Reviving Victorian Homes: Modern Solutions for Age-Old Challenges

Victorian Houses in Modern Times

From the semis of Clapham to the terraces of Tooting, the townhouses of Islington to the stucco villas of Notting Hill, our capital is famed for its Victorian homes. While we all love period features such as ornate cornicing, handsome fireplaces and jewel-toned stained glass, the fact is, Victorian architecture isn’t always a perfect fit for contemporary living. The open-plan kitchen-diners and flowing layouts that suit our lives now would have been unimaginable to the 19th-century Londoner.

Trade Fairs and Modern Design Inspirations

Modernizing Victorian homes doesn’t mean erasing their original character, but adding another layer to their design history. The influence of modern design trends can be seen in many Victorian homes, thanks to the exposure and inspiration from events such as Designing Impactful Tradeshows in London’s Event Spaces.

Lighting Up Dark Hallways

The traditional Victorian hallway can feel like an overly narrow space hemmed in by closed doors. For a more modern feel, colourful paint or a staircase runner in a brilliant shade will bring this transitional space to life; use similar colours in other rooms to make the hallway feel connected. For a larger-scale project, doorways can be enlarged and fitted with glass doors to flood the hallway with natural light.

Revamping Galley Kitchens

Victorian kitchens, often located in basements or at the rear of the house, were places of hard work and were designed to keep smells and noise at one remove. Modernizing this space involves creating a warm hub for the home, which could involve opening up the kitchen to other living spaces or introducing more light through glazing.

Adding Personality to Living Rooms

Victorian living rooms were all about privacy and decorum. Modernizing them involves injecting personality into the space through colour and art, or creating a screen-free sanctuary decorated in serene shades.

Architectural Individuality

For the Victorians, decor was a way to conform and signal one’s position in society. Today, we are free to do the opposite: create rooms that surprise and express our individuality. With renovations like these, modernizing a Victorian home is about adding another layer to its design history.

Preserving and Enhancing Period Features

While modernizing a Victorian home, it is important to retain and accentuate its period features, such as ornate cornicing, fireplaces and stained glass. These elements can be harmoniously combined with modern design elements to create a home that is both contemporary and rich in history.