About Habitusliving

 

Habitus is a movement for living in design. We’re an intelligent community of original thinkers in constant search of native uniqueness in our region.

 

From our base in Australia, we strive to capture the best edit, curating the stories behind the stories for authentic and expressive living.

 

Habitusliving.com explores the best residential architecture and design in Australia and Asia Pacific.

 

Learn more

Design Hunters

The Art of Collaboration: Mari Funaki for Schiavello

The completion of Schiavello’s new headquarters, located in Tullamarine, Melbourne, in 2005 provided Schiavello managing director, Peter Schiavello, with the perfect opportunity to engage his passion for art through a unique collaborate with design luminary Mari Funaki. It was a collaboration that started small and would finish in a ‘monumental’ gesture. Japanese by birth, Mari arrived in Melbourne in the 70s where she would study, work and later set up the world-renowned Gallery Funaki. Her jewellery and object designs were renowned for their delicate, insect-like forms, always mathematical in precision, and dynamic and activating in their relationship with the body and the built environment. Mari Funaki for Schiavello | Habitus Living Captivated by Mari’s work, Peter commissioned her in 2007 to create a piece that would welcome guests to Schiavello’s headquarters. She, in response, handcrafted a 1:22 scale maquette of the proposed full scale sculpture. “Schiavello has long prided itself on design quality and excellence,” comments Peter. “When selecting the designers that we work with at Schiavello we always look for design distinction and a unique approach. It is important to us that we work with those whose values are similar to ours.” Having worked with numerous international and Australian designers, (London studio Doshi Levien, Italian architect-designer Mario Bellini, and Melbourne designers Helen Kontouris and Joost Bakker – to name a few), Schiavello takes great pride in producing designs that stand the test of time from both a quality point of view, as well as market relevance. Mari Funaki for Schiavello | Habitus Living The collaboration between Schiavello and Mari’s was a first for the company and unique in its scope. Mari’s skilled craftsmanship and unerring eye, combined with Schiavello’s uncompromising approach to manufacturing excellence: “It was with great pride that we were able to fabricate this extraordinary work,” says Peter. The sculpture was produced in-house at Schiavello’s 70,000sqm manufacturing plant in Melbourne and erected at the Schiavello HQ in 2011. Monumental in scale and materiality – it reaches 5.7 metres high, 13.6 metres long and weighs 2.6 tonnes, the sculpture echoes Mari’s early discovery of paper thin blackened mild steel. This she would blacken it to the point that it seemed to absorb light, enhancing her objects’ fragility. Mari Funaki for Schiavello | Habitus Living Peter Schiavello, Tony Schiavello, Mari Funaki and Peter Geyer Schiavello’s culture of design quality and attention to detail in manufacturing were integral to recreating a monumental sculpture that stayed true to Mari’s vision, and the depth and delicacy of that original maquette. Her untimely passing in 2010 makes it all the more meaningful in its homage to a lifetime devoted to great design. In 2016 Schiavello looks back at its most monumental moments as it celebrates 50 wonderful years of outstanding design and manufacturing in Australia and abroad. Watch the making-of movie, click here. Explore more of Schiavello’s 50 monumental moments over the last 50 years, click here. Schiavello schiavello.com Gallery Funaki galleryfunaki.com.auabc
Architecture
Homes

A Labour of Love in Tasmania

The quiet magnificence of MGA.I’s New Town House in Hobart is as heartbreaking as it is tenderly beautiful. When asked about challenges faced during the execution of projects, most designers and architects will refer to problems of materials, legislative restrictions, heritage structures and budgetary limitations as the norm. In most responses, that is, the warmth of the human story that is part (and in many ways, the totality) of design is lost. New Town House was designed by MGA.I in very close conjunction with the resident clients. Sadly, the partner of the client passed before the project could be completed in full – and this emotional attachment to the intellectual property of the design proved to be both the greatest challenge and touchingly enduring impression New Town House leaves. New Town House | Habitus Living The overall effect of New Town House is one of assured, hushed serenity that speaks so much to its muted, grey, white and bleached timber tonality. The simplicity in form is the result of highly sophisticated detailing and vigilance for recognising the inherent dramatic beauty of pre-existing elements. The established brickwork was preserved as the champion feature. Smooth painted brick expanses of this two-storey home provide strong geometric forms when framed by coursing and jointing. This pared down and simple visual interaction assumes the charge of ‘artwork’ in this home that otherwise shirks the necessity for adornment. New Town House | Habitus Living An aesthetic narrative of continuity is maintained throughout inside and out with alternating flush and deep tooled jointing creating the lasting effect of banding to soften strong geometric forms. It also bears the doubled benefit of continuing a historical narrative that references the adjacent turn-of-the-century painted brick workers’ cottages. New Town House | Habitus Living Brief, compact and efficient, the structure utilises natural light and opens itself up to breathtaking vistas of nearby Mount Wellington. The most minute and sympathetic attention to details are seen everywhere throughout – down to dramatic shadows created by brick detailing that dance and morph gently throughout the day. New Town House | Habitus Living Sustainable practice, high-energy efficiency and low maintenance construction was key. The design team’s inspired use of reverse brick veneering and thermal massing inside successfully allowed the project to sit well within ecologically conscious design practice. The client’s desire for a contemporary house that was responsive to the urban context was realised in alignment with the area’s traditional building stock. New Town House | Habitus Living New Town House is an elegy of stark, sincere beauty. Its quiet message is one we should not forget: some things are so perfect, just so. MGArchitecture.Interiors mgai.com.au Builder: Marlin Constructions Photography: Peter Mathew New Town House | Habitus Living   New Town House | Habitus Living New Town House | Habitus Living New Town House | Habitus Livingabc
Design Hunters

Behind the Textiles of Song for the Mute

Step into Song for the Mute’s Glebe studio and flagship store and you will most likely be greeted personally by the brand’s founders, Lyna Ty and Melvin Tanaya, who regularly interact with customers in the combined space. “We never really intended for it to be that way, but we love it,” Melvin says. Surrounded by the finished garments, “The customers come in to hang with us and they get to see Lyna designing and [meet] the team,” he continues. Demonstrating the design process from beginning to end, it’s a compelling on-site marketing campaign.

_MG_6003

“When we moved to this space, we fell in love with it,” Melvin remembers. “It’s still a work in progress,” he continues, “It’s nowhere near finished or how we want it to be, but that’s part of the journey – to build upon what we’ve got now.” Growth and constant evolution seem to be core principals at the heart of Song for the Mute, whose meteoric rise in the Australian and international fashion landscapes has seen Melvin and Lyna present their collections multiple times a year in Paris, and placed their wares in the most exclusive boutiques across the world.

_MG_5957

It’s quite a way from where they started in 2009 making t-shirts as a hobby while they both had full-time jobs. “I’d just finished my course in Italy, and came back and was working in bridalwear, actually,” Lyna laughs. A few t-shirt designs later, they added some trousers and jackets, making the decision to focus on menswear exclusively. “We didn’t even know how the industry worked,” says Melvin. “We had no prior experience in terms of selling the collection to a buyer; we didn’t know when the selling season was. We had to read a book, like a textbook, on how to run your own fashion brand and we took some tips from there.” Incredibly, they went through the Yellow Pages to find their first makers. “It took us a while,” Lyna remembers. “We kind of learned as we went... and it’s still the same,” admits Melvin.

_MG_6048

The design process begins with the fabrics, on which the pair places the utmost significance. “It evokes an emotion when we touch and feel a fabric. It either stems from a concept of the collection or a feel of that collection,” Melvin explains. “Everything happens organically. We don’t force, we just let the fabric speak for itself. We’re discovering the collection as we go.”

Read the full story in Habitus issue #32, available now.

Song for the Mute songforthemute.com Photography by Rob Palmer Words by Christina Rae _MG_6212 _MG_59442abc
Happenings
What's On

What’s New at Melbourne Indesign

Make it Late For the first time in Melbourne Indesign history, we’re inviting you to join us in the CBD for a hot date with design. Introducing Up Late Indesign, an exclusive Friday evening ‘bar hop’ between five of the city’s top design retailers, where we at team MID are teaming up with a bunch of our favourite designers and brands. There’s nothing better than an up-late date in Melbourne city, and this Melbourne Indesign, we offer design lovers across the city to wrap up your Friday with a city spanning exploration of what’s new in design. Debuting At MID Melbourne Indesign 2016 is all about new experiences and new brands, and the list of terrific exhibitors and brands showing off at the event continues to grow. Never seen before at Melbourne Indesign and exhibiting for the first time is Authentic Design Alliance, Cerdomus, the Dutch Design Collective, Franco Crea, Premium Floors, and TOTO all of who have confirmed they’ll be bringing great design experiences to the city this August. This mix of exhibitors represents the wide range of design talents on show and growing for Melbourne Indesign this year. Product Showcase A great design culture is all about great products, and Melbourne Indesign will feature the best and latest ranges of products from here and abroad. A few of the brand’s showcasing new and exciting products at Melbourne Indesign include Atlas Concorde, bringing design direct from Italy; District; ECF, showcasing design from Germany’s Sedus; Hub, bringing Italy’s Moroso to the city; PAD Furniture; Winspear and more! New Partnerships Indesign highlight The Project returns this year with a range of new partnerships & design installations celebrating the spirit of collaborations. Old and new favourites alike are taking part this year, showcasing a range of exciting installation, from a Bowling Alley and a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party to student collaborations with RMIT and the Academy of Design Australia. Across the city, designers and creatives will be exploring the idea of evolution, including Café Culture, Artedomus, Shaw Contract, AJAR, Scandinavian Business Seating and more.abc
Architecture
Homes

Victorious Victoria: Napier Street

Located on the historic Napier Street in Melbourne’s Fitzroy stands an imaginatively rejuvenated Victorian cottage. Now exhibiting contemporary flair and ingenious design answers – thanks to architects Peter Mills and Craig Gorman of architecture firm Mills Gorman – this single-fronted Victorian cottage retains all the intimacy and warmth of its prehistory with new super-added confidence and buoyancy. Napier Street | Habitus Living Home to an in-demand interior designer, the house is carefully and subtly designed as its own memoir. With original brickwork forming a feature spine, a vein of the structure’s history runs through the house and garden walls. A motif of blackened steel tracks the industrial past of nineteenth-century Fitzroy, and bespoke woven strap screens on the dwelling’s façade hint familiarly at vertical window proportions seldom popular these days, but that our great-great-grand parents would distinguish all too well. Intelligently designed vistas run between rooms of the property and its courtyard gardens to individually nod to different periods of the home’s past. Napier Street | Habitus Living A custom firebox, a laser cut staircase and woven façade screens provide a modern contrast and sense of openness and light streaming through the Victorian skeleton of the residence. Designed to provide a flexible and sustainable environment for living and working, the redevelopment sits side-by-side with the original cottage. From inside, however, the new layout reveals itself: only the front three rooms were retained and refurbished. Beyond this, the new dwelling stretches to the rear, wrapping around the cottage and extending upwards, giving the property a new vertical dynamic that responds to the rhythm of neighbouring double-storey terraces. Napier Street | Habitus Living The muted tonal scheme purposefully appropriates the pre-existing palette, designed so as not to overwhelm the distinctive handsomeness of the Victorian streetscape. Always with this deliberate empathy and consideration in mind, the design aspires toward historical preservation and ecological sustainability. Solar panelling, an underground water tank, low energy fixtures and fittings, low VOC and the use of only the most local materials allowed this project to be both environmentally holistic and historically conscious. Napier Street | Habitus Living This co-ordinated and proactive design bears the characteristic hallmark of the Mills Gorman approach: collaborative and interactive design solutions that have brought architectural innovation to many constructions and sectors including residential, commercial, hospitality and entertainment environments. Mills Gorman millsgorman.com.au Napier Street | Habitus Living Napier Street | Habitus Living Napier Street | Habitus Livingabc
House Of The Year

Chau Doc House

Chau Doc House is located in An Giang province (seven hours journey from Ho Chi Minh City), on the Cambodian border and a block back from the Mekong River. It resonates with a host of contextual issues and, like so much contemporary Vietnamese architecture, it is preoccupied with how a traditional way of life can accommodate the rapid changes taking place in Vietnam. In this case, the house is a remarkably imaginative response to how it might be possible to accommodate an extended family. At the same time, it set out to preserve the traditional “floor-sitting lifestyle” while also providing the amenity of a contemporary house, including passive responses to climatic issues through natural ventilation, control of sunlight and extensive greenery in and around the house. The local housing vernacular typically consists of corrugated iron cladding and pitched rooves with the structures raised up on pilotis. The area is flood-prone and previously the house site would be flooded for up to five months of the year. However, new concrete embankments along the river have eliminated the flood issue – albeit creating another problem, namely badly polluted ground levels which previously would have been regularly cleaned out by flooding. Chau Doc House aims to reflect the local vernacular housing, although to some extent this is an imposed regulatory condition – namely the use of corrugated cladding. Existing height limits were driven by flood conditions, but with the newly dry topography, the architects have been able to create a three-level house within the height restrictions by dropping the ground floor down two metres. This area is now the communal living and dining area for the three families. Rather than a pitched roof, the architects have used a butterfly roof which has the effect of opening the house up to the outside, especially to attractive views out to distant paddy fields. The pilotis are subtly referenced by the floating timber frame (on concrete columns) of the house. These timber frames create a series of private, but connected, spaces. The balance of privacy and community is also calibrated by the use of moveable partitions rather than fixed, solid walls. The cladding is mandated corrugated iron, which is also used for the kitchen cabinetry. The architectural language of the house is clearly modern. However, it remains a good neighbour because its lightweight transparency ensures that it does not impose its modern character on its immediate neighbours. A key feature of its flexibility and adaptability is the use of pivoting, metal-framed, semi-translucent corrugated windows to control the often intense sunlight as well as directing breezes. These pivot both horizontally and vertically, the verticals being an enfilade of almost full-height doors. The timber frames, timber detailing and extensive use of plants soften what might otherwise be a somewhat industrial building. Private space is achieved by the filigree delicacy of the spatial composition which connects all the spaces – and the interior to the outside – while still creating the required sense of separation. This is a house which is very much of its place and highly sustainable both culturally and climatically, not to mention in the way it provides a home for three distinct but related families, enabling them to be independent while still enjoying the benefits of communal living. abc
Design Hunters

We Are Huntly Is One to Watch

“We are not a one-trick pony” is the philosophy of interior design studio We Are Huntly established by Kylie Dorotic and Alicia McKimm in November 2013. Certainly the breadth of work and recent accolades reveals these designers do have a lot of tricks up their sleeves with more than 60 projects to date and having recently been named Emerging Interior Design Practice at the 2016 Australian Interior Design Awards. “With every project we put our name to, we aim to create something unique, something that is sure to surprise you and something that is most definitely beautiful,” Kylie and Alicia explain. Based in Windsor, Melbourne, We Are Huntly is a six-person studio that offers a holistic service from concept phase and construction to furniture and accessories selection. Projects span retail, hospitality, commercial, residential and multi-residential while the creative process plays to each designer’s strengths. “Kylie has an intuitive approach to work and will never settle for normal and Alicia brings an understanding of form and business sensibility,” the founders describe; and together they are “dedicated to bringing something exclusive to each project.” We Are Huntly | Habitus Living This emphasis on exclusivity includes custom designed, tailor made or handcrafted pieces that reflect We Are Huntly’s focus on details, craftsmanship and function. “To us, beauty is not only found in the way something looks, but also in the way it works. Every aesthetic decision is grounded by purpose, so we can create a space we would want to be in, live in and work in; not just look at.” One of those spaces is the Richmond Residence, which received a Commendation for Residential Decoration in the 2016 Australian Interior Design Awards. The unique 1980s-style warehouse apartment is home to an art and design enthusiast and We Are Huntly curated the art and furniture and designed custom-made joinery to complement the building’s industrial heritage. “The result is a gallery-like interior, which finds the perfect balance between personality and a homely yet luxurious space,” Kylie and Alicia describe. We Are Huntly | Habitus Living Also proving their range, a selection of other projects include the understated Balaclava Residence with its rich textures and a monochrome palette, and The Penny Drop café with its sensuous art deco curves and fittings. Hampton Penthouse fuses bold stone and gold metal details with dark stained timber and Prahran Grocer combines the nostalgia of a 1950s grocer with the practicality of a modern-day supermarket. While We Are Huntly’s projects and briefs may vary greatly, its high-quality consistency does not. With an aesthetic that’s warm, considered, minimal and functional, each project is realized as a distinctive and quite simply stunning interior. We Are Huntly www.wearehuntly.com.au We Are Huntly | Habitus Living We Are Huntly | Habitus Living We Are Huntly | Habitus Livingabc
Architecture
Homes

A Calming Indoor/Outdoor Design Experience

In Perth’s Mosman Park, the Bay View House is striking in the distance, with its suspended second floor extending out and over the open plan ground floor. Supported primarily by a sculptural column, the lack of immediate walls, and the glass panelling create a welcoming entrance point to a house that is sheltered by a dominant cube above. Bayview House | Habitus Living Craig Steere Architects worked with the client to a brief that was explicit in its desire to create a home that balanced the careful line of intertwining the exterior with the interior. The architects note that, “One of the more challenging aspects of the design process was to create opportunities for all priority spaces to access vistas through to the river and park. This was achieved via an interplay of varying floor levels together with staggered and angled wall planes.” Bayview House | Habitus Living The ground level of Bay View House is the principal communal space, with open plan living, dining and kitchen areas, as well as external gardens and courtyards, and a pool. The second story with its distinctive cube shape is more intimate, housing bedrooms with strategically framed apertures to invite quality sun and air into the home. Steere enthuses that, “our favourite part of the design is how the house responds to the site throughout the day. The clients were very keen to blend the distinctions between the inside and outside, and this manifested in the provision of courtyards that extend the amenity of the interior spaces.” Bayview House | Habitus Living Inside the home is a clever combination of different finishes and textures, from raw cement to warm timber and cool marble. A liberal use of glass ensures that the outside view is still accessible from even the deepest recesses of the home, and classic neutral tones were utilised to impart a sense of luxury. “‘Luxury living’ to us is defined by a state of great comfort and joy whenever our clients use their home. We strive to achieve a pleasurable experience for our clients in the execution of architectural detailing throughout the home,“ continues Steere. Bayview House | Habitus Living This idea of luxury was extended to the multiple bathrooms within the home, utilising the elegant and contemporary Falper Scoop basins and Fantini Mare tapware for the vanity, and the indulgent Apaiser Sublime, and Kaldewei Pura baths for the ultimate bathroom experience. The steel detailing of various Cosmic Extreme accessories add to the spacious ambience, contrasting with cream tiles and rich timber. For Steere, “we see the bathroom as a space of ritual retreat, so quality of light and material selections support this design intent in a timeless and elegant manner.” Working in tandem with Rogerseller, part of Steere’s design process involves attending showrooms with the client themselves, providing advice on design, and finish, as well as allowing the client to experience first hand the tactility and function of fixtures used. Bayview House | Habitus Living This strong emphasis on quality workmanship – both in the architecture and the products within – was paramount to the brief, coupled with a consciousness for environmental sustainability. Making use of the house’s predilection for natural sunlight and ventilation, Craig Steere Architects incorporated passive solar design principles, hydronic floor heating, and double-glazing, to ensure a minimal need for artificial lighting and mechanical climate control. The considerate approach to the environmental aspects of the Bay View House adds to the feeling of luxury – throughout the indoor and outdoor spaces in the home, to the finishes, furniture and products, and the overall living experience.

Craig Steere Architects craigsteerearchitects.com.au

Bayview House | Habitus Living Bayview House | Habitus Living DSC6082abc
Design Products
Lighting

Shining a Light on the Perfect Winter with AJAR

The Collingwood-based design team behind AJAR are multi-disciplined, adaptable and have a comprehensive and infallible eye for design details. With founders Andrew Boddington and Josep Vallhonrat at the wheel, AJAR is a forerunner in bespoke design product and installs joinery, lighting, homewares, and furniture with specialist care to Spanish designers and brands. They are also expert curators and importers, representing a colossal collection of 15 brands – the majority new to the Australian market, exclusive to AJAR – the sum of which is unequivocally contemporary and fresh. As winter continues and the bitter cold descends still on Australian shores, AJAR guide us through 4 of their standout pieces perfect to bring warmth and light into our homes. AJAR | Habitus Living The BlancoWhite R3 Table Lamp by Antoni Arola for Santa & Cole is one in an extensive family of lamps characterised by their one-centimetre thick structure housing an LED light source. With brevity, simplicity and spaciousness as the key design themes, the BlancoWhite R3 Table Lamp offers both flexibility and versatility to the space-poor. The lamp doubles as a tabletop shelving system, bookcase, or composite lighting system perfect for the small desk or feature table. Its most innovative facet is the use of a state-of-the-art LED plate. Using the Dot Cutting System that distributes dots of progressive concavity across the light surface (becoming increasingly concave the further away each dot is from the initial source), the BlancoWhite’s LED promotes a harmonious consistency in the light flow. AJAR | Habitus Living The Blow Table Lamp by Novell-Perera for Almalight features a elegant, sleek design set in a tonal scheme of frost offset by glistening silvers. Comprising a high-polish chrome stem and base, its blown glass shade subtly diffuses without losses on radiance-factor. With an intriguing crescent cut-out on its floating base, long continuous lines and geometric circular motifs, The Blow Table Lamp is a studied example of mature sophistication. AJAR | Habitus Living The Ginger Table Lamp by Joan Gaspar for Marset represents the mid-century aesthetic reinterpreted for twenty-first century needs. Including an ecologically friendly LED light source, a powder-coated metal stem, slim lines, and a toasty colour scheme, it exudes warmth and cosiness. Its timber laminate shade stretches into a plateauing canopy covering semi-hidden bulbs. These LEDs are further cupped into a black crucible at the top of its central stem. With its interplay of horizontal-vertical dynamics and open-and-hidden glow, its dim moodiness is textbook snuggle-lighting. AJAR | Habitus Living Reminiscent of the magic lantern, the Cesta Metalica by Miguel Mila for Santa & Cole is the latest reimagining of the original 1962 design. It now features a chromed steel trestle and warm, frosted cap globe in a soft bulbous shape. The leather handle makes it ideal for both tabletops and ingenious floor lighting. The entire AJAR collection is built on strong, close relationships with an international suite of brands and designers. This resilient foundation allows the AJAR team to deliver beautiful and creative design stories passed directly from makers and manufacturers. AJAR ajar.com.au 15 Johnston Street Collingwood VIC 3066abc
Design Products
Furniture
Lighting

Curious Grace: Simplicity with a Smile

The house of Curious Grace has once again put the ‘fun’ back into ‘functionality’. Curators of Australian-made furniture and importers of design and furnishing pieces from across the globe, Curious Grace’s latest favours are inspired by objects as diverse as European church bells, Sub-Saharan foliage, and the insouciant calm of Scandinavian and Danish design. Curious Grace| Habitus Living Now stocking the ultra-cool Anders Lounge Chair, Curious Grace caters to those of us with design needs that require sophistication with a sense of humour. Featuring sleek, black powder-coated steel legs, this upholstered chair of original Danish design offers that pop of colour bringing delight and comfort to the home. Its internal structural system is derived from solid wood and MDF, a webbing spring system, and high-density polyurethane foam profiles on top ensuring that all-important snug factor we crave. Curious Grace| Habitus Living Nonchalant and elegant, Curious Grace’s new Floater Table – brought to you from the design teams of 365˚North – is lovingly crafted from solid European oak. Available in a muted colour scheme of blue, blush, pink and grey, the Floater Table is also offered in Natural Oak. Stripping back busy frills and trimmings, this streamline and simple table is designed with peak practicality in mind. Curious Grace| Habitus Living Also from the same brains behind the Floater Table, 365˚North brings an element of the African savanna to Curious Grace. Inspired by the giant baobab tree’s bulbous trunk and sumptuous plateau, the Wire Basket Table is made from birch plywood with an oaken veneer. Set on a black powder-coated frame designed in a plump organic shape, the table is available in three different sizes that together offer a visual drama of balance and metamorphosis: like a forest. Curious Grace| Habitus Living Sweet, humorous and enchanting, Curious Grace’s Ding Pendant light plays with the shape and suspension of church bells. Each pendant is hung from a hand woven cord to create a unique handle from which the pendant lamp is supported. Cast in porcelain and available in varied sizes, the silhouette’s versatility is perfect for every room of the home. Grouped together the Ding Pendant lamps are a theatrical example of rich, warm light that can be intensified with a gold interior finish. Curious Grace| Habitus Living All furniture and home interior products in the Curious Grace collection are original designs. Always with an eye to support designers from across the globe as well as at home in Australia, the curators at Curious Grace are sensitive to the beauty of ethical, contemporary design that can have the potential to be fun, dramatic, and always practical. Curious Grace curiousgrace.com.auabc
Design Products
Finishes
Fixed & Fitted
Furniture

Modulnova: Heart and Home

Both within their native Italy and also on the global stage, the Presotto family name is synonymous with kitchen design solutions that are at the frontline of innovation and style. With a distinguished pedigree in the furniture and design world of over sixty-seven years, the Presotto family’s furnishing firm Modulnova continues their legacy of bringing sophistication, elegance and originality into our homes. Modulnova | Habitus Living Modulnova recently wowed the world’s design community during Salone del Mobile 2016, and some of their latest knockout offerings from the Modulnova Cucine line are sure-fire winners for kitchen furnishing needs across the globe. Modulnova | Habitus Living Forget the bedroom, because with the kitchen as the heart of every home, Modulnova understands that this space is always the most inherently romantic in any house. Appealing to the heart, then, Modulnova’s Blade Kitchen line features a warm burnished tonal scheme that speaks to the romance, mystery and passion of our gastronomic lifestyles. With a thick mitre-folded worktop in Rovere Fumo and panelling in the rear cutout to allow optimum shelving spaces, the champion feature worktop insert is cut from a single block of Pietra Savoia Anthracite Gres. Accompanied by all the state-of-the-art steel and glass induction hobs and a metallic epoxy Iron Dust fireplace insert, the veneers are highly resistant due to being baked in a superheated oven, mounted on an aluminium honeycomb support. Trounced off with generous shelving and storage options, the large floor-to-ceiling doors deliver that element of slickness: with a push-to-open mechanism that does away with fussy handles, hinges and plinths. Modulnova | Habitus Living But for those of us looking for design options that speak to our need for more carefree serenity in our homes, Modulnova’s Fly Kitchen is an airy monochromatic meditation on simplicity and calm. Including a heavy Corian worktop with satin Bianco lacquered base units, the doors are trimmed in 45° bevelling. Modifying the Blade door with Modulnova’s Bilico structure makes it possible to close compartments for ease of movement that also appeals to the uncluttered eye. Modulnova | Habitus Living Since their establishment in 1988, Modulnova continues to be a master of home design answers. Their other lines include Modulnova Cucine, Modulnova Bagni (2000) and md Home, the newest direction that steps out of the kitchen and into the rest of our homes. Modulnova modulnova.com Words by David Congram. Modulnova | Habitus Living Modulnova | Habitus Living Modulnova | Habitus Livingabc
Architecture
Homes

Between Two Harbours: A Scrubby Bay Retreat

Formed from the remnants of two volcanoes, the South Island’s Banks Peninsula forms a striking geographical feature against the smoothness of the Canterbury Plains. Two harbours, formed inside the eroded cones, became the focus for settlements – Lyttelton and Akaroa – while the rest of the peninsula is mostly farmed. The rugged landscape and indented coastline bare the scars of subantarctic storms, while the hot dry summers turn the fields to gold, framed by the turquoise blue of the Pacific Ocean. It’s a remote location and this house site made even more so by four-wheel-drive access across a 1600-hectare sheep station. Base Camp | Habitus Living One of the north-facing bays of the station ­­– a bay known locally as Scrubby Bay – was chosen as the site for a holiday retreat designed by Patterson Associates. The flat valley floor and boulder beach are back-dropped by a step and almost symmetrical natural amphitheatre. The sound of the surf and wind through the valley give it an eerie feeling, as if there wasn’t another soul on earth. Base Camp | Habitus Living To site a house in such a remarkable setting was daunting for architect Andrew Patterson. “So where do you put a building there?” he reflects. “I work on the premise that humankind is as much a natural part of our planet as the birds and trees; we are all evolved. We made the brave move to place it right in the centre of the amphitheatre as if it were the player on the ‘stage’.” Base Camp | Habitus Living With the house site set 25 metres back from the beach, there had to be a visible connection made with the physicality of the bay for the house to really belong. With the enormous logs of driftwood washed up along the boulder beach, Patterson imagined a long, low building bleached by sea and sun that had also found its natural place on the valley floor. But it would also need to be a farm building – robust, practical and impervious to the climate, for use by large family groups. From afar, it might appear to be a barn, but up close, a comfortable shelter from which to experience the farm and sea – with walks, mustering, horse riding, swimming, diving and fishing – and a house able to be completely shut down in a storm and when empty between visits. Base Camp | Habitus Living With no curtilage area, the house rests in a sea of grass. Vehicles and horses can come right up to it, as do sheep when the paddock is opened by the farmer. It is a humble form, made with two gabled buildings ‘slipped’ past each other and connected in the middle. It reads as a house made of timber: a vernacular of exposed details and craft, its barn silhouette linking to the farm’s utility buildings. But it is also a very contemporary building, evident in its crisp lines and scale – at 480 square metres, with a five-and-a-half-metre high apex, it is a lot grander up close than it first appears from a distance or from photographs. Read the full story in Habitus #32, available now. Patterson Associates pattersons.com Photography by Simon Devitt, Stephen Goodenough, and Greg McKenzieabc