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‘A house that meets the needs of starting a family’ is the essence that made the owner of the house, trusted his friend from elementary school, Mr. Skarn Chaiyawat, an architect from Skarn Chaiyawat Architects, to design the newlyweds’ first house. The house is designed according to their living lifestyle and is built in a simple, compact, and proportionate style. The house is concealed from the outside while opening for natural light without sacrificing privacy.
The vacant land in Ladprao Soi 80 comes with some drawbacks due to its proximity to a factory industrial area and the unattractiveness neighbourhood. The construction budget is also limited to three million baht. These constraints pose a challenge for this design given the total area of about 300 square meters.
A two-story house with all necessary functions on half of the total land area
After considering the options, the architect decided to build the house on only half of the total land area. He created a 150-square-metre two-story house with functions that perfectly meet the owners’ current requirements. The other half of the total land area is left undeveloped to accommodate future expansions as their family grows and requires more space.
The simple and uncomplicated house fits the owner’s lifestyle
Following the discussion, the functions of the house are tailored to the owner’s lifestyle. The space is divided into two primary sections: the lofty, spacious living room to the east, the kitchen, office, and bathroom to the west with a staircase leading up to the second floor containing only one bedroom and one bathroom. It is important that all functions are organized in a simple, uncomplicated manner, with a focus on compactness, making the most of the available space, and compatibility with their daily life.
Since they are both easy-going people, and most of their daily routines are rushing down to have a quick breakfast before driving to work, the kitchen is therefore the first function when entering the house. It also addresses the convenience of accessibility. When they return from grocery shopping, they can access the kitchen to store those groceries without having to walk through the living room. It fits with their lifestyles very well.
The kitchen is also connected to a multipurpose laundry space via sliding doors that allow plenty of natural light in. The house’s privacy is protected by a solid wall. So, there is no need to install a curtain in this area.
Simple, yet specially built.
“In a limited budget, I should design something in which I am confident in the construction and is the basis that all contractors can do. That is simple and ordinary that is carefully developed through a thought process in every area. Where should the voids be placed to accommodate the homeowner’s lifestyle? Which voids’ position will make the owners comfortable and contains simple lines, yet special according to the house’s design?” said the architect.
This idea became an essential component of the house’s design. It can be seen through the relation of the compact, simple, and airy white space without much decoration, yet special with the interior voids that bring in natural light and wind while maintaining privacy. For example, the living area and the dining zone are combined in the same space. It is a tall, spacious hall in Double Space style that is airy with voids to the front gravel garden and the back lawn with external walls creating privacy for the area.
In addition, the light grey colour of the aluminium frame in the home blends in nicely with the white colour of the structure, as well as the straight lines, while concealing the power cord and the curtain rails, reducing other unnecessary lines to make the house look as simple as possible.
Repurpose the old woods
The floor material in the living room and the office is made of the owner’s old natural woods which come in a variety of colours and sizes. The woods are recoloured with darker tones for a harmonious look. The details may not be neat, but they are acceptable to homeowners. Similarly, it adds character to the home while saving money on materials.
Securely surround the house with a solid wall while opening the view to the sky
Since the neighbourhood is unattractive and the owner’s lifestyle that fond of privacy, the architect chose to cover the three sides with solid white walls and open the view to the sky instead. He designed a skylight around the stairs in the middle of the house to let the light shine through. The sky is a good view that can be seen at any time. At the same time, he built an airy, open-air courtyard between the bedroom and bathroom on the second floor, encouraging natural ventilation and light while ensuring full privacy from the outside.
Temporary garden on the vacant land for future home
The second half of the land has been left as an open lawn for future expansions. Currently, it is temporarily made into a simple garden. The area adjacent to the living room is designed as a lawn to help create shade and comfort when viewing from the living room. The other side, which is connected to the garage, is a gravel garden that is easy to maintain and can serve as a temporary parking area for visitors.
“The homeowners’ identity will gradually emerge from the furniture or other items added to the house. Don’t put in a lot of things; instead, just try to provide the owner with a place to live a normal life. I carefully created proportions and designed the rhythm of the structure and lines of the house, so that it becomes pleasant. The house features light, wind, gardens, and privacy. In the end, it will become a complete house and a beginning of family life in their way eventually” concluded the architect.
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Architect: Skarn Chaiyawat Architects
Design Team: Skarn Chaiyawat, Puvanart Svavasu
Photographer: DOF Skyground