Project manager in the City by day (or rather, week-day) and Instagram creative by night; we had the pleasure of sitting down with Tun – the always-elegant London resident behind the @tschang Instagram handle – in his dreamy Mid-century inspired Homewings designed open plan living room.
As we arrive at a charming block of flats in East London’s Leytonestone, an impeccably –yet casually – dressed Tun opens the door with a radiant smile. “Come in, come in!” he says ushering us in, the faint purr of a boiling kettle humming in the background as he offers us a cuppa. The warmth of that welcoming moment reflects itself in the bright, perfectly designed living room we now find ourselves in. The only words that come to mind: Mid-Century Scandi paradise.
Hard working, and aesthetically meticulous: These are words that seemingly describe all aspects of Tun’s personality, from his Instagam feed to his living room. The bright space, with its modest square-footage, is decorated to feel airy and bright. “All of my furniture has elevated legs” Tun points out, recalling the elegant combination of the Alana copper side table and Motti two-seater sofa from Made. “Because I live in a small space, I didn’t want too many bulky items. I don’t have anything that sits directly on the floor, because it would add a heavy and bulky feel. Instead, I went for pieces with legs. The fact you can see through them gives a sense of openness”.
Tun could have opted for cookie-cutter white scandi shelving and furnishings, but that would have lacked the character he craved for this space.“I feel like when everything is white, it doesn’t stand out and sort of blurs into the background. I wanted my living room to have lots of character – something unique, full of Mid-Century furnishings” he says, referencing the Acorn Mid-Century shelf from West Elm in the far right corner of the dining area. “As soon as you walk in, it has a real wow-factor.”
And the wow-factor continues throughout the uber-functional dining area, where a sturdy yet lightweight walnut table sits, perfectly paired with Classic Cafe chairs (both from West Elm) creating a multi-purpose dining/work area.
“The table was one of the things I knew I needed from the start of the design process” says Tun. As a creative that often has to get work done from home, functionality was key – and this little piece of furniture had some big roles to play.
“It’s the perfect example of practical/functional design: Practical for entertaining and practical as a work space.”
“Because of the size of the space, I couldn’t have both a dining table and a workstation” says Tun, “that’s where the functional thinking came in. Some of my friends ask me ‘why did you choose to have a dining table in such a small space? If you get rid of it you’ll have a lot more room!’ Although they are right in theory, I feel like that’s when functionality is super important. For instance, I don’t want to have dinner on a coffee table while having to sit on the floor. I think dinner time is such a nice moment – it’s when you can gather yourself at the end of the day and really relax. In a way, a table to sit at and a nice chair to sit on is a small luxury we take for granted. Now, I have a table that can do both! It has an extension as well, so if i want to entertain 6 people, there is also space to extend it. It’s the perfect example of practical/functional design: Practical for entertaining and practical as a work space.”
Although functionality is a common thread in this Insta-worthy living space, it is the small accessories and furnishings that truly make it feel like a home. The geometric printed cushions – which you can find here, here and here – from Ikea, paired with the Memo rug from Linie Design add a pop of personality and colour.
But in Tun’s eyes, it is the little things that make a house a home. “It’s all about the personal touches – the little things” he says. “I love walking into people’s homes and seeing all the interesting things around their home and learning the story behind them.”
With a never-ceasing smile, Tun ushers us out of his perfectly designed home; a little mid-century gem in the heart of East London. As we walk towards the door, the Swoon Editions Zebel TV unit paired with the Talisman floor lamp from Iconic Lights round out this Mid-Century vibe with a touch of understated elegance. One final question comes to mind: Would you say this is now the perfect living room? “Yes” says Tun, “it really is a realisation of my vision.”
10 Questions About You, Your Home & The Homewings Process With Tun of @Tschang
1 | Why did you decide to use Homewings?
“I decided to try it out because I was in the process of figuring out what to do with my living room. I had a blank canvas and although I had lots of ideas, I wanted to get a second opinion from a professional to see how I could actually execute my vision, and maybe even improve on the ideas.”
“I think interior design should be like this all the time. The process should really be collaborative, and allow you to bring your personality in, bouncing off ideas and getting a fresh opinion.”
“When I connected with my designer and laid out my vision, she understood the style I was trying to go for. It was very useful that she sourced the items for me because I’m very busy, and although I knew the sort of thing I was looking for, I didn’t have the time to actually go and source it myself.”
2 | What did you like most about the process?
“Because I had my own ideas, I wanted to work with my designer, rather than just letting her decorate the space in a vacuum. In that sense, the experience was really great. It was a real collaboration. She understood that it is my living room after all, and I wanted to put my own stamp on it. I think interior design should be like this all the time. The process was really collaborative, and it allows you to bring your personality in, bouncing off ideas and getting a fresh opinion.”
“Making the final decision on the furniture and choosing the specific items was the best part. But that’s also the hardest part, because you realise ‘oh! I could go with this, or that’ and you want it all! The trick is to go with your gut. That’s what I did and I am very happy with that decision.”
3 | What’s your favourite item in your new living room?
“Hmmm – I think it has to be the shelf. I don’t know why, I think i’m discovering that i’m a bit of a shelf person! I love collecting things, and I love looking at all my books and my plants on the shelf – my little collectibles. Your shelf is really all about you. The small items you chose to display on your shelf really define who you are.”
4 | Your Interior style in 3 words:
I would say Mid-Century Scandi? It’s minimalistic and clean but still has lots of character. I was probably Danish in a previous life!
5 | What was the funnest part?
“The funnest part was at the end, when I saw the images of this photoshoot. Just seeing how everything came together so beautifully – it really showed me the potential this flat has got!”
6 | Which is more important? Aesthetics or comfort?
“Can I say both? I think a space has to be beautiful and practical. In fact, I think that [practicality] is even more important than comfort, because a practical space will be comfortable by definition.”
7 | What is your perfect Weekend like?
“I love going to Angel, in North London. From there you have a lovely canal which allows you to walk all the way to Broadway Market and you can stop by cafes along the way and pop in to a nice little place to have your lunch at Broadway market.”
“On a Sunday - that’s an easy answer! It has to be Columbia Road flower market. It’s the best place to go on a Sunday afternoon. I tend to get there around 3:00pm. Even though everyone says to go early in the morning to avoid the crowds, I think the point of Columbia road flower market is to go into the crowd! If you go there when there is no-one, you totally miss the point. It’s all about the crowd, and pushing and shoving to get to the best stalls, hearing to the choir of cockney accent-ed ventors shouting to get you to their stand. It’s the perfect depiction of London - it’s why I love it.”
8 | Coffee or Tea?
“Tea! I always have the kettle on.”
9 | Where is home for you?
“I’ve lived here for a long time, so even though i am from Malaysia - home is definitely London. When I’m in the UK, and I tell people ‘I’m going back home’, they know I mean Malaysia, but when I’m travelling abroad going ‘home’ means coming back to London. Sometimes, after you come back to London after a long trip and you get on the tube, you get a feeling of ‘I’m finally home’ – I think that if you feel that way, it means London is home for you.”
10 | Sofa Sunday, or Sporty Sunday?
“Lazy Sunday. Sunday is just a lazy day! It’s a day to relax and do nothing – apart from brunch! If you have too many plans for a Sunday, it’s not really a Sunday! For me it’s a day where you go with the flow; Wake up whenever you want, and stroll to the flower market in the afternoon.”