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

Interiors
Homes
Architecture
ARC - Feature

Bucolic Beauty

Simple (but not simplistic), and explicit in form and function, The Barn House by Garth Architecture is a worthy addition to the oeuvre of Australian barn houses. The property was designed for a young professional couple living in Ballarat, Victoria who desired a sustainable home that could grow with their family. “It was important that the house wasn't a McMansion but was consistent with the family’s requirements at the time, so it was designed as two halves (a future extension is in the works), with the focus on the quality of the spaces rather than the footprint of the home,” shares Anita Garth, principal of Garth Architecture. “It was also important for the spaces to overlook the land and the horse paddocks, which was a driver for the family’s move back to the country.” The house is sited on a 4.5-acre corner allotment, bounded by larger farm holdings, a neighbour to the north, a vacant block to the west, unscreened road frontage to the south and east, with existing neighbours and farmland across the road. “The house was designed to turn its back on the road frontage and prevailing freezing winter winds, to create privacy and a sense of sanctuary from the weather,” explains Anita. As expected, the house has been designed with a focus on exposure to the unfiltered, open expanse of the countryside. With the practical and strategic emphasis on northerly orientation, the house also leverages passive solar design. The only spaces to face south – namely the bathroom, laundry and spare bedroom – collectively act as a buffer to shelving spaces from the cold. The architectural form of The Barn House was inspired by the simple, robust architecture of old, local rural sheds and with a minimalist approach to form and proportion. The current design consists of three bedrooms, a large living space designed as a collective family gathering space, and a bathroom, laundry and garage. As per the future addition and alterations, the current living space will ultimately form a master suite with a larger open plan living space extending towards the east, with a garden wall extending from within the house out into the landscape, forming a north-facing outdoor private living zone. “This will reinforce the layers of privacy, with the entry and living spaces providing a buffer between the road and the more private zones of the home,” explains Anita. The second galvanised barn is the horse's barn, designed to complement the house. The client's desire for a naturally heated and cooled house with minimal supplementary air conditioning has been achieved with 400-millimetre-thick walls which create deep reveals for the timber-framed, double glazed argon filled windows. This reveal allows low winter sun in and keeps summer sun out, their depth allowing for extra insulation. Additional sustainability credentials include (but are definitely not limited to), a polished concrete slab that works as thermal mass and a heat sink to even out the dwelling temperature fluctuations, windows with operable full height casements that are used as doors enabling cross ventilation and cool airflow in summer, a 40,000-litre rainwater tank and a wastewater treatment plant that includes watering the north lawn via sub soil drippers. There has been an extensive consideration of detail on The Barn House, some of which is not immediately evident or even visible to the eye. For example, the locally sourced sugar gum timber cladding has been milled to a custom profile to make the reveal in the profile “crisper and more minimal”. “The boards were coated on all sides prior to installation with Cutek, a low VOC oil, to allow them to grey naturally while minimising mould growth, shrinkage, cracking and cupping,” explains Anita. “All joints were mitred and angled for longevity to minimise any areas where water could sit, which would lead to movement of the board.” Internally, the space has been designed to be a calming influence with a focus on a clutter-free aesthetic. “The key interior elements are really the white walls, the polished concrete slab, and light; everything else was secondary to these primary space creating elements,” explains Anita. “For these elements to read clearly, the detailing had to be uncluttered, so the door jambs were profiled timber with single reveals, flush with the wall so the opening looked like a clean cut. The window frames were flush with the cladding and the frames concealed so the white of the internal space was a distinct plane meeting the external timber.” The result is an authentic feeling of seamlessness between the interior spaces and the landscape. “Ultimately I think it's important for any house project for the client to have a real connection to the design and the process and love it if they want to and can become involved in some way during the construction,” adds Anita. “My dad, partner and I clad the Barn House. The boards were provided as random lengths to maximise the timber used from the trees and every board was measured, numbered and sorted by hand. The cladding layout was then worked out to minimise wastage. At the end of the process, there was only one wheelie bin of offcuts left. I loved those boards and would often hug them, they had my own blood sweat and tears on them which was very fulfilling.” A moving and fitting narrative that defines a house with innate character and legitimate integrity. Project Details Architecture – Garth Architecture Photography – Nicole England We think you might like this project in Queensland by Room by Room and Bones Studioabc
People
Editors Picks
DH - Feature
Design Hunters
Conversations

Gwen Tan on how a Home Should Celebrate Life

As co-founder of Formwerkz and Studio iF in Singapore and Habitus House of the Year 2021 juror, Gwen Tan unpacks tropical architecture and the qualities of a meaningful home. For Gwen, a home should first and foremost “be a place that celebrates family life”. After that, it’s about being designed in a way to grow with changing needs, and finally, it needs to sit well in its context and the surrounding climate. Practising in Singapore means dealing with the climatic conditions is undoubtedly a priority. “The tropical climate in Singapore has its own unique parameters. Being so close to the equator, we get a very balanced shift of sun angles throughout the year. As with all tropical climates, heavy rainfall and an almost constant of extreme heat and humidity become something we have to battle with intrinsically,” she shares. [caption id="attachment_115631" align="alignnone" width="750"] Casa Villa by Studio iF[/caption] Understanding that tropical architecture comes with many recognisable features, Gwen often looks for ways to design that embrace passive cooling. It’s a sustainable approach that ensures a comfortable microclimate because “Relying on air conditioning as the sole means to cool the house is something I don’t advocate,” says Gwen. Ramp House by Formwerkz exemplifies this thinking. While carefully considering the tropical climate, the design language speaks in a more refined manner. “The gesture of a single ramp that wraps around the house linking the external spaces together (the lower garden with the rooftop pool) allows for the much-needed shade typically provided by roof eaves. [caption id="attachment_115630" align="alignnone" width="2560"] Ramp House[/caption] “The outer skin parapet and downhang walls of the ramp feature carefully calibrated openings that provide a modulated climatic and privacy control for the glass openings on the inner layer. Indirect light is brought into the house through glass slits on the ramp itself and the ramp also creates a wind channelling effect into the house. The pool on the flat roof together with the equipment deck’s air space provides the necessary insulation for the spaces below from the overhead sun.” [caption id="attachment_115974" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Ramp House, photo by Fabian Ong[/caption] Gwen approaches architecture as an art form, but one that is “not as finished as other art forms”. For her what makes architecture challenging is also what makes it interesting – the idea that the building evolves over time, changing based on the inhabitants. “I feel that it’s worth spending a lifetime searching for a better answer and devoting time to developing my craft.” With a deep passion for continually exploring architecture, Gwen took this thinking further when designing her own home, Open House, which featured in Habitus House of the Year 2018. The project enabled her to push the boundaries of tropical architecture, experimenting with a front façade that is “totally open from the second level up, with the exception of a metal and timber screen”. [caption id="attachment_115629" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Open House is Gwen Tan's own home, photo by Fabian Ong[/caption] The ground floor offers protection and security with a thick timber wall. A pool hovers on the first floor where the façade is the most open as a way to maximise passive cooling. “Air is blown across the pool before it reaches the depth of the house,” Gwen says. The openness connects the house to the external environment, with the sound and even the smell of rain permeating throughout. [caption id="attachment_115637" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Open House, photo by Marc Tan[/caption] [caption id="attachment_115975" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Open House, photo by Fabian Ong[/caption] Gwen comments that it was nice to see similar ideas in many of the projects in Habitus House of the Year, where they found ways to “inject daylight into the house through glass skylights, which often lead to delightfully lit interiors”. Formwerkz formwerkz.com Studio iF studioif.net

Habitus House of the Year launches 14 October with the Special Edition of the magazine hitting shelves, and a videos series being released online at habitusliving.com/houseoftheyear

abc
Interiors
Homes
Habitus Favourites - Slider
Architecture
ARC - Feature

Franklin by Ola Studio is an Enviable Beachside Haven

A few hundred metres from the bay of Portsea lies a road screened with dense shrubs, hiding a row of beach homes. Sandy pathways leading to the homes appear out of the foliage, hinting at the beachside locale. It’s down this road that Franklin by Ola Studio lies, a wood batten home inspired by Japanese aesthetics. The brief, says project lead Phil Snowdon, was “informed by our clients’ eclectic art interests that specifically include Japanese, Greek, Indigenous and Mid-century Modern as well as a fascination with Japanese design in general”. A woman sits inside Franklin by Ola Studio Conceived as a “Japanese inspired fuzzy white cocoon”, the calm and private residence is designed to suit both the client as a single person looking for a tranquil getaway, and their extended family of children and grandchildren expected to “overtake” the home during school holidays. Franklin responds to the beach surroundings with Australian grown pine and beachside calm. “The intent in responding to these elements is to establish a sense of belonging to the natural environment rather than the built, and in turn establish an architectural language of tranquillity,” says Snowdon. The exterior, which is enveloped by Iron Ash cladding and battens, is purposefully humble, appearing to be just a single storey from the street. Yet internally the project is lofty, hosting a double-height living area and a second storey for the master bedroom. “Varying volumes provide a sense of discovery for its occupants,” says Snowden. “The scale of the house is revealed as you traverse the driveway and descend some garden steps to the front door where you are greeted with a simple timber wall and screened fenestration hinting at what is beyond.” Wide doors open entirely to connect to the pool deck, making for a seamless and vast indoor-outdoor summer entertaining area. The spacious open-plan living room and kitchen interiors reflect the serenity of the external wood panelling and cement pool surrounds. A palette of grey and beige is prevalent, with light grey NavUrban cabinetry and a speckled white and ash terrazzo island by Signorino, while subtle hints of pale blue in ceramics and art mirror the pristine pool. A predominantly blue photograph, Amoeba Phase II, by Prue Stent and Honey Long sits at the end of one corridor off the living room, bringing a pop of colour to the otherwise neutral side of the room. As a residential project, Franklin is an early adopter of cross-laminated timber (CLT), a material typically reserved for larger-scale projects. This material is versatile and sustainable and due to its strength it is even being used partially in skyscraper construction. “We worked closely with the structural engineer and CLT fabricator to find a bracing solution that could be seamlessly worked in with the kitchen joinery and other internal elements of the design,” says Snowden. “The CLT allowed elevated construction with reduced foundations, minimising excavation and site and flora disturbance,” Snowden adds. PEFC certified and locally grown Iron Ash reduce the home’s carbon footprint, while effective cross ventilation, non-toxic construction materials and low VOC paints “look after the earth and the inhabitants of the house,” says Snowden. True to the client’s brief, Ola Studio has delivered an organic, private, peaceful and fresh home that integrates harmoniously with its coastal surrounds. Project details Design and Architecture – Ola Studio  Landscape Designer – Fiona Brockhoff Construction – Sinjen Group Photography – Derek Swalwell Want to see more from Ola Studio? Check out Shou Sugi Ban: The Art Of Charred Cedar.abc
Architecture
Header Slider
Homes
Primary Slider

The Most Phenomenal CLT Homes

If you haven’t heard of CLT yet, it's time to start listening. Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) is fast becoming the go-to for designers and engineers who wish to build structurally sustainable projects. Due to the material’s strength, it can be used to replace typical structural building materials such as concrete, even in large projects. In 2019, Voll Arkitekter made history by using the material for Mjøstårnet, the world’s tallest timber building, coming in at 85.4 metres. By 2025, Sydney is expected to be home to the world’s largest hybrid timber tower, the Atlassian Sydney Headquarters, a 180-metre-tall skyscraper that will be partially constructed from CLT. [caption id="attachment_115520" align="alignnone" width="1170"] The Seed House. Photography by John Gollings.[/caption] Differentiating it from standard timber, CLT’s structure is engineered by glueing together layers of wood at perpendicular angles to make a panel, giving it properties similar to reinforced concrete, with generally much lower energy consumption than the production of steel and concrete. While CLT is clearly becoming essential in commercial construction, in the last couple of years, the uptake in residential architecture has also been growing – in part because it is one of the most sustainable materials that can be used structurally, but also because of its aesthetic appeal. Comparable to the uptake of steel and glass as mass production expanded in the 19th century, leading to the modernist movement, there are whisperings that cross-laminated timber, in a similar fashion, will determine the future of our homes and become a signifier of our times. [caption id="attachment_115522" align="alignnone" width="810"] Cross laminated timber detail in The Seed House. Photography by John Gollings.[/caption] CLT House | Ecobuild Design Maianbar, NSW Recognised as Australia’s first CLT house, Ecobuild’s house in Maianbar makes the most of the timber’s light weight, allowing for elevation and cantilevers that fit the site’s slope. According to the beach house’s owners, the timber has greatly improved the thermal efficiency of the home, which requires no cooling and minimal heating. ecobuilddesign.com.au Photography by Marian Riabic.   Seed House | Fitzpatrick+Partners Castlegrag, NSW Nominated for the 2019 House of the Year awards, Seed House is an expansive home made primarily of CLT sourced from New Zealand. Tucked away in Sydney’s North Shore, the sprawling home is predominantly constructed of CLT, including a cantilevered living space. Other woods, including Huon Pine, Blackwood and Celery Top Pine line the home, thanks to the owner’s love of Tasmanian timbers. fitzpatrickpartners.com Photography by John Gollings.   CLT Passivehouse | betti&knut architecture Balgowlah, NSW Betti&knut’s CLT Passivehouse is an affordable solution to sustainable, architecturally designed housing. The building is listed in the international passivehouse database as one of less than 25 houses in Australia, made possible by the home’s airtightness and high level of insulation, which render artificial heating unnecessary. Exterior of the CLT house with blackbutt panelling  bettiundknut.com.au   CLT House | Emma Mitchell Architects Angelsea, VIC A coastal home that embraces whimsy and comfort, Emma Mitchell Architect’s CLT House was the first of its kind made with Australian CLT. Composed of cross laminated timber, which is exposed internally, concrete block, red brick and clad with cement sheet, the home prioritises natural and sustainable materials. Meanwhile, the L-shaped plan allows for protected outdoor spaces and a strong sense of connection to the garden. emmamitchell.com.au Photography by Dianna Snape.   CLT House | FMD Architects Mornington Peninsula VIC Bridging exceptional architecture with sustainable thinking, CLT House by FMD Architects is a true celebration of the material. The engineered timber makes up the home’s columns and beams in an effort to minimise steel in the design of the house. CLT is used in significant proportions – one wall is composed of a three-metre high beam of the material. The saw-tooth roof of the home allows copious light in while hosting solar panels that power the house. CLT House was in Habitus House of the Year in 2020. Close up of the CLT fmdarchitects.com.au Photography by Dianna Snape.   Torea Studio | Tennent+Brown Architects New Zealand A little further afield, Torea Studio is a residential extension. The add-on features folded CLT panels that were precisely cut from a computer model and covered in charcoal zinc. The resulting structure is sculptural and kite-like, forming cave-like rooms inside and protected outdoor spaces. tennentbrown.co.nzabc
ADVERTORIALS
Happenings

Who’s Next in Line for the Australian Furniture Design Award?

Stylecraft and the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) are extending an invitation to Australia’s foremost designers, architects and makers to register their latest projects for the 2022 Australian Furniture Design Award (AFDA). A biennial event, the Australian Furniture Design Award is now in its fourth iteration after being launched in 2015 by Stylecraft in partnership with the JamFactory, in order to identify and nurture the wealth of design talent the country has to offer. The search for the next award winner begins now, with registrations now open. The winner of the award will receive a $20,000 cash prize for their efforts, along with an invitation to develop a commercial range or product with Stylecraft and a two-week residency at JamFactory, Adelaide. While the cash prize is a welcome boost to any designer, the ability to create a range with Stylecraft and work in one of the country’s foremost design studios in JamFactory underlines the significance of the award for Australian designers. [caption id="attachment_115612" align="alignnone" width="1100"] Paperclip, Seaton McKeon x Stylecraft[/caption] Seaton McKeon was the inaugural award winner in 2015, with his design of The Sun The Moon and Me, a free-standing light and mirror that portrays a map of stars in the night sky. The moon is represented by a mirror reflecting the viewer’s image within the scene. The industrial designer and founder of studio.mckeon & Neatt, McKeon went on to launch the outdoor seating collection, Paperclip, in conjunction with Stylecraft in 2017. [caption id="attachment_115613" align="alignnone" width="1100"] The Sun The Moon and Me, Seaton McKeon[/caption] The sculptural vanity unit titled Place was the AFDA winner in 2017. Designed by Alice Springs-based designer Elliat Rich, the unit possesses a neatly concealed drawer constructed from stacked and coloured dowel, a removable storage container and a velvet-covered pivoting mirror, which sit upon a grouping of timber legs. The colours, textures and sense of foreground, middle ground and background of the piece reference Rich’s travels through the Central Australian landscape. Rich’s subsequent collection, Different Thoughts, studies the “boundaries of time and matter, and what connects one being to another.” [caption id="attachment_115614" align="alignnone" width="1100"] Elliat Rich’s Different Thoughts collection for Stylecraft[/caption] The title of the most recent award winner of AFDA belongs to James Walsh, with his submission Anthropic Beach. The Hugh Williamson Curator, Contemporary Design and Architecture, NGV, Simone LeAmon, says, “The AFDA jury was unanimous in their applause of Walsh’s furniture design, recognising the designer’s ambition to investigate meaningful and practical uses for glass that would otherwise end up in landfill, while delivering a new and novel aesthetic experience for furniture design that successfully merges the past with present.” [caption id="attachment_115615" align="alignnone" width="1100"] James Walsh’s Anthropic Beach, AFDA 2020 Winner.[/caption] Walsh’s debut collection with Stylecraft remains in the design phase, with the range to be announced in the coming months before its release in 2022. [caption id="attachment_115616" align="alignnone" width="1100"] James Walsh’s Anthropic Beach, AFDA 2020 Winner.[/caption] The AFDA is a two-stage competition, with the first stage being an open call for new and original furniture or lighting design concepts. Entrants are required to give information on their professional practice. In order to be eligible for the award, all competitors must register to enter. Registration period closes on the 15th October 2021. Register your designs for the 2022 Australian Furniture Design Award here.abc
Design Products
Dining
Furniture

Coco Flip’s Coveted Sequence Collection is Now Fit for Dining

Adding to the renown of its Sequence collection, Coco Flip has conceived two dining tables in response to significant interest from the design community. The coveted made to order dining tables come as a round and an oval version. Both designs follow the signature curvature of the original collection, made from durable steel that features a streamlined top paired with chunky, cylindrical legs that softly curve at the base. Pale Eucalypt Coco Flip Sequence round dining table Not simply enlarged versions of the coffee table, instead, the dining tables have been redesigned to consider comfort, stability, transport and assembly. Consequently, they have larger bases and are designed so that the legs and tops can be transported separately and easily assembled. Launched in 2019, Sequence was named after a boardgame of the same moniker. Coco Flip’s Sequence dining tables, in the same way as their namesake, aim to encourage families and friends to gather, create memories and share experiences. The repetitive nature of mathematical sequences is also felt in the collection’s simple yet boldly curved table legs that recur in each piece. Headland red Coco Flip Sequence oval dining table Coco Flip’s founders Kate Stokes and Haslett Grounds have worked closely with Melbourne craftspeople and manufacturers to develop sustainable, authentic furniture and lighting pieces for over a decade. While somewhat cheeky in appearance, the pieces maintain Coco Flip’s high quality of design and manufacturing dedication and will continue to be manufactured sustainably, one at a time and in limited quantities. Headland red Coco Flip Sequence oval dining table Each piece from the Sequence collection begins in Lilydale where metal workers who have maintained ties with Coco Flip for 11 years go through the dedicated and intricate process of rolling steel drums, spinning the curved bases on a lathe, laser cutting, welding and sanding. The tables are then sent to Preston for powder-coating and finishing touches. The dining variants join a collection of tables in varying heights, shapes and sizes. Each allows a fair amount of customisation, which lets them suit different spaces – including both indoor and out. They’re also available in a range of colours, including Deep Ocean (a steely grey-blue), Paperbark (a subtle beige), Pale Eucalypt (a sage-like rendition) and Headland Red (a deep red). Stokes and Grounds create from a place of curiosity – whether it’s working with an interesting material for the first time, or imbuing a unique personality into their furniture. Sturdy and simple, yet packed with playful energy and idiosyncratic style, it’s this personality that shines through in the Sequence collection. “We believe a considered purchase is a purchase for life, and we hope our designs will make you smile for decades to come,” say Stokes and Grounds. Coco Flip cocoflip.com.auabc
Interiors
Homes
Architecture
ARC - Feature

Room by Room and Bones Studio Revamp a Traditional Queenslander

With its wrap-around verandah and corrugated roof, the front of this Northgate Queenslander is typical of the quintessential homes of the region. But once inside, it’s a different story. Purchased by a young family who needed the space to grow into, the charming character of the home had its drawbacks. The traditional typology of the Queenslander meant the home originally didn’t have a grounded connection to the backyard. Instead, it had a large, north-facing and uncovered balcony that was unbearably hot in the summer. For the family – who wanted to spend more time in the backyard – better accessibility and usability was crucial. Church pews and large dining table in Northgate, Brisbane Queenslander by Bones Studio and Room by Room The clients contacted Jessica White from Room by Room to help with their interior design needs, however as White realised their needs would include adding significant architectural demands, she suggested they bring on Bones Studio to help with the extension of the home. “It needed careful and functional consideration to ensure the new extension complemented the beautiful character elements of the existing home’s architecture,” says White. Curved kitchen bench in the Northgate queenslander Once Bones Studio’s Chris Brandon was on board, the project took off. “The brief was very open for interpretation, but included an additional living wing including an open plan kitchen, living and dining room,” says Brandon. “The clients requested the inclusion of a large pool and pool house, a new master bedroom wing and also a library slash entertainment room for the children.” Backyard firepit and pool of Northgate, Brisbane Queenslander by Bones Studio and Room by Room Mainly, Brandon and White tell me, the clients were looking for a comfortable and private residence that had the space to entertain regularly. “Our proposal included raising and shifting the existing house to allow for an additional level on the ground floor,” White and Brandon share. “Utilising the block's natural fall from front to back was key to the initial master planning of the site.” Firepit of Northgate, Brisbane Queenslander by Bones Studio and Room by Room “This strategy also minimised the need for, and expense of, excessive earthworks and retaining,” they add. The original street level was maintained, but by following the site’s contours, a split-level ground floor was conceived. Polished concrete floors flow throughout and steps lead down into an open-plan living area at the back of the house, which reveals a dramatic double-height space. The concrete also forms the kitchen bench, where it contributes an organic, curved shape. Large doors open into the garden, where the concrete surface continues, creating a far more seamless indoor-outdoor living area than the original home allowed for. A platform on the stairs of the Queenslander is used to feature the clients' artwork. The distinction between the old and new sections of the house have been deliberately contrasted with materiality and scale. The new section places emphasis on plywood, walnut timber, tile and cement, and the transition between the two spaces is defined by a perforated metal bridge that connects the rear façade to the original dwelling. Vertical beams demarcate the upstairs living area. Playful notes have been made throughout, including the incorporation of the client’s own art and furniture pieces like the striking church pews in the living area. Paying homage to the original design features, the pale pink bathroom highlights a typical Queenslander archway that has been repurposed to frame the vast mirror, while the laundry is freshened with a contrasting pale green. “The residents have now been in the space for a little over a year, they absolutely love the new environment and the vast space both inside and out,” White and Brandon tell me. A traditional archway frames an expansive mirror in the pale pink Queenslander bathroom. The pale pink Queenslander bathroom. The pale pink bathtub in the Queenslander bathroom.Northgate Queenslander inbuilt bedside table.Plywood bookshelves. Project Details Architecture – Bones Studio Design – Room by Room ConstructionMuller Constructions Photography – Cathy Schusler Enjoy this article? Check out more homes in Brisbane.abc
Architecture
Design Hunters
Design Stories
Header Slider
Interiors
NOT HOMES
Primary Slider

An Ideas Playground

Playfully infusing a new purpose through a series of curious gestures, Studio Fable transforms a windowless basement into its own inspired muse. Previously a supporting space to the home above, the Sydney based practice carves its own studio space within the storied walls. “Keeping it quite playful and fun when doing your own space,” Antonia Pesenti, founder and director, says, “ensures you have more freedom to be more expressive.” Through an opening and connecting to the rear garden, the new space integrates storage, display and lighting, while being a creative haven from which to create. The studio’s cross-disciplinary approach sees a project portfolio spanning architecture, interior design, graphic design, placemaking and public art. “I am constantly moving across quite different projects, all connected through a similar veined thought,” Antonia adds, “The (studio) space allows me the autonomy to test out ideas and be more experimental, while bringing influences together instead of keeping them separate.” While the aim of the new studio was to be a place of stimulation, having a connection to natural light and allowing said experiments to cohabitate the studio environment further allows for cross-pollination of creative insight. In its inherited state, the layers of the building’s heritage past lay evident in the roughened stonework and material patina throughout. As a storyteller herself – through words, graphic and spatial design, it felt appropriate to allow the space to denote its own story. “It feels really peaceful and restive, but also quite private,” Antonia describes, “I wanted it to feel quite inspiring and suggestive of the hybrid nature of our practice, while also retaining the lumpy and sculptural stone wall features to maintain the textural quality of the space, instead of cladding over everything.” A key part of the opening up of the previous rooms to create one uninterrupted volume was to enhance movement and to emphasise the impact of the space. “The studio is a reflection of Fable’s practice,” Antonia says, “it is a real melting pot of ideas where we combine custom plywood joinery with integrated lighting as a counterpoint to the stone walls, allowing for a model-making workshop to be tucked into the rear – it allows us to focus on what we do.” Colourful insertions of iconic furniture, lighting and artwork don and animate the space, with art and books as a consistent influence for the practice, “Sydney is just a really inspiring place, where I love being able to immerse myself in exhibitions and see how artists solve problems in their own unique ways.” The French-Australian Antonia Pesenti has a growing list of interesting and equally diverse projects she is currently exploring, and the newly completed studio space is the ideal playground for her to test and interrogate a multitude of ideas.    Project Details  Interior design – Studio Fable Photography – Luc Rémond We think you might like Poepke, designed by MAKE Creativeabc
Editors Picks
HAP - Feature
Happenings
Video

Psst! Here’s a Sneak Peek of the Habitus House of the Year Video Series

For months now we have been working on the biggest issue of the year, the Habitus House of the Year special edition, which features an incredible array of projects from across the Indo Pacific. From family homes to sprawling holiday houses, renovated townhouses to sustainable tiny dwellings, the houses in the Habitus House of the Year line-up express the diversity of what it means to live today. I have personally always loved how Habitus seeks out and curates the most incredible homes, people and products, pulling back the veil on the variety of cultures and climates from around the region – it is this unique lens that continues to set Habitus apart.  Through its careful curation, we offer an original perspective into architecture and design, ultimately showing a way of living that is grounded in regionality. [embed width="810" height="810"]https://cdn.indesign.com.au/website_assets/habitusliving.com/hoty2021/HOTY-2021-teaser.MP4.mp4[/embed]   While the magazine makes its way to your doorstep and onto shelves, we're over the moon to give a little teaser of something else we've been working away on. The Habitus team has created a video series to capture the essence of House of the Year and distil it into a different format – a collection of four short video episodes – and it is an understatement to say that we can't wait to share it with you! The videos dive into four key themes drawn out of the projects and unpack what it means to live in design. This video series takes Habitus' singular approach even deeper and considers the ideas that are shaping design in the Indo Pacific. Expect to see some new and familiar faces, as architects and jury members share their insights: – Alexander Symes (Alexander Symes Architect) – Howard Tanner (Consulting architect and Habitus House of the Year juror) – Kim Bridgland and Aaron Roberts (Edition Office) – Virginia Kerridge (Virginia Kerridge Architect) – David Clark (Design editor and Habitus House of the Year juror) – Matt Krusin (Tobias Partners) – Renato D'Ettorre (Renato D'Ettorre Architects) – Plus many more! The episodes will officially kick-start from October 14, but here's a sneak peek below:

A New Kind of Green

Sustainability is an imperative of our time. In this episode, we consider the role that architecture has to play in creating environmental solutions that make our homes more comfortable, durable and future-proofed.  

Future Monuments

  Buildings should endure, passing from one generation to the next. Through an approach grounded in timeless design and quality, this episode explores what design longevity means. High-quality materials, details that don't shout, design that looks beyond mere trends – homes that can adapt and even be adapted.  

The Wellness Revolution

The benefits of connecting to greenery and being surrounded by natural materials have come to the fore, especially throughout Covid. Our homes are sanctuaries, offering us respite and refuge. In this episode, we examine how biophilic elements in our homes are part of the wellness revolution.   

Return to the Local

Supply chains have been drastically affected throughout the pandemic. But through the process, there has been a resurgence in working with local makers and manufacturers, relying once again on local skills and knowledge.

We are thrilled that the Habitus House of the Year video series will launch on 14 October.

Stay tuned for more habitusliving.com/houseoftheyear

abc
People
DH - Feature
Design Hunters
Conversations

Mim Fanning Reflects on 21 Years of Practice

Elana Castle: Can you share some of the seminal moments in your early career and how they influenced you as a young designer?

Mim Fanning: As a graduate, I worked for a large architecture office. Fortunately, the practitioners were all very generous in sharing information and I was able to build an amazing library of expertise, both in knowledge and built form. In that time, it was a hand-drawn practice. It’s amazing how technology has changed. Those early skills have proven extremely valuable in my career moving forward. To this day I still encourage a hand-drawn skill as I feel it allows creative freedom. [caption id="attachment_115470" align="alignnone" width="810"] Bower, Manly, photo by Tom Ferguson[/caption]

What prompted you to go out and establish your own practice and what was your early vision for Mim Design?

Starting my own business was really the most significant and formative turning point in my career. I had a young child at the time and my intention was to work as a design consultant, affording me the freedom of flexible hours and diversity. This is what initially prompted me to go out on my own, and from there I was very fortunate to have landed my first project within just a few weeks. Before I knew it, my independent consultancy grew into a studio, which has continued to grow incrementally ever since. [caption id="attachment_115479" align="alignnone" width="810"] Coastal Pavilion, photo by Tom Blachford[/caption]

How do you ensure that each project has a meaningful and unique outcome?

Research. Lots of research. For example, I love retail master planning – understanding the psychology of what drives people to shop a certain way and to connect with things. It’s a great educational process. I love space planning, investigating form and function, the sculptural aspect, three-dimensionality, materiality – essentially the complexity of design. I am lucky to have an amazing team (of 27), who work really hard to push all aspects of design. You have to find purpose and substance in every project. Design responses are holistic but also tailored to people. Design has to transcend time and have longevity. Ultimately you design for an emotional response. We want to create spaces that people just connect with and enjoy inhabiting. [caption id="attachment_115472" align="alignnone" width="810"] Bower, Manly, photo by Tom Ferguson[/caption]

What challenges have you faced at Mim Design?

When I first started Mim Design I had just had my first child. Designing, running a business and being a mum was very hard. I was told that you can ‘have it all’ and upon reflection, I don’t feel that’s entirely true. You have to figure out how you can both work and have children, and you have to let go of some things and choose your time and projects carefully. I believe that’s what makes one successful. Early in my career, I found being on building sites quite challenging as a woman, but I also enjoyed standing my ground for what I believed in. Ultimately, it made me a stronger businesswoman and helped me realise my true passion for delivering on projects.  

"You have to find purpose and substance in every project. Design responses are holistic but also tailored to people." – Mim Fanning

 

How do you find the time to design when there are so many other aspects of a business to manage?

In the last six years, I have learned to compartmentalise, to be specific with my time, and then only multitask when absolutely necessary. Some days I reserve for just designing and I’m strict about this because, at the end of the day, I want my job to be enjoyable. There are always issues, but it is our role to be problem solvers so that is a skill we simply need to have. I believe that if you enjoy your work at least 75 per cent of the time, then you have a career with longevity. [caption id="attachment_115473" align="alignnone" width="810"] NNH Residence, photo by Peter Clarke[/caption]

How has Mim Design evolved over the past 21 years?

We recently appointed a director of architecture and created an FF&E department. Now we get involved in all aspects of design and documentation. The continuity of architecture and interior design is a philosophy that has always been central to our practice, so these additions to our studio are very exciting. In the past five to seven years we have also made it a priority to only work with people who want to work with us. When we meet a potential new client, we invite them to meet us for coffee so we both have an opportunity to get to know one another. Projects can take years, so it’s important that both parties will enjoy the time you spend together. I also love the idea of us educating our clients as well as our clients educating us. We are a highly collaborative team, both with clients, consultants, builders and suppliers. [caption id="attachment_115474" align="alignnone" width="810"] Coastal Pavilion, photo by Tom Blachford[/caption]

What types of projects would you love to add to your portfolio in the coming years?

The more diverse the project types, the better. I’d love to work in infrastructure in some way, like designing a pavilion or a bridge. A winery would also be wonderful and I’d love to do some international work and maybe further develop custom furniture. The most important thing is to grow all our divisions and to make sure that the team is always being brought closer together.  

"I believe that if you enjoy your work at least 75 per cent of the time, then you have a career with longevity." – Mim Fanning

 

How were you able to run Mim Design in the midst of a global pandemic and during an extended lockdown in Victoria?

2020 was certainly a year of adapting and learning, and what really came to the forefront for us was being reminded of the importance of home. We obviously had to go remote and despite that, I think we adapted really well. We had lots of group design meetings and I’m not the most technical person in that department, but I learned a lot and have enjoyed learning that further skill. [caption id="attachment_115475" align="alignnone" width="810"] Bower, Manly, photo by Tom Ferguson[/caption]

To what do you attribute your undisputed success as a designer?

People who produce great design, LIVE design. They really live design, versus just doing design. It’s also about being an originator versus a follower. Some of the best practitioners in Australia live design. It’s what makes their work great. [caption id="attachment_115645" align="alignnone" width="1100"] 'Works' is a new book by Mim Design, available now[/caption] Mim Design mimdesign.com.au Mim's new book Works is available now abc
Architecture
Homes

The Bold and the Durable

It’s not often that energetic and playful family homes can also be called laid-back refuges. But when client Liana and James Shaw-Taylor approached Tom Mark Henry studio to design Wahroonga House, they delivered on both the durable child-friendly and the calming sanctuary aspects of the brief. The dark green kitchen with white walls and a brown tiled mosaic island bench. Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. “Robust and functional materials were employed to accommodate the playfulness of young children and for durability. It is the unexpected use of colour and texture that provides a cohesive connection throughout the house, delivering a laid-back and sophisticated refuge, which excites and intrigues while fulfilling the client's brief,” says project lead Cushla McFadden. A loungroom with white walls and white timber ceiling with support trusses. Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Dark green tiles in the bathroom match the forest green of the kitchen in Wahroonga House, while the dark timber of the dining table is mirrored as the master bedroom’s bedhead, speaking to this cohesive colour and texture. Matte terracotta tiles line the floors throughout the home, including the bedrooms, a durable factor that was chosen to cope with the playfulness of children. The clever use of colour, materials and repetition allowed for a cost-effective impact that didn’t compromise on design. Living room Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Designed to house a growing family, the living, dining and kitchen form the open central area of the home, allowing “the young family to enjoy the space with ease and comfort”. Large sliding doors were incorporated into the living room, allowing the area to connect seamlessly with the external landscaped garden, pool, and bushland surrounds. Located in Wahroonga, the home responds to the leafy bushland of Sydney’s Upper North Shore. “The use of rich golden brown hues and the deep forest green cabinetry complement the site’s natural bushland of flora and fauna creating a unified space from the inside out,” says McFadden. Bathroom with green tiles and white grout in the Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. The mid-century structure of the home was also referenced in the clean lines of the white-painted timber ceiling and triangular trusses. Details such as the curved shapes in the joinery also act as “a nod to the minimalist yet playful geometry of modernist design,” says McFadden. “A truly collaborative approach with the home owners from all involved in the design and build has contributed greatly to the successful outcome, delivering the inhabitants a home which is reflective of their personalities and love and respect for quality, timeless design,” says McFadden. Bathroom with green tiles and white grout in the Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Beautiful yet durable, Wahroonga House delivers a child-friendly and financially sound home, without compromising on its bold and sophisticated aesthetic. A frosted brown door to the bedroom in Bathroom with green tiles and white grout in the Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Bedroom with built in white and brown cupboards and terracotta floors inBathroom with green tiles and white grout in Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Bathroom sink in Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Terrazzo bathroom vanity in Wahroonga House by Tom Mark Henry. Project Details Interior design — Tom Mark Henry Architecture — Quantum Built Damian Bennett We think you might like Bistecca restaurant, a project also by Tom Mark Henryabc
Happenings
HAP - Feature
Finishes

Colour Our World

The 15th volume of the Haymes Colour Library has arrived, and entitled Awakening, it stirs up bold creative ideas but also contains colours that engender calmness and wellbeing. It’s an apt and perceptive name for the latest update of colour trends and reads our moods correctly, translating them into a spectrum of colour to gladden any interior and indeed our hearts. As the largest Australian made and owned paint manufacturer, Haymes Paint has established itself as a business with a grand reputation for quality products and service. Established in Victoria in 1935, the Ballarat-based company presents not only a fine product but in this new iteration of colour trends, there is choice to suit every palette. As the overarching theme of the colour collection, Awakening speaks to our changing circumstances – from the challenges of the last year to the hope for the next. Through colour there is the opportunity to make a statement, to experiment and explore and yes, to awaken the creative soul that lurks within. Speaking with Wendy Rennie, Concept Manager, Haymes Paint to find out just why Awakening is special she commented, “In one statement I can say it is the true power of colour! [caption id="attachment_115403" align="alignnone" width="810"] Clear view[/caption] "These colours are so timely and responsive to the mood and situation we are in right now. As a result of the pandemic each of us is having a different experience – some are showing such resilience and gratitude for their own circumstances, and may be more drawn to the soft warm comforting neutrals and tactility of the 'In the Moment' palette. "Others are needing something to help break down the feeling of rules and regulations so really fun and unexpected colour palettes from the 'Game Changer' just add some joy and a sense of newness to spaces. While others may be looking for respite and escape, which can be found with calming and reflective hues offered in the 'Clearview' theme.” The continuum between the three palettes of Awakening – 'Game Changer', 'In the Moment' and 'Clear View' – is the depth and cleanness of the colours. As each palette explores an emotional response in the viewer, the diversity between them encompasses all feelings but also allows for a multitude of applications. [caption id="attachment_115404" align="alignnone" width="810"] Game changer[/caption] 'Game Changer' encapsulates the idea of newfound freedom that offers the chance to challenge the old with fresh optimism. There are powdered blues, shades of sunset with pinks and aquas, greens and mustard yellow and there is an underlying softness to the palette that gives the creams and white a beautiful resonance. 'In the Moment' celebrates nature in all its glory. Taking cues from the Australian landscape, this palette speaks of our environment with shades of rust, earthy browns, ochre and creamy greys and taupes.  [caption id="attachment_115405" align="alignnone" width="810"] In the moment[/caption] 'Clear View' on the other hand is a sensational group of mostly blues some greens with a dash of brown. Transparent and pastel blues, opalescent teal, eau de nil and classic grey through to ink blue and forest green all represent a calm and relaxing vibe that contributes to a soothing aesthetic. [caption id="attachment_115406" align="alignnone" width="810"] Clear view[/caption] What defines these palettes is the strength and clarity of the colours. They are not loud but dense shades that are saturated and complex. These are colours that will make a statement on a feature wall or be a sensation painted throughout a room or house. A favourite for me is the 'Clear View' palette as blue has been a dominant and much-loved colour, however, there is ample choice to find a new ‘go to’ colour with pinks and greens at the top of the list. As everyone has a favourite colour, or family of colours – here are the choices from Awakening from some of the fabulous editorial team at Indesign. [caption id="attachment_115407" align="alignnone" width="810"] Game changer[/caption] Alice Blackwood, Editor Indesign “I like the gutsy peacock blue of Haymes Awe Inspired – lots of power but still warm and rich. Also, I like the combination of Faded Blue through to In Bloom, playful, with personality, but not too pretty.”   Jarrod Reedie, Digital Content Writer “I like the 'Clear View' palette. The Remote Green and Arboretum lay a strong foundation for the lighter tonalities to provide relief, with the blue nuances very much the salient feature.” [caption id="attachment_115408" align="alignnone" width="1170"] In the moment[/caption] Aleesha Callahan, Editor Habitus “I love the calming and textural palette of 'In the Moment' – all those soothing neutrals are just what we need right now.”   Emily Sutton, Design Product Editor "Pick of the day: Game Changer. This collection of tones brings a muted vibrancy that instils a refreshed energy to our everyday spaces. With a playful mix of bold and subtle shades, the 'Game Changer' palette paves the way for artistic, colour-led environments.” [caption id="attachment_115409" align="alignnone" width="810"] Game changer[/caption] Laura Box, Digital Editor “I love how the 'In the Moment' palette transports me to the Catalan countryside with its calm and warming tones, particularly Haymes Sand Haze and Haymes Clay.”   And lastly from Rennie, her pick of the stand out colours from this Forecast. “Haymes Fuzzy is the new go-to neutral for me, which kind of feels like the best ever bone colour (not grey and not yellow) just somewhere between the two. Haymes Arboretum is a deep rich forest green – while green overall is still having a moment. "Another colour we have featured but not talked much about yet, which is going to shine through is Haymes Gumleaf Green, a beautiful silvery green, capturing the beauty of the gum leaf with a just a bit more depth to it.” [caption id="attachment_115410" align="alignnone" width="810"] Clear view[/caption] Then colours like Paradise Pools, a soft clear aqua, not blue or green, has some kind of transformative effect in just making a space feel like you are wading through water on a deserted island. Reviewing the 15th volume of the colour story from Haymes has added a little joy to working from home. It’s inspirational and shows that colour can indeed reflect and enhance our moods and awaken us to the possibilities and that’s just as it should. [caption id="attachment_115416" align="alignnone" width="810"] Game changer[/caption] [caption id="attachment_115417" align="alignnone" width="810"] In the moment[/caption] Photography Martina Gemmola We think you might like this story about colourful tapware by Volaabc