When monochrome meets minimalism

Parallelogram Design plays with textures and crisp lines to craft engaging experiences in this three-room BTO flat.

  • When monochrome meets minimalism

Home Type: 3-room HDB flat

Floor Area: 740sqft

Text by Airis Abdullah

As avid collectors of Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent goods, the owners of this BTO flat have an affinity for monochrome. Their design brief for their three-room flat in Kallang was a clear one. In addition to having a monochromatic palette, the couple preferred minimalist and clean lines. “Knowing that the unit is small, they also wanted to have more spacious living and dining areas,“ says interior designer Anthea Tang from Parallelogram Design.

monochrome interior

The home came with white homogeneous tiles for the living area and bedrooms. An overlay of matte vinyl on the original flooring was one of the first key moves to remove the gloss finishes and bring in a sense of warmth to the monochrome interior.

monochrome interior

A full-height storage unit clad in dark woodgrain laminates anchors the living area. The customised solution also hides away the household shelter. Every element here comes with precise dimensions to ensure a smooth flow from one space to another.

monochrome interior

The design team kept much of the layout intact to preserve the size of the bedrooms, but made changes to the kitchen. “We decided to reduce its size as it was not the homeowners’ priority in terms of space and activities,” Anthea shares. As a result, there is more room and comfort in the living and dining areas. The team also constructed a false ceiling flush with the beams to ensure neat lines.

dark kitchen

Merging the service yard and kitchen paved the way for keeping the bulky refrigerator out of sight from the living and dining areas. The large-format porcelain tiled backsplash introduces stone patterns into the kitchen and serves as bridge between the light and dark hued cabinets.

monochrome interior

“The highlight of the unit was the dining table, which was handcrafted and charred by their good friend, a Japanese craftsman. It was a very personal touch and a gift to the homeowners,” says Anthea. Done using the ancient Japanese technique of shou sugi ban, the Japanese burnt wood table surface and clear acrylic legs form an unexpected juxtaposition.

shou sugi ban table

The monochrome theme and emphasis on simplicity continues in the bedroom. The wardrobe in the master bedroom is bold yet unassuming with its crisp lines, matte surfaces and flush doors.

monochrome wardrobe

With a recess in the full-height wardrobe serving as a side table, the design team could maximise space for the couple’s wardrobe.

side table

The bathroom, too, is a beautiful play of light and dark. “The monochromatic scheme can seem very cold and stark if the ratio is planned wrongly. Not to forget, we would not want the place to be too dark, which would make the interiors look even smaller and cluttered,” Anthea explains. “To overcome this, we’ve played with various textures and materials to balance subtleness and hardiness. This is complemented with influences of the Japanese concept of wabi-sabi.”

monochrome bathroom

Parallelogram Design

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