Modernist Twist

“The results are fantastic, we’re very happy with our house….” - client


This existing mid-century modern house was originally constructed in two stages in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Unfortunately the two parts to the house were just that, two half’s, and that if designed as one at the time may have inherited the full list of modern qualities that make these houses special. As a result the house interior suffered functionality from being compartmentalized in a traditional sense and circulation was uneasy and lacked flow. Some elements such as the internal stair were ill fitting and compromised. The light and connected flow that these mid-century houses usually exhibit was lost. However in contrast the exterior enlisted some courageous and unique features such as the airplane wing canopy over the front entry. This integrates and streamlines the exterior form which we used to good effect as further inspiration for the new design.

The alteration brief to Wright & Gray Architects included suggestions such as rationalizing the circulation and creating flexible spaces. Also better connections within family areas. To link these ideas together the stairway would became an important feature to rebuild, and bring the project together making the house feel as one unit. We created a modernist design that was light filled, integrated the existing and new design elements and preserved the existing mid-century character.

The photos show clearly how all spaces from the kitchen through to the living area are visually linked and the house feels light filled, very large beyond its size, and connected. A small addition allows the dining area to become two defined spaces now, incorporating a larger more usable family space. Wood and plywood was used to good effect in ways that underpins the modernist philosophy.

The rest of the house received upgrades such as an ensuite to the master bedroom, and good wardrobe storage. There were left over spaces to allow for flexibility such as the snug at the top of the stairs that has amazing valley views and direct sun.

There are just so many amazing features to the reinvented house. We will leave the rest to the photos. Enjoy.