When we walked into this building it felt like some kind of subterranean Bond villain’s lair. Created by the internationally renowned architect Sir David Adjaye in a former delivery yard in the heart of Kings Cross, The Lost House looks as if 3 huge glass boxes filled with trees and pebbles have arrived from Earth and settled themselves into an interplanetary black interior as a kind of experiment to show a different galactic race what our planet once looked like.
It is hard to imagine a 4,000 sq ft interior this good can be found behind the simple black door before you enter. The three large light wells in the main living area, including a central water garden with koi carp give just enough light to lift the space from subterranean cave into a luxury hotel lobby. So what to do?
We wanted to keep things simple, to highlight the architecture while softening the interior, leaving people enough space to walk around and enjoy the experience while also giving them hints of how they might live there. We brought a large Japanese red maple with us to sit in the entrance with a red prototype Dutch chair. The idea was to let colours pop against the black and also make the green even more vivid going from red, its opposite colour, to nature’s favourite shade as you sashay from corridor into the main room.
I say sashay because this room could be used as a catwalk or art gallery, hence carefully placed pieces including some vintage mathematical blocks made to look like a sculpture, an Eames LCW, a stool by Par Avion and conversation piece of a vase by young designer Talia Designer Maker.
The kitchen just needed a few pieces. We mixed an iconic Timo Sarpaneva cooking pot and new ceramics from Par Avion with vintage French and Scandinavian midcentury ceramics with plenty of texture without going the full lava.
The guest bathroom with its bold exotic wallpaper needed a few things you might use in a bathroom to soften its ‘aloha’ in your face nature so we added baskets, towels and smalls to complement the space.
Above this up some steps is another large bedroom, bursting with natural light which we wanted to subtly show could work as either a bedroom or as a studio and office space now so many people are working from home .
We used Les Arcs leather and chrome chairs (originally sourced by Charlotte Perriand for the Les Arcs resort), a gorgeous Seventies wooden table that extends from desk length to table length and some eye catching sections of smalls. We wanted to include some artwork but the owners did not want any fixed to the walls so we balanced some as you would before you put it up on the wall.
At the other end of this vast sprawling warehouse apartment we added floating beds to the guest bedroom with en-suite shower room and master bedroom with dressing room, wet room and steam room.
While we would have preferred to have put in a lower sideboard to make the space seem larger, it is always important to us to take the needs of the client into consideration. Here we were asked not to move the 3 white chests of drawers already in situ so we dressed them to work as a feature when you looked from the door and placed a chair in front to the side to break up the while a bit.
Running alongside the master bedroom is a dramatic enclosed swimming pool that is so black it looks like an oil slick before the lights go on and make you aware of it.
In this bathroom we placed some feature pieces – African seed pods and bowls.
Lucy Ryder Richardson
Contact petra@modernshows .com and firstname.lastname@example.org
Speed up the process of selling with a mix of midcentury & modern styled by our founders former stylist and journalist Lucy Ryder Richardson and graphic designer Petra Curtis. A big leap away from the showhome look, the dynamic duo mix iconic midcentury pieces that have built up a warm patina over time with cool contemporary from the latest designers to make your home stand out but still look loved and lived-in. The service is not super-expensive. While most clients go for the mid-range packages £10,000 up to £25,000, smaller one bedroom flats and houses start from as little as £5000 plus VAT with books, sheets, towels, soaps, smalls, quirky objects and paintings all included. Because we can get good deals and already have a selection of high-end early production designer furniture and smalls in-house Modern Shows’ staging service is cheaper than hiring the furniture directly from dealers and companies that will hire you all modern. In America where staging is more established you pay much more for this service. Americans understand that the quicker the property sells the better for their budget and you can often achieve a hike in sale from the spend as a queue of interested buyers build up. By adding emotion to the setting you will see your property tug at the heartstrings. Lucy and Petra work with architects new builds regularly for The Modern House estate agency. Other jobs include an office and dining room for Saatchi and Saatchi, office meeting room, reception and snug for Danish company Adform and dining and deli decor for Brindisa restaurants.
All images are c Petra Curtis, Lucy Ryder Richardson and also The Modern House so please obtain permission before using