A Timeless Yet Characterful Federation Bungalow Update
Studio Prineas’ recent project, ‘Bona Vista’, is a restored and extended Federation bungalow in Sydney, blending timeless and characterful design.
The Haberfield property (seven kilometres west of Sydney’s CBD) recently included charming but not quite appropriate details for modern living. Among them – a sweet sewing room with an affixed vintage Singer sewing machine, and several built-in elements. The plan was to preserve as much of the home as possible, then add an extension aligned with the overall character.
Original rooms were mostly left intact, except for updates to circulation paths and the ceiling. ‘Over time, the ceilings had suffered water damage, which required replacement, but we did this faithfully, repeating the original detail,’ explains Eva-Marie Prineas, principal of Studio Prineas.
New to the home is a pavilion containing the contemporary open-plan domain – a stark contrast to the original floor plan. ‘Even the kitchen was in a segregated room [before]’ says Eva-Marie. ‘As this addition is more contemporary in its detailing, we made the decision to separate it from the original house by a drop in level and internal stair.’
In keeping with strict heritage restrictions, the same roof profile of the original home was embraced, while introducing an unconventional internal ceiling line. The result is a surprising and memorable volume, articulated by partially obscured skylights filtering natural light.
For the material palette, Studio Prineas were inspired by the home’s existing terrazzo thresholds and vitrified fireplace tiles. Red stack bond brick forms a robust datum that grounds the open living spaces, complemented by warm natural stone, Tasmanian oak and rattan joinery.
Eva-Marie says the completed home is as much about the parts restored, as it is about the parts created. ‘The home we restored is one that encourages and inspires a life well-lived, and it’s in this way that our changes and additions have improved what was already there.’