Challenged by the intricacies and opportunities of a small site in Melbourne, Australia, Inglis Architects came up with a clever narrow house design for project Fairbairn Road Residence. Masonry, timber and stone are the main materials employed for the exterior finishes, “whether through brick perforated screens, steel cantilevers or custom timber claddings”. By layering up the front elevation towards the street, the architects created depth, thus managing to powerfully distinguish the residence from its neighboring buildings.

In order to create a feeling of generosity through space and materiality, the architects reduced the functionality of the first level, which mainly accommodates the living room. Bedrooms were elevated to the tree tops on the first floor, in order to offer a high degree of privacy. “The house is refreshing. It requires minimal furnishing to feel warm and hospitable due to the soft natural finishes. The floorboards, stone and masonry here are on show and the light fittings and furniture are purposefully simple and pared back allowing the interiors to breathe. It feels raw whilst achieving elegance through composition, texture, volume light and program”. [Photos by Derek Swalwell]