Folding House explores the idea of transforming a traditional Japanese tatami room into a modern home-office design. The goal was to remodel the existing industrial office space to an upmarket 2-in-1 smart home and design showroom. The flexible layout enable the users to transform their space to serve different functions depending on their needs. On overall, the cream coloured walls and glass partitions with black metallic door frames and black stripes of furnishings make the space welcoming and give it an understated elegance. Working in this space is comfortable and efficient with the lighting seeping out to bath the rooms with a warm and soft glow.
The project fascinated by the moveable ‘shoji screens’ from traditional tatami rooms that is so flexible in defining spaces within any unit. The tatami room is made up of a tatami mat and probably houses a tatami bed, as well, with a shoji, which is a translucent sliding door, a ‘tenjo’, which is a coffered and decorated ceiling, and other types of Japanese furniture. The room is multi-functional, sleeping at night is with the use of a Japanese mattress called a ‘futon,’ which is folded away at daylight, enabling one to host visitors, perform tea ceremonies, etc.
Thus, the concept of Folding House is inspired by the multi-functional aspect of this tatami room. It was designed with a deliberate approach and effort to a flexibly configured layout that can be interchanged and switched up. For an urbanian design, Folding House uses modern sliding-and-folding door as a replacement of the shoji screens.
The space can take on a commercial-mode, workshop-mode, residential-mode, event-mode and the multipurpose-mode types of transformative modules. The focus of the design process is to make sure that the inhabitants live differently to occupy less of a footprint in the residence to fit a collection of office as well as household facilities within a 900sqft unit without wasting space by making it unusable.
There is an efficient consolidation of facilities such as studio, meeting, library, workshop, kitchen, toilet, bathroom and bedroom spaces among other areas such as multipurpose rooms. To structure these spaces excellent streamlined joinery and incredible structuring were seamlessly used in the assembling of design elements such as walls, ceilings, lighting, plumbing, flooring, appliances, and doors.
In actualizing the 2-in-1 smart home and design showroom, the formulation of Folding House provides solution for the urbanian resident to resolve their compact and tight spaces issue. Apart from ensuring that the result was a comfortable environment conducive for work and living and could be switched up to different configurations, it is also a techno-friendly setup. While home-office are now the norms in the many cities, there is the need for innovation in design to allow the space to be efficiently used by saving it and digitizing the office by using smart systems. In this case, this allows the enhancement of office operation and has left room for the integration of more advanced technology such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
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