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PROJECT TYPE: Luxury four bedroom show home


All photographs by Lucy Swainsbury @snapdragonstudio

A contemporary new build house in Colchester, Essex. To the right of the image is a brick wall with a log burner and a large window to the left. In the foreground a round glass dining table with upholstered terracotta chairs. The table is laid with round woven place mats, black crockery and modern wine glasses. There is a glass vase in the centre of the table with green, leafy branches.


The brief for this project was to create an aspirational show home for a development of eight luxury houses in a gated community.  The developers were approaching their launch date and did not want to take on the show home themselves so I took on the task for them. Time was tight on this project and I had to design a concept, get approval, source all furniture and fittings and install within 10 weeks.


Once the design concept had been approved and a budget finalised I sourced everything for this house from the bespoke wallpaper, large pieces of furniture and lighting right down to a bar of soap to sit on a dish in the utility room. This is quite a task in just ten weeks as large pieces of furniture are usually on long lead times so I was restricted with what I could specify. This house is large with four bedrooms, four bathrooms, a kitchen-diner, utility room, mezzanine office and a large living area complete with snug. To make a feature in the main bedroom I specified a bespoke wall mural and I also worked with a local upholstery company to provide a bespoke headboard in the second bedroom as well as a large, colourful cushion for the window seat in the living area. Once all items were on site I had two days to work with the subcontractors to get the show home installed.

The living room of a contempoary new build home in Colchester, Essex. There are shelving units in the backgound displaying books, plants and. decorative accessories. In the foreground there are two mid-century style armchairs upholstered in cream boucle fabric. The sofa to the right is upholstered in brick coloured fabric with plain and patterened cushions.


Designed by award winning Stanley Bragg Architects these houses are unusual and quirky. All levels are split with the bedrooms on the lower floors and the main living spaces on the upper floors. This design makes the most of the views of the surrounding countryside while creating interesting site lines throughout the property. Natural materials have been used in the construction of these houses, along with eco technology such as air source heat pumps, photovoltaic panels and car charging points. With this in mind I thought it was important to create an interior that suited both the building and the site location. Another consideration was the time of year the development was being launched to the public. As we were approaching September and many of the viewings will take place during autumn and winter it was essential that I created a comfortable, welcoming interior using a warm colour palette and a selection of textures. As I was brought onto this project at a late stage certain elements had already been finalised such as wall colour and floor finishes so I had to incorporate this into our scheme.


I have had such a positive response to this show home. My client was delighted with the results and viewings were booked up quickly. Within two weeks of the launch 50% of the houses had been reserved. These houses are beautiful in their own right, but by dressing them potential buyers could see how the space could be used and picture themselves living there. My thoughtful design for this house was the cherry on top!



"We had not worked alongside an interior designer to create a show home before, so had to place a lot of trust in Alix's decisions and have not regretted it at all. The results are beyond our expectations, especially considering the tight timeframe she had to work to; she effectively used her budget management skills to create a luxurious, welcoming home. The feedback from prospective buyers has been extremely complimentary and we would not hesitate to work with Alix again."

A detail image of the loving area in a new build home in Colchester, Essex. There is a dark wood side table with two books, a mug and a small houseplant.
A detail image of the living area of a new build home in Colchester, Essex. The image shows a black metal and wood shelving unit displaying booksm plants and decorative objects.
A detail image of the master bedroom in a new build home in Colchester, Essex. The image shows a black wood four poster bed against a wallpaper mural of trees and woodland. The bed is dressed with white bedlinen and cushions in green and terracotta.
A new build home in Colchester, Essex. The image is a detail of the thord bedroom. The walls are painted white with a dark wood headboard, accents of yellow in the cushions and the  throw on the bed. The bedside yable displays an alarm clock, gold lamp and a houseplant.

Would you like to have a chat about your development project?

Please call Alix Stoney

on 07747 555879 to discuss your project requirements or use my contact form.

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