Humble Homes http://humble-homes.com Thu, 24 Jul 2014 12:16:41 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 Seelenkiste – A Flat Pack Retreat from Germany by Allergutendingehttp://humble-homes.com/seelenkiste-a-flat-pack-retreat-from-germany-by-allergutendinge/ http://humble-homes.com/seelenkiste-a-flat-pack-retreat-from-germany-by-allergutendinge/#comments Thu, 24 Jul 2014 12:14:34 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12437 From the creative minds of Matthias Prüger, Manuel Rauwolf and Ulrike Wetzel comes this rather ingenious tiny retreat. Called Seelenkiste, which translates as “Soul Box”, or “Spirit Shelter”, the retreat is designed to rejuvenate the occupants by providing a stress-free escape from day-to-day living. The trio are part of a small design studio called Allergutendinge, […]

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From the creative minds of Matthias Prüger, Manuel Rauwolf and Ulrike Wetzel comes this rather ingenious tiny retreat. Called Seelenkiste, which translates as “Soul Box”, or “Spirit Shelter”, the retreat is designed to rejuvenate the occupants by providing a stress-free escape from day-to-day living.

Seelenkiste - Tiny Retreat - Allergutendinge - Germany - Exterior - Humble Homes

The trio are part of a small design studio called Allergutendinge, which creates a variety of dwellings and sculptures with a focus on sustainable building practices. Seelenkiste itself is a relatively simple timber frame structure in which sections can be prefabricated, flat-packed and transported to the owners site. A small team is then able to assemble the different components to create the tiny retreat.

Seelenkiste - Tiny Retreat - Allergutendinge - Germany - Ground Floor - Humble Homes

The building is composed of three main components or levels. The first being the entrance/ground floor living area. Next up is the sleeping quarters which cantilevers out the back of the structure to minimise its impact on the living area below. The final level acts as a small study space accessed by the recessed steps built into the side wall.

Seelenkiste - Tiny Retreat - Allergutendinge - Germany - Exterior - Humble Homes

The exterior is clad with fibreglass reinforced plastic panels, whereas the interior has been mostly finished in with a light wood siding and sheets. Perhaps my favorite aspect of this tiny dwelling is that it doesn’t feature windows, but wall openings that can be easily adjusted according to the weather or the user’s needs. It also allows the structure to be closed up when not in use.

Seelenkiste - Tiny Retreat - Allergutendinge - Germany - Cross-Section - Humble Homes

Due to its size, it looks like the entire retreat can be supported on a simple foundation consisting of concrete tiles and brick, although this may have just been for the photographs, I’m sure most people would rather tie the building down a little more thoroughly.

For more retreats check out this minimalist forest retreat in Czech Republic by Uhlik Architekti. Or these sustainable “Swamp Huts” on the outskirts of Boston that were designed by Moshow Lin Architects. See all retreats.

Via Treehugger
Photos: Allergutendinge

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A Family Home in Tokyo Designed for Adaptabilityhttp://humble-homes.com/family-home-tokyo-designed-adaptability/ http://humble-homes.com/family-home-tokyo-designed-adaptability/#comments Wed, 23 Jul 2014 13:21:39 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12383 This house in Musashisakai, Tokyo, has been designed by local design firm Upsetters Architects for a small family. The house was completed in 2011 and contains a total floor area of 97 square meters (about 1044 square feet). Set in Tokyo suburb, the house has a relatively generous amount of perimeter space when compared to […]

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This house in Musashisakai, Tokyo, has been designed by local design firm Upsetters Architects for a small family. The house was completed in 2011 and contains a total floor area of 97 square meters (about 1044 square feet).

House in Musashisakai - Small House - Upsetters Architects - Tokyo - Japan - Exterior - Humble Homes

Set in Tokyo suburb, the house has a relatively generous amount of perimeter space when compared to some of its contemporaries (which are often less than a foot or two away from the adjacent buildings). Built for a family of three, the architects attempted to create a layout that would serve the family’s needs over time, and as such it features a rather unusual, but playful floor plan.

House in Musashisakai - Small House - Upsetters Architects - Tokyo - Japan - Stairwell - Humble Homes

To cater for their daughter as she grows older, they inserted a two-story wooden box structure that contains her bedroom as well as an interim mezzanine floor that can be used for studying or relaxing. Interestingly, the mezzanine floor isn’t tall enough to allow a person to stand up and can be accessed by climbing ladders, or the bookshelves in the daughters bedroom.

House in Musashisakai - Small House - Upsetters Architects - Tokyo - Japan - Living Room - Humble Homes

To some the mezzanine may seem an odd, and perhaps dangerously accessed addition but I find it to be an amusing and useful space, not unlike that of a child’s treehouse or den, but set within the home. I do sometimes wonder about the Japanese building codes though, as they often seem to have open staircases and interior balconies with no guard rails at all.

House in Musashisakai - Small House - Upsetters Architects - Tokyo - Japan - Kitchen & Dining Area - Humble Homes

The rest of the house has been designed to meet the needs of the family as a whole. The living room, kitchen and dining room can all be found on the second story and are accessed by a small winding staircase in the entrance. The first floor of the house is dedicated to the two bedrooms (one with a walk-in closet), a bathroom and a garage. There’s also a small attic room at the top of the home that acts as a guest bedroom and a study.

House in Musashisakai - Small House - Upsetters Architects - Tokyo - Japan - Cross-Section & Floor Plans - Humble Homes

While there doesn’t appear to be much in the way of a garden, there is a reasonably sized balcony accessed through the main living area. All in all, it’s a unique layout with some interesting and clever ideas regarding its use over time. Something which all designers should possibly be thinking about more given current climate of sustainability, future-use, and resilient design.

For more Japanese houses check out this 3 meter wide house in Tokyo by the architecture studio Saboarch. Or Teppei Fujiwara’s glass-clad house in Todoroki that features a wooden-frame structure. See all Japanese houses.

Via ArchDaily
Photos: Upsetters Architects

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Small Weekend Cabin is Inspired by Fairy Taleshttp://humble-homes.com/small-weekend-cabin-inspired-fairy-tales/ http://humble-homes.com/small-weekend-cabin-inspired-fairy-tales/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 12:30:41 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12366 Set amongst the pine trees of a forest in Brandenburg, Germany, this small cottage acts as a weekend home for a family, although it could easily be occupied on a full-time basis. The site originally contained a summer house that dated back to 1926, which was unfortunately beyond repair. The owners of the land contacted […]

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Set amongst the pine trees of a forest in Brandenburg, Germany, this small cottage acts as a weekend home for a family, although it could easily be occupied on a full-time basis. The site originally contained a summer house that dated back to 1926, which was unfortunately beyond repair.

Waldhaus -Small Cabin - Brandenburg - Atelier-ST - Exterior Humble Homes

The owners of the land contacted Atelier-ST to create a modern weekend cabin that would be sympathetic to its surroundings. The new cabin was completed in 2010 and is designed to pay homage to the mythologies and fairy tales that involve dwellings located deep in the forest. The architects even refer to Hansel and Gretel as a source of inspiration.

Waldhaus -Small Cabin - Brandenburg - Atelier-ST - Kitchen - Humble Homes

The exterior has been clad with timber and finished in a dark brown helping it to blend in with the forest setting. The house is rather unremarkable from the front and the sides, but the back wall has been dedicated almost entirely to a set of large patio doors.

Waldhaus -Small Cabin - Brandenburg - Atelier-ST - Living Room - Humble Homes

The doors/windows allow the rear of the house to be flooded with natural light, creating a bright and airy living space (which is enhanced by the nearly all-white finish). The interior of the house contains a kitchen, living room, lofted sleeping quarters and a bathroom.

Waldhaus -Small Cabin - Brandenburg - Atelier-ST - Dining Room - Humble Homes

The living room is finished almost entirely with white-painted wood. The only items breaking up the white palette are the furniture pieces and the wood-burning stove. Unlike the living room, the kitchen features unpainted wood finishes which create a much warmer atmosphere.

Waldhaus -Small Cabin - Brandenburg - Atelier-ST - Bathroom - Humble Homes

Much of the storage has been built into the walls to maximise on the available floor space. The bathroom is clad in the same white-painted wood as the living room, but features a rather funky red-tiled shower compartment. Designed for year-round use, the cabin is a quaint getaway that feels as if it’s in a remote location, but is actually located within the city bounds of Berlin.

For more cabins check out the Stealth Cabin by the Toronto-based studio Superkül, which aims to blend in with it’s environment. Or the Methow Cabin designed by Eggleston Farkas Architects that serves as a family holiday home in both the summer and the winter. See all cabins.

Via ThisIsPaper
Photos: Werner Huthmacher

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Madrid Apartment Makeover by Beriot, Bernardi Arquitectoshttp://humble-homes.com/madrid-apartment-makeover-beriot-bernardi-arquitectos/ http://humble-homes.com/madrid-apartment-makeover-beriot-bernardi-arquitectos/#comments Mon, 21 Jul 2014 11:06:36 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12374 This ingenious small apartment in Madrid has been given a makeover by Beriot, Bernardi Arquitectos. The architects are no stranger to the design of confined spaces. In fact, I’ve featured their work a few times in the past (which you can check out here and here) for their smart layouts and inventive use of space, […]

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This ingenious small apartment in Madrid has been given a makeover by Beriot, Bernardi Arquitectos. The architects are no stranger to the design of confined spaces. In fact, I’ve featured their work a few times in the past (which you can check out here and here) for their smart layouts and inventive use of space, and this home is no exception.

Beriot Bernardini Arquitectos - Small Apartment - Madrid - Living Area & Kitchen - Humble Homes

The apartment is set on the ground floor of a block of flats in Madrid. Unfortunately the original ceiling wasn’t high enough to allow the architects to introduce a lofted sleeping space. To overcome this they dug down sixteen inches, providing them with the required space to incorporate a small kitchen and bathroom under the loft.

Beriot Bernardini Arquitectos - Small Apartment - Madrid - Cantilever Staircase - Humble Homes

The loft is accessed by a steel cantilevered staircase, whose open rise lightweight aesthetic allow the staircase to have a minimal impact on the space. Unfortunately there’s no handrail which is a big no-no for some, but at least the sides are closed in from the fourth step onwards.

Beriot Bernardini Arquitectos - Small Apartment - Madrid - Kitchen - Humble Homes

The apartment has a total floor area of 400 square feet (37 square meters), and for such a small space there’s quite a lot of rooms/spaces. On the ground floor you’ll find a kitchen, bathroom, living and dining area, two patios and a guest bedroom. The loft serves as a bedroom, and also features a small study desk and a walk-in closet.

Beriot Bernardini Arquitectos - Small Apartment - Madrid - Loft Bedroom - Humble Homes

As pointed out by Lloyd Alter of Treehugger, some may wonder why they didn’t install the bathroom in the loft instead of the walk-in closet, but I think it makes sense. If you do have guests over, having them walk upstairs and pass through what is effectively your bedroom, usually isn’t ideal. On the other hand, if you need to use the bathroom at night, it’s slightly less convenient.

Beriot Bernardini Arquitectos - Small Apartment - Madrid - Floor Plan - Humble Homes

The most interesting part of this renovation project is the laminated wood panel component. It appears not only to serve as a visual divider between the kitchen and living area, but also as a worktop, a desk in the mezzanine and as the structural support for the loft itself.

For more apartments check out the Closet House, a sophisticated small apartment with embedded technology features. Or Maria Badiola’s small apartment conversion on a limited budget in Spain’s most expensive city. See all apartments.

Via Treehugger
Photos: Yen Chen

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The 5.5m x 5.5m House by LVPH Architectshttp://humble-homes.com/5-5m-x-5-5m-house-lvph-architects/ http://humble-homes.com/5-5m-x-5-5m-house-lvph-architects/#comments Thu, 17 Jul 2014 15:29:24 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12356 Simply named after the building’s dimensions, “5.5m x 5.5m” is a small house set on a piece of private property in Windig Park, Fribourg, Switzerland. The park is 30 hectares in size and contains a manor house that dates back to 1830. However, the park as a whole is currently in a state of disrepair […]

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Simply named after the building’s dimensions, “5.5m x 5.5m” is a small house set on a piece of private property in Windig Park, Fribourg, Switzerland. The park is 30 hectares in size and contains a manor house that dates back to 1830. However, the park as a whole is currently in a state of disrepair and requires funding to help maintain the property.

LVPH Architectes - Small House - Windig Park - Fribourg - Switzerland - Exterior - Humble Homes

The 5.5m x 5.5m house was created by LVPH architects as part of the Windig Project. The project aims to provide possible solutions for the financial needs of the park. LVPH’s proposal is to build a number of small structures scattered throughout the site, which could then be rented out and thus generate money for maintenance.

LVPH Architectes - Small House - Windig Park - Fribourg - Switzerland - Kitchen - Humble Homes

Each building is 5.5 meters square by 9 meters in height (about 18 foot square by 30 foot in height) and contains four levels including a basement. The house’s dimensions, in particular its height, have been based on the surrounding forestry – LVPH want the buildings to be sensitive to their surroundings, not dominating.

LVPH Architectes - Small House - Windig Park - Fribourg - Switzerland - Wood Burner - Humble Homes

Given the immediate natural environment, the house has been clad with timber siding, both inside and out. Its cuboid form and few (but large) window openings has led to them being referred to as turrets. The interiors have been finished plainly in a minimalist fashion in an attempt to create an atmosphere of serenity.

LVPH Architectes - Small House - Windig Park - Fribourg - Switzerland - Bedroom - Humble Homes

The basement is dedication to both heating and cleaning. It contains the house’s bathroom and a large wood-burning stove that is the homes only source of heat. The bathroom itself consists of a toilet, shower, and storage cabinets. On the first floor you’ll find a galley kitchen that runs parallel to the staircase, and a small dining area.

LVPH Architectes - Small House - Windig Park - Fribourg - Switzerland - Floor Plan - Humble Homes

The next two floors of the house are used as either two bedrooms, or as a living room and a bedroom. The master bedroom is found on the top floor and, unlike the other rooms, contains two large windows providing views of the surrounding countryside.

For more small houses check out House Morron, a 1950′s renovation into a modern day family retreat. Or this modern Swedish town house by the Stockholm-based architecture practice, Elding Oscarson. See all small houses.

Via ArchDaily
Photos: Jérôme Humbert

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A 3 Meter Wide House in Tokyo by Saboarchhttp://humble-homes.com/3-meter-wide-house-tokyo-saboarch/ http://humble-homes.com/3-meter-wide-house-tokyo-saboarch/#comments Wed, 16 Jul 2014 18:05:47 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12347 This small house from Shibuya, Tokyo, is set on a slim piece of land between two converging streets. The house, called “The Wall of Nishihara”, has been designed by the architecture firm Saboarch and is set on a site area of just 40 square meters (430 square feet). The building itself covers an area of […]

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This small house from Shibuya, Tokyo, is set on a slim piece of land between two converging streets. The house, called “The Wall of Nishihara”, has been designed by the architecture firm Saboarch and is set on a site area of just 40 square meters (430 square feet).

The Wall of Nishihara - Tiny House - Masanori Kuwabara -Sabaoarch - Shibuya Tokyo - Exterior & Kitchen - Humble Homes

The building itself covers an area of 24 square meters (258 square feet) and is just 3-by-8 meters (10-by-26 feet) in size. To compensate for the tiny footprint the architects have made the most of the available vertical space, with 6 offset floor levels and a roof deck enclosed within the structure. The final combined usable floor space amounts to 78 square meters (840 square feet).

The Wall of Nishihara - Tiny House - Masanori Kuwabara -Sabaoarch - Shibuya Tokyo - Seating Area - Humble Homes

The Wall of Nishihara features an unusual exterior facade composed of concrete but moulded to look like timber cladding – an attempt to make the building more “friendly” in appearance. The concrete walls are punctured by a number of small windows. This provides privacy for the inhabitant in a busy urban environment, while still allowing natural light into the building. Other areas of the home feature larger opening with frosted glass, such as the bathroom.

The Wall of Nishihara - Tiny House - Masanori Kuwabara -Sabaoarch - Shibuya Tokyo - Bathroom - Humble Homes

The staggered floor levels are accessed by a folded metal staircase in the center of the house. The architects have likened the experience of climbing the stairs to that of a climbing a tree: “The multi-levelled house is connected by a rope of stairs. The experience is like climbing up a tree to the sky, looking at the surrounding scenery.”

The Wall of Nishihara - Tiny House - Masanori Kuwabara -Sabaoarch - Shibuya Tokyo - Roof Deck - Humble Homes

The area of the home featuring the staircase seems to be somewhat stark and dark. In contrast to this, some of the house’s rooms are brightly lit, with surfaces finished in wood bringing a sense of warmth to the space.

The Wall of Nishihara - Tiny House - Masanori Kuwabara -Sabaoarch - Shibuya Tokyo - Cross Section - Humble Homes

All told, the house contains a total of 7 different spaces – a kitchen/dining area, bathroom, an enclosed “garden”, a roof deck and three other rooms which are presumably used as bedrooms, or for storage.

For more Japanese houses check out House K in Tokyo which makes great use of cladding to provide privacy without impeding natural light. Or this origami inspired house in Japan’s Mie prefecture by TSC architects. See all Japanese houses.

Via Dezeen
Photos: Shigeru Oono, Yuji Nishijima, Sabaoarch

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A Tiny House by AnLstudio – Mondang Househttp://humble-homes.com/tiny-house-anlstudio-mondang-house/ http://humble-homes.com/tiny-house-anlstudio-mondang-house/#comments Tue, 15 Jul 2014 15:40:47 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12309 This modern tiny house has been built in Jongro, a western section of the old City Centre in Seoul. The client commissioned the local architecture firm, AnLstudio, to create a functional family home that made the most of the 34 square meter (366 square foot) site. Due to the limited site area, just 6-by-5.5 meters […]

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This modern tiny house has been built in Jongro, a western section of the old City Centre in Seoul. The client commissioned the local architecture firm, AnLstudio, to create a functional family home that made the most of the 34 square meter (366 square foot) site.

AnL Studio - Tiny House - Mondang House - Seoul - South Korea - Dining Area - Humble Homes

Due to the limited site area, just 6-by-5.5 meters (20-by-18 feet), the architects decided to maximise the height of the house within building control restrictions. By going to the maximum possible height, they were able to create a three-level structure with a total floor area of 49.5 square meters (533 square feet).

AnL Studio - Tiny House - Mondang House - Seoul - South Korea - Floor Level - Humble Homes

The house has been named Mondang House by the architects, which translates as both shortness and dreaming. Like many small builds with limited opportunities for window openings, Mondang House makes use of split floor levels with openings that allow light to filter down from one floor to the next.

AnL Studio - Tiny House - Mondang House - Seoul - South Korea - Spiral Staircase - Humble Homes

One floor of the house is dedicated to the kitchen and dining area, but it also features a small cut-out in the roof/wall allowing people to see into the library area above. The library is located between the first and second level, acting as a buffer zone and allowing people to interact easier despite being on different floors.

AnL Studio - Tiny House - Mondang House - Seoul - South Korea - Living Room - Humble Homes

Access to the different areas of the home is provided through a lightweight circular staircase. The further up the building you go, the more private the rooms become, from the kitchen/dining on the first floor, to the bedrooms on the top floor. The intermediate levels contain the living room, library, and bathroom. There’s also a terrace on the roof of the building.

AnL Studio - Tiny House - Mondang House - Seoul - South Korea - Bathroom and Study - Humble Homes

The entrance to Mondang House doubles as a small garden space. It was the only space left for greenery after accommodating all the other needs of the project. Being set on a small site surrounded by other buildings, careful consideration was given to the sizing and location of window openings. AnLstudio has attempted to frame picture views of immediate cityscape and the mountains in the distance.

For more tiny houses check out carriage house that was converted into a small studio home by Christi Azevedo. Or this unusual micro-home called “Blob” that features curved walls covered with storage. See all tiny houses.

Via DesignBoom
Photos: iñigo bujedo aguirre

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Christian Schwienbacher’s Tiny Barn-House Conversionhttp://humble-homes.com/christian-schwienbachers-tiny-barn-house-conversion/ http://humble-homes.com/christian-schwienbachers-tiny-barn-house-conversion/#comments Mon, 14 Jul 2014 14:08:42 +0000 http://humble-homes.com/?p=12317 This tiny, multistory house set in the village of St. Ulrich, Ortisei, Italy, was originally a small barn that had been abandoned and left in a state of ruin. Upon acquiring the site the client contacted Brixen-based architect, Christian Schwienbacher, to transform the dilapidated building into a two bedroom home. The site had many restrictions […]

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This tiny, multistory house set in the village of St. Ulrich, Ortisei, Italy, was originally a small barn that had been abandoned and left in a state of ruin. Upon acquiring the site the client contacted Brixen-based architect, Christian Schwienbacher, to transform the dilapidated building into a two bedroom home.

Christian Schwienbacher - Small House - Ortisei - Italy - Exterior - Humble Homes

The site had many restrictions placed on it. The barn is attached to an adjacent building through party/firewall, leaving the architect with only three walls for openings. The volume and layout of the structure was also restricted – it couldn’t be increased in size and the original floor plan had to be used.

Christian Schwienbacher - Small House - Ortisei - Italy - Kitchen Dining Room - Humble Homes

With so few options available for the rebuild, Schweinbacher took full advantage of the 4-by-5.5 meter (13-by-18 feet) floor plan and 8 meter (26 feet) building height. The home is now composed of six different levels, each of which serves a different function/acts as a different room.

Christian Schwienbacher - Small House - Ortisei - Italy - Staircase - Humble Homes

The lowest level of the home contains a single bed bedroom, followed by the bathroom and entrance on the second floor. The kitchen and dining area are on the third and fourth floors respectively. A large exterior deck that doubles as sheltered car parking can also be accessed from the dining area. The living area is found on the fifth floor, and the last level is dedicated to the master bedroom.

Christian Schwienbacher - Small House - Ortisei - Italy - Bedroom - Humble Homes

Due to the limited space, the architect has designed the staircase to serve double duty at times. For example, the stairs are intended to be used as additional seating in both the living and dining areas. By diving up the levels the transition between each floor is made to seem smaller, and requires less effort.

Christian Schwienbacher - Small House - Ortisei - Italy - Floor Plan - Humble Homes

The interior mimics the exterior; the floors, walls and ceilings are all clad with knotty pine. The walls are punctured with long shallow window openings, providing views of the outside world and allowing plenty of natural light into the home, while also maintaining the occupant’s privacy.

For more tiny houses check out this contemporary billboard home that’s been designed to house the homeless. Or this rustic tiny house that’s available for rent through AirBnB. See all tiny houses.

Via Trendir
Photos: Jurgen Eheim

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