Victorian townhouse in Hackney transformed by Dedraft
A late Victorian townhouse in East London’s Hackney is transformed by Dedraft into a modern home with an emphasis on light, materials, minimalism and quality of space
This radical transformation of a late Victorian house in Hackney, elevates a standard period property into a modern home with an emphasis on minimalist architecture, light, use of materials and quality of space. The architecture studio behind it, East London based Dedraft, took on the challenge to redesign the building’s interior and add an extension to the structure that was previously divided into two apartments.
The clients – an investor and a singer – bought the property to create their dream family home, so the focus of the commission was not about ‘simply gaining more’ in terms of square footage, stress the architects. The four level interior was therefore modernised and thoroughly rethought, highlighting a sense of space, natural light and design and material quality.
The clients were keen on textured, tactile materials that feel natural and functional. Corten steel and exposed concrete were on their list, so the architects obliged. The new build extension now is fully clad in weathered steel, which wraps around large openings that flood the tall ceilinged spaces inside with sunlight. A sculptural cast-in-situ concrete staircase becomes a monolithic centrepiece of the extension’s interior.
‘To permit light across the floors internal openings were punched, enhancing the quality and volume of space, opening up spatial connections and directing the passage of natural light, inspired by the interiors of La Corbusier’s ‘La Roche House’,’ add the architects.
Clever level adjustments and a sunken sun terrace create a pleasant, light-filled basement level, where the kitchen and a family room are located. Main living spaces (including a reception and formal dinning area) are placed on the raise ground floor, while the upper two levels house the bedrooms.
The minimalist interior becomes a gently lit backdrop where the owners’ art can be displayed. While a lush green garden space with a separate studio outbuilding to the rear ensures visual and physical connection with nature and the outdoors - even within the urban environment of East London. §