When we came across Fiona’s Intsagram feed we fell in love with her gorgeous house, son and style.
We are so happy she wanted to do a guest post for us and share her story with all of you.
Toen we Fiona Burrage’s Instagram galerij ontdekten waren we op slag verliefd. Haar woonst, haar zoontje en haar geweldige stijl is dan ook iets wat we graag met jullie willen delen. We voelen ons dus vereerd dat ze hier haar verhaal wil delen.
Fiona Burrage from The Factory
13 months ago, we bought our home – an apartment in a converted factory. I live there with my husband, Bobby, and our son, Stanley, who is 19 months. We live in a small cathedral city in the East of England, called Norwich. It’s half an hour from the coast and just over two hours to London. We also live in the shadows of Norwich City Football Club.
Our apartment is one of seven duplex penthouses. The top floor of the building used to be the drawing rooms for an engineering firm, whom benefitted from the windows on all aspects. Being designers ourselves, we immediately fell in love with the natural light and, of course, were nostalgic over the building’s creative heritage.
My husband, Bobby, and I co-run a branding and graphic design studio called The Click Design Consultants. Bobby works from our studio in the city and I have my own small studio here at home. We occasionally work together from home too – if we’re particularly busy on a project.
Our apartment is blessed with double aspect windows that provide a beautiful view of the Norwich sky line. We are also fortunate to have a sky light that runs the length of our home, bathing us in natural light. Even on a grey day it is still light and bright.
We are inspired by minimalism and modernism, in particular Scandinavian, Swiss and Japanese design. We have incorporated design classics like Eames, but finished the space as well as modern classics like Plumen, Boskke and Hay. I am very pro smaller independent designers, whom I have found via Instagram – it is a great platform to discover new talent and products.
Our main living space is open plan and, at its peak, has a ceiling height of 4.5 metres. By suspending Plumen lights and Boskke sky planters, we have intentionally accentuated the height of the space along with defining the respective areas (i.e. kitchen / dining / lounge). The recent addition of the Boskke planters has transformed our dining area into a more identifiable area. We inherited our dining room table from the local art school (both Bobby and I studied there). We painted it white, removed the ingrained chewing gum(!) built up over the years and fitted a glass top for practicalities.
For sometime I have longed for the string shelving system in our living room but the size we would need would’ve been quite an indulgence. Instead, Bobby designed and built our shelving / storage using IKEA cabinets, finished with bespoke cut 24mm Birch plywood. It contrasts nicely against the brilliant white walls – and we love the detail in the cut edge of the ply.
We have four bedrooms. The master bedroom (the only upstairs room) covers the footprint of all other three bedrooms and bathroom. Our bedroom will be the last room to be fitted out. It is a challenging room to furnish, as the floor meets the wall at 45 degree angles on two sides of the room, meaning conventional furniture just doesn’t fit. Our Christmas and anniversary presents this year to each other will be a custom built bedroom, including bed, wardrobes and side units – all crafted out of birch plywood. It will also result in the addition of a more storage, which, with a toddler, is a god send.
Next year, we will be replacing the staircase to provide sufficient space for an en-suite shower room which will benefit from the sky light meaning we can enjoy a shower under the stars. The colour palette will be greyscale and I am most excited about the shower and fittings being matt black. It will definitely be more grown up. We consider upstairs to be our sanctuary and want it to feel like a boutique hotel.
Stanley has two of the downstairs bedrooms – one as a nursery and the other as a playroom – the latter of which I am really enjoying refreshing – now that he is playing more. I love muted colours and when it comes to fashion I feel safest in greyscale but I really don’t want to enforce this on Stanley. Although all the walls are white, this just provides a great canvas for splashes of colour.
My other favourite ‘room’ is our south facing roof terrace. We have installed 2metre tall toughened glass panels on two sides as well as a slatted fence partition between us and our neighbour. This provides not only privacy but also shelter from the wind. This summer we have enjoyed drinks at dusk around our fire pit.
In the new year, I will be sowing herbs and a few vegetables. I’m looking forward to teaching Stanley about nature. We bought two Bacsac planters, which are home to our lavender and I’d like to get a few more for my vegetable patch.
My final addition to the roof terrace will be the installation of an outside shower next spring. I can’t think of anything better than a cool refreshing outdoor shower on a beautiful summer’s day!
Thank you so much Fiona for sharing your gorgeous home with us.
M Word Mag Team.