Tucked away in an unassuming Barcelona neighbourhood lies a narrow little home, transformed from its previous ramshackle avatar into a gorgeous residential haven for a family. Before it underwent its current evolution though, the owners were at a loss as to how to maximise the space—a narrow structure ensconced in between adjacent buildings, and which almost seemed like an afterthought. When it comes to narrow spaces, who better to transform it than Vallribera Architects, the Sabadell-based mavericks that specialise in converting seemingly hard-to-work-with spaces into absolute gems? They've done it before, and they do it again.
Their design aesthetic is defined by clean lines, open layouts and often, a rather unusual placement of windows that make it appear more like a work of abstract art. Let's take a look at the stunning family home that they designed while working within a fairly limited budget.
From this view, we see the back-facing portion of the house, complete with a small garden and porch. The architects chose to go the sensible route (as far as a narrow house is concerned) and built upon the existing structure; that is, they went vertical.
The large glass sliding doors creates a seamless exterior/interior transition: bringing some of the outdoors in while letting a little bit of the stylish interiors spill out.
We love the statement staircase that almost takes centre stage in this home. The pinewood (check out those gorgeous knots all over!) acts as a focus wall of sorts here with the white semi-floating stairs being the conversation starter. Staircases can appear bulky and space-consuming, but the architects have managed to craft a design that seems almost feather-light.
The pinewood is used throughout the house, linking not only the different levels of the house but also the overall design aesthetic, characterised by its minimalism.
Our first, proper glimpse of the interior showcases a bright, light-filled space that has a sleek, contemporary feel to it. The long, narrow space accommodates the kitchen, dining area and the living room, all designed to occupy space on one side of the room; this allows for an unobstructed walkway where people don't have to jump over things (or people!) when moving through the spaces.
The design scheme is largely white except for a few exceptions: the pinewood wall panels adjacent to the staircase and the ceilings, for example.
This narrow bathroom space could have been a claustrophobic nightmare, but some smart design tricks not only make it appear much larger but also gives it an unexpectedly cool vibe. (If you're looking to redo your small bathroom space, speak to the experts at homify.)
First off—those floor tiles! We can't take our eyes off of them. They provide a stark contrast to the crisp white storage cabinets and the wall-to-wall mirror. The retro influences and contemporary minimalism seen here pays tribute to multiple design styles while coming together as one harmonious thread.
Clearly, these guys know their tiles! The ceramic tiles here are a perfect snazzy complement to the classic and minimal kitchen design, and instantly cheer up the space. Notice how the kitchen space is unambiguously demarcated as a separate area with the help of those funky tiles!
Last month, we explored another ingeniously designed narrow home by Vallribera Architects. Check it out here: The narrow home of hidden wonders.