Designed by a Gen-Y for a Gen-Y
Claire’s house provided a unique opportunity for a gen-Y architect to design a home for a gen-Y client; exploring an eclectic approach within a first-home-buyer's budget. The client required a flexible design: a home that would function immediately with housemates, and later as a family home. The sloping block and challenging orientation presented both constraints and opportunities, inspiring a stepped modular design that wraps around a central outdoor space. Surrounded by homes largely cut in, or built up, on their block, this house stands out for its gentle sloping form that matches the landscape, responding appropriately to place, climate and culture. With emphasis on energy efficiency throughout the design, this home achieves an EER of 7.3 stars, significantly improving comfort at the same time as dramatically reducing heating/cooling costs.
The design relied strongly on client-architect collaboration and contributions from other craftsman such as bricklayers, a mural artist and carpenters, to work on artistic features of the home.
To achieve this collaborative finished product, on a first-home-buyer’s budget, the architect and client thoughtfully planned for elements that she could complete after the finished build.
The client then coordinated or built items such as further custom joinery, decking and landscaping, the perforated metal carport door, plus engaged mural artist, John VOIR, to complete the large brick wall painting to the deck, viewed as a backdrop from the main living areas.
The house becomes an extension of the client’s creative style. An eclectic use of materials created a perfect base for the client’s broad taste. Concrete floors contrast with spotted gum stairs and an exposed Canberra red brick wall. Contrasting materials like gloss white with plywood, charcoal joinery with mirror splashbacks, and grey tiles with black wet area fixtures, creates a home that feels diverse, playful and interesting. The contrast of old and new, such as the modern pendant lights next to the salvaged cottage-style sliding door on the ensuite, also compliments this pattern. This home is a clever example of art in architecture: as a tool for client involvement and collaboration; as well as a device for delivering an affordable, highly thoughtful and personalised home.
3 bed, 1 living, 2 bath
557 m² sloping site with north running diagonally through the block
Client coordinated and built joinery, decking, landscape and carport door
Designed to accommodate a changing lifestyle: separate bedroom wing for a studio, housemates or children in the future
Commissioned mural by VOIR on face brick adjacent to timber deck
Floor finishes: burnished concrete and tiles
Living areas connect to the north facing timber deck and garden
Tailored to the site and designed to our client's brief and budget using our Light House Modular approach
High performance PVC double glazing
Ceiling fans and cross ventilation only forms of cooling needed
R1 insulated slab
R2.5 insulation to exterior walls
R1.5 insulation to interior walls
R5 insulation to the ceiling
Vapour permeable building wrap to walls and roof
Minimal air leakage, well sealed building envelope (8 air changes per hour at 50 Pascals)
Evacuated tube solar hot water
Rainwater tank plumbed to garden taps, toilet and laundry