The allure of imperfection

The bungalow refurbishment project in South Delhi breaks new ground by incorporating state of the art techniques for energy efficiency while also uncovering new methods of upcycling.

The residential bungalow was built in 1982 and over the years, it has undergone many alterations to suit the demands of the growing family.

When the client’s son decided to permanently return to India after working abroad for over a decade, they decided to revamp the bungalow. The project was conceptualized in 2014 and completed in 2018.

The client’s brief to the architect was that the bungalow should reflect their outlook and future aspirations with a hint of nostalgia. The architect wanted the new house to be a fresh start for the family, a haven where the long disjointed family can replenish their personal connections.

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The design process was highly collaborative from the very beginning and this helped the architect to experiment and manifest his ideas fully. Due to this, planning was open, helping the interiors to be spacious and roomy.

The ground floor was retained with minimal design interventions considering the memories that must be connected with the place. The first and second levels were replanned and a third level was added.

This was also an opportunity for the architect to devise design interventions for energy efficiency.

Considering the sun path is slanted towards the South in this region, he made sure the south facing part of the building were composed of powder room, storage etc and the windows were given with wooden shutters and overhangs to avert direct glare falling on the panes.

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The wind direction is from the south-eastern side and the openings were oriented accordingly to provide passive ventilation.

In order to maximize daylight ingress, the Northern side is glazed and there is a stilt in the roof allowing for a triple height light well. Every level has one open space or a garden.

The garden has tall shrubs on both sides for privacy. Many upcycled elements have been incorporated in the design scheme. Some of them sourced from the site (reinforcement bars, plumbing pipes and doors).

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Other materials were obtained from the scrap yard like the old truck engine used to make the coffee table. The dining table is made of wooden sleepers from obsolete railway tracks.

In order to unify the weathered textures of the upcycled materials, the architect has left a lot of the surfaces unfinished or given new unconventional finishes like rough plastered walls, rusted steel plates etc.

In order to support the new level, steel columns have been inserted into the layout. They are attached to the wall using brackets.

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Overall, the design scheme celebrates the beauty of blemishes and imperfections.

The impeccable detailing and the seamless integration of the eclectic design choices are all pointers to how much the architect researched and contemplated over the project. Due to this there is an unparalleled timeless beauty reflected in the spaces.

Fact File

  • Project Title : Residential Refurbishment
  • Location : Kalkaji, New Delhi
  • Practice : Studio Sher
  • Typology : Refurbishment
  • Principal Architect : Rohin Sher
  • Interior Design Team: Rohin Sher, Tusha Gupta, Soham Doshi
  • Area : 5500 sq. ft

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