Cover The living room of an apartment designed around the owner's stylish wardrobe

Mr Shopper Studio designed a sartorially driven apartment that takes cues from the owner’s stylish threads; the walk-in wardrobe serves as a home office, too

Most interior designers will tell you that compact city apartments present more of a challenge than sprawling urban projects, even if there are far fewer rooms to makeover. This is because creating a rich aesthetic in a petite space, and finding a balance between form and function, takes real skill. When Mr Shopper Studio was tasked with redoing this two-bedroom apartment in the newly constructed Boutique at Bartley, the firm put one of its most talented designers on the job.

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“Our primary aim was to create a luxurious home for the client,” says Sean Hafiz, lead designer on the project. “We wanted it to encompass not only her design brief, but also her personality and lifestyle and to make a statement in different areas of the home; we wanted to create a sense of excitement as you enter each part of the house.”

The owner’s main request was to create various ways to display her collection of clothes, bags and accessories throughout her home, while creating an Instagram-worthy effect in various areas of the apartment.

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There is a real flair and panache to this dwelling, and a charisma that hits you from the moment you step inside. This is partly due to how the designers have incorporated wallpaper and prints in nearly every room, bringing a playfulness to the otherwise sleek and minimalist interior.

“Designers tend to think that darker tones make a space feel smaller,” says Sean. “But I think that a mix of wallpapers in various dark tones and textures makes it feel a lot cosier. Wallpapers are taboo to most Singaporeans and designers as they are afraid the climate means they won’t last long. But with the right treatment and the right kind of material, wallpaper can last years.”

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Apartment owners usually have one key gripe: a lack of storage space. But it takes a particularly skilled interior designer to find a way to incorporate cupboards and shelves that do not make a room feel more cramped.

“The most difficult room to design was definitely the living area,” says Sean. “We fashioned the TV console in such a way that the storage areas and the main TV wall are divided by a display shelf. It also helps to separate it from the storage areas. Built-in LED lighting helps to create visual continuity throughout the space and brighten the home.”

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In an apartment such as this, with unimpeded views across Singapore, the window areas tend to take centre stage to capitalise on the stunning vista. But the team at Mr Shopper Studio wanted to ensure that what was inside the apartment was as memorable as the glittering skyscrapers outside.

In the bedroom, the eye is drawn indoors with contrasting patterns on the bedlinen and accent cushions, a rug imported from the US, and a customised, tropical-themed headboard that takes pride of place in the room. It features wallpaper from Cole & Son and mirrored panels on both sides to create a sense of expansiveness within the room.

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The walk-in wardrobe, in particular, is a standout fixture. Sporting a pair of polished, gold-framed glass doors, it was designed to resemble a fashion boutique; a long rug placed in the centre recreates the look of a catwalk. This self-enclosed area also houses a desk so it can function as a home office.

Altogether, the apartment is a beautiful amalgamation of textures and patterns, resulting in a stylish space both the design firm and the owner are proud of.

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