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Timber Design Awards

Easterbrook House

The utilitarian forms of a tent and a shed are the design references in this Titirangi home which comprises a duo of like-minded buildings.

The utilitarian forms of a tent and a shed are the design references in this Titirangi home which comprises a duo of like-minded buildings.

The main three-bedroom dwelling is 120-square metres while its ‘mini me’ cousin is a petite 58. The buildings share a humble aesthetic and honest materiality, with a predominance of timber throughout. DAA conceived the primary home as a barn-like pavilion with bedrooms for adults and kids at opposite ends. A canopy-like roof is strung between these bookends to architecturally mimic a tarpaulin.

Within the small footprint, a meticulous programme with no wasted space was planned. The rectangular form is only 4 metres wide, but a mono-pitch roof that soars to 8 metres teamed with full-height glazing ensures spaciousness and amenity. A split-truss roof allows an external pergola for shade and clerestory windows to bring in low winter light. The low-key palette of glulam beams, plywood walls and ceilings, aluminium joinery and concrete floors are sympathetic to the rural vernacular.

A sunken conversation pit breaks up the open-plan living room. Built-in furniture, including an entertainment unit and L-shaped banquette seating backed by bookshelves, ensures more space saving. Off the kitchen, cavity sliders demarcate a spare bedroom or office furnished with a built-in fold up bed. Board-and-batten facing on this insertion further defines this zone and brings a rural detail indoors.

Although the home and its smaller counterpart alongside it have just been completed, their use of timber and planning allow them to appear long settled in the bush-clad environment.