Small Cool 2009: architeCTS's Cohesive Whole

Small Cool 2009: architeCTS's Cohesive Whole

Janel Laban
Apr 9, 2009

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Who Lives There: architeCTS
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
Size: 540 square feet

What is your one favorite element in your small, cool home? Unity, I know that isn't an object, but I personally feel that no one object should be the focus of one's greater desire. It is the cohesive whole that makes a space great. It is the multitude of elements that tie a space together that make it a home making its occupant or resident feel as if they are a part of that space. It is that intrinsic nature of every piece of the design, the character and thought behind it, the use of color and material which ultimately weaves space together. That is my favorite element!

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What was one of the biggest challenges you faced in furnishing your small home? The largest challenge was creating private/distictive spaces that still speak to one another and maintain an open feel. This was accomplished by creating a design utilizing an open floor plan that lets program spaces overlap and eliminates dedicated circulation space.

The threshold between private and public space is blurred and each area is intentionally connected in a manner that allows uninhibited movement and adds to the approachable scale of what could have otherwise been a very confined space. This openness is balanced by a rigorous spatial organization that is punctuated by clean lines and careful placement of insertions. Where separations do exist, they are thoughtfully placed to help delineate and identify, such as where the sleeping mezzanine compresses the rear bay and defines the bathing area.

Color and materiality were used to create a sense of continuity throughout the design. The raw concrete structural system and all of the existing mechanical systems were left exposed to contrast the polished interior additions. The vivid red used throughout becomes a thread that stitches the spaces together; a bold statement at the foil finish cabinets but an understated accent as a tile insert in the concrete countertop.

These deliberate design strategies guided the creation of this modern space that fulfills my functional needs while delivering a unique finished product that triumphs over the restraints presented by its physical size.

Give architeCTS a THUMBS UP if you think this home belongs in the finals!
Thumbs Up Voting is only activated for 48 Hours — so don't delay!
Do you have a Small Cool Home? Enter Here by April 13th!
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