If you think of Sweden I’m sure you can think of a lot of great things. Maybe it’s their fantastic contribution to the world of pop music; maybe you prefer their existential cinema or perhaps you’re simply salivating at thought of their delicious meatballs? Either way, as a country, Sweden has done pretty well for itself. For me, I like to think of two things: flat pack furniture and summer houses. For too long these icons of Swedishness have stood apart, but they’ve finally been combined thanks to this ingenues project by Jonas Wagell and Sommarnöjen.
Dubbed the Mini House 2.0, the project is a prefabricated cabin concept that can be delivered flat-packed and typically takes only two days to construct. A collaboration between the Swedish manufacture Sommarnöjen and the designer and architect Jonas Wagell, the modules comes in various layouts and can be configured to include a kitchen, bedroom, bathroom and living space.
Developed in a range of sizes, the first two models are 15 square meters in width and length. As I said, they come with a range of interior solutions and are constructed with high quality wood. Each cabin is fully insulated and includes electricity and interior and exterior painting.
Not only are they a great idea but they also look great. You can see more from this project on its website.
Located in the beautiful surroundings of Japan’s Kansai region, Scape House sits on a hillside overlooking Biwa-ko, the country’s largest lake. With so many houses nearby it was important that this building could make the most of its view without opening itself up too greatly to the neighboring homes. Designed by Kouichi Kimura Architects, this recently completed home aims to incorporate as much light and scenery as possible through versatile living spaces and windows while still allowing its homeowners a sense of privacy.
While it seems that the focus of this project was very much based around creating a home that was comfortable, private and rich with versatile spaces, I have to say that I find the building’s sober exterior to be particularly striking. It’s slender, almost Tetris-like, shapes form a distinct look and its combination of different greys add variety and texture to a bold exterior.
You can view more images from inside Kouichi Kimura’s Scape House here.
Located in the quite hamlet of Remsenburg near New York’s Westhampton, Barn House is a beautiful home renovated from a faux barn that was originally built in the 1980s. Today it stands as the weekend home of Le Pain Quotidien CEO Vincent Herbert and his family.
Designed by Herbert’s close friend – the interior architect Francis D’Haene of D’Apostrophe Design – the project seems to have been a real passion project for the client and designer, with D’Haene mixing old and new to excellent effect.
I love the rustic charm on the outside of the home. D’Haene seems to have really wanted to maintain this and even added wood salvaged from a 200-year-old Canadian barn to add to the personality of the outside. Inside is a different story all-together. Almost nothing from the original interior was. Low-ceilings and dated surfaces were quickly scrapped and replaced with an interior which pares everything back to the bare essentials. It makes for a great interior and I would certainly love to spend a couple of long-weekends in this wonderfully minimalist retreat.
Modulorbeat’s One Man Sauna is a wonderfully strange construction found near the German city of Bochum. The work forms part of a research lab project called Borderlands which the architects have been working on since 2012. Borderlands examines the border and transit spaces of the city and attempts to see what role architecture can play in the development of these spaces.
This One Man Sauna is located on the site of an old abandoned factory and stands at nearly 25 feet. Built from old building shafts, the sauna consists primarily of three stacked pre-cast concrete parts. These form three different unique layers on the inside: a plunge pool at the bottom, a sauna on the middle level and a relaxation room and viewing area at the top.
Go check out Modulorbeat’s website for more exciting work.
Architectural firm Bates Masi + Architects LCC have had roots in New York City and the East End of Long Island for over 50 years. Recently they completed this stunning family home in Amagansett, New York. If anyone knows the area, they’ll know that it’s a popular destination with tourists and features a bustling resort town as well as a number of celebrity homes.
One of the key considerations for this property was to shelter it from the noises of the near-by village. The architects say that their interest in the building’s acoustics was what drove the form, materials and detail of the house. From the outside, it initially looks windowless, with large concrete walls that are nearly 20″ thick. These provide excellent insulation as well as great protection from the sounds of the village.
Inside the home looks bright and spacious with a particularly beautiful living-and-dining space. Its use of different woods makes this area feel relaxing and comforting and its large window opens up to the rear of the property to reveal a garden and pool.
“The research of sound and how it affects our perception of space informed the details, materials, and form of the project” say the architects. “This approach to the design led to a richer and more meaningful home for the family.” I think the finished house looks beautiful, and I’d happily except an invite to come stay-over from whoever its new residents are!
More work from Bates + Masi Architects can be seen on their website.
It’s August and people are on holiday all around the world. Unless you’re like me, working in the U.S., and the idea of holiday is a foreign concept and you can only dream of getting away for a month. To be specific, I’ve been dreaming of this holiday apartment in Barcelona which was rebbed by CaSA, an architecture firm run by Matteo Colombo and Andrea Serboli.
The brief was to transform this neglected, very badly distributed apartment into an attractive holiday home. The property is located in an extremely central street, right between Plaza Catalunya y Plaza Universitat, on the sixth floor of an art nouveau building. Nonetheless, this last floor was built in the ’60 and lacked of the charm of the rest of the building. In order to meet the brief, spaces had to be re-thought completely and all existing partition had to be demolished. The budget was tight and clever solutions were required to complete the needs providing an attractive, contemporary holiday atmosphere.
The biggest success of the space to me is the relationship between inside and outside. The terrace originally had been extremely closed off. The architects came and opened it up with a number of interseting window spaces that allow the air to circulate through the space. They’ve also brought the wood elements from the outside into an indoor relaxing area.
Overall the space is neutral until you reach the hallway, which is a wonderfully rich shade of blue. The hallway leads to three bedrooms which are quite similar, the main difference between them are their brightly colored, tiled bathrooms. The contrast between punches of color and neutrailty is quite nice and lends to a tranquil environement.
View more images and behind the scenes information about the project by clicking here.
Mamva, a health food restaurant based in San Pedro Garza García, Mexico, recently received some fresh new branding and interiors from probably my favorite design agency in the world, Anagrama. Mamva serves fresh smoothies, juices, salads, and paninis, so the branding and identity needed to feel clean, friendly, and honest.
Our proposal uses symbolism and easy, simple language to communicate friendliness and natural health. Drawing from the idea that eating healthy is the best medicine, we featured the snake thanks to its status as a symbol of health and medicine since ancient times.
The color palette and rough materials give a care-free tropical vibe. The logotype presents a built-in, all-in-one practical guide to everything Mamva, such as its schedule and phone number. The brand also uses a simpler version of the logo in seal form, a nod towards its excellent food quality.
You can see more imagery from the project by clicking here.
If there’s anything any home needs it’s an abundance of plant life. Studies show that plants help fight colds, clean the air, lower your blood pressure and make you happier overall. That said, could you imagine living in a multi-story concrete home that basically slender vertical garden? This is what architect and designer Ryue Nishizawa, one half of the design firm SANAA, has helped create.
Tucked away in a tiny crack in Tokyo is this four-story home which mixes concrete and glass to create a series of terraces and balconies that blurs the line between interior and exterior. The home is united with a spiral staircase the punctuates the space from top to bottom yet still feels elegant, not consuming or overpowering the space.
It’s always fascinating to me to see how the Japanese utilize such unique spaces with such creative solutions. A space like this isn’t for everyone, though if you offered it to me I’d take it in a heart beat.