Calm taupe reigns supreme in this Aberdeen new build

Gold, grey, cream and silver join forces to give this home the cohesion and flow its owners craved

New-build homes. So fresh, so snugly insulated and energy-efficient, so often in a desirable location. Not for these owners the pain of disin­te­grating sash windows and the punishing expense of remoulding crumbling cor­nices. And yet – as one Aberdeen family who bought just such a turn-key property discovered – so hard to transform into an elegant yet personal family home.
The Jacksons learned the hard way, engaging the services of several design companies who failed to deliver the comfort and style they longed for. “We ended up making some very costly mistakes while still not achieving the look or feel for the house I knew I wanted,” Martha Jackson recalls.
“We moved in around ten years ago, before any modifications had been made to the property. The location had been its biggest selling point, as the small enclosed street next to park­land and forest walks gave us exactly what we needed for our family life, along with the benefit of being within walking distance of the city centre, for schools and work. The size of the property gave us the space we were looking for and we saw the potential to make a really comfortable family home.”
But there was a downside. “The house was exactly what you’d expect from a new-build – no work was required but it was very bland and formulaic in its design.”
In its original configuration, there was an open-plan kitchen/family room, a separate formal dining room, a study and a sitting room on the ground floor. Upstairs were five bedrooms, three with en-suites. The Jacksons did make changes, removing the wall between the family room and dining room to create a large kitchen-family space that leads onto the garden. They redid the master bathroom and brought in designers to improve the living room. But nothing felt quite right and the house still lacked the cohesion that Martha craved.

This is just a taster, you can browse the full article with more stunning photography on pages 186-194, issue 98.

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Words Anna Burnside
Photography Neale Smith
Art Direction Gillian Welsh
What A five-bedroom ten-year-old new-build
Where Aberdeen
Design Ambiance Interior Design