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Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

If there was a contest for coolest pool, then Villa Midgård by DAPstockholm would probably place in the top ten. This gorgeous home, located in Stockholm, was built to be virtually maintenance free on the exterior. They wanted it to feel solid and secluded, and yet allow the owner to feel close to nature.

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

A pool with a view.

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

The landscape was designed in collaboration with Nod Combine.

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

The multi-volume home is built in such a way that gives the owners varying light options with seven different facades.

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

This puts the cool back into car port.

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

Villa Midgard by DAPstockholm

[via ArchDaily]

Photos by Lindman Photography.

 

Deconstruction: David van Alphen’s Modern Shed

You might remember David van Alphen’s name from his Friday Five back in January. I invited him for our Deconstruction column because he built a fantastic modern shed in his backyard for just about $3000 without using a kit. I’ve been watching his progress for quite some time and hoped that he’d be up for sharing the project with you. Check out the process photos and David’s story, which might inspire you to build your own modern outdoor shed this Spring.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

When we moved into our beautiful little ranch house, this is what was in the back yard. At first I thought it was a cute little shed but after further inspection, I saw that it was falling apart. Wood was rotting, walls were leaning and the floor was sinking.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Once I decided to replace the shed I decided that I would build a new studio in it’s place. As I said earlier, our beautiful mid-century house is small. This was my current working condition with my studio in the boys playroom. I think that’s all that needs to be said on that situation. I did some searching on the web and came across www.modern-shed.com. I loved the look of them but didn’t have the extra $11,000 to buy a prefab. So I decided I would build it on my own trying to keep the cost under $2500.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

The first thing I started with was to remove the barn doors the front of the shed. After doing this, I realized how unstable the structure was and decided to call the professionals!

So I called the great guys at 1-800-GOT-JUNK. They actually offered to tear down the structure for me for FREE. Who wouldn’t want to do demo for free. If I wasn’t scared of knocking down my new fence, I would have been happy to. After they tore it down, I went through the pieces of scrap and salvaged as much of the wood as I could. Unfortunately because of the condition, it wasn’t much. Total cost for demo and haul-away — $275. Well worth it.

Since the old shed was on an angle, I had to move some dirt around to get the ground even again. I put cinder blocks in the ground underneath where the concrete corners to help keep the new studio from sinking. After everything was level, I built the floor using pressure treated wood to keep it from rotting. Then I laid the plywood down. Floors done!

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Then, the first wall went up. Within a couple hours, I had all four walls up. My wife Vicki give it the wind test by blowing on it. We do live in the windy City. Gotta be careful.

With the four walls up. Time to put the door in. I decided to spend a little extra on a nice glass exterior door to get the most light in. After the door was secure, up went the roof. This was definitely the most challenging part. I had to call the neighbor over to help me lift it onto the structure.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

It was also tricky to figure out exactly where it would lay and make sure that all my dimension were right.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Once the frame was in place and everything was level, It was time to put the walls up. I used .75” plywood since I was routing grooves into them to give it the look of planks.

If you look closely, you can see the one that hasn’t been routed yet on the end. It was actually easier too to route the boards when they were already up.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

My wife wanted a front stoop to have her morning coffee. I guess I could have made it a little bigger for her.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

I built the AC unit right into the wall to save window space and make it less distracting.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Now for the electrical. This is always fun and exciting. Yeah, right. I actually had my dad out to help me with that so that I didn’t wake up to a midnight bonfire in my back yard.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Took a little break from building and painted the front door. It is actually the same color as the front door of the house.

As I mentioned earlier, I have two little boys. So I thought it would be best to use Plexiglas. I also filled in all the cracks between the plywood.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Now that the outside is done, time to get to work inside. Up with the drywall.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

One of my WTF was I thinking moments.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

To save money, I decided to just stain the floor an espresso color. I also built a desk to run the length of the room and painted all the trim the same espresso color.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Now that the interior is done, it’s time to paint the outside. I put two coats of a khaki primer on that my neighbor gave me.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

After the primer was dry, I painted the trim and routing grooves the same espresso color as the inside and painted the rest a cream color. I think the color scheme goes really well with the little Zen garden I made the Spring before.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

Interior view of the couch area, the desk with drawers and mini fridge. I still haven’t moved all the art supplies out yet which is why it looks so clean.

Deconstruction: David van Alphens Modern Shed

The last detail was the sconce on the outside. It actually took me about two months to find the right one that had a nice modern look and cost under $500! I got this for about $100. The final size of the studio is 8′ x 12′ and with all the extras I spent about $3000 total. Without the AC, fridge and other details, I could have easily come in under my $2500 goal.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

We noticed a trend going on these days: offices in the backyard! The convenience of just walking rather than driving to work is too good to pass up. Check out these backyard offices that allow people to get away from the house without really getting away and save the hassles of dealing with traffic, commuting costs, or space rentals.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

WorkPod by Ecospace is a gorgeous, contemporary backyard office would definitely appeal to design addicts. Other than its great looks, the space is built-in the office technology you need to get your work done.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

There’s something about the round shape of the Archipod (which we’ve written about before) that makes me want to wrap my arms around it when I see it. It looks small, but it’s actually bigger inside than you think and it fits in with the backyard landscape very nicely.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

dmvA’s Blob VB3 is an egg-shaped unit that can be used for an office or even a living space. It definitely reminds me of a giant marshmallow jelly bean.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

The OfficePOD creates an environment that supports productivity and provides the user with an efficient use of space. It’s made using as many recycled and recyclable materials as possible and there’s a low level energy consumption along with a high level of insulation.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

This small recording studio designed by Piet Hein Eek for entertainer Hans Liberg is a modern spin on a log cabin. The exterior is consists of many logs that cover a plastic and steel frame.

The Rise of the Backyard Office

The customizable Garden Studio by UK company in.it.studios is insulated and can have heating, lighting, power outlets and even a bathroom or kitchen!

Do you know of any other backyard office solutions like these?

Fincube Structure

Retour sur ce projet d’architecture « Fincube », le nom de cette structure pré-fabriquée qui peut être installée et démontée en très peu de temps. Située à Ritten en Italie, cette construction au design très réussi est une création du studio allemand Aisslinger. Plus d’images à découvrir dans la suite de l’article.

 

Hollywood Stars Go Colorfully Pop

If you could shoot bursts of controlled confetti and make it look like the Hollywood stars of old, you’d have portraits a lot like those of graphic designer and illustrator Alessandro Pautasso. This passionate Italian artist has created a large collection of famous American stars, from Audrey Hepburn to Paul Newman and Rita Hayworth, all with his signature bold colors and abstract geometric shapes. In doing so he hopes to revive the colors of the past… but he’s also breathing new and imaginative life into stars which have been re-interpreted many times.

Puatasso (aka Kaneda) found his first interest in drawing as a child, where under the guidance of his mother who is a painter, he gained the foundation for the work you see here. Later, he explains, he discovered an illustrated book about the Beatles by Alan Aldridge, sparking his passion for design and illustration. Since then he’s never looked back, working in the commercial arts field while simultaneously pursuing his blossoming career in art.

SEE ALSO CULT CLASSIC CHARACTERS AND MUSICAL ICONS ILLUSTRATED

Here we look at examples from his last two series’, both titled Abstract Colors but with different twists on their execution. In his latest 5 examples, which you will find above and below, he has simplified his previous technique, giving more weight to the color and its ability to convey each stars personality. You’ll find more of his work at nosurprises.it

Above: Audrey Hepburn
Below: Paul Newman

Marilyn Monroe

Rita Hayworth

Joan Crawford

John Wayne

Frank Sinatra

Bette Davis

James Dean

Yul Brynner

Greta Garbo

Humphrey Bogart

Tallest Skyscrapers Under Construction

Architects around the world are reaching to infinity and beyond with new construction.

 Emporis, a database of construction projects, just released a list of the 10 tallest skyscrapers that are currently under construction, meaning they have a foundation laid.

The buildings sport an average height of 1,857 feet — or more than one-third of a mile high. China leads the way, with six buildings on this list.

Even amongst all this construction, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa will still keep its spot as the world’s tallest building at 2,717 feet tall. If other proposed building plans are put into motion, there could soon be skyscrapers that dwarf the Burj in height.

But for now, these buildings are the tallest in progress.

#10 Busan Lotte Town Tower — Busan, South Korea. Height (when completed): 1,675.02 feet

#10 Busan Lotte Town Tower — Busan, South Korea. Height (when completed): 1,675.02 feet

Copyright SOM

Source: Emporis #9 Pentominium — Dubai. Height (when completed): 1,692.91 feet (construction is currently on hold)

#9 Pentominium — Dubai. Height (when completed): 1,692.91 feet (construction is currently on hold)

Copyright Imre Solt

Source: Emporis #8 Dalian Greenland Center — Dalian, Liaoning, China. Height (when completed): 1,699.48 feet

#8 Dalian Greenland Center — Dalian, Liaoning, China. Height (when completed): 1,699.48 feet

Copyright HOK

Source: Emporis #7 CTF Tianjin Tower — Tianjin, China. Height (when completed): 1,738.85 feet

#7 CTF Tianjin Tower — Tianjin, China. Height (when completed): 1,738.85 feet

Copyright SOM

Source: Emporis #6 One World Trade Center — New York City. Height (when completed): 1,776.02 feet

#6 One World Trade Center — New York City. Height (when completed): 1,776.02 feet

Copyright SOM + dbox studio

Source: Emporis #5 Goldin Finance 117 — Tianjin, China. Height (when completed): 1,958.68 feet

#5 Goldin Finance 117 — Tianjin, China. Height (when completed): 1,958.68 feet

Copyright P&T Group

Source: Emporis #4 Makkah Clock Royal Tower — Makkah, Saudi Arabia. Height (when completed): 1,971.78 feet

#4 Makkah Clock Royal Tower — Makkah, Saudi Arabia. Height (when completed): 1,971.78 feet

Copyright Henry Wong

Source: Emporis #3 Shanghai Tower — Shanghai, China. Height (when completed): 2,073.87 feet

#3 Shanghai Tower — Shanghai, China. Height (when completed): 2,073.87 feet

Copyright Gensler

Source: Emporis #2 Ping An International Finance Center — Shenzhen, Gaungdong, China. Height (when completed): 2,125.98 feet

#2 Ping An International Finance Center — Shenzhen, Gaungdong, China. Height (when completed): 2,125.98 feet

Courtesy of KPF

Source: Emporis #1 India Tower — Mumbai, India. Height (when completed): 2,362.20 feet (construction is currently on hold)

#1 India Tower — Mumbai, India. Height (when completed): 2,362.20 feet (construction is currently on hold)

10 Stunning Homes Of The Future

Tornado-Proof Home

Ted Givens, an architect with Hong Kong’s 10Design created this prototype for a tornado-safe home. Hydraulic levers pull the Kevlar-coated house into the ground when high-velocity winds pass by. The high-tech structure’s roof then locks so water and wind can’t enter. Once the weather clears, the house unfolds and residents resume normal life.

The Wolke 7

Flying first class takes on a new meaning with this house, conceived by Switzerland-based designer Timon Sager. Durable cables suspend the living space in the air. With multiple decks, a state-of-the-art entertainment center and a luxury bedroom, the flying house has everything you could want.

The Wolke 7

The Wolke 7

Roll House

The heat of California was a definite consideration for Korean designer Christopher Daniel who came up with this roll-like home concept. Designed for arid environments, the house is secured with a carbon fiber truss frame and has a hydraulic powered automatic door. The upper half of the door opens overhead and the lower part unfolds onto the ground. Depending on the amount of sun, residents can make skylights and windows less or more transparent. Curtains and bookshelves act as dividers in the rooms.

Roll House

Roll House

Water Discus Hotels

Imagine looking out your hotel window at a school of fish. A design concept by Deep Ocean Technology in Poland, includes an underwater area that would allow guest to do just that. The 11,000 square foot space would sit 33 feet below the surface of the water. Additional features include a diving center, open terraces above water and a spa. For safety the disc-shaped dwelling is can be detached from the main structure and used as a lifeboat.

Water Discus Hotels

Water Discus Hotels

Urban Tree House

Population growth and consequent crowding can leave little room to live in big cities. But Jason Lubutkah of Jason David Designs in New York City has an idea: Why not build houses that cantilever across city streets, using up space that would otherwise be wasted? The homes would be constructed off site and then raised to their new location.

Urban Tree House

Weave House

Inspired by a child’s loom toy, the woven facade of this mixed-use building is designed for passive energy use. Prefabricated units lock together to form apartments.The overhang of each unit provides shade. Easy—and very quick—to build, the structure arrives from a factory in dozens of parts. Once on site, the pieces are hoisted into place. The concept was designed by Meridian105 Architects of Denver, Colorado.

Fallingwater Cottages

Look once and you’ll see a hill. Look again and you’ll see an entryway into that hill. Patkau Architects in Vancouver, Canada conceived of these underground dwellings. Tucked into grassy mounds, the small homes blend with the landscape and provide a minimal-footprint approach to living while attending to basic needs.

Fallingwater Cottages

Moon Villa

Designed by Royal Haskoning Architechten in Nijmegen, Netherlands, this transparent home concept was designed for lunar living. It has no stairs, since the moon’s low-gravity would allow residents to float or bound from one level to the next. The house has enormous rotating shades that regulate the extreme temperatures of outer space. An underground bunker is also included in the design, just in case a dangerous solar storm should arise

Moon Villa

Reboot Home

Designed by New York City’s Victor Vetterlein, this POD house is completely computer-controlled in order to maximize energy efficiency and comfort. Every inch of its exterior surface acts as a solar energy collector. A wind-powered elevator and water-treatment plant are included and the rooftop collects rainwater that is stored in holding tanks. Natural air-flow is provided via vents that  residents operate themselves.

Reboot Home

Sky Terra Towers

Living in cities is rarely a green experience but San Francisco-based designer Joanna Borek-Clement has come up with a sky-scraping solution. The neuron-like collection of towers she designed would reach elevations of 1,600-feet and would be inter-dependent, each structure supporting the others. People would reach the amphitheaters, pools, fields and parks via elevators from the street. The design was conceived with Tokyo in mind.

Sky Terra Towers

For most, the word “house” conjures images of rectangular dwellings with front porches and chimneys. Front lawns and garages too. But fast forward a few hundred years and the traditional four walls and a roof won’t be standard housing fare, according to urban experts. Climate change, population growth and geo-political shifts are already redefining the way we look at residential spaces of the future.

“The only path forward is to harness solar, wind and water for power and to use the power of computers to design, build and maintain homes,” says Victor Vetterlein, an architect residing in New York City.

Full List: 10 Stunning Homes Of The Future

To this end, Vetterlein conceived of a self-sufficient, eco-friendly dwelling called Reboot. Curvy and smooth on the outside, its futuristic aesthetic includes an elliptical glass elevator encircled by a white stairway with glass handrails, high gloss floors and a change-able floor-plan. Wind turbines and batteries supply the home’s power, taking into account a predicted shortage of fossil fuels. And an in-house water treatment plant is ready for the rain-water that’s collected in a drain above the windows.

But as futuristic as Reboot may look, Vetterlein says it’s not nearly as “out there” as it seems. While its smooth-and-shiny surface and stem-like base may look like something out of Japanese Anime, most of the technology that would make it possible already exists. Vetterlein says Reboot’s main function now is to provoke discussion. “When people love or hate a new idea like Reboot, discourse emerges…and this is the predecessor to real change.”

For Chad Mitchell, architect and founder of Meridian 105 Architecture, a project called Weave Housing came about in order to address housing issues that include energy efficiency in a changing climate, affordability in a struggling economy and quality of craftsmanship in an evolving marketplace. The woven design of the multi-family project creates pockets of shade to keep the building cool, and these pockets double as balconies for residents. And the building can be pre-fabricated elsewhere then transported, after being checked for quality, before being put in place, something that reduces its cost, as well.

Further challenging our ideas about where home architecture is headed is graphic designer Timon Sager. Based in Switzerland, Sager designed a dwelling called Wolke 7 that brings everyday living to new heights—literally. Considering the U.N. says the world population could surpass 10 billion by 2100, living in sky homes could help considerably in combating the overpopulation situation down below. Still, if you’re envisioning an airplane–or an RV with wings–think again. The modern-looking home, which has multiple decks, large walls of glass and a host of luxury living amenities, including a huge entertainment room, actually dangles from heavy cables as two enormous zeppelins escort it through the skies.

So, why did Mr. Sager design such a place? The reasons are more existential than scientific. “It really bothers me that current concepts of home stand for the opposite of freedom,” says Sager. “[Homes] are built on a foundation in a single location and they are all about being static and safe rather than free and adventurous. In my opinion, the home of the future will not be tied to a particular location or country. In other words, your property will be with you, rather than at a fixed address, and being at home will mean being anywhere you want,” he adds.

Full List: 10 Stunning Homes Of The Future

Flying homes, weave houses and Reboots might sound far-fetched now, but as architect Chad Mitchell reminds us, even the most science-fiction seeming homes are “…often grounded in logic and even feasible from a construct-ability standpoint.” Architects and urban planners can’t pinpoint exactly when these concepts will become necessary–it all depends on how economic and geographic factors play out–but they’re confident the most effective ideas will rise to the top. According to Mitchell: “Generally, the best ideas will gain traction and define what is to come.”

10 Wonderful Libraries Repurposed from Unused Structures

Last week, the internet went crazy for an abandoned Walmart in McAllen, Texas, that was recently converted into the country’s largest single story library, winning its category in the 2012 Library Interior Design Competition in the process. Inspired, we went on the hunt for other libraries that were born from unused and abandoned structures, from the large (drill halls and supermarkets) to the small (phone booths and shipping containers). After all, what better way to recycle just about anything than to turn it into a center for knowledge? Click through to check out a few libraries that rose from the ashes of other structures, and let us know if we’ve missed any from your town in the comments!

The McAllen Public Library, built inside a 124,500 square foot abandoned Walmart in McAllen, Texas. Photos via.

The Central Library in Cape Town, built inside an old drill hall. Photo via.

Eden Prairie Library in Minnesota, converted from a “big box” supermarket to the gorgeous library it is today. Photos via.

Nassau Public Library in Nassau, Bahamas, once a colonial jail, but converted into a library in 1873. Photos via and via.

Britain’s smallest library, the Westbury Book Exchange, lives in an old telephone booth. Photosvia.

And the American version — a free mini library in a disused NYC pay phone booth, created by architect John Locke. Photo via.

Jackson Public Library in Jackson, New Hampshire, converted from a barn built in 1858 for the town’s first inn. Photos via.

BiebBus, a Dutch mobile library for kids built out of an old shipping container. Photos via.

Beautiful Bibliothèque Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Longueuil, Québec. Photos via.

The Biblio Trenes in Chile: disused train cars that have been converted into cool libraries. Photos via.

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A-cero

A-cero architecture studio has completed another home in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain. This home of 1000m2 is a bit smaller than the other buildings in the development. The home features some of A-cero’s signatures such as the angular protrusion on the side, the white-ish marble exterior and dark interiors. As with most other projects from A-cero, they have also designed many of the home’s furnishings. The all-pink little girl’s room was a bit unexpected and I just love the room with the striped wall that continues onto the ceiling.

From the architects:

House plot has a rectangular shape and a surface of 4.500 m2. It has a direct access from a private road located in the north. In the south area is a wide garden which is joined with the urban development green spaces. It is a two storey building (ground floor and basement). Both levels are perfectly adapted to plot slope where the house takes place.

In the main entrance is a hall which communicates with an ample wide lounge and a dining room. Both stays overturn towards the back façade. They have plenty ample windows that are opened for a porch where other lounge and dining room are. In this exterior area is a barbecue and a spectacular bar designed by A-cero besides a exterior swimming pool (with jacuzzi). In this level also is the kitchen, cleaning room and service area (it includes a living room, two bedrooms and two baths) with an independent exterior access.

In the opposite side of this level is located the principal bedroom. It is decorated in white and golden colours and has a large window. This room includes a dressing-room and a huge bathroom.

By an interior stairs you can go down to the basement where three bedrooms are with their bathrooms and a games room. Furthermore, in this level is a gym, a cinema rooms, wine vault, the facilities quarters and the garage.

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Dwelling in Pozuelo de Alarcón in Spain by A cero

Metamorphosis House in Chile


Chilean architects José Ulloa Davet and Delphine Ding designed this completely awesome wood house in Tunquén, Casablanca, Chile. From the outside it looks like a fortress with a view over the coast, but on the inside it’s warm like a home should be.

 










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