Bartley Residences Interior Design – Balcony and Dining Hall

For years, I longed for an apartment with balcony. I’d love to stand there at night, look up the sky, see the stars and enjoy the cool breeze. Isn’t it wonderful?

It’s like a dream come true to me because our new home will have two balconies. I already warned V not to use our balconies for drying laundries! I already have plans for them. Our balconies may not be big, but there’s no reason they can’t be beautiful.

Now, let’s turn your attention to our living hall balcony. The estimated size is 5m x 2m. For the flooring, we plan to put 60% composite wood decking and 40% carpet grass. The area with carpet grass will be made into a mini putting green for our boy. We will put an outdoor tea table and chairs at the other side with composite wood decking.

BR Dining Hall

The other balcony is at the master bedroom, and it’s very small. We plan to put composite wood decking and a hanging chair – to be made into reading or chilling corner. Most likely, we’ll install invisible grilles on both balconies.

For the dining hall, we will use a wall mirror to expand the interior space visually, and a settee with storage. Our designer proposed a single tea colour mirror. I told him I wanted to try a three-colour combination – tea, white and black. Then, he patiently explained to me the reasons why my idea doesn’t suit our home, but he still kindly done up the 3D drawing so that I can have a better “feel” of it.

BR Dining Hall c

At the end, we still feel that his original design (single colour mirror) looks nicer.

If you’re wondering whether we have collected our keys, the answer is “no but very soon”. This week, we received the letter for final payment, which is the 25% TOP, 6 months of maintenance fees (~$1,900) and a one-time survey fee ($166). We made the payment straight away, so we can expect to receive the letter for key collection next week.

Nonetheless, we won’t be collecting the keys until after the Chinese 7th Month – which is in mid September. Giving approximately 2.5 months for defect rectification and renovation, we’re likely to move into our new place during the Dec school holiday.

This means – By Primary 3, school will just be across the road. My office will just be one MRT station away, and if I drive, it will be less than 10 mins to go to work. I’m so looking forward the “time savings” soon.

 💡 Check out my other posts on Bartley Residences Interior Design:


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Bartley Residences Interior Design – Master, Common and Study Room

Key collection sign board has been put up at the entrance

The latest piece of news that has been shared in our BR Residence Facebook Group is that the TOP letters have been sent from the developer to our lawyers this week. This means the key collection should start in 2-3 weeks time by batches. Ours is the second batch, so my estimate will be early – mid September, and we’ll make the collection after the Chinese 7th Month.

In my last post, I shared the 3D drawings of our living hall and foyer. Today, I’ll share the design of our three bedrooms.

Firstly – our master bedroom. Originally, we wanted a king-sized bedframe so that our 8 years-old “baby” can sleep with us (if he wants to). Of course, he’s more excited to sleep in his own room now than bunking with us. But still, having his sweet little nose cuddled into my chest or his smelly little feet poking at my face while sleeping is a wonderful memory that I’ll always cherish.

BR Master Room

Nonetheless, due to space constraint in our master bedroom, we’ve to downgrade to a queen-sized bedframe. Else, there will be no space for dressing table. Our designer proposed this design for us, keeping in mind that we wanted something simple, cozy and comfortable.

The queen-sized bedframe comes with storage, bed-head with lightning, two side tables and a dressing table. This design is like love-at-first-sight to us, we accepted it without any alteration.

Coming up next is Bedroom 2 – which is Edison’s bedroom. We wanted an “age-proof” design that maximizes the space in his room. This is the original design proposed by our designer. It’s simple but fits perfectly with the room’s lay-out. However, our boy doesn’t seem to like it – I guess the design is too “matured” for him.

BR Bedroom 2

He wanted a bunk bed, but we told him it’s not practical since he has no siblings to share the bed. Then, we proposed a platform bed and he thinks that it looks kinda cool too. We decided to put a super-single bed for him so he can sleep comfortably (I can bunk with him occasionally too!).

By now, you should already know that I’m a crazy mom who likes co-sleeping. Haha! Here’s the final design of his room with a platform bed.

BR Bedroom 2 (A)Picture (A)
BR Bedroom 2 (B)Picture (B) – after some revisions that we requested

Lastly – our Bedroom 3 which we will be using as our study room. Picture (A) is the original design and Picture (B) is the amended version as V wanted the top-hung cabinets on both sides to look the same.

BR Study RoomPicture (A)
BR Study Room (A)Picture (B)

I squealed with delight knowing that we will have our own personal workspace soon (Yay to no more sharing!)

So far, we’re quite happy with the design and concept that our designer has worked out for us. It’s also a fun partnership with him. We’ll meet him again when we get our keys for the actual site measurement and defect checking. Till then, I will update on this space again.  🙂


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Bartley Residences Interior Design – Foyer and Living Hall

Everyone is anxiously waiting for the key collection date, but so far, there is still no news from our lawyer yet. I understand that the key distribution list has been fan-out by the developer, so we should be receiving our letter very soon.

Here’s a picture of Bartley Residences taken two days ago. It’s all completed now.


Our renovation plan and 3D drawings from our ID are close to finalization now. Once we get our keys, he can proceed with defect checking and site measurement for us.

Living Hall Lay-out

The foyer / entryway is the first area of the home that is seen when we enter our home. Thus, we want a design that exudes a warm welcome. We also want a full height shoe cabinet that hides the DB box, with a small settee beside it so that our boy can sit while wearing his shoes.

Here are the two designs proposed by our ID. The second design includes an area to put keys, wallets and other daily used things.

BR Foyer

BR Foyer A

The TV feature wall is the most important element in the interior design (I think!), thus we spent the longest time searching for design ideas. It holds our entertainment system and provides storage too. Most importantly, it conceals wiring, cable boxes, and everything else that’s unsightly.

Our ID gave us 3 proposals for our TV feature wall: 1) full-height cabinet, 2) feature wall using laminate with two contrasting colours, and 3) feature wall with stucco finishing that gives a “brick-like” feeling.

BR Living Hall
BR Living Hall B

BR Living Hall A

It’s not an easy decision to make. Full-height cabinet gives us more storage space, but it also makes our living hall looks smaller. So, we decided not to go for it. We will choose between option (2) and (3). If you were me, which design will you choose?

Well, that’s a short update for today. In my next post on Bartley Residences Interior Design, I will share our 3D drawings for our dining hall and bedrooms.


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Bartley Residences Work-in-Progress: Jul 2015 & Interior Designer Selection


Our new home has finally TOPed! Yay! It seems to have been a very long wait (we signed the S&P in Mar 2012), and suddenly it’s ready now. Our new home, our new future – we’re all ready for you. Hopefully, we can get the keys next month.

July 2

July 4

July 3
Fridge and washer delivered to the last few units

We started looking for Interior Designers three months ago. We didn’t have a floor plan with precise measurements, but most of the IDs that we talked to were able to make estimation using their software.

We started our “ID Search” by sending our requests to several renovation portals like RenoTalk and HomeSavv. We ended up with too many replies and phone calls, but none of them were able to send a quotation without first meeting us to understand our requirement. It’s indeed true that there is no standard renovation package as the cost truly depends on individual requirements.

Then, we decided to search for IDs through recommendations, ratings, and portfolios online, rather than fishing for quotations through these portals. We shortlisted a few IDs that we like and we sent our RFQ (request for quotation) to them. Some of them responded, but not all.

We began our ID meet-up soon after that. Truth be told, we were completely clueless on what to expect during our first appointment. Thankfully, the first ID that we met was kind enough to spend almost 2 hours explaining all details of new condo renovation to us, from the design themes, to renovation timeline, costs and ideas. Knowing that he was the first ID that we met, he even recommended that we should meet up with at least 2 more IDs to make our comparisons.

Our second ID meet-up was a brief one. Due to time constraints on both sides, we met-up at our home instead. The meeting took less than an hour as the ID needed to rush off for his next appointment. We told him our project scope (based on what we discussed with the first ID). He also threw in some useful pointers and ideas for us. A week later, he sent us an official quotation.

After these two meetings, we were in a much better shape and far clearer on our project scope. And we came up with this:

Reno 1
Reno 2
Reno 3

Next, we sent this project scope to the remaining shortlisted IDs. Three of them replied with estimated quotations (final price is still dependent on actual measurements). For this version of project scope, the cost is roughly about $30K to $35K. This excludes additional fittings done by independent contractors such as grills, wallpapers, curtains, electrical fixtures, lightning and appliances.

It’s impossible to compare prices item by item between these quotations as they vary depending on the measurements, material used, design, complexity, warranty, etc. But at least, we’ve a rough idea on the average cost for our project scope – that’s an important figure to work out our subsequent budget.

We communicated with few other IDs and contractors through phone calls and e-mails before we met our third ID. We didn’t expect it to be such a lengthy discussion, and we ended up with 2.5 hours on our first appointment. This designer is very pleasant and extremely patient – he listened attentively to all our requirements and at the same time, he also dished out his ideas and considerations that we didn’t think about earlier.

The fact that he’s very passionate about his job and he was also very well-prepared with the floor plan that we e-mailed to him prior to our appointment made us feel that he’s the BEST among the other IDs that we’ve met or spoken to. Thus, we secured our second appointment with him to review the quotation.

We met him again a week later to review the quotation. The price quoted was on the high side but still within the range of other quotations. Ultimately, we felt that it’s more important to engage a designer that we can trust and work with, rather than choosing the cheapest one.

Both of us have confidence in him and we were satisfied with the proposed design for our living, dining, balconies and three rooms. After some negotiations, we sealed the deal (on the same day) and paid the first 20%. That ended our “ID searching and meeting” phase for now.

Both V and I were collectively relieved to find our ideal designer just before we flew off for our Taiwan vacation. We gave him a month to work on our 3D drawings even though he said he needs only two weeks. Since we haven’t collected our keys and would be away for vacation, we were not in a hurry for that.

One important lesson learnt – the more IDs you meet and discuss in person, the more you become ascertain of your project scope and requirement. With every new visit, you’ll surely learn something new that you’ve not thought about earlier.

This will be my last Work-in-Progress post. Coming up next, I’ll begin a new topic on Bartley Residences Interior Design. So please stay tuned!


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