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An Agrarian-Inspired Holiday House on an Agricultural Dutch Island

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An Agrarian-Inspired Holiday House on an Agricultural Dutch Island

July 23, 2018

When Dutch architects Mechthild Stuhlmacher and Rien Korteknie of Korteknie Stuhlmacher were asked to design a holiday house for a large family on the island of Goeree-Overflakkee off the coast of Rotterdam, they were met with two main challenges: 1.) the local building laws permitted a maximum total volume of 750 square meters, and 2.) the family wanted to maintain a modest profile among the small, traditional houses of the island’s agricultural landscape. For the first, they lowered the floor in part of the house by 45 centimeters (about 18 inches) as a workaround to the limits (the below ground area doesn’t factor into the total square footage). For the second, they split the property and built two connected buildings: one narrow single-story house that’s sympathetic to the workers’ houses in the area, and a larger structure designed to resemble a traditional barn.

The 220-square-meter property (about 2,400 square feet) is constructed with cross-laminated timber (CLT) panels precut to size and assembled on-site within two weeks. (The architects had previous experience with the material and worked with carpenter Christian Doerschug, who specializes in CLT structures.) The houses are clad in Western red cedar siding, and the interiors are outfitted with ash paneling, custom furniture, and Dutch and English lighting fixtures. Join us for a lesson in subtle splendor.

Photography by Luuk Kramer, courtesy of Korteknie Stuhlmacher Architecten.

the larger barnlike building as seen from behind the house. the property sits o 9
Above: The larger barnlike building as seen from behind the house. The property sits on the site of a former dilapidated farm from the 1950s.
the architects worked around strict limits on roof angle, shape, and direction. 10
Above: The architects worked around strict limits on roof angle, shape, and direction. Here is where the two houses, and their pitched roofs meet.
the western red cedar siding of the house is finished with a natural wash to  11
Above: The Western red cedar siding of the house is finished with a natural wash to “anticipate the patina and grayness” says Stuhlmacher. “The house will not need painting in the future.”
the pale green paint color on the kitchen cabinets and island, window frames, a 12
Above: The pale green paint color on the kitchen cabinets and island, window frames, and doors is Beige Grey, available through Dulux.

the kitchen counters are a dark brown terrazzo and the pendant lights are porce 13
Above: The kitchen counters are a dark brown terrazzo and the pendant lights are porcelain and copper Bufferlamps by Dutch design studio Wieki Somers.
the pendant lights hanging above the custom ash dining tables are original btc  14
Above: The pendant lights hanging above the custom ash dining tables are Original BTC Hector Pendant Lights. The chairs are vintage school chairs sourced by the clients. (For more, see our post 5 Favorites: Sources for Vintage-Style French School Chairs.)

the interior walls are cross laminated timber finished with a transparent white 15
Above: The interior walls are cross-laminated timber finished with a transparent whitewash varnish to allow the wood grain to show. The wood floors are ash.

a view to the kitchen, which has a lacanche chassagne range in terracotta red a 16
Above: A view to the kitchen, which has a Lacanche Chassagne Range in terracotta red and chrome stands out among the otherwise muted palette.
the larger barnlike building is made up of bedrooms, bathrooms, and the central 17
Above: The larger barnlike building is made up of bedrooms, bathrooms, and the central living space, which has Foscarini Gregg Suspension Lamps (one large, medium, and small) overhead, a Carl Hansen & Søn Cuba Lounge Chair, vintage leather butterfly chairs, and a tiled woodstove from Van Hoff Ontwerpen.
the floors in the living room and hallways are finished with liquid polyurethan 18
Above: The floors in the living room and hallways are finished with liquid polyurethane in Dulux’s Beige Grey paint. The classic ceramic ceiling sconce is the Thomas Hoof Ceiling-Mounting Porcelain Light. The doors are fitted with Post & Eger Handles (FL-8644).
doors and the built in cabinetry designed by the architects are all painted wit 19
Above: Doors and the built-in cabinetry designed by the architects are all painted with Farrow & Ball’s Borrowed Light.

in designing two children’s bedrooms, the architects were inspired by train c 20
Above: In designing two children’s bedrooms, the architects were inspired by train compartment bunk beds.
a door from the bunk room leads to the outdoors. 21
Above: A door from the bunk room leads to the outdoors.
a wood veranda runs along the back of the house. the door to the left is painte 22
Above: A wood veranda runs along the back of the house. The door to the left is painted with Farrow & Ball’s Charlotte’s Locks. The French-style wicker chairs are vintage, sourced by the client. (For more wicker furniture, see our post Rattan Revival: New and Vintage Wicker from Atelier Vime.)
a jee o fatline outdoor shower in brushed stainless steel on the far end of the 23
Above: A Jee-O Fatline Outdoor Shower in brushed stainless steel on the far end of the veranda.
a view of the outdoor patio nestled in the nook between the two buildings. 24
Above: A view of the outdoor patio nestled in the nook between the two buildings.
from a distance, the house unassumingly blends into the landscape of goeree ove 25
Above: From a distance, the house unassumingly blends into the landscape of Goeree-Overflakkee.

For more grand European country houses, see our posts:

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