Koriyama’s sprawling urban landscape is spread over the banks of Abukuma River. The city is an important commercial hub of Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. Like other cities of Japan, it is highly congested. Setting up a family home in a place like this where space is available only at a premium remains a dream unrealised by many. This Koriyama family turned out to be luckier than a lot of their fellow citizens. They not only found a suitable plot to build their residence, but also came in touch with designers capable of helping them realise their dream.
Little Nest Works help people maximise the potential of small plots in and around Koriyama. Though only established in July 2013, they use their expertise, local knowledge and technological know-how to build affordable family homes. This Koriyama home that we will shortly see is one of the many examples of their already rich portfolio.
This two-storey house is built on a plot of about 212 sq metres. The total living area, consisting of about 111 sq metres, is designed to satisfy every requirement of a modern family. The use of low-cost materials helped in keeping the project pocket friendly. However, the quality of the construction was not sacrificed in the process. While the roof is made of galvanised steel, the outer walls make use of fireproof materials.
The main door opens to a small living room cosily decorated to entertain guests or sit with the entire family. Open-plan living is an age-old tradition in Japan. Also, to counter the constraints imposed by its diminutive size, the interior of this home follows the same tradition as well. The living room boasts an extra high ceiling adorned with a modern chandelier. Laminate flooring adds warmth in an otherwise understated colour palette. For various flooring options, don't forget to check our suggestions shared through this article.
The kitchen shares its space with the lounge area. It is oblong and extremely narrow. But designers have tried their best to make it comfortable for working extended hours. A decorative faux wood frame enhances the beauty of its interior. The kitchen counter doubles up as a work top, so the oven sits next to a sink. Ledges on the wall behind act as additional storage space. Like elsewhere in the building, energy-efficient LED lamps brighten up this small kitchen as well. Other electronic devices like a chimney and air conditioner work to make the space as comfy as possible.
The bathroom is fitted with simple white fittings. Except for the wooden shelves under the wash basin, the whole space wears a grey and white look. A large mirror acts as a solo decorative feature jazzing up the interior of this small bathroom. One corner of the bathroom is secured for a washing machine and additional storage units.
Glimpses of the private quarters can be obtained from the narrow corridor that acts as a bridge between two worlds – public and personal. It is made appropriately child safe. The entire area has laminate flooring. Ceiling and wall-mounted LED lights cheer the interior and brighten up those corners which lack the generosity of natural light.
At sundown, the busy streets grow quiet and a mellow mood fills the interior of this Koriyama home. The occupants of the house gather around the TV to enjoy a drink, share the day’s exploits and have a fun time. Perhaps they also come to realise the truth of an old Japanese proverb; 'wherever you live, you come to love it'. The presence of cheerful faces and kind hearts is enough to create a happy home.