On the Sofa with Designer, Swee Lim

Designer, art consultant and stylist Swee Lim of Swee Design selected the furniture, art and objects for Carpenter’s Square House, designed by Architects EAT. We spoke to Swee about her favourite DOMO furniture pieces, and how she curates furnishings and accessories to complement her clients’ lifestyles and homes.

Can you tell us about Carpenter’s Square House?

It’s an amazing architectural house that Architects EAT have done an incredible job with. The clients are a family with young children, and they engaged Architects EAT to design a new wing for their Edwardian house, allowing ample garden space and a pool. The original house has gorgeous decorative detailing, which Architects EAT has faithfully restored to its former glory, and the addition has rich textures and materials executed with fine craftsmanship and precision. The aim with the furnishings was to complement the old and new, and to suit the family’s modern lifestyle.

Photography: Derek Swalwell

What was your approach to choosing the pieces for the formal living room?

I took cues from the pressed metal ceiling, which is detailed and restored by Architects EAT, rich and ornate. As this is the formal living room, I wanted the furniture to reflect the elegance and sophistication of the architecture and decorative detailing.

I chose a key furniture piece – the Wittmann Miles Sofa – and curated the other furnishings around it. The sofa has a curvaceous form that envelops and encloses the room, and I paired it with the Wittmann DD Coffee Table, which is also round and curvaceous.

As an art consultant, I am always looking for unique one-off pieces to complement the furnishings. I chose the beautiful ceramic vase by Mark Young for the coffee table. It is very earthy, textured and organic against the smooth marble tabletop.

The round form is a key element in many of the pieces, Swee. Do you use form to curate a setting?

Yes, I am very interested in form, and particularly sculptural forms as I have a background as an art consultant. I am also very inspired by the wondrous concave battened ceiling by Architects EAT – how it provides a sense of movement inside the house and at the same time giving a defined volume that feels soft and cocooned. So, all the pieces have a sculptural nature and create a distinctive composition, whether it’s curved, like the sofa and coffee table, or more angular, like the Ligne Roset Archi Armchair.

I also used black to tie the furnishings together. The black and white grid rug from Halcyon Lake is a neutral but classic base for the rest of the furniture, which is much richer.

The teal velvet sofa is very rich and distinctive. Why did you choose this colour?

We wanted the sofa to be the stand-out. It’s a beautiful, refined and detailed piece, and the rich teal velvet provides lustre, richness and warmth to the room. The green tones are picked up in the marble coffee table, with its brass highlights providing a touch of glamour.

Multifunctional furniture has become very popular for designers and customers in recent years. Is this something you consider in choosing furniture, Swee Lim?

Working as a designer and an art consultant, I am especially interested in furniture that is multifunctional and has interesting sculptural shape. We are becoming more organic and relaxed in our furniture usage, and the Wittmann Grain Cut side table is a perfect example of this. It has such a striking profile that it can work as a stand-alone piece while also functioning as a side table and even a seat.

The de Sede DS-80 Daybed is another great example. I placed it next to the window where it’s perfect for relaxing and reading in the sun. But it’s also a very sophisticated piece, so it functions as additional seating when the clients have guests.

Also, the Ligne Roset Passe Passe coat rack is in the bathroom, where it serves as a towel rack. It will work in any position since it’s freestanding, and can be used for towels, coats, hats, etc.

 Swee Lim, what is your favourite brand at DOMO and why?

My favourite brand is Ligne Roset, without a doubt. The furniture has a really strong design edge and is playful in terms of the interplay of interesting forms. Th brand also has a very adventurous spirit. They commission new pieces every year, thus supporting innovation and the design industry, and giving young designers an opportunity on the international stage.

Ligne Roset is not afraid to be different and to make a statement, which is how I approach my own work. I like it to have a point difference, while fulfilling the client brief.

DOMO’s contemporary, classic and attainable luxury collections are on display at DOMO showrooms nationally.



Project: Carpenter’s Square House #EATCarpentersSquareHouse

Architect & Interior Design: Architects EAT @architectseat

Furniture, Art and Styling: Swee Lim at Swee Design @sweedesign

Photography: Derek Swalwell @derek_swalwell

Ceramic sculpture by Mark Young @markmillimetre (on marble coffee table)