Case study

London Bridge Apartment

Our client got in touch about his centrally located London Bridge apartment, after he felt as though it was starting to feel a bit tired and dated and selling it was on the horizon. Situated in a stunning building with Crittall style windows only a stones throw from Borough Market, upon first visit we knew we could turn it into something modernised and fresh. To set the scene it was a spacious 2x bed property, with a large open plan living / kitchen / dining space and two bathrooms. The bathrooms weren’t in bad condition so to save on budget, we decided to focus on all the other areas with the aim of giving it – as our client called it – “the wow factor”. Topology were asked to design and project manage the installation of the kitchen, dining area, living room, bedrooms and hallway in order to achieve this but in this case study we’ll be focusing on the open plan kitchen / living / dining area.

The Overview

The budget for this project came to approximately £115k. This included…

  • Installation of a new, much larger kitchen, utility area, spacious hallway & two bedrooms
  • Bespoke panelling and boxing in of boiler in the master bedroom
  • New switches & sockets throughout including new electrical circuits and locations
  • Damp repairs from an external leak including new windows panes
  • New herringbone flooring throughout
  • Painting all rooms, furniture, lighting and accessories throughout all rooms inc. window treatments
  • Incinerator installation

One of the main areas to focus on the biggest transformation was the living room. In our opinion the open plan / living & kitchen space was formerly laid out really poorly. The sofa sat against the far right wall with no real focal point in the room and the kitchen felt cramped into a corner. So we wanted to make it feel much bigger by flipping the living space around into more of a ‘zoned’ area. The before & afters below show just how transformative the space now feels with a renewed functional layout.




We also wanted the kitchen to be a real epic focal point. So we made it roughly a third bigger knocking down an existing cupboard that was serving no purpose other than concealing a load of pipes and we utilised some dead space to the left of it, by extending the cabinetry along. Additionally, we improved the lighting scheme and elongated the island in an angle that was appropriate with the natural slanted shape of the room. With the inclusion of a wine bar, additional storage space and pendants on dimmers, it became an elevated kitchen perfect for hosting in!


The Design Stages

After a site visit and formalities are complete with the client, we always undergo a series of ‘design stages’. This makes the process collaborative and fun, allowing the client to ‘sign off’ decisions along the way. First up we started with a layout for each room, which was tweaked until the clients were happy.

First port of call is a layout. As you can see from here we wanted to radically flip the living area on it’s head to create a more practical layout. We also extended the kitchen and padded out any sparse looking areas. Although more furniture was added, the space ultimately felt bigger.

Next up, you can see we drafted up a concept to get a feel for how the space would look in reality once colours, furniture & textures were added.

Renovation Development

The renovation lasted approximately 8 weeks for the actual building works and this didn’t just include the open plan living / kitchen space but a large entry hallway and two bedrooms also. The building work amounted to around 48% of the overall budget and was vigorously planned out with two spreadsheets we could accurately predict exact costs as the process went on.

As the renovation is underway, we carry out weekly site visits to check in on progress and chat to our lead builder to ensure all is running smoothly. Renovations can be exhausting work for not only the trades, but us too, and undoubtedly obstacles will always crop up as you start to rip things out. Whilst these are usually out of our control, our aim is to deal with these in an efficient manner so our client can focus on going about their daily lives whilst their properties are turned upside down & inside out!

Once the trades are finished with their work and the Topology team are happy with everything, we prepare for an ‘install day’. This includes a delivery of all of the products ordered to our warehouse, electricians fitting new lighting, hanging specialists putting up curtains, artwork, mirrors etc, handymen building and Topology managing the full process, ensuring everything is in line with the agreed plans. Install days are always a little hectic  but it’s the most exciting part of our job – watching our designs come to life – as well as seeing the reaction from our clients when their new space is revealed!