A tired Victorian terrace proved an irresistible challenge for interior designer Georgie Scott, who needed a new home for her young brood.
With her heart set on living in familyfriendly Battersea, Georgie Scott had struggled to find a new home with a good-sized garden in such a central location – untilshe sawthis Victorian terrace. ‘The most striking thing about this property was its sunny garden,’ says Georgie. ‘Most homes my husband Nick and I had viewed had tiny rear gardens, so it was such a joy to find a 40ftsouth-facing garden.’ The tired terrace was in need of a total refurbishment. ‘We changed everything,’ says Georgie. ‘We dug down the whole length of the house and added an extension on every level at the rear. At one point, there were no floors or walls, and the house was just a façade.’ Unperturbed by the work, Georgie was confident that her detailed plans and determination would triumph. ‘It took nine months of planning,’ she says, ‘and most of that time was spent on agreeing the party walls. The excavation took us about a year. There were unexpected complications, such as the high water table, which delayed work further.’ With plans in place, the rooms began taking shape and Georgie’s vision of a light-filled kitchen-diner soon became a reality. ‘I had a clear idea of how I wanted the kitchen to look’ she says. ‘I wanted sliding doors with large windows to make the most of the garden, and soft grey warm wood-veneer units with a lighter island. The living room, just off the kitchen, is quite dark, and I wanted to give the kitchen a lighter atmosphere. I chose tranquil colours to flow through both spaces so they naturally merge without an obvious join. I don’t like vivid hues, as I wanted to create a calm, relaxed environment in contrast to the busy city outside.’ Despite the complex redesign, Georgie’s mantra is to keep things simple. ‘My ethos is that function comes first and style second. First and foremost, this is a home and it has to work well for our children, Ava, four, and Alex,18 months. My dream sofa would be white but that’s not possible with a family, so I have a dark, hardwearing sofa I’ve lightened up with cushions. It’s all about compromise.’ After three years of work and attention to detail, Georgie and her family are reaping the rewards of this stylish house and its central location. ‘The garden is what makes this house feel like a home,’ says Georgie. ‘I feel lucky to live so near the city centre and yet we have our own garden and the park on our doorstep. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.
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