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Monday, May 16, 2016

Mastery of Magical Illumination

By Sonal Mamoowala
Photography: Courtesy Ben Rousseau
Read Time: 3 mins

open plan living dining

Armed with a basic concept of creative illumination system, designer Ben Rousseau sets into motion “a well-designed plan with the appropriate choice of materials” to cast a magical spell and metamorphose this house into “a glamorous, luxurious, sophisticated fully-automated living movie set…”

Situation: Refurbishing a spacious residence lacking in style quotient housed in a conservative Victorian-styled building amidst a grand property in U.K.

Victorian building

Solution: Action, Lights, Drama!

Typical Victorian features like arched windows, large door openings with framed ornate architraves, bay windows, split-level high ceilings with peripheral cornices render the space an aura of grandeur.    Enhancement is introduced via simple elegant and contemporary bespoke furniture and feature installations that reflect the owner’s lifestyle.

Victorian building interiors
plush living room
plush interiors
home styling

Action begins with retention and restoration of existing features like Venetian plaster details, primary structural elements and completely refurbishing the bathrooms.  A tactile and colour sample chart for wall papers, fabrics, paint, carpet, furniture finishes, flooring… helps consolidate the colour and material schematic.

home theatre

Hi definition versatile automation systems are installed for easy operation of the gadgets, blinds, CCTV, air conditioning system…etc! Treating the entire house as a homogeneous space, the walls are finished in ivory as a neutral backdrop against hues of brown for the flooring, wooden and metal furniture, panelling, internal doors, and some random upholstery to break away from monotony.   A consistent palette of teals and champagne with metallic gold induce coherence and harmony. Even the bathrooms are artistically redone in white and blues.

master bedroom suite
children's bedroom
luxurious bathroom

Action and production, coordinated with unobtrusive controlled light, create a compelling visual landscape. A common ceiling lighting detail with tonal differences illuminates the entire house. That apart, a wide spectrum of light fittings takes centre stage: ornate, eclectic, focus lights, indigenous abstract wire lights, recessed spots, wall washers, strip lights,  fibre optic starscape, and crystal pendants with dimmers… produce the most dramatic magic spell casting mystical auras via chiaroscuro elements and augmenting the innate luxe appeal.

home office

At the end, curtains are drawn, leaving viewers with an understanding of true fusion of period, contemporary and technology!! 


  1. Smart Wired HouseMay 27, 2016 at 6:52 PM

    Great lighting concept!

  2. That's a very stylish and sympathetic refurbishment

  3. Shaheen Qasim MBBS , FRACP ,WHS , RTW , SCEMay 27, 2016 at 6:53 PM

    Beautiful . Simple but elegant . Congratulations.


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