If your neighbours are too close for comfort - and in the city, they often are - focus on bringing in natural light wherever you can, much like DX Architects have done in this Burnley Renovation. Your home will feel spacious and you'll forget your neighbours are there...
The premise for this inner-city renovation in Melbourne's Burnley was to create an open-plan living area that connects to the backyard. The home is on a typically narrow, single-fronted site, with neighbours either side. So the trick for DX Architects was to bring in as much light as possible, to avoid the home feeling narrow and dark.
The solution was a cathedral ceiling punctuated by skylights. This gives the narrow space another dimension which instantly makes it feel more spacious. By bringing in light from the skylights, the architects overcame the issue of getting light into a narrow floor plan. At the end of the new open-plan living area, the architects installed industrial-style steel-framed windows. The steel-framed windows are thin to maximise the light, and virtually melt away to connect the indoors to the outdoor courtyard space.
Custom joinery runs the length of the new open-plan space, helping to hide life's clutter. Storage is the most important thing to get right in compact spaces, because all that 'stuff' most families have feels heavy and can make rooms feel smaller.
A mirrored splash back in the kitchen reflects the light from the skylights and courtyard, making what might otherwise be the dark, middle of the home, feel bright and spacious.
Skylights continue into the bathroom, creating a beautiful light-filled space to wake up to. Patterned tiles on the wall add a delicate, textural feel to this bathroom and, combined with the blonde timber joinery, create a warm space.
The answer to narrow inner-city homes? Light, light and more light. Get it any way you can and you home will feel more spacious and more connected to nature. Considering how hemmed in this home is in reality, it feels private and light-filled - a delightful retreat.