The verandah. It's as Australian as loading a Pav into the back of a Holden Ute on a hot Christmas Day, yet how often do we stop to think about how much the verandah can improve the liveability of our homes? White Delight by POLYstudio is a tiny project - just a verandah - and yet it has created a versatile covered outdoor space that ensures an easy and enticing connection to the outdoors...
In Melbourne's inner-city Prahran, outdoor areas a becoming more and more rare. And in a suburb packed with Victorian-era cottages, the relationship between inside and outside is hardly a relationship at all - those Victorians didn't seem to enjoy the light. Vampires, maybe?
That's why this simple, but oh-so-effective project is so refreshing. Little more than a verandah, it's clear how much of an impact this well-planned space has on the home. White Delight transforms the Victorian weatherboard by adding a light and breezy verandah out the back. Somewhere between indoors and outdoors to sit and linger. A place to entertain friends or a quiet spot to enjoy a cuppa in the sun.
White Delight is designed as an extension of the original weatherboard home, mimicking its horizontal bands of timber. A folding door is clad in white timber bands. The bands dissolve to create a pattern which lets in light and views where they will be most beneficial - and hiding the uglier parts of urban living. The screened room created by these timbers feels private and quite literally blurs the boundary between inside and out.
The screen folds back to suit the owners' needs. They can be fully or partially open to let in more light and create a seamless connection to the garden, or closed off for a more private, sheltered experience.
Overhead a translucent fibreglass roof protects from the rain, while also beautiful diffuse light into the semi-enclosed verandah. This diffuse light helps to avoid a common problem of generously proportioned verandahs - blocking out too much light! The combination of screening and diffusing light blocks and tempers the harsh summer sun, without making the interiors feel dark.
Never underestimate the power of a well-designed outdoor living area to transform your home. This clever verandah is a great example of the need for a considered outdoor space which mediates between indoors and outdoors. Without an expensive addition, POLYstudio have created a flexible and functional space that sits somewhere between living area and garden. And, appropriately, the perfect place to unload that Christmas pav for an informal family get-together.