When interior designer Gianna Camilotti set eyes on this converted historic church in Chingford, Essex, a suburb of London, it was love at first sight. It had undergone a sympathetic conversion in 2005, leaving Camilotti with a gleaming white space in which she could create a spacious home and office for her interiors business. “The architecture is so beautiful; I loved everything about it,” she says. “High ceilings were a must, and this building has those and everything else — lots of character and history.” Camilotti’s main challenge was to fill the generous space without having her furniture get lost in it. “It was such an amazing project. I had no limitations,” she says.
Houzz at a Glance
Who lives here: Gianna Camilotti of Gianna Camilotti Interiors
Location: Chingford, Essex, England
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
The converted church, a National Heritage List property dating to 1890, seduced Camilotti with its arching ceilings and timber beams. “When it came to a base color, I decided to keep it neutral in order to accentuate the original beams,” she says.
“I needed lots of courage when it came to decorating,” Camilotti says. “The living area is a huge, open space, and a normal-sized sofa would have disappeared, so I supersized!” Camilotti has always had a passion for oversize furniture, and the generous proportions of her new home allowed her to indulge her whim for extravagance. “The upholsterer thought I was crazy when I gave him the measurements for the sofa,” she says with a laugh.
Camilotti was drawn to a monochrome palette and is happy the colors worked to the building’s advantage. “I just couldn’t imagine this place in another palette — I think it works perfectly,” she says. The gleaming surface of the glossy white Koishi coffee table reflects light from the large windows.
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Houzz Tour: A Live-Work Space With a Heavenly Heritage