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An Urban Hut in London by Jonathan Tuckey for an Under-the-Radar Design Doyenne

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An Urban Hut in London by Jonathan Tuckey for an Under-the-Radar Design Doyenne

April 12, 2019

If you happen to be in London, strolling through Belgravia, and find yourself on narrow and winding Kinnerton Street, you might spot a group of frock-wearing women racing bikes, taking afternoon tea, and lunching in the shade of a potted bamboo plant. They’re the women of Egg, a 25-year-run shop by Maureen Doherty that sells simple and functional clothing. Located in a former dairy stable (“London’s first,” she says), the two-level shop is whitewashed throughout.

When the adjoining building became available not long ago, Maureen took it over with the intention of creating an office and a pied-à-terre for herself; “a hut in the middle of town,” as she calls it. She enlisted architect Jonathan Tuckey, a Remodelista favorite (she had admired his Shadow House project and “fell in love with the sympathy he had for the building”). The brief was both ambiguous (“the pottery finishes of Lucie Rie, a ball of string”) and exacting (“Must have fire. Must have water. Must have a bathhouse. Enormous showers. Must bring the light in”). The architects responded with a creative solution: a series of timber containers inserted into the core of the building, with the main living spaces on the second level. Join us for a tour.

Photography by James Brittain and Dirk Lindner (as noted), courtesy of Jonathan Tuckey.

Upstairs

Tuckey inserted a fireplace into a corner of the main living area, which is located on the second floor. Maureen keeps the space spartan: the furnishings consist of a table (a Rupert Spira Poem Bowl anchors the surface) and two chairs. An armchair and side table create a living room. “It doesn’t need much. It’s a hut. It’s my hut,” she says. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: Tuckey inserted a fireplace into a corner of the main living area, which is located on the second floor. Maureen keeps the space spartan: the furnishings consist of a table (a Rupert Spira Poem Bowl anchors the surface) and two chairs. An armchair and side table create a living room. “It doesn’t need much. It’s a hut. It’s my hut,” she says. Photograph by James Brittain.
Tuckey made a few small but dramatic changes to the th-century building: He cut three skylights into the roof rafters, added a new wall on the first floor, and created a void in the floor above the bathhouse. On the top floor, a closet, kitchen/larder, and shower are all built into the containers. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
Above: Tuckey made a few small but dramatic changes to the 19th-century building: He cut three skylights into the roof rafters, added a new wall on the first floor, and created a void in the floor above the bathhouse. On the top floor, a closet, kitchen/larder, and shower are all built into the containers. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
Maureen, who has had a long affiliation with designer Issey Miyake, prefers a colorless interior. The project is in a restrained palette of white, a dark blue-black, and cream. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
Above: Maureen, who has had a long affiliation with designer Issey Miyake, prefers a colorless interior. The project is in a restrained palette of white, a dark blue-black, and cream. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.

A bathroom with a shower is built beneath a skylight. The sink is the Aston Matthews Astonian Toot Basin and the brass taps were sourced from a garden wares shop. An inset cupboard holds Maureen&#8
Above: A bathroom with a shower is built beneath a skylight. The sink is the Aston Matthews Astonian Toot Basin and the brass taps were sourced from a garden wares shop. An inset cupboard holds Maureen’s collection of Lucie Rie pottery and a painting by Anthony Fry. Photograph by James Brittain.
The shower has a Livinghouse Copper Fixed Shower Head and copper pipe. Beyond the shower, the window-like opening leads to the first-floor bathhouse. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
Above: The shower has a Livinghouse Copper Fixed Shower Head and copper pipe. Beyond the shower, the window-like opening leads to the first-floor bathhouse. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
“I don’t do dinner parties anymore, so I just wanted a really simple kitchen,” says Maureen who also wanted to be able to conceal the kitchen when she so desired; to accommodate her request, Tuckey designed a set of doors that pivot and retract into the wall. The bespoke enamel countertop and sink are by A.J. Wells & Sons and the oven is the Ikea Lagan OV3 Oven. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: “I don’t do dinner parties anymore, so I just wanted a really simple kitchen,” says Maureen who also wanted to be able to conceal the kitchen when she so desired; to accommodate her request, Tuckey designed a set of doors that pivot and retract into the wall. The bespoke enamel countertop and sink are by A.J. Wells & Sons and the oven is the Ikea Lagan OV3 Oven. Photograph by James Brittain.
“I needed semi-big closets because I wear frocks to work,” says Maureen. The entire structure is built from exposed European redwood and chipboard walls that are finished with Osmo White Satin wood wax finish. The floors are painted in gloss Dulux Floorshield. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
Above: “I needed semi-big closets because I wear frocks to work,” says Maureen. The entire structure is built from exposed European redwood and chipboard walls that are finished with Osmo White Satin wood wax finish. The floors are painted in gloss Dulux Floorshield. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.

Maureen furnished her corner office with antiques she collected during a soujourn in France. The heater is a Stelrad Planar Radiator. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: Maureen furnished her corner office with antiques she collected during a soujourn in France. The heater is a Stelrad Planar Radiator. Photograph by James Brittain.

Downstairs

The first floor opens out onto Kinnerton Street. Bella, an Egg veteran, walks Maureen’s two lurchers (Irish hunting dogs), Finn and Lilly. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: The first floor opens out onto Kinnerton Street. Bella, an Egg veteran, walks Maureen’s two lurchers (Irish hunting dogs), Finn and Lilly. Photograph by James Brittain.
To create a bathhouse, Tuckey installed a new timber joist floor on top of the existing floor, adding radiant heating and drainage—a continuous full-length gutter integrated into the tile behind the bathtub. The walls are painted with Farrow & Ball All White paint in full-gloss finish. The tile is Earthenware Elements xcm Gloss Field Tile in Candle White from Ann Sacks. The brass light is by John Glew. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: To create a bathhouse, Tuckey installed a new timber joist floor on top of the existing floor, adding radiant heating and drainage—a continuous full-length gutter integrated into the tile behind the bathtub. The walls are painted with Farrow & Ball All White paint in full-gloss finish. The tile is Earthenware Elements 10x10cm Gloss Field Tile in Candle White from Ann Sacks. The brass light is by John Glew. Photograph by James Brittain.
The bath is the Badbox, a larch wood tub by Studio Anna van der Lei. Jonathan Tuckey&#8
Above: The bath is the Badbox, a larch wood tub by Studio Anna van der Lei. Jonathan Tuckey’s team made the two copper faucets. Photograph by Dirk Lindner.
A view of the exterior shows the first-floor layout: the bathhouse is on the left, and the office/utility space for Egg is on the right. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: A view of the exterior shows the first-floor layout: the bathhouse is on the left, and the office/utility space for Egg is on the right. Photograph by James Brittain.
A window display featuring a hat by Otto, one of a small family of brands Egg carries, and soap from the oldest soap factory in England, wrapped in wax paper. Photograph by James Brittain.
Above: A window display featuring a hat by Otto, one of a small family of brands Egg carries, and soap from the oldest soap factory in England, wrapped in wax paper. Photograph by James Brittain.
A drawing of the house shows the back room storage, the bathhouse, and its chimney-like space to the second floor, and the upstairs bathroom and closet.
Above: A drawing of the house shows the back room storage, the bathhouse, and its chimney-like space to the second floor, and the upstairs bathroom and closet.

For more on Maureen’s shop, see Shopper’s Diary: Egg in London.

N.B.: This post is an update; the original ran on September 25, 2017.

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