Dixie Lessard January 30, 2021 Home Ideas
Nestled into a woodland area, this small, fresh feeling cottage is small but anything but cramped. Instead, it’s space efficient in a way that eliminates clutter and calms the mind. Affectionately called Indigo for short, this ecologically sound structure follows a modular building concept. The intent of this project was originally to explore how small but effective “mass-customized” buildings might provide us all with healthier living solutions while still catering to individual needs and styles. Rather than adopting a “one size fits all” approach to housing, Woonpioniers prioritized green productivity, ease, and customization all at once.
Fig Tree House is a stunning example of how longstanding city buildings can be updated and modernized without losing their old fashioned, more traditional appeal. Located in La Haya, The Netherlands, this tall home recently underwent a small transformation in the back in the form of a beautiful open concept extension designed and created by by Bloot Architecture. Because the house is located in an historic area, namely The Hague’s Vogelwijk district, the style of the house extension was kept a minimalist, making it contrast sharply but beautifully with the slightly more rustic red brick of the 1927 house.
Rather than just building an average family home, these designers sought to create a haven where family members can escape the hustle and bustle of busy life at the end of the day and thoroughly enjoy their space and each other’s company, letting them feel rejuvenated and refreshed to tackle each morning. That’s how PH House came to be! PH House is a two story dwelling built for two married professionals and their children; a son and a daughter. Despite being located in the thick of fast paced, urban life, giving the family access to everything they need in their modern lifestyle, it is also an escape for the mind, body, and soul when the day is done. In their design process, this team made their primary goal one of shared time and calming space.
To create a delineation between work and leisure, designers built a bright space that facilitates productivity on the ground floor, providing large windows with stunning nature views and lots of natural light. Above that, a relaxing loft bedroom is built. Rather than entirely cutting the two rooms off from each other, however, designers chose to leave space for the same picturesque windows to spill sunrise, daylight, and sunset auras into the room, creating an almost spiritual waking and winding down experience for the artist.
In the front, the house maintains its original structure while, around back, the lovely old fig tree it was named after stretches its branches across the yard. Previously to the extension, however, that namesake wasn’t actually visible from inside the house, something the owners lamented. This is why owners and designers agreed that a full glass extension, with floor to ceiling window walls, was the best solution! Because the new section extends beyond the perimeter of the original house into the yard, and also because its glass walls can be slid back to open the room entirely into the open air, it appears to create a more cohesive relationship with the house, the fig tree, and the environment around the two.
To achieve these goals, designers aimed to actually invite potential dwellers into the design process of their home right from the beginning. This would facilitate a flexibility within the standard building framework that considers the context and lifestyle of each person. Although the Indigo is a an idea that might be produced on mass scale, this individualized process means that no two versions will ever be precisely the same! This particular model, designed in partnership with a creative professional named Lia, was specifically customized to harness only the essentials in order to create a stunning, naturally inspired minimalist style. The inspiration in creating this aesthetic was Lia’s desire to create her natural stone art in the midst of the trees where she can absorb the calmness and beauty of the landscape around her.
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