An earthy palette and midcentury influences make up The Brown House by The Drawing Studio

JUL 23, 2020 | By Krisha Godani
The Brown House is appropriately named for its restrained palette, minimalist design and use of reclaimed Burma teak; Photography by Sachin Powle
The dining table features a white top and wooden base and is paired with simplistic wooden chairs; Photographs by Sachin Powle
One of the bedrooms features mustard linens to offset the earthy design scheme; Photographs by Sachin Powle

The 1,700 sq ft Brown House in Mumbai is a pleasing amalgamation of old Burma teak and a rich, natural colour palette that led to its moniker. Deepshikha Jaiswal Raut, principal designer of The Drawing Studio, collaborated with multidisciplinary creative Samir Raut for this project and chose reclaimed wood as the central material such that it tactfully navigates the homeowners and visitors through the house. 

Belonging to a family of four, the layout is designed to be free flowing and seamless to create a sense of openness. It is evident in the open plan that comprises the home office, living, dining, media rooms. All of these are connected to the master bedroom using a custom built central sliding door on one end, and the children’s bedrooms on the other. When they’re open, the segregated parts combine and create a dynamic whole.

For the design process, Jaiswal Raut says, “We discussed architects such as Alvar Aalto, Carlos Scarpa, Bijoy Jain, Joseph Dirand and Lina Bo Bardi. The forms are inspired by the works of artists László Moholy-Nagy, El Lissitzky and Senaka Senanayake, in terms of colours and textures.”

Decor elements in the living room feature quirky lamps and an olive green seater; Photographs by Sachin Powle

A straightforward material palette is seen throughout the residence. One that’s rich with pops of green and maroon to complement the abundantly used reclaimed Burma teak. The timber is generously employed in every aspect of the design to frame spaces, act as a backdrop, to create sculptural objects and even as skirting around the polished terrazzo and concrete floor. This minimal design combined with natural material and colour palettes results in a peaceful cocoon for the family.

The living room abuts a balcony, from where allows natural light streams in; Photographs by Sachin Powle

The furniture, Jaiswal Raut says, pays an ode to “American and Danish midcentury icons such as Florence Knoll, Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, Arne Jacobsen and Alvar Aalto. Indeed, each and every piece of lighting has been created in collaboration with Samir Raut”. And these influences, when blended with the richness of the wood, create a cosy and intimate setting for the homeowners. Details in brass and marble seen in the home effectively elevate the ambience of the living spaces. 

A muted leather chair and decorative accents on a wooden and brass shelf create an intimate setting; Photographs by Sachin Powle

Jaiswal Raut has also specially designed the windows to take advantage of the natural light that streams into the house and crafted each room to maximise its effect. Plus, the homeowner’s love for plants ensured that greens add freshness to the warm palette. “I believe in the ‘less is more’ philosophy,” says the designer, as she showcases the abode’s minimal yet honest design.

A quirky side lamp is seen in this earthy hued bedroom; Photographs by Sachin Powle

The home also includes custom made, handcrafted and carefully curated objects as well as artworks made by Jaiswal Raut that reflect the personalities of the homeowners. We love how the inlaid terrazzo floors, mix of Jaisalmer marble, green Baroda and Indian makrana marble on the walls and brass accents tie all the spaces together into one seamless and harmonious abode.

This seating area in the home is a cosy corner, doubled in size by using a mirror on the wall; Photographs by Sachin Powle