On today's 360°, we explore a Korean family home heavily inspired by Japanese design, in both its traditional and modern variations. Japanese architecture tends to focus on lines, shapes and mass rather than ornamentation and as a result, fits right in with modern design. This design principle has been liberally applied here by the Japanese-based architects who have crafted a home that is traditional at its core while modern in its sensibilities.
Fortunately, the architects had enough room to play around with, a luxury in South Korea where ample space is often hard to come by and therefore, considered a luxury. The house itself is built on a limited plot but room was made for a substantial garden outside as well as a courtyard inside, which opens up the space further and lends an organic feel to the home.
The interiors are kept simple yet elegant. Let's take a look.
Right from the outset, you can see how this house sets itself apart—architecturally speaking—from the surrounding houses. The architects opted to construct a one-storey home with a flat roof, a feature common in modern Japanese homes. The entrance has its own separate design element, housed as it is under the eaves. The thin wooden slat doors and windows adds an interesting touch to the facade while the light mustard brown colour gives it a distinctively warm feel.
Notice how the open, flat garden space seems to open up the house, a feeling that will get amplified when inside.
As you step inside, you can immediately feel how nature is an integral part of the overall design scheme here. The outside and the inside flow together seamlessly and there seems to be no rigid boundaries. This was achieved not just by the garden we saw earlier but also by incorporating an interior courtyard that is directly adjacent to the living area, and is separated only by large glass sliding doors.
In keeping with the organic feel, the decor consists largely of wood, which infuses the space with warmth. The modern, almost-Nordic furniture imparts a modern vibe to the area.
Let's take a closer look at the courtyard inside. You can almost feel the tranquil vibe of this space jump off of the screen at you! You'd be forgiven for thinking, even if for a second, that you had walked into a peaceful mountain dwelling and not an urban home.
This harmonious space is designed in a simple, minimal fashion with moss, pebbles and a stand-alone tree creating a relaxing oasis for the family. Talk about finding beauty in simple things! Interior gardens are great, whether you're living in cool or warm climes; speak to our interior landscape designers who can help you to get started.
No Japanese home or Japanese-inspired home in this case, is complete without a traditional room whose floors are laid out in tatami mats and which has a versatile function. Situated adjacent to the lovely courtyard, this simple tatami room is used as a space for introspection, meditation and even as an extension of the living and dining areas.
Honouring the traditional approach, the architects have chosen to focus more on the structural aesthetics of the space rather than what occupies it. As is customary, rice paper screens or shoji are used in place of doors and windows to partition this room from the remaining areas.
From this view, standing on the deck, you can get an overview of the interiors including the courtyard and the shuttered tatami room. The wooden deck acts as the perfect transitory space where the outside and the interiors meet in a neutral zone. This is further aided by the large glass sliding doors which keeps the boundaries porous. Come nightfall, rice paper screens can be pulled down to keep prying eyes out. This moderately-sized home is a perfect example of how simplicity can go a long way.
To check out another stunning, yet altogether different one-storey home, go to The 70sqm home you won't forget.