Flashback: (left to right) Thakur has converted one of the bedrooms into his office and the walls of this room are lined with shelves laden with stationery; classic rock CDs are arranged alphabetically and form a grid over the bookshelf; and the dining area serves like a modern art gallery. Photographs By Anay Mann; Styled by Ragini Singh / Better Homes and Gardens

Thakur was going to use the place as home, and as the base to run his design firm, The Grafiosi, from, hence the place had to reflect Thakur’s design sensibility and his work. True to this vision, the three-bedroom flat in Vasant Kunj, New Delhi, now looks anything but a run-of-the-mill flat. In fact, you’d be forgiven for wondering if you’d walked into a pub, since you are greeted by muted light, black sofas, artistically organized CDs and books, lots of digital art, and walls splashed with colour.

As you soak in the details, you notice that floral grills have been replaced with straight lines, teak windows and doors have been put in, wooden flooring has replaced ordinary mosaic, and bathrooms have been completely transformed with charcoal tiles and modern fittings. Thakur has also utilized space well by dividing the drawing and dining areas into two, courtesy a TV unit. He used a big block of teak over the unit along the ceiling to embed recessed lighting, which now services both areas. “I believe in 100% efficiency," says the self-taught artist, who uses only compact fluorescent lamps (CFL), and fashioned a six-level CD rack from waste wood leftover from doors. Thakur is partial to black, and there is ample use of dark hues in furniture, and even linen, juxtaposed with white walls on which he has created textured art using bright acrylic splashes.

In fact, while he was painting, some of the paint flew on to his self-designed Leatherite sofa and even on the floor, which he has left untouched. Though the room may appear cluttered—he has an open shelf where he keeps his “souvenirs of life"—there is a method to the madness. “I like it to look chaotic, but I know exactly where everything is," he says. If there’s a lesson to be learnt from his home, it’s this: Be unapologetic about how you want your home to look, and don’t be afraid to experiment.

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