Postmodern interior design by Breathe Architecture

Double Life House is the name of a project by acclaimed architectural firm Breathe Architecture, which received the NSW Architecture Award for Residential Architecture from the Australian Chamber of Architects (AIA) in 2016. The design embodies the combination of classic exterior architecture with contemporary interior design in a postmodern style, transforming a small house hidden on a tight inner city terrace in Sydney into an attractive and elegant retreat for two introverts.

the old facade of a narrow house, behind which a modern and refined interior is hidden

small terraced flat with a narrow floor plan

During the reconstruction of the house, the majority of the 100-year-old building was left as well as the old facade. In order to reveal the true identity of the house, the building ceilings were cut back. The originally preserved facade plays the role of a typical mask of the surrounding urban space, which in no way indicates a modern and quiet living area.

narrow modern living room with wooden corner bench, black curtains, wooden beamed ceiling, concrete walls and wall sconces

Upon entering this at first glance traditional town house you find yourself in a completely different world, in which a modern style of living prevails. The entrance area is a narrow corridor that runs along a semi-open and simply furnished living room. A corner seat and the dividing wall between the living room and the entrance form a small seating area in front of the façade windows, which is emphasized by an interesting ceiling design and light accents of artificial lighting. This entertainment area is also defined by its slightly recessed area and the contrast between the wood flooring in the hallway and the dark concrete walls and floor in the lowered living room.

elegant room design through the contrasting combination of wood and concrete

cool and modern living room design with polished concrete walls, white wall paint, wooden beamed ceiling and modern wall lighting

small house with lowered living room, gray concrete walls, wooden beams and wall decoration with black bookshelves and artwork in light pink

The corridor, which is indirectly illuminated from above, leads directly to a house library built against the front door and made of black, room-high bookshelf, behind which is the kitchen and dining area. As soon as one bypasses the house library, one gets into a cleverly furnished eat-in kitchen with a dining area and a view of a small courtyard area. The cooking area is defined by a cooking island with three bar stools and a hanging shelf made of black structural steel. Small white tiles cover the cooking island and the kitchen walls. The bespoke concrete kitchen worktop is fitted with a double under sink and retro wall mounted kitchen faucet in copper finish.

charming interior Desgn for small kitchen with kitchen island and dining area

small living kitchen modern design with white wall tiles, black construction steel, clinker flooring in fischgratmuster and wooden wall cladding with metal shelves

The elegant eucalyptus and metal seating group corresponds with the open shelving system on the wall in the cooking area. Followed by a work of art by Max Berry, the wooden wall shelf and the painting create a chic accent wall, which is additionally staged by a narrow skylight along the entire wall.

The narrow kitchen space with natural lighting and black frame made of structural steel set in scene

modern dining room with open kitchen, metal hanging shelf over the island of concrete worktop of the cooking island, wooden dining table with bench and wooden chairs, glazing and sliding door to the courtyard garden

The narrow space in the small, well-kept backyard, which looks like a natural complement to the kitchen, passes through large-format sliding doors, thanks to the flooring made of blue-gray clinkers in herringbone pattern. In the courtyard is an amazingly narrow concrete staircase with black steel railings made of wave mesh, which leads to another courtyard in the back bedroom.

Attractive stair solution for access from the courtyard to the bedroom

Bedroom idea with sliding door and stairs made of concrete and wood to the small courtyard garden with gray pave in the fischgratmuster

Upstairs, the second bedroom leads past a bathroom that opens to the sky, and to the master bedroom, which separates itself from the vestibule with sufficient storage solution by means of a light-reflecting sliding mirror door.

Elegant design of narrow concrete staircase with a filigree steel railing

modern exterior staircase made of concrete with black railing made of corrugated grid in the courtroom with concrete bench seat and hall layout with plants, windows and wooden wardrobe

original design idea for optical extension and light reflection with mirror door

cool bedroom design with light wood furniture and full-length mirror as a room door and light-reflecting element

The narrow bathroom also deserves ovation with its interesting and modern interior design in the postmodern style with fresh accents from nature. The open to the sky shower area was designed with a wall paneling made of wooden slats and brick plant beds behind glazed shower enclosure very attractive, natural and relaxing. Here, too, the floor was laid in herringbone pattern as a playful accent to the simple wall design in concrete look with a round mirror over a narrow concrete washbasin with an elegant counter top washbasin and retro bathroom fitting in copper. In bad weather, the open-air shower is closed by a folding glass roof system but again lit naturally.

Interior design idea by Breathe Architecture for homely and chic bathroom design

cool bathroom idea for modern bathroom design small bathroom with outdoor shower, wooden wall paneling, climbing plant in concrete raised beds and retro bathroom fittings in copper gold

Pictures: © Katherine Lu

Plants that have a lemon fragrance protect against mosquitoes

The mosquito, also called mosquito, actually represents an important link in the food chain, as the insect family of about 3100 species to which it belongs, provides a rich feed supply to various birds and lilacs. Nevertheless, the mosquitoes, with their constant groaning and itchy bites, can spoil the pleasant time outside. To eliminate the annoying mosquitoes, you can also arm yourself with a natural mosquito repellent, namely with the right plants for the target. The natural exhalation of some plants is so repugnant to the mosquitoes that they go around them. Plants that can help include essential oils that the mosquito does not like at all and that are very handy for the kitchen.

Plants that have a lemon fragrance protect against mosquitoes

Herbs are a natural mosquito repellent

lemon balm

The lemon balm is a perennial plant that can reach from 20cm to 90cm and smells strongly of lemons. It belongs to the classical kitchen and medicinal herbs, which one can cultivate on the balcony or in the garden. In addition, the lemon balm is easy to care for and flowers from June to late August in white, purple, pink or blue. This natural mosquito repellent grows equally well in full sun and in partially shaded locations, as long as the soil is loose and humus rich. The plant does not like waterlogging, but must be watered regularly. The lemon balm is especially good at keeping mosquito bites low, but it is also an invasive plant, so you need to be careful when growing it in the garden. It is good if it is planted in a pot on the terrace or in another outdoor area.


the fragrance of various kitchens and hail herbs drives out the mosquitoes

Rosemary and sage

There are two other mosquito repellent plants you know from the kitchen, rosemary and sage. These herbaceous plants smell very good even when they are burned, but the smoke on burning them is very pleasant for most types of insects. A great mosquito repellent when you’re having a barbecue or just sitting around outside the fire.

The catnip is also against the annoying mosquitoes

The catnip has a deterrent effect on plant pests and vermin


The catnip is a restrained ornament in the garden, which is also a magic herb for animals and humans. The flowers of this plant contain a pheromone-like fragrance called nepetalactone, which is especially appealing to cats. However, the catnip acts on plant pests and vermin such as e.g. the mosquito deterrent.


Herbs as a home remedy for mosquito bites


The basil, also known as a home remedy for mosquito bites, is ideal for an insect-free kitchen. Its fresh aroma displeases flies but also mosquitoes. A 2009 study shows that the essential oil of this delicious staple from your herb garden is toxic to mosquito larvae. This makes basil a suitable plant for planting around natural water sources like a pond.

The lavender scent also eliminates mosquitoes and moths

lavender helps to expel the mosquitoes


In addition to the calming effect on humans, the lavender scent can not only ward off moths, but also banch mosquitoes. A very effective way to fight the insects is to rub the plant on the skin to release its oils.

The oil of peppermint also has repellent effect and can kill the mosquito larvae

Peppermint oil can repel the mosquitoes and kill the mosquito larvae


In concentrated form, peppermint can also be used as an insect repellent. The oil of this plant repels the adults and kills the larvae and eggs of various insects.

the lemon geranium as a beautiful terrace decoration and mosquito repellent

Lemon geranium as a remedy for mosquitoes

Fragrance or lemon geranium

The leaves of the scented geranium, still called “mosquito shock”, have glands that are filled with essential oils. The smell, which exude the glands, is felt by humans to be pleasant, but the mosquitoes do not like it and even wasps can be fended off with it. Due to its strong lemon fragrance, this shrub is still known as Citronella plant. Unfortunately, according to some research, the geranium is the least effective garden plant in the fight against mosquitoes. Nevertheless, rubbing the crushed leaves on the skin, and if there is nothing else, the scented geranium will provide some protection.


the intense smell of a tomato plant is not to the liking of the mosquitoes

The leaves of the tomato plant drive the mosquitoes

tomato plant

Another natural mosquito repellent is the tomato plant, which keeps the mosquitoes away by the intense smell of their leaves.