The Victorian townhouse in London’s Primrose Hill had been “nailed by contractors,” says project manager Emily Girling. This was not intended as a compliment. Girling is a member of the small team at Mark Lewis Interior Design, and grand resuscitations with a historic bent are Lewis’s specialty: see, for instance, A “Modern Victorian Loft” in Hoxton Square and Mark Lewis’s Inspired Reinvention of His Family’s North London Row House.
This four-floor renovation for a couple with kids and dogs (he’s the CEO of an advertising agency) became the firm’s pandemic project. “Very few original details remained, so it was a case of reinstating features, such as fireplaces, cornices, and parquet floor,” continued Girling. And of rethinking the layout: “The lower floor was a rabbit warren of rooms. We built a small extension at the rear and opened up the space into a huge open-plan kitchen-living area.”
To see the house now is to go back in time to an era of brick hearths and generous Aga stoves—and forward to our own century’s sunny, free-flowing interiors and “American-size” refrigerators. Scroll to the end to see Before and After floor plans.
Photography courtesy of Mark Lewis Interior Design.
Garden Level Kitchen
The French oak parquet floor was sourced from UK salvage specialists Lassco. The white paint used throughout is Linen Wash from Little Green (emulsion on the walls, eggshell on the woodwork). The new back stair has a painted runner (Dead Salmon from Farrow & Ball) and tongue-and-groove-paneled under-the-stair storage plus a WC.
Garden-Level Living-Dining Room
The stair has a new Victorian-style hand rail made of sapele, a hardwood that resembles mahogany. The jute runner is from Tim Page Carpets.
Before and After Floor Plans
More Mark Lewis designs:
- A Garage Converted to a Compact Guest Cottage
- Kitchen of the Week: A Family Gathering Spot in a London Victorian and Steal This Look
- A Victorian-Style Loo in London
- All the Details: Pantone Powder-Coated Hardware from Mark Lewis’s Online Shop