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A Peep into A Nostalgia - Barrack House from the 1930s

Also, what should you consider when lighting the outdoors
Designer :
Victor Ting | The Carpenter’s Workshop
Nestled in the heart of rugged Geylang is a single storey barrack house that was originally built in the 1930s with s space of 1700sqft. The original façade was painstakingly restored and retained by reconstructing a 2-storey attic with a new built-in space of 3100sqft to what is now, the unassuming yet charming office of The Carpenter’s Workshop.

Upon entering, you’ll be able to see that elements of the old house was re-purposed and reused which act as a window to provide a glimpse to the past. A multi-split-level approach was adopted and the internal space was divided by the staircase and an air well into the front and back portions. The front of the house are all the private spaces and while the back portion of the house are communal spaces.

Of particular interest to this interaction is The Reading and Working Spaces which are newly minted spaces of the Barrack House

Qn: Please tell us the significance of your Reading Space (Sofa area) and your Creative space (attic area) in relation to the whole office. Also, how these places influence your work and daily life.

I like both spaces in the office for Breathing In & Breathing Out.

The Reading Space (L2) is a place for breathing in. A place where I get inspiration from and also where I relax and contemplate. On the other hand, The Creative Space (L3) in the attic is an area for breathing out. A place for creative work and expression. This is where my ideas are born and inspirations are ignited.

View from Creative Space to Reading Space

Creative Space

The Reading Space and The Creative Space function like an integrated space although both are two very distinct spaces but are physically linked by a flight of stairs.

Area leading to flight of stairs to Reading Area

When seated at The Reading Space (sofa area), the balcony on the right with the glass door is bordered by a vertical green curtain. On the left, are windows that look through to a vertical green wall and into the attic, stands parallel at the other end.

Both the balcony window as well as the attic windows are both facing the air well, which allows the 2 spaces to be visually connected. This visual connection, as well as the high ceiling, gives a sense of space and liberation where ideas are allowed to flow.

View from Creative Space to Reading Space

Meanwhile, we had some questions for Victor from The Carpenter’s Workshop on key elements to consider when lighting the outdoors.


- The type of light

⦁ Ambient lighting (Lighting that gives the overall mood and setting of a space)
⦁ Task lighting (Lighting for a specific function / purpose)
⦁ Accent Lighting (Lighting that highlight and create different focal points)

- Projection angle

⦁ If the light is to highlight the façade, a wider angle offers a more overall light up of the facade. A smaller angled light will highlight specific details
and create a certain effect.
⦁ It is also possible to combine the use of ambient and task lighting. For e.g. Having wall-mounted lamps with patterned light diffusers or spike
lights that throw light up against the facade.

- Positioning & Purpose

⦁ Is the light used to create a mood or to fulfil a task?
⦁ An upward throw and downward throw of a wall light will give 2 different effects.
⦁ Spike lights can be used to highlight different aspect of the tree or building
⦁ Ground embedded light can be applied as guiding light for pathway or to serve as a feature.

- Solar Energy

⦁ Considering at least 12 hours of natural light, the incorporation of solar panel features is a both a logical and sustainable concept.

Oligo Trinity in Graphite

Disclaimer: Oligo Trinity is not weather-proof. Image is for marketing purposes

Qn: How would you incorporate safety measures for outdoor lighting?

Weather proofing the lights is sometime a challenge as some light fitting may not be as well designed to withstand wet weather.

Wall light fittings tend to have more issues such as a worn-out seal due to the exposure to weather elements which can cause seepage.

Paying attention when choosing light fitting that has better design in terms of water tightness is important.

Some light fittings have designs with external wire while others the wire is embedded internally during installation. The latter ensures that the light fittings are better sealed as a whole and more water-resistant.

Qn: How do you use outdoor lighting to accentuate the architecture and landscape of an outdoor space?

To accentuate the architecture, light is needed to bring out the details of the architecture. The placement of the lights is also important to bring out the form of the architecture.

For landscape, the lighting has to support and enhance the landscape design which means helping to add dimensions and bring out different layers of the landscape during the night.

Qn: Some tips to upkeep and care for outdoor lighting?

⦁ Checking periodically for any condensation in the light glass enclosure.
⦁ Periodic checks of the rubber seal to prevent water seepage into the light fittings.

Qn: Some unorthodox outdoor lighting tips to attempt for the eccentric

Collecting old glass bottles with big opening and then improvising the fitting into the glass. Also, Drilling holes of different sizes onto metal pails and hanging them in the garden with candles inside. The holes of different and random holes will emit glow.

Qn: Why Oligo’s Trinity?

Because Oligo Trinity is more than just a light, it is a sculpture. In addition, the versatility of the rotating light segments gives life to the whole light design. The 3 segments of the light can be controlled individually giving the option to create different mood and effect.