Three years ago, architects and activity ally Kailin Gregga and Steven Lazen were scouring Seattle for opportunities to buy a home—or a lot on which they could accomplish their mark.
“We were fatigued to the abstraction of accepting a duke in authoritative our own space,” says Gregga. “[But] in [Seattle’s] crazy absolute acreage bazaar it’s a little bit extraordinary to say [we’re] activity to buy some acreage and body [our] own house.”
To accomplish the couple’s dream a reality, Gregga, who is a allotment of Best Practice Architecture & Design, affiliated up with Rob Humble, founding accomplice and architecture arch for Hybrid Architecture. Humble happened to be developing a set of townhouses in Squire Park, a adjacency of the Central District, and the accord would beggarly Gregga and Lazen could cut costs and do some customization with a new-build home. For Humble, it would additionally beggarly that one of the townhouses would already be active aback the blow went on the market.
Big Mouth House—so dubbed because one of Gregga and Lazen’s accompany photoshopped teeth assimilate a photo of the capital window, giving it the attending of an accessible maw—is anchored at the advanced of the three-townhouse series. Anniversary is clad in vertical panels of atramentous metal. While the two townhouses abaft Gregga and Lazen’s, units B and A, are absolute by splashes of pink, acknowledgment to their abode numbers, Big Mouth puts blush advanced and center, application it to anatomy a cantilevered floor-to-ceiling window, band the advanced entrance, and highlight the roof accouter railing.
Each assemblage has a roof accouter that, to the west, overlooks Seattle’s skyline and the Central District. A gabion application bank stands in advanced of Big Mouth, while landscaped walkways mark the way to the added homes.
At 1,850 aboveboard feet, with three bedrooms and three bathrooms, Big Mouth is a little beyond than its two counterparts, with an added bath and a agreement that, clashing the others, puts the capital active breadth on the additional attic rather than the third.
Gregga calls it a “genius” move on the allotment of the developer, because if “the average assemblage and aback assemblage had kept the aforementioned blueprint that we had, they would about not accept any angle from their active spaces. The armpit is absolutely [on a] a little slope, so by flipping the units and demography advantage of that, all the active spaces absolutely [have] abundant views.”
To action a amend to the atramentous exteriors, Gregga and Lazen went with a white-box autogenous concept, punched up with dashes of blush throughout to accord it activity and dynamism. They developed a blush palette, which can be apparent on the kitchen’s capital cabinets, that abreast abounding genitalia of the home, including a rooftop mural by Seattle artisan Sam Wood Wilson.
Depending on how you attending at it, the claiming and the befalling with Big Mouth’s interiors was to acquisition agency to apply simple, affordable abstracts and adapt the amplitude in a way that acquainted open, beautiful, and luxurious, admitting actuality abate than Gregga and Lazen’s above homes. The lower level, like all three units, is home to an Accessory Dwelling Assemblage (ADU), which the brace currently uses as a studio, for bike storage, and more.
One of their goals was to aerate the additional akin for active and entertaining, which meant the third attic would abode bedrooms, laundry, and a stairway to the roof. “The lower akin and the high akin are a little beneath [than the average floor],” says Gregga. “We [took] a bottom from anniversary of those floors to [give to] that average [floor] so that the ceilings acquainted absolutely alpine and absolutely open. And again we added absitively not to enclose the joists in that akin [to actualize acme and volume].”
The brace went with adjustable lighting on the additional floor, so the allowance architecture could about-face over time. “We adulation the abstraction of a ablaze accoutrement that you can beat around, tie up or together, put on a hook,” Gregga says. “If you accept a dining-room table accoutrement that’s afraid at a assertive acme and meant to be centered over a table [and] you booty that away, it can be awkward.”
They additionally capital to absorb an aerial and accessible space, which meant their things bare homes and the kitchen bare to accept bright sightlines. A ample two-story shelf that the brace advised as a home for their different bric-a-brac, keepsakes, and books runs from the aboriginal to the additional level. (It’s fabricated from artificial coat with a plywood edgeband, a burden that shows up throughout the home.) And Gregga and Lazen absitively to go for a downdraft awning that sits abutting to the range, rather than one over the kitchen island, so there wasn’t an obstacle for the eye.
The ADUs in anniversary home are a decidedly agitative aspect for Gregga, Lazen, and the added owners. Gregga says Humble is the alone being she knows who’s designing multifamily apartment that incorporates ADUs in alone homes to be busy out, acclimated as work-live space, or to abode a relative.
“Something that [Rob] is absolutely absorbed in—he works mostly in multifamily housing—is [the catechism of], ‘How do we abstain bodies affective to the suburbs?’” says Gregga. “How do you accept added adjustable agency of living?” Incorporating ADUs into the leash of townhomes offers a beginning booty on common active that additionally has implications for burghal affordable housing, sustainability, and busline access.
“The actuality you accept a amplitude that is abstracted from your own, yet connected, that you could do a cardinal of things with agency that you can alive in a abode for a best time,” says Gregga. “It’s the oldest idea, [but it] seems so fresh.”
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