When you haven't got a lot of space to deal with, every decision needs to be a smart one - every square metre counts. Architects Green Sheep Collective have ensured just that with their Smart Home addition to an existing heritage home in Seddon in Melbourne's inner-West...
The project involved adding an open plan living, dining and kitchen to an existing heritage home. The reason it's so smart is the way the architects made such effective use of a very tight space. By stacking spaces on top of each other, the architects managed to fit a mezzanine level above the pantry and study nook within the volume created by a cathedral ceiling.
The mezzanine is a bonus space in the home. With a sofa bed it can act as a guest bedroom or just a quiet, semi-private space to read a book or enjoy a siesta.
Large, openable skylights make the most of the cathedral ceiling and fill the space with natural light, making the home feel larger and more welcoming. But the skylights also serve another purpose, when they're open they double as 'thermal chimneys', helping to cool the home naturally by expelling hot stale air and drawing in cooler air from down low. The home is designed with passive design principles which keep it cooler in summer and warmer in winter.
Almost everything in this clever space is designed for multiple uses and for flexibility. For example, a built-in window seat for the dining area opens up to double as storage.
Built in shelves and storage units subtly divide and define spaces in the open-plan design, making each space feel more intimate.
A sliding door can close the study nook for when the desk is a mess but work-time is over. There's even a mezzanine stair which slides out from over the bookshelf.
The living area opens via bi-fold doors onto a backyard deck and BBQ area. Raised brick planter beds next to the windows make the green space continue indoors (and allow you to pick herbs from the kitchen).
Smart Home lives up to its name by fitting a lot into a small space and by incorporating passive design features to create a naturally comfortable space. That sounds pretty smart to us.