These two readers tell us why they called on the help of home styling and interior design experts to pull together their perfect home.
Makeover by E&A Interiors:
Vanessa Rademaker, Portuguese
Our bedroom furniture was 13 years old and, although it was still in good shape, we decided it needed a refresh. We purchased a new mattress and bedframe, I began looking for mirrored bedside tables; I purchased a pair of stacked glass ball lamps, thinking they would fit with the new bed. I also began looking into having luxurious bedding made.
I reached out to Chlöe from E&A Interiors as I liked that she sourced high-quality, more unique fabrics from smaller vendors in the US and Europe. We met and discussed what I was looking for, before she came to see the space in person.
The master bedroom is large, brown and rather dark all around. Given it’s a rented property, we couldn’t change the brown fixtures, but Chlöe had concepts for the bedding, along with other recommendations on how to achieve my desired outcome of a bright, fresh look with luxurious fabrics and textures, while also bearing in mind I was budget conscious. The project became about striking a balance between the new elements such as the soft furnishings, rug and footstool, and giving the existing furniture a new lease on life.
Existing furniture was sprayed in white and the mirrored accents that I had been searching for were added. The dressers got mirrored tops, while the bedside tables also got mirrors on the drawers and new glass drawer knobs. Bed cushions were made, matching lampshades added, as well as wallpaper to brighten the room. I had a chair and ottoman re-upholstered in a stylish combination of fabrics, and a soft rug and footstool were added to complete the look.
A vintage French country lingerie chest with new mother-of-pearl drawer knobs and pulls was initially sprayed a darker blue, but I found it to be too intense and dark for the room. Chlöe agreed and didn’t hesitate to send it back and have it resprayed in a lighter shade.
Chlöe was hands on every step of the way, and she was also open and responsive when I asked her questions and wanted to share my ideas. She has a keen eye for design and what does and doesn’t work in a particular space; a “cookie cutter” interior design approach won’t work in Singapore given the peculiarities of room layouts here. The vendors and contractors Chlöe works with are top-notch professionals, and every detail was well executed.
She did such a good job on the bedroom that we immediately started working on updating our formal sitting area, which has turned out beautifully. Every time I have visitors, they comment on the beautiful space and I get all the credit!
Makeover by Arete Culture:
Carl and Stella Jaeger, with children Lily and Jaiden, American
The collaboration with an interior designer is such a personal and intimate journey, so it’s important to find someone you can fully trust in terms of their artistic vision and concepts. Long-term functionality, along with creative designs that truly reflect our family’s style and personality, are also important. These collaborations can take weeks with multiple specialists, hence finding an interior designer with a reliable and professional team is key.
We’ve recently completed our third makeover with Arete Culture. Since our first makeover with owner Carol nearly four years ago, she continues to exceed expectations with stunning results each and every time. With each collaboration, she envisages new concepts and themes, while restyling existing pieces where possible.
This most recent project is the most comprehensive and complex, as we requested a full home makeover. We recently moved into a four-bedroom garden house with generous private outdoor space at the D’Leedon. The unit was bare with standard finishings, and while we brought in contractors to custom-build wall cabinets, study desks and bed frames, we engaged the Arete Culture team to bring sophistication and personality to our new home, and to draw out the distinct lines the building’s architect Zaha Hadid is renowned for.
Having other external contractors involved can often bring a range of challenges. This included outsourcing the colour scheme and design of the curtains throughout the entire home. We also had the pleasure of working with Carol’s external team of furniture and framing specialists for customised works, and they were also highly professional and reliable. Lastly, since we decided to furnish the majority of the home with new furniture pieces, Carol and Jules had to incorporate these new pieces along the way into their final vision.
The two-day transformation itself was amazing and impressive beyond expectations. The stunning wow factor throughout the house was seamlessly achieved, and we absolutely love our sanctuary. Our daughter’s room exudes quiet sophistication and serenity, while ensuring that the room’s theme will be appropriate as she grows into her teenage years. The master bedroom and junior suite bedrooms each have their own distinct character, through the curated art pieces, soft furnishings, wallpaper and sensual fragrances.
Carol and Jules fully devoted their attention to our makeover, despite managing several projects simultaneously. We are beyond happy with our new luxurious and sophisticated home, and love our outdoor garden for hosting our friends and family. The entire team’s acute attention to detail with the ability of restyling several key pieces ensured that the final result was absolutely stunning throughout.
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