Today, I bring you yet another renovated home with ethnic touches from Jyothika Baleri’s portfolio. This home belongs to Jessie Paul in Bangalore. Jessie got this home, which is in the heart of Bangalore, renovated. The home is replete with age-old solid wood furniture. It brings in a whiff of fresh air as you see traditional cupboards like the ones used by our grandparents take the place of modern factory-made ones.
The home stands out with rafters, wooden pillars holding a swing in the terrace, stone-clad entrance, a green wall to camouflage utility, Athangudi floor tiles, and woven fabric through out the house. Tons of images are waiting to greet you. It’s drizzling here in Bangalore this morning. So grab a hot cuppa and indulge yourself to this visual treat.
It’s easier to design a new home as it is a blank slate. But, when it comes to renovating a home, how do you go about the project? Does the family move out? How do you incorporate the existing elements from a functional and aesthetic point of view?
- Firstly we don’t change the structural elements. So our planning is fairly restrictive. We are particular on functionality and aesthetics at the same time. The designs evolve accordingly. We weave in the existing elements with facelifts or change in functionality so that it adds to the overall aesthetic component of the home. For instance, if there is a large beam running across a room, we highlight it by putting pillars below it and paint the beam in an offset colour. If the flooring is a plain vitrified tile,we change the skirting to Athangudi/any colored tile to add a dash of colour.
- Most times considering we renovate old apartments that are just purchased. So the question of the family moving out does not arise. But, since they are in rented home we try our best to hand over the homes in 3 months time to save on further rent.
- We have done renovations with the family living in the homes as well. In such cases, we take it up 1 room at a time so that they are not troubled too much. But its an inconvenience for the family to have workers going in and out.
Many of your projects are renovation ones – that sorta makes you the queen of renovation. What are the challenges you face when executing such projects?
- Hidden costs is our biggest challenge: As we start breakages and repairs, many smaller issues crop up relating to old water /plumbing/electrical lines which need immediate attention. Some walls need to be reinforced since they tend to get week during breaking of adjacent walls/etc.
- More time to finish: Another challenge is neighboring homes if in an apartment complex/gated community. They constantly interfere with the work wanting the noise / disturbances to stop immediately. So we need to work keeping in mind people rest between 1 to 4 pm typically. So work stops for 3 hours daily,delaying our completion date.
Tell us more about this project. What makes it interesting? What was the theme before and what is it now?
Many features are what you see only in traditional homes – the flooring, the lanterns, the painted palanguzhi. Where did you source them from?
The green wall is an interesting concept. What is this made of?
How did you conceptualize the terrace garden? It’s beautiful with the pillars and the swing. Often, the concern is exposing wood to rain? How have you addressed that?
Your advice to homeowners taking up renovation projects.
- Have a clear idea on how much you want to spend as renovations have a lot of hidden or unforeseen costs.
- Hire a good designer to optimize your cost since their inputs will be valuable.
- If budget is limited, spend on the kitchen and bathrooms.Its essential and most used.
- Hire a contractor who is experienced in renovations as they are able to advice you on do’s and dont’s from previous experience.
- If dealing with mosaic floors for change, new tiles can be easily laid over it without spending on removing the old existing floor.
- Avoid using marble/granite slabs on floor for renovations as it requires existing flooring to be removed completely.This may cause some structural damages.