The couple designed the house on their own without seeking help from an architect or interior designer.
On the gates of the two-storey house, the nameplate reads Manasam. Mahesh and Reneshia, the proud owners of Manasam, have put their whole heart into building their dream home.
“When we decided to build a house, we had a perfect idea of what all things we didn’t want,” laughs Reneshia. Having stayed in 13 to 14 rented houses in Kochi had made them quite experienced. The lessons learnt from cramped spaces and badly-lit interiors helped the couple think differently. Their hunt for a plot ended up in Elamakkara, where they found the four-cent land.
“Our initial idea was a single-storey house, but we would have to compromise on the space and hence went for a three-BHK in two storeys,” she recalls. Like every young couple who takes the initial step to build a house, they too were pulled back by budget constraints. But they had the will and the way.
A media manager at a private firm and a part-time ad filmmaker, Mahesh, who is also an artist, made good use of his artistic skills and came up with a plan with suggestions from his wife.
“We didn’t have an architect or interior designer. We just had a mason to help out, and we explained to him our exact requirements through drawings, and he replicated it perfectly,” says Reneshia.
The beautiful 1,700 square feet house speaks for itself. The foyer is the space that connects both the floors. “The plan is that everyone in the home should stay connected. Anyone upstairs gets to know if a guest arrives or something happens in the house,” she says.
From the grey-ash-white flooring to the patio to the wood-iron-steel blend staircase, every single detail of the home was their idea. Reneshia explains, “The first challenge was using every space on the kite-shaped plot. On two sides, we had two triangle-shaped spaces in excess. One was converted into a patio while the other covered the work area.”
One needs to see it to believe how beautifully the space has been accommodated. The patio, with a vertical garden and a transparent pergola, is an ideal spot for a tea time chat, to read the favourite book or to simply enjoy the rains.
The ground floor houses a bedroom, living room, dining space and a kitchen, whereas the first floor comprises two bedrooms – one of them converted into an office room – and a stunning living area with louvre walls and jute blinds. The curtains, blinds and décor are mostly DIY crafts Reneshia learned from the internet. “With Mahesh helping me with the designs, I myself stitched the lemon green curtains and made the hanging glass jars in the first floor hall,” she smiles.
On the narrow green patch in the backyard, the couple has managed to fit a small vegetable garden. “Everything we wanted is here. For us, this is our happy world,” says Reneshia, glancing at their son Rigwed.