An old ‘granny flat’ gets reinvented and infused with new life and purpose.

Nestled among tall mature trees in Sydney’s leafy North Shore and aptly named that way, Tree Studio is a compact and well-articulated small home that relies on an inherent and operable flexibility. Sitting at the back of the family house, it’s a home-away-from-home for the grandparents and visiting guests, while also serving as a no fuss entertainment space. We borrowed design elements from the main house and fused them with the personalities of its current occupants, crafting a highly liveable, one-bedroom apartment with all the modern conveniences.

Date
JUNE 2022
Photography
PABLO VEIGA

A neutral colour palette was chosen, with emphasis to the natural elements that the studio sits within – soft muted olive and eucalyptus greens. This creates a serene calm, soft atmosphere. The kitchen joinery is a combination of thin shaker and panelled cabinets adding texture and dimension, while the choice of the enduring quartzite for the bench tops and island adds warmth and interest.

The informal open plan living has lots of glass with a strong link between the inside and outside. We have used large-scale bifold doors to allow for an expansion and contraction of space, diffusing any separation between internal and external.

In the bedroom on the main wall behind the bed, we installed vertical panelling, one of the easiest to heighten the walls and create openness in a small space. The panelling was painted the same colour as the other walls to unify it within the room and create interest and dimension.

The spacious bathroom and stand-alone laundry continue the colour and cabinetry theme of soft greens and neutral greiges, while the vertical panelling is once again echoed in the vanity and herringbone tiles in the bathroom and laundry terracotta splash back.

We overlayed modern insertions and a new roof to ensure the new structure stands the test of time, optimises light and has a better internal flow – thus dialling up the sense of luxury from a traditional granny flat to contemporary studio living.

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