Comfortable Modern Homes
“Modern” is more than a look; it’s a way of being in the world. Its means rethinking stereotypes and questioning assumptions of “how we’ve always done it”.
“Modern look” to some people may mean brutal, cold or unwelcoming. For us it’s the opposite: it’s the best path to that perfect house, tailor made for your needs and comfort. Sleek minimalism is balanced with warm materials and intimate gathering spots.
“Modern spaces” flow together as opposed to separate rooms connected by openings and hallways. There is an emphasis on spacial quality and appropriateness. Is the 500 square foot entry foyer with twenty foot ceilings and double staircases going to add to the enjoyment of the home? It might be designed to impress people walking through the front door, but mostly doesn’t really feel very welcoming. Frank Lloyd Wright famously created modest entry foyers with low ceilings that then opened up to spacious and beautifully proportioned living areas, saving the ‘wow’ moment for a space that would be lived in.
A “modern home” doesn’t have to require discipline to live in, nothing out of place, everything neatly packed behind concealed doors and cabinets. They can be warm, inviting and comfortable to live in, designed with the occupant’s lifestyle in mind.
“Modern design” relies on refinement of materials and details, general lack of traditional ornamentation such as moldings, and applied decorative finishes. Rather, the details are expressed in the way materials and surfaces come together and meet or are separated. The materials themselves provide the decorative finishes, color and texture.
“Modern environments” are appropriate to their climate and local conditions. A house has to be environmentally comfortable, which might mean that the design of a mostly glass house in southern California might not translate to a home in colder climates. A glass wall will never quite keep you as warm as a well insulated wall. So expanses of glass, truly valuable in a modern home, need to be carefully selected for greatest impact.
Good lighting must be an integral part of the design of a comfortable modern home, combining the best use of daylight with the most discreet and functional lighting design. It is neither a room with nothing but recessed fixtures, nor a blast of flat, even light from above.
The systems of any house, traditional or modern, must clearly take comfort into account. The right heating and cooling system should not only be energy efficient, but should provide a healthy environment for the residents.
The use of non toxic materials to build and finish a home are essential tools of creating a comfortable home. That “new car smell” isn’t something that’s desirable in your new home. Off gassing of chemicals used in building products can be harmful for someone who might be at all sensitive. There are many options to the more toxic products used in homebuilding.
Accessibility should be designed into homes to the degree possible. Anyone might at some time need to live in an environment that doesn’t provide physical barriers to being able to stay in their home. Building a home that provides for ease of use for the physically impaired also means ease of use, and thus comfort, for the able bodied.
“Comfortable modern homes” are for people to live their lives in, not just act as a stage set. Warm and beautiful materials can be used just as well as stark ones to create a modern space. Nothing about open spaces and simplicity of design restricts the use of fine materials and detailing.
While we can occasionally forgive some compromise of ideal function in the service of the perfect spatial experience, we still want our homes to function for their intended purpose and to use space wisely. If you’re a cook, you want your kitchen laid out in a way that supports your efforts to prepare a meal, and not having you running around a large space to access what you need.
When all of these elements come together, the result is truly a home that is modern, comfortable, functional, and a joy to live in.