The Sunset Idea House 2012

Modern architecture gets a bad rap, often characterized as cold, austere and “unlivable.” With the interior design of the Breezehouse, we wanted to show that contrary to these misconceptions, a modern house can be warm, open and inviting, alive with color and texture and expressive of the interests and passions of its inhabitants.

From the start, I knew that because the house was being factory built, it was important to include in the design forms and materials that felt organic and hand-hewn. I also wanted to create a color palette that was both vivid and earthy, mixing well with the natural wood finishes of the cabinetry and flooring. We also tried to incorporate a lot of upholstered objects in the furniture plan to temper the hard edges of the architecture.

It was also important to take advantage of the connection between indoors and out by using fabrics and materials that while beautiful, were not too “precious.” To this end, we incorporated a lot of Sunbrella fabrics into the mix, which are not only indoor/outdoor, but also sturdy enough to withstand use and abuse by two young children.

Finally, flexibility seemed key for a young family, whose tastes, interests and needs will evolve over time. There is a banquette in the living room with concealed storage in the base, which means that within minutes the room can be transformed from a play area into a clean, sophisticated room. The banquette also provides a quiet place for reading or relaxing, like a little room of one’s own within the large, open Breezespace. Many of the furniture items, like the colorful poufs in the kids’ room and living room can function both as extra seating for an adult party, or “lilypads” in a children’s game of leapfrog. And finally, there are plenty of storage and display options, like the “Open and Shut” wall boxes in the kids’ room, the picture ledges in the living room, and the full wall bulletin board in the office, which will allow the continual adjusting and refining that occurs as a family grows.