There's something about traditional European cottage-style architecture that is timelessly appealing. Perhaps it's the historical echoes that are charming or perhaps it's a telling sign of simpler times. Or perhaps it's simply our earliest memories of what a house looks like, which finds its way into our crude drawings of 'home' as children. Gabled roof, square-ish structure, a stone pathway and to cap it all, surrounded by the bluest skies and the greenest earth.
The house we are looking at today has essentially largely adopted that old-world template for the facade while keeping it glamorous and modern inside. Designed by Polish firm Biuro Projectowe Mtm Styl, Umbra as the house is called, has a lovely classic appeal that is tempered by owner-friendly and practical functionalities. If you're looking for inspiration to merge the two worlds, read on to find out how the architects did that here.
While European or English cottages are usually accompanied by a patina, the architects chose to forego that effect in order to create a more modern impression. The asphalt roof shingles, with a chimney, and the white brick exterior work together with the wood and glass-panelled door to increase the charm of this house. The straightforward style here is defined by classic, strong lines and the grey-brown brick base.
With ample square metres left to play with, the architects were able to include a substantial garden that would be right at home in the rolling countryside. If you're looking for a landscaping artist who can help you with your patch of greenery, reach out to our experts.
The stylish flair can be seen as you enter the house, into the living and dining space. Since the architects were working with limited space (88 square metres), they decided for an open-plan design where the living room, dining area and the kitchen all come together to work as a single unit.
The Nordic-style furniture is accentuated by the wood flooring and beams, giving it a softer feel. The large glass windows that look out toward the front of the house brings nature inside while serving as a source for tons of natural light.
The modular kitchen doesn't occupy too much space, but provides enough room for pottering around without obstructions and more than enough room for storage. Our favourite feature here though are the huge windows and the lush little herb garden framing its sill. With enough light coming in through here, the owners were able to create their own interior garden space, one that immediately creates a soothing effect.
To the left, an entire wall was reserved as a 'blackboard' space where members of the family can jot down inspirational messages, ingredient lists, or put in pesky reminders to take out the trash.
The bright and warmly-lit bathroom is definitely one of the highlights of Umbra. While the fixtures and appliances are as modern and swanky as they come, there is an inherently classic feel to the space. That's probably got a lot to do with that gorgeous light wood that is used as the encasing for the tub and in the cabinetry. Along with the white tiled floor and walls, the whole room bounces off light and creates the impression of a larger space.
Note too how the built-in niche acts as a well-lit spot for when you just want to plonk down your brushes or toiletries and not bother about storage organisation.
The master bedroom is where the elegant tastes of the owner is most evident. There are no unnecessary ornamentations here. The only pieces of furniture are the essentials: a king-side bed, two bedside tables and a built-in cupboard to the left. Sombre tones like the textured brown seen on the bed frame and the black silk curtains create a comfortable yet mysterious air.
Check out A modernist mansion of opulent charm for more inspiration!