The Inside View | A return to city living?

The Inside View | A return to city living?

With demand for homes in London and other major cities possibly returning to pre-pandemic levels, how can we adapt our style for urban living? Steve Hird, Director at Edward Thomas Interiors offers some insight and looks at what makes apartments so appealing.

One of the common misconceptions about these types of homes is they require compromise, but this isn’t always the case. Most apartments follow an open plan layout with a large kitchen/dining/living space and, if you think about it, this is hardly dissimilar from the majority of larger new build homes. The challenge is how to style this space. Using the logical flow of the property is a great place to start, you want to avoid creating pinch points with bulky objects or pieces of furniture. Consider using temporary screens or partitions to create distinguishable areas for dining, relaxing, exercising or home working. And for extra illusions of space, add mirrors and lighting. 

It’s also advisable to think about your styling holistically; what’s the overall look and feel you aspire to? Is it an industrial, NYC-inspired loft, a bohemian retreat, modern and minimalist Japandi or perhaps bold and contemporary? Whatever you choose, make sure your colours, fabrics, metals and materials flow through the property to create a sense of synergy.

Another benefit of apartments is they’re not ageist. Homeowners from all stages of life can embrace apartment living, from first time buyers and young couples to professionals and the retired. They don’t have to be confined by convention either, if it has two bedrooms why not turn the guest one into a home office, craft room or gym and ensure you’re maximising your use of space? On one of our recent retirement properties for McCarthy Stone, we styled the second bedroom as a study/snug to show how it could provide an additional, habitable living space.

Finally, although outdoor space is likely to be more limited with an apartment, don’t let this be a deterrent. If you have a balcony or terrace, add outdoor furniture, throws and lighting to make a cosy, hygge-style bistro. Or why not create a vertical garden with window box vegetables and plants? Don’t overlook indoors either, add plants, botanical fabrics and artwork, or even consider adding a living wall to make a striking feature.

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