Vessel | Madeleine Blanchfield Architects

Vessel is a Victorian Terrace situated in a quiet enclave amidst vibrant Darlinghurst. The philosophy for the project was to design a bare stage for life’s theatre to fill and empty.

Our response to early heritage advice that a new addition would require a pitched roof form was to take this further and create a double skylit void in a folded roof form. These two funnels of light explore the fullness of the void invoking the feeling of being inside a ceramic vessel which opens at the top and in which the space inside the object creates the form.

The design is a testament to focussing on the creation of an atmosphere rather than the embellishment of spaces. The scrutiny and distilling down of what’s essential to house within a home reveals the value of empty space in this design; how joy, discovery and meaning emerge from an empty stage.

Shed House | Breakspear Architects

Shed House, built for a couple and their three children, is a place that harmoniously blends work and home life with landscape. The couple have a passion for making furniture and have entwined their professional and domestic life by jointly operating a fabrication/design business. Shed House provides a balance for their lifestyle by conceptualising a house over two distinct levels, arranged with deliberate adjacencies and separations. The design emphasises rationality and legibility, while introducing a central courtyard as a counterpoint that brings in the ephemeral qualities of the surrounding landscape, seasons and weather. From the imposed order, juxtaposed with natural phenomena, a liberating atmosphere is created for daily life.

Royal National Park Amenities | Breakspear Architects

Established in 1879, The Royal National Park is the second oldest national park globally and is a place of natural splendour with rich cultural and environmental significance. The Dharawal people, the original custodians of this land, have left an indelible cultural legacy with numerous sacred sites throughout the landscape.

The Audley picnic area, situated at the confluence of the Hacking River and Kangaroo Creek within the Royal National Park, underwent enhancements by Breakspear architects in collaboration with NPWS. Aiming to improve amenities, pathways, and landscaping on two riverbank sites, the project showcased a unique blend of new architecture, heritage restoration, landscaping, and civil works, all within a modest $1.25M budget. Despite its relatively small size, the project was complex. A strategic approach focused on an efficient structure, simple materiality, and a single impactful gesture, ensuring effective cost management and a transformative impact across the significant site.

Queens Park | Downie North

Queens Park House pushes to the peripheries and sleeves into the gaps left over by the original semi detached house it adapts. The transformation of an enclosed, two bedroom house into a spacious, multifunctional home for a young family evolved to incorporate diverse needs from outdoor play spaces and the capacity to host extended family. The architectural response was to inhabit edges, using the unused, from occupying the existing roof void to minimize overshadowing and bulk through to the creation of a roof garden above an existing garage.

Communal areas follow a curvilinear plan, fluidly adapting programmatic needs to make the most of sunlight and sea breezes. A new outdoor terrace invites interior and exterior to merge, doubling outdoor space and prioritizing landscape and views without compromising privacy. Shaded openings, exposed thermal mass, and ventilated facade are complemented by the photovoltaic solar array, demonstrating a harmonious blend of functionality and sustainability.

Hurlstone Park House II | CMA – Carla Middleton Architecture

Hurlstone Park House II is a renovation to a single storey Federation home located on a corner block in a heritage conservation area in Sydney’s Inner West. The original building form was retained and a new single storey addition runs along the side southern boundary, providing privacy from the secondary street frontage while allowing the living spaces to open up to the north.

The built form has been pushed and pulled to allow for four private courtyards that create a sanctuary for its occupants and enhances the project’s connection to the garden. The curved and wrapping built form allows for varied living spaces where the family can both come together and retreat. The addition’s scale responds to the sloping corner block and respects the existing streetscape context with an appropriate and subtle contemporary addition that is highly functional, with every space carefully designed to meet the client’s needs without excess.

Hidden Garden House | Sam Crawford Architects

Our client’s brief for Hidden Garden House was rejuvenation of the existing house, an update to provide light and warm spaces, passively heated and cooled. They wanted quality over quantity, improved functionality, and low maintenance.

The original house required radical surgery. The ground floor was damp, dark, and cold, and upper floor hot and leaky.

Part of our response was to demolish the roof to the existing rear pavilion and create a hidden roof garden above a clerestory ceiling and high glass wall.

The clerestory rises above the floor level of the main bedroom which opens onto a new deck. Strategically placed screens provide the main bedroom and ensuite with private views of the garden and sky.

On the floor below, the curved ceiling and full height glazing in the kitchen / dining room draws the eye out and up to the landscaped rear yard and sky beyond.

DOUGLAS | Ahron Best Architects

Douglas is a play full alteration and addition that transforms an existing classic semi into a modern living sanctuary for a young family of four.

The concept, a simple sectional diagram, creates uplifting spaces and a feeling of openness throughout the home.

Convex curved ceilings provide access to northern light and sweeping views to a central roof garden and beyond. The ceilings act to define the various functions of the house providing a balance of privacy and connection between the spaces.

High level windows allow for light and air to circulate home.

Bungalow Blonde | LiteraTrotta Architecture

This delightful bungalow in a winding residential street, was home to our clients for many years before they approached us seeking change, advising that the layout of the home was flawed and the centre dark and unused. We approached the design with the upbeat attitude of our clients, maintaining its street presence with stepped and pitched rooves, and a unique window that hints at curiosities beyond. The living spaces are bathed in natural light that enters via a halfmoon skylight above the stair, and through joyous peekaboo windows along the northern façade. The indoors spill out onto a luscious garden, a curved seat and deck defining one corner under a large Brushbox.

Truly transformed from its basic bones into an incredibly warm family home, its unassuming front is a veil for the wonders within generous spaces, soft sinuous curves, and playful natural light, it implores its guests to expect the unexpected

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