Fashion house uses design to create a light, easy flow


Dublin 8: €850,000 Fashion designer Helen Cody's two-bedroom house on the banks of the canal is a light-filled home with a studio at the end of the garden writes Eoin Lyons

Helen Cody's redbrick house overlooking the Grand Canal at 4 Lullymore Terrace in Dublin 8 is a pretty Victorian cottage that is full of light and useful space.

Felicity Fox is asking €850,000 for the double-fronted, two-bedroom house that has 106sq m (1,140sq ft) of living space.

Lullymore Terrace faces the canal beside Sally's Bridge, the next bridge up from Harold's Cross bridge.

Cody has transformed the house from a state of disrepair when she bought it about seven years ago, to the kind of place that's featured in interiors magazines.

The house is a little different to others of its kind - rooms seem slightly larger, ceilings that bit higher and there's some lovely original sugar-icing plasterwork.

An interconnecting living and diningroom are on one side of the entrance hall and there are two double bedrooms on the other.This long space has stained timber flooring and an open fireplace.

Like any good designer, Cody has put much effort into the details: wardrobes, radiator cabinets and kitchen units have all been custom made to her spec.

The back of the house has been extended to create a large, bright kitchen.

It has a high-pitched ceiling with skylights. According to Cody it's a space that works just as well for entertaining (double ovens help) and everyday life.

French doors open from the kitchen to a richly planted garden. There is vehicle access from a laneway behind the house, so off-street parking is possible.

The bedroom to the front is a good size but the second one is much more special. It features an internal window that looks into the kitchen.

The previous owners had almost completely closed in this window when they added an extension of a small jumble of rooms at the back of the house.

Cody has opened it up as an interior window with the help of architects Bennett McCleary, who also helped re-design of the rest of the house. The garden to the rear of the house can now be seen from the bedroom through the kitchen windows.

In one corner of the garden Cody has built a studio which she has been using for design work.

She bought the house around the time she produced her first collection and needed a space from which to sketch, make patterns, do administration and so on.

There was a half-shed/half-garage in the garden so she had a builder brick in the opening where the garage doors were, fixed up the other walls, put in a decent window and door, and ran electricity and heating out to it.

The rooms in the house are painted in soft Farrow & Ball shades and the comfortable atmosphere is one new owners would do well to retain.

"What I've loved most about living here is the calmness," says Cody.

"There is something serene about the place - maybe it's the balanced layout with one room facing another. The other good thing is that whatever way the sun hits the house, it's always bright - even in winter."