Who should design an architect’s residence? The architect, himself? Or a trusted designer friend? Or maybe another coveted architect? By deciding to design her own home in Avalons Greenwoods, Vadodara, interior designer Shivani Sanghani puts a rest to this debate.
According to one school of thought, the concept of a designer decorating his or her own house is troubling due to the lack of constraints. The major tenet of this group is that constraints, boundaries and briefs offer a framework to the designer, a set of guidelines which helps refine a concept.
A challenging site, a demanding client, a restricting budget and a complicated brief are vital ingredients for an ingenious design outcome. To every opinion, however, there is always a contradicting view, and this scenario is no different. The opposition school of thought is of the belief that sifting through the realm of an uninhibited imagination is overwhelmingly inspiring and altogether what genius solutions are made of. Sanghani, the principal designer of Kyrra Studio, belongs to this school.
A luxurious living cum dining room greets visitors upon entering her duplex apartment. The space is replete with stylish modern elements such as a cove-lit wooden ceiling, a vast expanse of seamless white marble flooring, and classic white upholstery. “To describe it simply, the interiors are neither too much, nor too little,” says Sanghani.
The mood board is dominated by whites, greys and browns. A bright abstract painting sitting on a warm grey wall brings a pop of colour into the scheme. A folded plate staircase suspended from a deep brown wooden wall becomes a focal point. A slender brass handrail poises itself elegantly on this backdrop. Tall standing lamps, one black and the other white, add a magical twinkle to the lighting.
A wooden log dining table resting on brass legs defines the dining room. The proportions of this classic design – a considerable length as compared to the breadth – give the dining area a comfortably spacious feel. Chairs crafted in leather and brass complement the table and match the console unit.
In addition to the formal dining area, the kitchen comes equipped with a built-in dining space. As opposed to the modular kitchens that most people opt for today, Shivani preferred to customise her kitchen in-house. The result was a smart and effective kitchen space with ample space for movement and state-of-the-art finishes.
Upon venturing outside, a double-height deck and a swimming pool come into view. “Amidst the lush green lawns, it is pure luxury to sip on a nice cup of coffee,” says Sanghani. The sleek wooden stools sit beautifully on the planks of the deck.
The cool blue of the pool, the stone wall it reflects and the diffused lighting that surrounds it create the perfect mood for relaxing. Being music lovers, Shivani and her husband installed speakers in every room of the house. Needless to say, the outdoor area wasn’t left out.
The last room on the lower floor is occupied by the parents. A similar mood board of minimal whites and greys creeps into this space. Rose pink soft furnishings appear in the form of curtains and a bed runner.
Sliding wardrobe shutters, lacquered white, subtly reflect the hues of the room. “The room is soothing and sophisticated, and caters to the demands of its inhabitants,” says Sanghani. Moving up the staircase, one enters the lounge which is provided with a sofa set, a television unit and a library of books.
The master bedroom on the upper floor symbolises youth and a passion for music. Immediately, the eyes are drawn towards a drum set that sits like a meticulously carved sculpture against a warm grey wall. Splashes of colour mimic the beats of the drums in an abstract painting that hangs above.
A guitar suspended from the wall adds to the ensemble of instruments. The ceiling over the bed is marked by detailed, 3-dimensional wooden panelling. Three warm grey walls subdue themselves so that a feature exposed brick wall can stand out. A long wooden study table with overhead storage, a modern attached bathroom and ample wardrobe space complete the room.
The guest room is defined by its stark white poster bed. A painting above the headboard adds a youthful zest to the otherwise minimal interiors. A pair of trunks, one grey and the other bright red, acts as a side table. While each of the rooms of the house has its unique elements, a consistent material palette is seen throughout.
A perfect balance of light, space and colour creates a timeless effect. “Clean lines, simple yet well-crafted furnishings, and an acute attention to texture and quality materials are my essentials,” says Sanghani. After receiving her degree in interior design from CEPT University, Ahmedabad, she established Kyrra Studio in 2015. And since then, there has been no looking back.
Text By Ar. Priti Kalra
Photographs Phxindia – Sebastian Zachariah + Ira Gosalia