minimal | clean lines | lack of ornamentation | contrast | revealed structure | innovative | undisguised materials | functional | playful | open floor plan | contemporary l |iving with nature | organic | non-traditional | pure form | timeless

renovation

The Makeover…It’s Personal – Moving Forward 1 (Roof and Programme)

The weather in the Philippines was very unpredictable and it was crucial to complete the roof once and for all.   I was on Christmas holiday when we started working on it.  Some change in plan was consider like including covering the slab above the garage to provide a den, an extra room for guest, a TV room or study room as our previous one will be used as bedroom for one of the boys.   I left the country without finishing the work.  Eventually, a roof over my family’s head were screwed and riveted in place.

Since my family lived in here during the whole duration of construction, the architect came up with programme, doing the whole house in four (4) phases.  He prepared plan for each phase starting with the master bedroom with walk-in closet and ensuite bath (Ph1 – The Masters); the laundry, service kitchen, maid’s quarter with T&B, formal kitchen, dining and common T&B for the kids (Ph2 – The Service Area); the living room and the courtyard/airwell (Ph3 – The Front Room) and the kid’s rooms and the den (Ph4 – For the kids).  We did not include works in the facade (The Envelope) and the apartment at the back (For Rent – Back of the House).

(To be continued…)


Casa Malaparte

Alternative names Villa Malaparte, Malaparte House
General information
Type Private house
Architectural style Modern architecture
Location Isle of Capri
Country Italy
Coordinates 40°32′49″N14°15′33″ECoordinates: 40°32′49″N 14°15′33″E
Current tenants Foundation Giorgio Ronchi [1]
Construction started 1937
Renovated 1980–90
Client Curzio Malaparte
Design and construction
Architect Adalberto Libera

Casa Malaparte (also Villa Malaparte) is a house on Punta Massullo, on the eastern side of the Isle of Capri, Italy. It is one of the best examples of Italian modern and contemporary architecture.

The house was conceived around 1937 by the well-known Italian architect Adalberto Libera for Curzio Malaparte. Malaparte actually rejected Libera’s design and built the home himself with the help of Adolfo Amitrano, a local stonemason.

Casa Malaparte is a red masonry box with reverse pyramidal stairs leading to the roof patio. On the roof is a freestanding curving white wall of increasing height. It sits on a dangerous cliff 32 metres above the sea overlooking the Gulf of Salerno. Access to this private property is either by foot from the Town of Capri or by boat and a staircase cut into the cliff. Casa Malaparte’s interior and exterior (particularly the rooftop patio) are prominently featured in Jean-Luc Godard’s 1963 film, Contempt (Le Mépris).

Casa Malaparte was abandoned and neglected after the death of Curzio Malaparte in 1957. It suffered from vandalism and natural elements for many years and was seriously damaged, including the desecration of a beautiful tiled stove, before the first serious renovation started in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The building was donated to the Foundation Giorgio Ronchi in 1972.

Malaparte’s great-nephew, Niccolò Rositani, is primarily responsible for restoring the house to a livable state. Much of the original furniture is still there, because it is too large to remove. The marble sunken tub in the bedroom of his mistress still exists and functions. His bedroom and book lined study are still intact. Many Italian industrialists have donated materials for the preservation.

Today the house is used for serious study and certain cultural events in Italy and is admired and hated by many architecture enthusiasts worldwide.

The house can only be reached by traversing the island. The last twenty minute walk is over private property, belonging to The Ronchi Foundation. It takes an hour and a half to walk there from Capri’s Piazzetta at the summit of the funiculare from the Marina Grande. The house can be reached by sea, on calm days only, as the waves are cast upon treacherous rocks and there has not been an official pier for many years. From the sea, one must climb 99 steps to reach the house. Malaparte gave his friend and boatman money to open a restaurant which is run by the boatman’s son today. It is the only restaurant one would pass on the path from the Piazzetta to the promontory where Tiberius built his palace, Villa Jovis.

The book Malaparte: Casa Come Me (A House Like Me) edited by Michael McDonough, includes drawings and essays by many prominent artists and architects, such as James Wines,Tom Wolfe, Robert Venturi, Emilio Ambasz, Ettore Sottsass, Michael Graves, Willem Dafoe, Peter Eisenman, Wiel Arets and many other luminaries of arts and letters. Casa Malaparte was also prominently featured in the Jean-Luc Godard film, Contempt (1963).

(n.d.). Retrieved July 13, 2015, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casa_Malaparte

A Modern Loft with Character

Loft apartments always have a distinct feel. Their openness, combined with their usual amounts of streaming light, makes them instantly appealing for most urban dwellers. Who wouldn’t want more light and a sense of more space in what’s usually a more crowded area? But lofts can also feel a bit cookie cutter, especially when the original space has been mass-converted to support loft living. A dozen or more lofts with the same feel and layout can feel stifling. This loft, designed by Indot, takes the idea of a traditional loft and plays with it using geometry, color, and texture. Don’t think that lofts are just limited to red exposed brick and neutrally painted walls.

A Modern Loft with Character. (n.d.). Retrieved July 12, 2015, from http://www.home-designing.com/2015/07/a-modern-loft-with-character?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed: home-designing (Home Design Ideas)

50 Three “3” Bedroom Apartment/House Plans

A three-bedroom home can be the perfect size for a wide variety of arrangements. Three bedrooms can offer separate room for children, make a comfortable space for roommate, or allow for offices and guest rooms for smaller families and couples. The visualizations here show many different ways that three bedrooms can be put to good use with stylish furnishings and unique layouts.

50 Three “3” Bedroom Apartment/House Plans. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2015, from http://www.architecturendesign.net/50-three-3-bedroom-apartmenthouse-plans/

50 3D FLOOR PLANS, LAY-OUT DESIGNS FOR 2 BEDROOM HOUSE OR APARTMENT

For small families, a two bedroom house is almost the ideal. Here are some of the 3D floor plans and lay-out designs we gathered for you to choose from and to get your ideas somehow.

Thoughtskoto: 50 3D FLOOR PLANS, LAY-OUT DESIGNS FOR 2 BEDROOM HOUSE OR APARTMENT. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2015, from http://www.jbsolis.com/2015/06/50-3d-floor-plans-lay-out-designs-for-2.html

Transition of a Fortified Italian Farmhouse

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Once upon a time, Arrighi was a watchtower peering over Tuscany and all along the Niccone Valley, with an adjoining fortified farmhouse. In recent years, the dwelling known as Castello di Reschio, in Umbria, Italy, is the result of a meticulous restoration that resulted in a luxurious L-shaped main house, and a standalone guest cottage.

Once the fortified farmhouse and watchtower, the impressive five bedroom main house is approached via a large paved courtyard beyond the entrance gates, past the sweet guest cottage that contains a double bedroom, en-suite bathroom, library and fully-fledged kitchen.

A glass encased external staircase tower is flooded with sunlight, and soaks in the extensive view over the very private and unspoiled 2,700 acre Reschio Estate, filled with rolling hills, vineyards, olive groves, chestnut and oak trees, extensive infinity pool and pool house.  (HOUSE TOURS)

HOUSE TOURS, . “Transition of a Fortified Italian Farmhouse.” home Designing. N.p., 18 Jul 2012. Web. 18 Jul. 2012. <http://www.home-designing.com/2012/07/transition-of-a-fortified-italian-farmhouse?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed: home-designing (Home Design Ideas)&utm_content=Yahoo! Mail>.


Photographing For Catalogs: Petra Bindel

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Check out this beautiful work by photographer Petra Bindel, for Swedish brand Stringfurniture, her work is crisp, bright and showcases classic Scandi-style interiors at their best. Bindel’s work has consistently appeared in Elle Interiors and Elle Decoration magazines, popped up in Dwell, and appeared across billboards and book jackets.

With 16 years in the business, the photographer has worked with some of the best stylists in the business to build an impressive body of work, about which she enthuses: “I don’t think there is anything more fulfilling than to work with talented people. It’s inspiring and the feeling of creating something together drives me forward and makes me want to do more”, and indeed she is prolific.

The pictures we see here of the String® system–a range of versatile shelving combinations that provide bespoke storage arrangements–exhibits the products in rich imagery, full of depth and clarity, and framed to perfection; the simple lines of the furniture take on an artistic, architectural quality, full of balance and careful geometry.

See more of Petra Bindel’s stunning photography portfolio, and read about her current inspirations, news, and impressive endeavors with a glittering list of industry greats on her blog: www.pertabindel.com.   (Home Designing)

 

Home Designing, . “Photographing For Catalogs: Petra Bindel.” Home Designing. N.p., 05 Apr 2012. Web. 6 Apr. 2012. <Photographing For Catalogs: Petra Bindel>.

 


Express your tastes and your personality…

RENOVATION TIPS by Design Uniform

Renovating your apartment is an exciting process. You are able to express your tastes and your personality. Your emotional well-being improves in a new, fresh environment. If you own the apartment, you will most likely add value to it by renovating it.

Keep in mind though, that renovations rarely go smoothly and are without problems. Below we list several issues that may arise. We believe that being prepared for those challenges will help make your renovation go as smoothly as possible.

The Budget

Plan your budget carefully. The main reason for underestimating the cost of the renovation is underestimating the amount of work involved. This is especially true for bathrooms and kitchens, where a lot of the work will eventually be hidden from view. This may include but not be limited to relocation of plumbing lines, installation of plumbing fixtures, electrical wiring, framing of wall areas in preparation for recessed cabinets or wall hung toilets.

The Contractor

The most important decision that you will make in the renovation process (following the decision of your design of choice) is the selection of the right contractor. Regardless of how extensive the renovation is, it is crucial that you have a contractor who performs quality work, but that is a person with whom you can also communicate well. Please see our tips on how to select a good contractor here.

Time

When will the renovation start? How much time will it take to complete? Discuss these questions with your contractor prior to signing the contract. The answers to these questions depend on the contractor’s availability, the number of people that will be working on the job at any one time, the hours in which the work can be performed, and of course the project’s size and complexity. Be prepared, however, that renovation projects sometimes run late, because of so called “unexpected field conditions,” delays in material deliveries, and other unpredictable circumstances. Always give your schedule some latitude – for example do not plan to move into your apartment on the day after the renovation is supposed to be finished.

Bids

The industry standard is to ask at least 3 contractors to price your job. This way you will assure that you are getting the best and competitive price. The contractors should meet with you and look at the apartment prior to giving you a price, so they can asses existing conditions which may have an influence on the price. Ask the contractors to list what they understand the scope of the project is. Also ask them to give you a bid with numbers broken down into categories, i.e. electrical work, plumbing, fixtures, accessories, tile work etc. This way you will be able to compare apples to apples when it comes to comparing the bids from various contractors.

Know what you are getting for your money

We realize that reading design drawings may not be your forte, but we encourage you to make an effort to understand what is included in the design documents, and request that the entire scope illustrated in the documents is accounted for, priced, and built by your contractor.

Negotiate

At least give it a try. Of course negotiations are possible only prior to contract signing.

The Contract

The expression “contractor” derives from the word contract and for good reason. It is extremely important to have a written contract in place with your contractor (builder). Depending on the size of the job, the contract may range in size from a one page document (for a small size bathroom) to a multi-page document with many appendices and riders. You can prepare the contract yourself, or purchase and fill out a document from a design association. Make sure that the contract contains at the minimum the following information:

  • The client’s (your) name and the address of the renovation
  • The contractor’s name and address
  • The total cost of the project
  • The schedule of the project (when will it start and how much time will it take to complete)
  • The scope of the project. This can be a description of what needs to be done. Do reference the design documents you have – this way they become part of the contract and the contractor is obliged to follow them. Be as specific as possible. (For example you can state: Scope of work is to complete a bathroom renovation, including removal of existing fixtures, accessories, lighting, tile etc, and installing new fixtures, accessories, lighting, tile etc as shown on design documents 1-8 attached to this contract).
  • Work excluded from the contract. You may be supplying some of the items listed by yourself or through a vendor. Those items should be clearly listed.
  • A payment schedule. Usually the contractor requires a deposit to start the work, and then receives one or more payments while the work progresses. Never pay the contractor the full amount until the work has been completed and inspected by you and you find it satisfactory. This is the best and often only way to make sure that your work will be completed!
  • Any other information that may be important for the project, for example that the contractor must follow renovation rules required by your condominium association, that work must be performed by licensed individuals, that the contractor must carry a certain amount of insurance, etc. For larger renovations we do recommend that you purchase a contract prepared by a professional association, which has a lot of the above information already built into the document.

Changes

If you want to make changes in the design – try to make them before you sign your contract with the builder. Changes during the course of construction may be very pricy, but sometimes unavoidable. A document that lists additional cost due to a change is called a Change Order. Request that the contractor issues a Change Order and you approve it before the contractor proceeds with the additional work.

Permits

The work you are performing may require permits by your city or county agencies and/or by your condominium/coop association. Make sure you have all paperwork and permits in place before the work starts. For city/county permits you will most likely need the services of a registered architect.

Materials

Purchase or have your contractor purchase all materials prior to renovation so that there is no stopping once the project starts.

Samples

Request samples of tiles. Keep in mind natural stone varies as it is a natural material. Some stones are more uniform than others.

Supervision

If you hire an architect or designer, their scope of services usually includes construction supervision or observation. If you did not retain a professional for this purpose, you will need to perform supervision yourself. Stop by on a regular basis and observe the quality of craftsmanship, the speed in which the work progresses, and whether you can spot any problems, errors or omissions.

Something goes wrong

Even highly experienced professionals who have been working in construction for many years will agree: mistakes happen. To avoid disappointment try to understand that this is normal. Usually the contractor will admit that he made a mistake and will fix it at no additional cost. However, you will want to carefully watch what the contractor is doing, and notify him immediately if you think something is wrong. Changes are much harder to make and much more costly if they are discovered at a later time.

Payment

Request a waiver of lien for each payment you make. As mentioned above, the final payment should be made after you have inspected the completed work and are satisfied with it.

Uniforn Design. (n.d.). Renovation tips. Retrieved from http://uniformdesign.us/renovationtips.php


Choose Loft Bed To Maximize Space

The fact is undoubtedly undeniable that it is very hard to decorate a small bedroom efficiently to maximize space. Here’s a solution that every house owner would like to introduce in his room – Loft beds. It is compact and looks attractive, is extremely space saving and allows multiple utilization of the premium space. Perfect for rooms with limited space, loft beds are unquestionably an excellent way to introduce functionality in the room in an efficient manner which no other furniture can.

Choosing a loft bed for a room offers you versatility and allows you to maximize space. Introducing a loft bed as opposed to the typical bed opens up the room and creates extra space. The bed goes off the floor, and extra space is created underneath the bed. Needless to be mentioned but this simply adds extra footage to the room. The extra space can be used to arrange anything ranging from a casual seating area to a study section, for which free space was not available earlier. You may even introduce free hanging shelves underneath a loft bed and create storage solutions, which may be used for storing daily utility items or simply for expanding a collection.

With so many benefits offered by loft bed, the only question left for asking yourself is – why should you settle for typical beds when you have the opportunity to maximize the space and enjoy the convenience of a loft bed?  (Stefan)

 

Stefan, . “Choose Loft Bed To Maximize Space.” Homedit. 09 Aug 2011. Web. 10 Aug 2011. <http://www.homedit.com/choose-loft-bed-to-maximize-space/&gt;.


warehouse, amsterdam

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This ground-floor warehouse home between Bloemgracht and Bloemstraat was dark, with an impractical layout. The owner also wanted an extra bedroom. With the windows being located at a height of three metres, a smart solution was required to create extra space while also retaining the existing daylight. By sinking the floor by 30 centimetres, enough height was created for a ‘floating’ glass bedroom, allowing daylight to filter through to the living room. Beneath this suspended cube, enough room remained for a spacious open kitchen. VASD custom-designed most of the furniture for this project. High-quality materials such as Murano glass, Belgian bluestone, and American maple offset the bare plaster.   (VASD interieur & architectuur)

VASD interieur & architectuur, . (n.d.). warehouse, amsterdam. Retrieved from http://www.vasd.nl/en/projecten_woningen/#

Potrero House / San Francisco, CA

The modern vernacular vocabulary of the architecture celebrates the singular qualities of this special urban environment.   (Bernstein)

Bernstein, C. (n.d.). Potrero House, San Francisco, CA . Retrieved from http://www.cbstudio.com/projects/res-potrero1-2.html