The Devonia Project

Transforming a Regency House into a Modern Home



The Challenge

  • Transform 3 flats back into one private home
  • Flood house with light
  • Increase square footage
  • Create a flexible living space
  • Construct a modern home with a tribute to it’s Victorian heritage


  • Conservation Area
  • Planning Permission constraints
  • Completely remove back of house with affecting integrity of existing structure
  • Work within tight budgetary contraints

Full Description

What was once a beautiful Regency home set along a quiet street in Islington became a worn, tired building ruthlessly dissected into flats.   Blocked windows, dim lights, and depressed, narrow spaces drained whatever life remained. Purchased as one house containing three flats, this project set about to create one modern family home.

The renovation strategy endeavored to retain the house’s original Victorian features while injecting a minimalist design to compliment modern living. By designing rooms in such a way that they would organically grow to adapt to the occupants’ lives, versatile living spaces were created that would not become stale or unused with time.

The power of light and air in creating ethereal spaces were essential to breathing life into the space. By employing frameless glass and unbound steel structures, air and light flowed freely thus creating movement.

Ideas were then malleable. Each room was considered individually and then revisited holistically to ensure continuity. By keeping the design minimal, the original Victorian features were allowed to shine through. Unobstructed spaces with glass balustrades sprouting seamlessly from the floor created a feeling of simplicity while ornate Victorian cornicing, sash windows, and marble fireplaces prominently embodied a tribute to the past.

The theme of multi-purpose rooms and open spaces would take root at the top of the house.

The loft, which previously housed a complex suspension of water pipes, would be brought down and replaced with a bedroom which overlooked a bedroom below separated only by glass. Moveable partitions would glide over the glass so that public spaces become private spaces.

To maintain cohesion, the bottom of the house echoed this design. The basement kitchen would be transformed by a frameless glass extension spanning two floors flooding light into an otherwise dark area. The ground floor reception would overlook the kitchen enabling two rooms to become one continuous form.

Step 1 – Remove the back of the house and install a double-height glass extension

Before: Original back of house

Construction - Removing the back

Flood the house with light

After - Double-height rear extension

Step 2 – Remove the roof and create more space by installing another floor with gallery overlooking bedroom.

Before - roof

After - Roof removed and extended into double height gallery

Step 3 – Inject Modern Elements

Take an old balcony and transform it



Take an old bedroom with low ceilings – remove the ceiling – and flood the area with light



Take a dark bathroom and turn it into a wetroom



Create a unique space with a kitchen that serves as the heart of the home



The Completed Design