Breezy brick house with a ground-floor cafe mimics the shape of a cuckoo clock

July 16, 2019 by  
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In the coastal Vietnamese city of Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City-based architectural firm Tropical Space has combined a single-family home with a coffee shop to create an architecturally striking mixed-use building that evokes the playful shapes of a cuckoo clock. Dubbed the Cuckoo House, the home is built predominately from locally sourced clay brick to tie the structure to the local vernacular, while the use of bold geometric shapes throughout the building give it a distinctly contemporary edge. The home also takes advantage of sea breezes with its porous facade that harnesses natural cooling for relief from the tropical heat. Built for a couple and their two children, the Cuckoo House spans an area of nearly 3,000 square feet across two floors and an attic. To make the most of its rectangular east-west plot, the architects split the ground floor into three sections: the entrance gate and parking pad on the east side along with a small storefront and bathrooms; the coffee shop and bar in the middle; and a semi-enclosed courtyard with a pool on the west side. Large arches surround the brick-paved courtyard and bring cooling breezes and views of the surrounding garden into the space, and full-height glazing wraps the coffee shop to blur the line between indoors and out. Related: Solar screen brings beauty and heat relief to a Vietnam home The residential section of the building is located atop the ground floor “base block” and split into three blocks: the double-story Block A with the master bedroom on one floor and the bathroom and walk-in closet on the other; the double-story Block B with the kids’ bedroom above and the living room below; and Block C that contains the kitchen and dining area. All three blocks are connected and open up to outdoor terraces with operable glazing and views. “Like a habit, most of people’s daily activities usually take place in functional spaces. Tropical Space detaches walls, which are used to defined the place and offer the buffer space to urge people to leave their rooms and join together,” the architects explained. “These buffer layers can be used flexibly, connecting the indoor and the outdoor of the house, which could make the family activities be both private and open. Meanwhile, it allows the breeze to go through all corners of the house, and make it chill in the tropical summer.” + Tropical Space Images via Tropical Space

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Breezy brick house with a ground-floor cafe mimics the shape of a cuckoo clock

Should you stop watching Netflix because it is bad for the environment?

July 16, 2019 by  
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The world’s digital obsession doesn’t come without a carbon footprint. By 2022, 60 percent of the world’s 7.5 billion people will have internet access and 80 percent of that internet use is for streaming videos. Data streaming now surpasses the aerospace industry in terms of carbon emissions . So should we stop watching Netflix? One French think-tank seems to think so. According to The Shift Project, until the world economy can realistically shift to renewable energy in every country where the internet is used, people should consider limiting their video streaming. Its recent report indicates that online video watching released 300 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in 2018 alone, about the same amount of annual emissions as the entire country of Spain. Related: Your favorite playlist has a carbon footprint “We have limited energy resources. The internet is a worldwide thing, so it would require every country in the world to be powered by renewable energy,” said Maxime Efoui-Hess from The Shift Project. Because that goal is still far off, he also said we should not allow the internet to grow as fast as it has now — essentially advocating to limit internet access and global connectivity for poor and rural populations, which are among the last to access and readily use the internet. Efoui-Hess also recommended slight changes like watching on smaller screens and not using high definition — changes that are insultingly small personal sacrifices and inconveniences while the top 100 corporations continue to emit more than 70 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases . If you’re suffering from climate anxiety and every small action makes you feel like you’re doing your part, by all means stop watching your favorite Netflix shows. But the best bet would be to continue advocating for major policy and economic changes that reduce the unchecked polluting and emissions among those companies and sectors in a position to make changes at a meaningful scale. + The Shift Project Via EcoWatch Image via Unsplash

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Experimental design-build festival takes over Californian desert

July 16, 2019 by  
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For the second year in a row, design lab Space Saloon has just wrapped up an exciting avant-garde art festival deep in the Southern Californian desert. Aimed to foster innovative design-build and hands-on education, the art festival , named Fieldworks, is an experimental outdoor campus where young artists can learn new techniques and showcase their groundbreaking designs. This year’s festival took place within the expansive desert landscape in the San Bernardino mountains between Joshua Tree, Palm Springs and Los Angeles. According to Space Saloon, the desert was the perfect place to host the open-air campus thanks to the wide open landscape that offers virtually no physical limits. Related: A magical field of solar-powered lights takes over a California landscape Like the first year’s event, Landing , Fieldworks was a week-long program where teams of students and designers live and work together, collaborating on site-specific installations that seek to question the relation between art and the environment. Led by Office Kovacs + Kyle May, Architect and MILLIØNS (Zeina Koreitem and John May), Fieldworks allowed students to attend various workshops that focus on subjects that differ from traditional techniques and processes in an attempt to broaden the students’ artistic horizons . The workshops showcase a range of experimental material, from coding exercises and sound mapping to performances and interactive installations. Using these workshops as guidance, the students developed new art projects, which could include any number of formats, including performances, videos, interactive coded programs, sound installations or immersive objects. One of the standout designs from this year’s event is DOTS, a pink and white framework with various connected platforms that could be used for an almost infinite number of interventions, especially as a flexible, temporary shelter . Another innovative project is Gymnasium 1, an outdoor communal bathing facility made completely out of hempcrete that aims to show that the carbon-negative material can be used in place of traditional concrete construction. The student projects from Fieldworks will be exhibited in Los Angeles in the fall. + Space Saloon Via Archdaily Images via Space Saloon

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Cartoon-inspired prefab treehouse can grow taller and wider over time

July 11, 2019 by  
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Design practice Studio Precht teamed up with tiny-house startup Baumbau to design Bert, a tiny modular treehouse that’s expected to hit the market in spring 2020. Inspired by the Minion films, the playful periscope-like structures eschew hard angles and offer a livable and cozy environment with a minimal footprint and off-grid capabilities, including built-in solar and a water treatment facility. Designed as a reaction to Bauhaus -style buildings found in cities worldwide, Bert embraces diversity and natural materials rather than cold concrete and steel. Built with a wood structure with fabric-lined interiors, the Bert treehouse mimics the shape of a tree, from its rounded trunk-like body to its brown leaf-like shingles on the facade that help camouflage the building into the surroundings. Large glass openings immerse users in the forest. As a modular structure, all parts of Bert will be prefabricated in a factory and assembled on site to reduce landscape impact. Related: Futuristic treehouse in Arkansas is designed to inspire imagination “We are fully aware that architecture is this serious and profound craft with a long culture and tradition,” says the design team in a press statement. “You see that when we architects find reference for our projects in art, philosophy, literature or nature. For this project, we also looked at art to find reference. But not at Michelangelo or Dali. Rather we looked at cartoon characters of Sesame Street or Minions. We took a playful look at this project and wanted to create a rather unique character than a conventional building. A quirky looking character that becomes part of the wildlife of a forest. I think this quirkiness can create feelings and emotions. And maybe these are attributes in architecture that are missing these days.” Modeled after a tiny home, Bert offers all the basic necessities within four floors. The entrance and living space is located on the ground floor, a bedroom and sitting area on the second floor, the kitchen and dining area with a secondary bedroom on the third floor, and the bathroom on the top floor. As a modular structure, the Bert treehouse can be customized to the buyer’s specifications to “grow” taller and wider with new modules, making it an ideal choice for eco-hotel operators. The smallest Bert structure starts at 120.000€ ($136,313 USD) and is expected to hit the market early next year. + Studio Precht Images via Percht

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Cartoon-inspired prefab treehouse can grow taller and wider over time

A firefighter’s stunning skoolie features a bespoke interior design

June 17, 2019 by  
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A man with big dreams now has a big skoolie to bring them to fruition. This beautiful bus conversion by Paved to Pines saw a 38′ Thomas Built transformed into The Doghouse, a spectacular tiny home on wheels for Toronto firefighter and entrepreneur Christian and his beloved pup. When Christian was looking for a tiny home on wheels that would offer him and his furry sidekick flexibility to travel as well as work, he tasked the experienced team from Paved to Pines with the job, and the results are simply spectacular. Related: Slide down a fire pole in this classic fire truck converted into a quirky hotel The Doghouse is a stunning skoolie with a sophisticated, light-filled living space. Starting with the exterior, the old bus was painted, of course, in a fire truck red in homage to Christian’s job as a firefighter. Although the red and white exterior is quite eye-catching, it is the interior design that is truly on fire. The living area is bright and airy, enhanced by plenty of natural light. White walls line the space, contrasting nicely with the stained pine tongue and groove ceiling. This cozy, functional space is complete with custom furnishings . The lounge area is made up of a built-in, L-shaped sofa that faces a gorgeous faux brick feature wall. A mounted flatscreen television is hooked up to the home’s surround sound system, making it the place to settle down and watch movies. With ample storage space, the kitchen boasts a beautiful butcher block counter, a full sink, an oven and a fridge. Adjacent to this area is a comfy dining or working area with a storage bench and an Acacia wood table and bar top. Beyond the kitchen, a narrow wooden door leads to a compact bathroom with a full-sized shower and RV toilet. Farther back is the light-filled master bedroom, which is big enough for a queen-sized bed. + Paved to Pines Via Tiny House Talk Images via Paved to Pines

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Breezy home in Mexico uses strategic cross ventilation and natural light to reduce its energy use

May 20, 2019 by  
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RDLP Arquitectos have unveiled Casa Puebla, a beautiful family home that incorporates traditional Mexican design with modern passive features . The stunning project features a contemporary shell over two rectangular volumes clad in raw concrete, paying homage to the tilework found in traditional Mexican constructions. The design features several passive design elements, including cross ventilation, natural light and sun shades, all of which reduce the home’s energy needs. According to the architects, one of the principle inspirations behind Casa Puebla’s beautiful,  nature-inspired design was the Popocatépetl volcano, one of the most beloved natural icons in central Mexico. Using the fiery landmark as a pillar of the design, architects then blended a series of natural elements with an avant-garde aesthetic. Related: The Nogal House saves energy with smart site-specific design The structure was built with two interconnecting rectangular volumes that form an L-shape. To add a bit of “visual contradiction,” the heavier concrete block was set on top of the lower glass-enclosed block. This unusual feature was instrumental in creating a double-height formation that ensures continual vertical ventilation throughout the interior. In addition, the design was strategic in creating multiple outdoor nooks that are shaded by the roof of the upper level. These outdoor areas, used for reading, entertaining and dining, forge a strong connection between the interior and the outdoors. As an implicit tribute to the local vernacular, the home was built with locally sourced, natural materials, primarily concrete and wood. The exposed concrete cladding , which provides a strong thermal envelope, pays homage to the use of tiles in traditional Mexican architecture. Vertical wooden shutters provide shade from the harsh summer sun while diffusing natural light throughout the interior. The use of concrete continues inside, where board-formed concrete makes up the walls and the pillars that frame the floor-to-ceiling glass panels . On the ground floor, an open floor plan houses the kitchen, dining and living rooms, and sliding glass doors lead to the exterior spaces. Contemporary furniture and elements run throughout the home, including a “floating” staircase that leads to the upper level. + RDLP Arquitectos Via Archdaily Images via RDLP Arquitectos

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Breezy home in Mexico uses strategic cross ventilation and natural light to reduce its energy use

A tiny home on wheels with brilliant interiors and two lofts can be yours for $56K

May 3, 2019 by  
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Although tiny homes  comes in many shapes and sizes, Canada-based Mint Tiny House Company has managed to create one of the most eye-pleasing tiny houses we’ve ever seen. In addition to its spacious interior design, which features dual loft spaces, the Napa tiny home also includes several sustainable elements, such as LED lighting and a composting toilet. Based in Canada, Mint Tiny House Company is known for its incredible talent at constructing customized tiny homes. Its latest model, the Napa, comes in two sizes, either 22 feet or 26 feet in length. Both options feature cedar siding exteriors with metal roofing. The pitched roof creates a homey feel and adds more space on the interior to accommodate two loft spaces. Related: Gorgeous cedar-clad tiny home designed to withstands Ontario’s frigid winters Inside, the Napa uses a crisp, white interior lit by LED lighting and an abundance of natural light to create a bright, modern living space. This light-filled interior is contrasted nicely with a rustic, stained timber ceiling and dark wood laminate flooring. The living area is located on one end of the tiny home and features enough space for a sofa that folds out to a guest bed. Home chefs will love the incredible full-sized kitchen with ample butcher block countertops and full-depth kitchen cabinets. Past the kitchen is a roomy bathroom, which has a stacked washer and dryer combo, a stand-up shower and a  composting toilet . On either side of the home is a  sleeping loft , accessed by a wall ladder on one side and stairs on the other. Like the rest of the abode, these lofts are bright and airy and have plenty of space. One can easily be used as the master bedroom while the other could be used as a guest room or repurposed into an office space, storage area, art studio and more. + Mint Tiny House Company Via Dwell Images via Mint Tiny House Company

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A tiny home on wheels with brilliant interiors and two lofts can be yours for $56K

Cinch Up Kitchen Waste With These 3 Green Household Products

April 23, 2019 by  
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I am an enthusiastic proponent of the idea that we … The post Cinch Up Kitchen Waste With These 3 Green Household Products appeared first on Earth911.com.

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These sweet teardrop trailers for adventurers run on solar power

April 19, 2019 by  
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We’ve covered quite a few teardrop trailers over the years, but Evolve ‘s new solar-powered trailers are really out of this world. The British Columbia-based company has just unveiled its latest models, the Evolve Traverse and the Evolve Outing. Both campers run on solar power and are clad in an all-aluminum frame to create an ultra durable envelope. Inside, the campers offer enough space for a queen-sized mattress and have a fully equipped kitchen with a propane stove and a cooler in the back. What more could you ask for? The innovative design for the teardrop trailer came to fruition thanks to a friend of Evolve’s owner, Mike. The man asked Mike for a simple tiny camper , but after designing campers for years, he was suddenly inspired to create something a bit more advanced. The result is a solar-powered camper that is fully insulated and waterproof. Related: The Droplet is a light-filled teardrop trailer inspired by Scandinavian design Years later, Mike, along with his daughter, Felicia, continues to build amazing tear drop trailers geared toward the nomadic spirit. The Evolve Traverse and the Evolve Outing models are very similar. Both run on solar power generated by a 100-watt rooftop solar array. Clad in aluminum and fully insulated, the campers are quite durable and can stand up well to extreme weather conditions. Each trailer can be customized, and clients can choose from a long list of extra features including custom colors, a bespoke kitchen layout, additional interior cabinets, hooks and more. Two large glass doors on each side of the trailer open up to the interior sleeping space, which has enough room for a queen-sized mattress that folds up into a sofa when not in use. There is also sufficient storage space for clothes and personal items, along with room for an optional HDTV for entertainment. Adventurers know that good meals are essential while on the road, and Evolve has spared no expense at building a beautiful kitchen into the trailer’s back end. The back door lifts open to reveal a fully equipped kitchen with a propane stove and cooler. The Traverse comes with a unique pull-out kitchen that provides extra counter space. Although it’s hard to image a better teardrop trailer, the company is currently working on The Explorer, an off-roading model with bigger tires for going off the beaten path. + Evolve Solar Teardrop Trailers Via Tiny House Blog Images via Evolve

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This camper van features not just one, but two sleeping pods in its cozy interior

April 12, 2019 by  
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While most DIY van conversions end up as just one project, Oxford-based Jack Richens and Lucy Hedges took their passion for transforming camper vans into contemporary homes on wheels and turned it into a career. Their company, This Moving House , has just finished its sixth project, the Jubel Explorer, and it is a doozy. The ultra-compact space has been completely transformed into a chic adventuring vehicle, complete with two innovative sleeping nooks. Constructed on a long wheel base Mercedes Benz Sprinter, the camper van ‘s revamped interior is surprisingly modern and space-efficient. At the front of the van, the driving area has two chairs that swivel around to face a small table with a three-person bench, creating enough space for dining or working. Related: Denver-based company helps you fulfill your van conversion dreams But at the heart of this incredible tiny home on wheels is the kitchen and sleeping space. Although incredibly compact, the kitchen is contemporary thanks to a palette of matte white with wooden trim. A white resin sink sits in front of a light-gray backsplash with a two-burner stove on one side and a countertop on the other. For additional preparation space, larger countertop panels folds out from the cabinetry. Next to the quaint cooking area is a day bed tucked into the very end of the camper van. Beside this bed, a simple staircase leads up to the company’s now-signature pod bunks. Accessed by porthole-style windows, the sleeping pods come complete with fixed full-sized mattress and reading lights as well as the possibility for tailored furnishings, such as a custom mattress and privacy curtains. To keep the space clutter-free, the camper van is outfitted with plenty of storage. The stairs to the sleeping pods lift up to reveal built-in nooks, and the main bed has pull-out drawers underneath. For additional storage, there is an extra-large drawer and room for gear in the back of the van. The Jubel Explorer was also made to be semi- off-grid  with a diesel heater that keeps the interior space warm and cozy. Power comes from a 110AH and 12V electrical system, and the van also comes with a 21-gallon water tank. + This Moving House Via Curbed Photography by Tim Hall Photography via This Moving House

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