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This $35K 3-Room HDB Reno In Kampong Kayu Is A Blend Of Modern Sensibilities & Nostalgic Whimsy

31 January 2024 | BY

Serene, rustic, and filled with the warmth you’d feel at ah ma’s or nenek’s home, this $35K 3-room Kampong Kayu HDB reno is one for the mood boards.

This $35K 3-Room HDB Reno In Kampong Kayu Is A Blend Of Modern Sensibilities & Nostalgic Whimsy

When we think rustic, we tend to think of wood-heavy farmhouses, or fairytale-like cottagecore interiors. But perhaps comforting, lived-in homeliness doesn’t have to be pastoral in quality. At $35K, this 3-room HDB renovation in Kampong Kayu by interior design firm Comfort Home Interior combines vintage furniture and choice materials to take this home back to an equally rosy, cosy version of simpler times.

With the warm nostalgia not unlike what you’d feel when visiting ah ma’s or nenek’s home, this is one for your Pinterest mood boards.

Hacking of 1 bedroom to create a supersized living and dining area

floorplan 1floorplan 2The final floor plan (above) for this home, with a normal 3-room layout (below) for comparison.
Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

The walls for one of the bedrooms are hacked away here, creating the necessary space to accommodate the extra large living and dining areas in this home.

HDB Reno 4Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

Arguably the centrepiece of the home, curved archways beautifully framing the living and dining areas respectively on both sides of you when you first step into the home. On your right, would be a turquoise wall serving as the backdrop for a charmingly rustic space. 

A lot of the furniture here is actually bonafide vintage, with the homeowner himself either using old furniture from his previous home or sourcing them outright from second-hand stores. This is part of his efforts at eco-conscious sustainability, but also means that plenty of the pieces have an aged appearance and design that simply exudes character. 

The red Chinese medicine drawer, for example, fits the captivatingly rustic appeal of this home just as much as it would in the set of a turn-of-the-century period drama.

HDB Reno 5Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

Left of the entryway is an equally nostalgic-looking dining area. The table is actually ingeniously repurposed from an old door. An interesting note is that, despite using different pairs of chairs for the table, they’ve somehow managed to preserve a sense of order and symmetry here whilst giving the dining table a fun, eclectic touch.

There are ample splashes of greenery all around the home, but here, they’ve specially created a plant sanctuary using a dedicated shelf located right beside the window so that the homeowner’s plant babies can get all the sun they need.

HDB Reno 6Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

With vintage furniture, a lot of the pieces here tend to be primarily made of wood. To counterbalance this, the flooring is done in cement screed. One of the tougher aspects of the home, creating this flooring was a delicate process, forcing the IDs to implement it as one of the last few additions to the home. 

That said, the patina that it’s gotten appropriately evokes memories of hanging out with friends down at a void deck.

The cutest little quadrant entryway

HDB Reno 7Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

The interiors may be captivating enough, but really, your first impression begins at the entrance. Entering this home is like literally stepping into the past, with the arc of the doorway sweeping along the line between the cement screed and the vintage-style terracotta tile flooring. 

Besides providing a visually appealing transition into the indoor space, the durable brick material is also a practical choice for a heavy foot traffic nature of the area.

A Mid-Century Modern kitchen

HDB Reno 8Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

Past a lovingly old-fashioned wired glass sliding door, and the kitchen itself has adopted a more efficient mid-century modern look. That said, the IDs have managed to keep it aesthetically in line with the rest of the home using an earthy stone tile backsplash and the same red terracotta flooring as the entryway.

A small but functional bathroom

HDB Reno 9Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

With the limited space that is shared by both the kitchen and the bathroom, the latter actually received quite a transformation. For one, the sink is relocated outside, integrating with the kitchen to serve both spaces. This is actually the other big challenge that the IDs had to negotiate,  largely due to the fact that they had to ensure the waste chute underneath could still be used once the sink was built in.

HDB Reno 10Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

Inside, they used travertine, laminate floor tiles, as well as painting the exposed pipes to give it a clean, yet still thematically appropriate vibe. Even the pipes are painted black to match the kitchen drawer handles and door frames in this home.

HDB Reno 11Image credit: Comfort Home Interior

For ventilation, they’ve also opted for an endearingly quaint black-framed wired glass porthole window.

What made up the $35k reno cost?

Renovation Element Cost (SGD)
Hacking 3,800
Tiling 11,000
Carpentry and Countertop 7,200
Partition 450
Windows and Door 5,700
Painting 2,400
Plumbing 1,500
Electrical 2,700
Cleaning 250
Total Renovation Cost 35,000

Some of the biggest single ticket items are actually found in the front door, with the terracotta entryway and the arched beams at the living and dining rooms totalling to about $1000. 

A nostalgic $35K 3-room HDB reno in Kampong Kayu

This 3-room HDB is endearingly nostalgic, drawing from a time where the kids played chapteh and hopscotch downstairs and a full plate of chicken rice was $1.50. So for those looking for vintage style for your next home reno, perhaps take a leaf from this design and pop down to your local furniture thrift store for ideas instead.

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Cover image adapted from: Comfort Home Interior

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