Dutch expat Maud Felius tells us why, in 11 years of different homes in Singapore, she’s never strayed far from living in Bukit Timah, and how her family’s beautiful black-and-white home is their favourite yet.
Who lives here: Maud and husband Valentine, originally from Belgium, their children Fleur and Milou, helper Rachel, and dog Louka.
How long in Singapore: 11 years.
Personal style: European timeless look, mixed with Asian elements.
Style of home: Maud says, “The house itself already has so much charm, and it mixes with all styles”
At first glance, Maud’s sprawling black-and-white home has all of the typical attributes of a historical home of this ilk. Look a little closer, though, and you discover that Maud has added her own unique stamp to the place. For example, the portico, used for outside dining, has seafood-themed dish lids attached to the walls; there’s an intricate hand-stencilled floral design across the walls in the dining and study area; and the kitchen has a large silver fish hanging from the ceiling. In each room there’s not just one but numerous pieces that catch the eye, and you find yourself flitting from one area to another, trying to take it all in.
It’s impeccably put-together, which is fitting because Maud runs her own bespoke furniture and home accessories company, Belouk. She sources and sells many of the pieces found around the house, from the strikingly upholstered chairs and huge lamps to the photo art collection. The outhouse has been turned into a small showroom, showcasing more of the pieces she sells, and her office in the main house is home to a variety of textiles to choose from once you’ve picked one of her chair frames to upholster.
Maud’s foray into home décor was prompted by her own passion and interest in interiors and sourcing pieces for her own home. “I would always get my furniture repaired and reupholstered – after all, Singapore is the perfect place to get this done – and then friends started asking for help.” She began with chairs, and customers can now choose from four different models and a wide range of fabrics. She has since brought in lamps, tables and small accessories.
The family has never strayed too far from the local area, starting first in a house in Watten Estate, then Watten Close, and now here. They still have access to the Watten Estate area, with a back gate that leads to the popular Watten playground, meaning they don’t have to traverse busy Adam Road. “We were told by our French real estate agent when we first arrived 11 years ago that we would love this neighbourhood, and to this day I’m still really thankful that we chose the area,” says Maud. “We’ve never wanted to leave because we like it so much; it’s just right for us, and we feel very blessed to stay in this historical black-and-white house.”
Tiong Bahru Bakery
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