With visions for an eco-focused house and tiny home visitor accommodation taking shape in my mind over the few years prior, it was an easy decision to purchase and we secured the property within a week of it landing on the market.
Quick disclaimer here… I’m no architect and I have very limited experience in building. But I do understand design principles and have a thirst for knowledge – a huge thanks to all those experienced minds that I have learned from throughout this journey.
The key elements used within every version of my designs were:
- Views over the truffle trees and capturing the morning sun to the east (to heat the house early in the day)
- Maximise windows on the north side, using the right angles for winter sun without overheating in the summer
- Exposed concrete slab to use as a thermal mass (this stores the energy from the sun and keeps the house warm)
- A mezzanine floor to maximise space in the roof line and benefit from second storey views
- Minimise corners and joins in the house structure for cost savings and thermal efficiency
Here are two of my early designs which both have all the above elements. In the second design however, I pulled the barn further away from the house to allow for more northern sun in winter.
In Comes Minimal Design
In one 10 minute chairlift we went from never having met to arranging a casual meeting over a cold beer to discuss the project.
Lukas and his team were excited to be involved in an environmentally-focused project and eagerly came to check out the property the following week. During the following meetings together, we created the concept design (including my initial “must have” list) based around a number of key materials and processes.
I’m not going to reveal every aspect just yet, but there are three cornerstone features of this design that will shape a lot of what is to come…