Architecture is not about building the impossible, which we can do if we have enough money and enough tools and enough computers. It is about building what is appropriate and about attaining beauty through such an approach. I describe this premise as ‘inherent buildability’, and I believe it is central to what I do.
There are always limitations on design. Planning controls, site size, shape and slope, and building budget all impact on design. While it would be wonderful to be able to design without restrictions, architecture is all about being able to work within these limitations and still design something beautiful.
If you are prepared to compromise on a view and cross ventilation, an underground home may be a feasible option.
On the up side, underground homes provide effective shelter from extremes of weather, resulting in a constant internal temperature all year round. Noisy neighbours would also be less of a problem as the sound insulation would be optimal.
If you think underground homes can’t be luxurious, take a look at these underground mansions in the UK.
Shipping containers can serve a number of architectural functions. When articulated effectively these simple structures can be transformed into exciting examples of architecture. From holiday homes to a kids cubby house, here are some examples of what can be achieved.
I recently visited Hinze Dam Visitors Centre located in the Gold Coast Hinterland, Queensland. Designed by Architect Malcolm Middleton, composed of concrete and timber cladding and beautifully detailed, it sits seamlessly within its surrounding context. With beautifully landscaped surrounds it was a pleasure to experience and would recommend a visit. The coffee was great too!
Furnishings are often considered to be the final consideration before moving into your new home. However, the decision on how to appropriately furnish your home should take place during the design process.
When I design a space for a new home, alteration or addition, I will always place furniture on the plans. This helps for the following reasons:
- determining the size of the space required;
- assists with the design of circulation space around furniture;
- allows to explore flexible future furniture arrangements; and
- helps the client budget for future furniture purchases
Many clients have existing furniture that can be measured and placed within the design of a space. While its best not to purchase your furniture prior to moving in, as tight fitting furniture may require a measure after the builder has completed his work, but there’s nothing preventing you from window shopping. Furniture is a very effective means of introducing a ‘splash of colour’ into a space. I often encourage my clients to resist introducing too many wall colours in their home, instead using the colours and textures found in furniture to create depth and character within a space.
When working with your architect, discuss and explore various furniture options to ensure you get the most out of your new spaces.