspiration / mood board with the various cutouts and other knick-knacks added. For a creative duo, this helps the creative juices flowing.
Knick-Knacks Just some of the knick-knacks on the wall -- postcards, cutouts, and a charming mini-clock.
A Collector's Collection The couple finds a way to display some of Dondi's collections - like these toy collectibles.
Recycled Decor Another find in the Limgenco home is this decor piece made from old light bulbs bound together by a woven nylon cord.
Classic Decor One of the quirky finds in the home is this Mao Zedong decor --- displayed with other vintage-looking pieces.
Functional Pieces To help organize keys in the house, they opted for a classic key organizer -- hanging on the wall.
The owners Dondi and Esmi pose for a quick photo op.

Latest Stories

Here’s What You Can See Inside Arete, Ateneo’s New Art Hub

Ateneo de Manila University’s latest art and cultural complex features various galleries containing works of important Filipino artists

These Condos in Manila Have Doubled Their Prices

Leechiu Property Consultants compile data on how selected high-end condominiums have risen in value over time

Save Space in a Small Apartment With These Clever Ideas

These nifty designer tricks can help you turn a tiny house into a bright and spacious haven

This Art Festival In Pasig Is Free To The Public

The first ever Ortigas Art Festival features paintings, installations, and art classes all within a community mall

8 Things to Remember When Visiting Art Galleries

Make sure you turn off your camera's flash

This Online Store Sells Pretty Woven Planters and Handmade Items

The plus side? Buying a piece helps local weavers and craftsmen, too!

The Best Divisoria Shopping Tips for 2018

Here’s our ultimate, updated guide on how to navigate Divisoria, the best bargain shopping spot out there

5 Renovating Mistakes To Avoid

DIY can only go so far—sometimes, you need the help of a pro

Get Ready to Shop: MUJI Is Lowering Their Prices

It starts today so run to a store near you!

A 100sqm Coffee Shop-Inspired Home

To turn this home in Singapore into a cozy haven, designer Kuay Mei Yee of Distinct Identity perfectly mixed Scandinavian and industrial details

5 Household Uses For Silica Gel Packets

Those tiny things you see in boxes of shoes and new bags go a long way
Load More Stories

Get inspiring design ideas and handy hints.
Subscribe to our newsletter now!