Aluminium Cottage Location: Yamanashi, Japan Size: 614 square feet Saw this prefab cottage designed by Japanese architect Toyo Ito over at Blue Ant Studio and was struck by both the form and the contrast between the interior and exterior: cold versus warmth, metal versus wood. At only about 614 square feet, the cottage is cozy but utilizes all useable space efficiently thanks to the integration of a loft and the space saving layout in a way that Japanese architects seem to do so best.
Upon doing a little digging in Ito's project portfolio, the Aluminium Cottage reveals itself to be a refined, modernized version of a previous design Ito designed in 1973/74.
Similarly sized (about 624 square feet of interior space) but more traditionally finished, Cottage in Sengataki looks every bit the part of the precursor of the Aluminium Cottage. Instead of a metal exterior finish, the Sengataki cottage was finished with Japanese wood, but shares the same 2 story loft scheme, while flipping the surface tension of materials used inside out. Here warm wood greets you from the front facade, only to reveal a spartan, modern interior within. Fascinating to see the designs designed decades apart, reverse mirror images of one another. Metal or wood, we'd happily take either version, as we love small spaces with loft solutions. [via Blue Ant Studio]