What did those who envisioned the work want? For example, a project with a differentiated design, practical and functional, sustainable, an infrastructure solution to a given problem etc.
From the beginning, the client was not a typical or common customer. Young, unmarried and eager, he had already prepared what he called a moodboard before I even carried out the initial study for the project. This moodboard consisted of a series of aesthetic references of what he liked, which was curious because it is usually common for the client to send reference photos of spaces or furniture and try to fit those into the project at all costs. In his case none of the images even showed environments, furniture or architectural ideas and solutions, but they presented a little of his universe, his particular love for the sea, shades of blue, greens and petrol, for the conviviality of his friends and his taste and affinity for art and especially photography. In addition to the moodboard, which was what most interested me, the client made it clear in a quick conversation that everything should be practical, comfortable and that the remodel could be radical since there was nothing from the original project that should be maintained.
How was the project conceived? What was the inspiration, the influences and the style?
I like to visit the apartment before even looking at the blueprint to avoid being influenced by preconceived ideas rooted in an analysis of the blueprint. I really believe in this first contact and in this first perception of the space. It was on the first visit to the apartment that it became clear that the main idea would be the integration of the spaces and the reduction of the number of compartments. The property was 90m2 and the client was young and single so it would suffice that he understood that all this could be simplified in favor of a more functional and mainly more integrated blueprint. And it was in that first visit that the initial ideas came into being, such as the elimination of one of the dormitories in order to expand the living room and the total integration of the kitchen, eliminating doors; this last principle, however, was vetoed by the customer, who did not yet have the security necessary to change the entire traditional configuration of the apartment.
Were there any difficulties? What were they?
In apartments, due to the piping and positioning of the hydraulics and sewage, any and every change in this regard is always quite complex and requires extreme care.
What is the differential/highlight of the project?
One of the most interesting elements of the project is undoubtedly the woodwork. I am a lover of drawing and carpentry itself. For this project the woodwork does not only appear in the doors, cabinets and kitchen, but also at several other locations that contributed to the unique result of the project.
The highlight would be the bathrooms. Both being counters over a wooden floor and having a dry area configuration, we tried to escape the old habit of bathrooms looking like bathrooms with bathroom linings. In these areas, the floor is made of wood, the walls are only painted and the sinks are placed on small dresser-like cabinets. These have rounded corners and are aesthetically slightly retro; they are extremely functional but have the appearance of furniture, which makes the entire set harmonic and quite delicate.
Was it a renovation? If so, how was the place before the renovation? And what structural interventions were made?
Renovation - Interior Finishing and Decoration.
The original property was a 90m2 apartment with several compartments: 3 bedrooms (1 suite), living room, kitchen, laundry room and a service dormitory. The building had characteristics of the late 80's and early 90's in a residential area of the Vila Mariana neighborhood.
What interesting layout, functionality, economy and sustainability solutions can you name? Were there are environment integrations? Which ones?
Yes, there was integration.
The property was 90m2 and the client was young and single so it would suffice that he understood that all this could be simplified in favor of a more functional and mainly more integrated blueprint. And it was in that first visit that the initial ideas came into being, such as the elimination of one of the dormitories in order to expand the living room and the total integration of the kitchen, eliminating doors; this last principle was vetoed by the customer, however, who did not yet have the security necessary to change the entire traditional configuration of the apartment.
The originally fully enclosed kitchen was integrated and the stove was positioned to face the dining table on an island. The idea was vetoed at first but soon embraced after seeing numerous lofts that had been designed by the office and some photos of the outcome... One of the dormitories was incorporated into the living room, giving rise to a single space with a large l-shaped sofa that both welcomes friends and can be used for movies and TV series (another interested pointed out by the customer). The area of the former half-bath was enlarged, occupying part of the service dormitory, and in it we created a small office because the client sometimes works from home and this was also one of his requests. The rest of the service dormitory was turned into a small half-bath. In the intimate spaces, the main bedroom was maintained and the second was transformed into a closet with the possibility of accommodating a guest. This space was integrated into the original bathroom, which through sliding doors became wider and interconnected with the bedroom. I have attached the original blueprint and the final layout.
What are the landscaping highlights for this project?
What concept guided the design?
Does the project have technological resources/solutions (eg. automation)? If so, please describe them.
How was the interior design conceived? What was the guiding concept? What about the differential? What elements and styles were explored? And what materials?
It is common in my work to standardize linings inside the apartment. Although I have a predilection for grays and monochromatic spaces, I like it when the client brings something new at the beginning because this gives way to the personality of the project. In my work, no project comes out the same or let alone similar to another. Because it is my need, and perhaps the most enjoyable part of this work, to create a unique "story" for each project. In this particular project, the base for all the walls and ceilings is a light gray and the floor in almost the entire apartment is a Tauari wood, which is a honey-shaded wood that is quite uniform but most importantly light. It was important not to darken the linings and the wood was central to bringing warmth but it had to be light-colored, as the apartment does not have large windows and openings in its original architecture. With this junction between the light gray base of the walls and ceilings and the light-colored wood, we had two elements that were enough to compose the structure to which we just had to add the decoration. But from the first look at the moodboard, what caught my attention in the customer's aesthetic references were the shades of blue, green but mostly the petrol tone. For him it was not a conscious choice but this was a color that besides being modern would bring more personality to the project, especially as something that had come from the client’s personal taste. Thus, my main challenge was to give up the gray and neutral structures that are so common in my work to embark on new experiences with a modern, striking color with lots of personality: blue or petrol green. With this challenge and uniformity in mind, there is the presence of wood, gray and petrol variations in all environments. The only exception is the home office, which for me is one of the most striking areas of the apartment. It was entirely painted in the same color: wall, ceiling and woodwork. The result is extremely impactful: a petrol green cube attached to the living room, which is the cherry on top of the project.
What is interesting about this project? What is worth talking about?
The main changes and major challenges of the work were to make an office where before there had been a half-bath and to build a half-bath where before there has been a service dormitory. It was also a challenge to create a bathroom in the suite with a layout that was totally different from the original. In apartments, due to the piping and positioning of the hydraulics and sewage, any and every change in this regard is always quite complex and requires extreme care.
What were the predominant materials? How were they used?
In this particular project, the base for all the walls and ceilings is a light gray and the floor in almost the entire apartment is a Tauari wood, which is a honey-shaded wood that is quite uniform but most importantly light. It was important not to darken the linings and the wood was central to bringing warmth but it had to be light-colored, as the apartment does not have large windows and openings in its original architecture.