Unconventional decor and colour gives this architect’s flat new life

Belgian architect Frederik de Wachter, who founded interior architecture firm DWA, visited 40 flats in Milan before falling in love with the light and the enticing position of his future house. The day was February 11, his birthday, which he believes brought him luck. The layout was given a new lease of life with some key changes. Although Frederik considers the furnishings of his house to be more of a random mixture than a carefully curated selection, it in fact comprises a good deal of thought. From the blue Rietveld armchair to the Albini table, and from the red Vico Magistretti chairs to the black Charlotte Perriand chair, every piece seems to be chosen with intent, right down to the lamps that dot the living space.

Frederik’s unconventional use of materials is of great interest; in the kitchen, he combined spruce plywood with marble on the worktop, and with fronts in a liquid-rubber finish. In the bedroom, he coated the wardrobe in linoleum with marble-like veins, while the bathroom is embellished with brass details. In Frederik’s Milanese haven, a combination of northern and southern styles prevail – but the results are far more than just a compromise.

Bold decorating touches and organic elements – select pieces in rich hues along with verdant greenery and wooden cabinetry – play off the living room's white shell.
A wooden surface from a studio project transforms into a coffee table. Accessories and artworks mingle in this corner, from modern geometric pieces to nature-inspired shapes.
Touches of pink pair with earth tones in the kitchen, along with Frederik's beloved plants.
Everything in the kitchen was designed by Frederik save for the 1950s-style sideboard.
The mirror ingeniously reflects the artwork from the bedroom across; a juxtaposition of materials and colours added visual interest to the bathroom. A palette of unexpected yet grounded hues create a calming mood.

Photography: Helenio Barbetta | Living Inside
Styling: Chiara dal Canto