George Bond: A dream of an apartment
PUBLISHED: 15:25 11 April 2011 | UPDATED: 19:10 20 February 2013
From holiday hideaways to grand mansions, Newcastle celebrity designer George Bond works with a diverse range of domestic properties. This month, a project that turned a tired 60s style apartment into a grand living space
People often mistake apartment living with the need for contemporary minimalism, but this month George talks about a project where he transformed an outdated three bedroom apartment in Gosforth into a warm and classical home, whose grandeur is akin to New York apartment living.
George says when the client, Mrs Pam Peterson, decided to move from her home in Woolsington, Newcastle, she toyed with thoughts of moving to Jesmond in the city, but when she came across a block of post-modern apartments in Gosforth, she fell in love with its panoramic views of the city of Newcastle and the Town Moor.
The interior of the apartment however, was well and truly stuck in the sixties so the day after she moved into the apartment with her late husband, they called on George to completely refurbish the place.
George said: Mrs Peterson had already seen a show home Id created in Jesmond, so knew exactly what to expect when she asked me to radically update the interior of the apartment.
Dodging removal boxes yet to be unpacked, I got to work investigating the space, all the while giving Mrs Peterson options and recommendations to ensure that my vision tallied up to her aspirations of her dream home.
George said she was an individual who simply would not have been at home in swish loft style apartment so familiar with city living.
Working with the original layout of the property, our brief was to quite simply rid the apartment of its 1960s decor and draw on my classical influences to create a brighter space, which the Petersons could call home. The philosophy underpinning an interior designers approach to a domestic space should be to strike a balance between functionality and aesthetics; a space to live and a space to be.
What we helped create for her was as good an example as I could show that confined spaces, such as flats or apartments, do not have to be all bare brick and exposed steelwork.
Project complete, Mrs Peterson says the kitchen is her favourite room, says George. Touches of stainless steel illuminate the hand crafted authenticity of the wooden kitchen units and naturalness of the granite worktops; a perfect blend of classic and modern.
I always recommend my clients allocate a reasonable budget for the kitchen. A well made kitchen with quality cabinets is an absolute must, and, having it designed and installed by a professional guarantees its longevity.
Likewise, the neutral tiling in the bathroom contrast with the wood and glass cabinets and white fittings to create a room which, while lacking in natural light sources, remains fresh and feeling spacious.
Elsewhere, a theme of timeless elegance runs through the apartment. Classic golds and rich reds make up the colour palette which, brought together with embossed wall coverings and regal fabrics with intricate detail, creates an overall effect of warmth and splendour.
And, how we delighted furnishing the apartment! says George. She and I enjoyed a shared passion for one off and antique pieces. We enjoyed many a trip to Tomlinsons in North Yorkshire to source furniture and ornaments, both antique and hand crafted by local artisans.
Nothing compares to the satisfaction of completely transforming a space into a dream home.
George Bond is the National Director for the Society of British Interior Designers (SBID) as well as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. George is director and founder of Brandling Park Interior Design Ltd, based in Jesmond, Newcastle upon Tyne. For further information visit www.georgebond.tv or call 0191 281 7799.