no.59 アーカイブ



The H’s weekend house stands in Hayama where magnificent views and ample nature can be enjoyed. The architect Yosuke Inoue planned a spacious living room to enjoy the view on the 2nd floor, which has direct access to the road above the slope, the main bedroom on the 1.5 floor and the bathroom and children’s room on the 1st floor, which are all built along the slope. Utilizing the landscape where the levels connect at different angles in a L shape, a dining kitchen with depth and a living room open to the ocean were created. The 180-degree view where the ocean and Mt. Fuji can be enjoyed is more impressive because of this cadent space. Also, the 3.8m high gable roof ceiling creates an interesting polyhedron space by changing the height of the east-west wall. On the 1st floor, a spacious terrace connects to the 3.7m staircase hall. Since this terrace has access to the outside steps, an outdoor shower was created to take the sand off when coming back from the ocean, and has direct access to the bathroom. The bathroom projects from the other part of the building, and has a white granite bathtub that is in balance with its openness. The bathroom can also be opened as an outside bath to enjoy the ocean view. The cedar and concrete exterior blends very well with the ample green of the landscape preservation area. This second house has succeeded in not being too decorative, and at the same time has the attractiveness of being able to change beautifully over time, together with nature.



At Milano Salone, the Venetian glass brand VENINI attracted many visitors by showcasing its artwork floating over the splendid furnishings in the Renaissance palazzo situated a bit further down Montenapoleone street in the city. This brand mixes modern art with traditional Venetian glass which has over 1000 years of history, and attracts many collectors worldwide with its unique view. Paolo Venini, who was a lawyer in Milan started the brand on Murano island in 1921, and the brand is now over 90 years old. It is one of the few brands that still has its studio on Murano island. The brand is also famous for the fact that architect Carlo Scarpa worked and designed for the brand. In addition, because of the quality of their pieces, their glass works are used in all Italian embassies around the world and were selected as novelty art for the Beijing Olympics. In the past, they collaborated with designers like Alessandro Mendini, Mario Berini, and Ettore Sottsass. Starting last year, they have invited Japanese architect Tadao Ando, and are expanding their works in the lighting field; they continue to produce artwork that attracts many from around the world.


Milano Salone 2012

Milano Salone is the international furniture exhibition that is held every year in Milan, Italy. This year it was held between April 17th and 22nd and 330,000 people gathered during these 6 days. Due to the economic depression and the trend of questioning the necessity of presenting new designs every year at Salone in the past few years, many brands tend to present different fabrics or color variations of existing models or choose to present revival models. What highlighted the event were colors in the blue family, like cobalt or light blue in addition to lemon yellow and orange. Smoky tones that match with other furniture especially stood out. Some furniture used bright colors and was designed simply and functionally, and was reminiscent of the mid-century. The chairs Minotti of Italy presented were designed under the theme of “the 50’s” and its gently curved shell covered with interesting fabrics was somewhat nostalgic. The major furniture brands like B&B Italia, Cassina and Driade continued to expand their furniture series this year, and presented colorful furniture in orange and yellow. What stood out was the design that mixed multiple colors woven together to make the material look like a fabric. Many brands presented furniture usable both indoors and outdoors and are putting emphasis on product development of furniture that is usable in any environment; it can be said that product boundaries are fading away.

driade, B&B Italia

De Padova

De Padova is an interior brand founded in Milan, Italy in 1956. What fascinated many was their furniture that is simple and sophisticated yet has warmth in its design. The couple Fernand De Padova and Maddalena who were inspired by the charm of Nordic furniture opened the interior shop in Milan and became the first to introduce Nordic furniture to Italy, which became the start of their brand. Afterwards, they produced original products with talented designers such as Vico Magistretti and Achille Castiglioni, and Ingo Maurer when he was very young. The sophisticated and unique coordination of Maddalena setting no boundaries with both style and the country of was supported by many, and created a firm image for the brand. For Milano Salone 2012, they appointed four spirited young designers. The round outdoor table “Railway” designed by the hot Italian designer Luca Nichetto used steel and cheek, and stressed its thinness. The orange sofa “Pilotis” designed by the French designer Philippe Nigro, has 5 legs on the back, left and right, and the contrast of the structural straight leg and the soft classical curved arm is new. The philosophy of “furniture with warmth and comfort” has not changed over time from its foundation. New development was seen, unlike in the past by bringing in new inspiration, but still managed to stay true to tradition.


Another story renovation / O residence

The O residence is a 30 year-old wooden structured 2-story house currently under reconstruction, and stands on a quiet hill of Kyoto. Previously, the hall, dining room, kitchen, Japanese room and bathrooms were all placed on the 1st floor, and the 2nd floor was divided into 5 separate rooms. Architect Dai Nagasaka took away all the walls on the 2nd floor and created a spacious 80m2 living room and dining kitchen with a view that matches well with the American and European furniture, which the owner couple collected over years. As the original ceiling height of the 2nd floor was low, he took away the whole ceiling, revealing the structure to secure the height. Also, he created an arch finished with plaster, connecting the wall and ceiling from the east-west and south-north sides, which created unity and a new impression. The ceiling structure was lightly painted white to minimize its existence. The openings were reused as much as possible to keep the cost down, and walls were created to place a chest and furniture. The floor height of the east side was newly extended, and where living room is placed is 570mm higher than the existing west side. Mr. Nagasaka created a counter on the center of the steps, separating steps as the gentle steps on the north side and steps that functions as the TV rack on the south side. Columns and walls were added to strengthen the structure on the 1st floor, and a main bedroom, children’s rooms and ample closets were also created. The bathrooms were kept in their original positions to keep cost down, and only the wall between the powder room and the bathroom was changed to glass, inviting light into the spaces.


Another story renovation / M residence

In a quiet residential area, M residence is a quaint condominium in an old, low-rise condominium building. The couple decided to fully renovate this spacious 237m2 condominium, which had a black, dark tone when they bought the condominium, and had been renovated several times by the previous owners over the past 25 years. As the couple lived outside Japan for a long time, they wanted to create a house with a hotel-like quality and planned a functional home under the theme of “Everything Beige.” They appointed interior designer Miki Saito. The layout has not been changed a lot, and the right side remains a private zone and the left side is a public zone entering from the entrance. The biggest change was making the kitchen open and spacious by taking down the wall between the dining space. The kitchen was expanded into the dining room and an island was placed in the new U-shaped kitchen. In the family room next to the kitchen, a nook and study space was created so that the children can be close while the couple is in the kitchen. Quality materials were selected, such as oak for the cabinets and doors, natural stone for the kitchen countertop, and tile for the floor and accent walls. The designer successfully balanced low-cost items with high-end expensive materials, like choosing IKEA’s high stool for the bar counter.


Effective storage

In housing storage, there are 3 important aspects to consider: “ to show or to hide,” “usage frequency,” and “its design.” There is made-to-order storage and system storage, and they are selected depending on the delivery time, design restriction, design taste and budget. When planning storage space, it is necessary to understand the design concept of the house, life-style of the residents, and the amount of goods needed to be stored. In Japan, where space is limited, giant wall storage is recommended for the living room’s AV storage. The space between the TV and the storage or the balance of its depth is very important. Also dark colored material balances well with the black TV monitor. As for the bookshelf, the space between the books and the shelf decides the impression of the design. Closets are mostly classified as walk-in closets and wall closets; the depth of a closet is normally 600mm from a man’s shoulder width and the height varies depending on fashion trend. For all storage, the maximum weight limitation and the thickness of the shelves are important. Also, the material and size of the doors, whether to have a door or keep it open, and the mixture of materials are important factors of the interior and relate to architectural design. As for the storage that is visible, attention to lighting and hardware details adds up to become a beautiful storage space.


Selective hardware

To create a beautiful home, it is important to change one’s perspective from “ the subtraction beauty” (erasing the presence of unnecessary lines) to “ the addition beauty” (adding accent and depth to a space). We will therefore review interior hardware as an option for interior decoration in this issue, and we will focus on furniture hardware, architectural hardware, hooks, switches and wall brackets. Furniture hardware is hardware used to open or close furniture, kitchen or bathroom counter, and hardware touched or seen directly is mainly classified as pulls or knobs. Architectural hardware is hardware used to set the entrance or interior doors. In Japan, there are vast numbers of various pre-made parts. It is good to find unique items at an interior antique shop. It is important to consider the balance of the whole space when choosing hardware rather than looking only at the furniture or door to place it on. Furniture and architectural hardware are installed mostly at the time of renovation or building of a house. Hooks and wall brackets can be installed easily at anytime, by yourself. As a decoration, it is very effective to select hardware that blends with the total space.

About no.59

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