Houzz Tour: A 1920s House Subtly Zoned for a Family of Five
This elegant home, untouched for 50 years, has been sensitively updated and designed to suit everyone in the household
“The owners saw the house in early 2020,” designer Natalie McHugh of N&K Interiors says. “They were keen to get going on extending it for their family and found us on Houzz when they searched local design and build companies, but Covid delayed everything.”
In September 2020, the team tackled the first floor – a bathroom and four bedrooms, one of which was turned into a playroom – as well as changing all the windows, and, with the use of the old kitchen, got the family in for Christmas. “In the January, we started the two-storey side extension – utility, boot room, cloakroom, living room and bedroom suite,” Natalie says. The remaining work was completed in 2022, resulting in a home that’s both highly functional and full of warmth and character.
To see more great projects where the homeowner found their professional via Houzz, take a look at our Born on Houzz series.
Who lives here? A young family of five and their dog
Property A detached 1920s house with a loft extension
Size Seven bedrooms and four bathrooms
Designer Natalie McHugh of N&K Interiors
Project years 2020 to 2022 (due to Covid delays)
Photos by Chris Snook
Life for the family of five is hectic and they wanted a home that helped life run smoothly, with a layout that was connected, but had areas where they could all find a space for themselves.
So among other clever ideas, Natalie designed a zoned kitchen, a separate playroom, a quiet library area, and a sectioned boot room with muddy-feet-friendly flooring.
The cabinets have been painted in a rich blue, tones of which Natalie has used in all the rooms. “The [owners] do like blue and we thought it was a good theme colour to run throughout the house,” she says. Teamed with white and wood, it makes for a calm palette.
The copper worktop on the island brings warmth into the room. “I was slightly concerned about it, because it’s obviously a natural material and it tarnishes and scratches really easily and I knew they were a busy family,” Natalie says, “but in fact, they’re not precious and it’s a beautiful piece of furniture.”
Kitchen in Pantry Blue, DeVOL. Tapware, Perrin & Rowe. Pendant and wall lights, Nkuku.
“The owner was quite specific on zones in here,” Natalie says. “She wanted a breakfast cupboard so she could, for instance, be prepping while the kids went to the breakfast cupboard to make their toast, so they weren’t all on top of each other.”
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The white zellige splashback tiles are subtle, but they add depth and catch the light beautifully. The Alaska Bianca quartz worktops also lighten the scheme.
Zellige splashback tiles, Mosaic Factory.
“When we started the extension, we found there were no foundations on the outside wall, so we had to underpin it,” she continues. “Between these two rooms we had to fit a picture frame steel, so we thought if we did something with timber [on the ceiling], it would detract from the bulkhead.”
Much of the timber, including the ceiling here, is lime-waxed, which prevents too ‘woody’ a look while still showing the grain.
From here you can see the extent of the side extension, comprising the utility and cloakroom behind the range cooker, a boot room, and the library / living room just glimpsed through the fireplace to the left.
This is also a good space to prep food and store produce, as it’s cooler in here. “It’s heated, but on a different circuit, so the temperature can be kept lower,” Natalie says.
The window frames throughout the house have been replaced with dark aluminium ones.
You can just see the cloakroom behind the pocket door.
The flooring is hard-wearing limestone.
Limestone flags, Artisans of Devizes.
This keeps the clutter contained and the entrance hall free. “The kids are very much drop your coat and rush off, and [the parents] didn’t want the hall to be used for that,” she says.
Having an indoor-outdoor space is perfect for the family, as they’re very sociable. The dining table extends to accommodate a crowd.
Dining table, The Rustic Table Company.
“They wanted some clear wall space to display artwork and pieces of furniture from their travels around the world,” Natalie says.
The rooms are very much connected while providing separate areas for the family to enjoy.
The flooring throughout the ground floor is engineered oak.
Walls painted in Inchyra Blue, Farrow & Ball. Armchairs, Nkuku. Bookcase, Muji.
“You actually feel as if you’re sitting in the garden,” Natalie says. “It was also a way to get in more daylight, and we illuminated it with little spots in the oak surround, so it adds a glow at night.”
Coffee table, clients’ own from their travels. Wallpaper, Milton & King. Pendant light shade, La Redoute. Bespoke cabinetry, N&K Interiors. Ceiling and reading nook painted in Railings, Farrow & Ball.
Pebbles, Marblemosaics. Tiles, Mandarin Stone. Vanity unit, Tikamoon. Bath, Lusso Stone.
Wallpaper, Hygge & West. Pendant light, Dunelm. Bed, Get Laid Beds.
Wallpaper, Hovia. Grace daybed, Bed Kings. Bespoke platform bed with ladder, N&K Interiors.
Superhero pendant light, Litfad. Wallpaper mural, Hovia.
Bed, beds4less.net. Wall painted in Hague Blue, Farrow & Ball.
Despite having to be so patient navigating the pandemic, the family are unsurprising thrilled with their finished home, especially the opened up ground floor. “They were delighted with the result and started having parties straightaway,” Natalie says. “It’s such a sociable space.”
What do you like best about this elegant renovation? Share your thoughts in the Comments.