Form follows function is like the one of the most popular tenets that many modernist designers try to live by. The idea behind it is to come up with a designed form and a kind of aesthetics that are based on functional needs rather than just products of an artistic expression.
This modern house, designed by Frenjick Quesada and Hisako Hirayama of Design HQ, is a classic example of how form could actually follow function. Owned by a veterinarian who constantly adopts stray cats and dogs from the streets of Metro Manila, the design primarily called for minimalist, low-maintenance, and animal-friendly design features. Apart from the house, there is also an additional requirement for a kennel housing for six dogs and a cattery for 40 cats.
The client wanted a modern minimalist house of clean geometric lines and a basic palette of gray, black and white. Later on, he agreed to add one accent color to the original achromatic scheme. So, the designers added three red vertical elements to provide a splash of color from the entrance of the house (photo above). Apart from being a focal point, the columns actually function as cabinets for the kitchen behind it.
The ground floor areas are laid out in an open plan. Both the dining area and the kitchen face the garden to allow the owners to cook and dine while enjoying the verdant view of the garden, and, at the same time, to keep an eye on the animals outside. With its open plant layout, multiple large window openings, and plain off-white walls, the house receives a generous amount of natural light during the day and is passively cooled through cross ventilation.
The flooring is finished in polished cement with stainless steel strip inlays to keep the ground floor area animal friendly and low maintenance. Aside from the three red columns, the industrial-looking skeletal stairway dividing the living area from the dining area serves as another focal point.
The dining table, like the flooring, is made of a concrete base in polished cement finish plus a clear glass top. It was the client’s idea, initially intended as a way to cut cost. In spite of being a “cheaper alternative”, the unconventional table became one of the most interesting features of the modern house.
Photos by Erik Liongoren courtesy of Design HQ
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Tags: filipino homes, frenjick quesada, hisako hirayama, home, modern, space matters. filipino design
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For our male readers, here’s a modern design for a bachelor’s pad created by Frenjick Quesada and Hisako Hirayama of Design HQ. What makes this condominium space unique is the unexpected Filipino twist added into its design. This space shows how modern design can be both high in style and big in personality. Read on to know more.
This bachelor’s pad features a clean modern design. Although the condominium space is undeniably masculine, elements of warmth and comfort were consciously integrated by reflecting the owner’s personality and interests onto the design.
A dramatic palette of chocolate brown and warm grays renders the space. Complementing textures of wood and leather were contrasted with stainless steel and other metallic accents, creating a cozy environment for relaxing while, at the same time, being a chic space for entertaining friends.
The client is an avid reader and has a wide collection of books. So, instead of storing the books inside closed cabinets, we decided to showcase them as an integral part of the interior design. Different types of built-in open shelves were carefully added throughout the unit to keep the books organized while making them a part of the interesting composition of the interiors.
There were shelves fitted above the windows, together with a customized step ladder, to maximize the space.
In both the entertainment area and the bedroom, there were drawers built under the ledges to further improve the functionality of the space.
An interesting feature of the design is the Filipino bone-and-wood inlay applied throughout the interiors. This detail was made modern by using customized linear patterns inspired by the client’s Arturo Luz painting displayed in the dining wall. The patterns, reminiscent of the art deco style, were applied to drawer faces, the coffee table top and key furniture pieces.
Another unique use of the bone-and-wood inlay is its application as a monogram on select chairs, spelling the client’s initials in Braille. The same approach was used for the main bookshelves, whose decorative wood panels have inlays that spell “books”. A star pattern was also developed for some drawer faces, since the client’s name literally translates into the word “star”.
*photos by Erik Liongoren courtesy of Design HQ
Tags: bachelor's pad, condo living, filipino design, filipino homes, frenjick quesada, hisako hirayama, interior design, modern, modern filipino, spacematters
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A couple of weeks ago, my googling directed me to the website of Frenjick Quesada and Hisako Hirayama, principal interior designers of Design HQ. Their portfolio is impressive! I particularly appreciate the fact that their works feature a range of design perspectives—from traditional Filipino interiors to modern minimalist spaces—demonstrating their ability to come up with interesting design concepts instead of simply altering popular styles.
Their approach could be attributed to their design philosophy that acknowledges the important role of the client in the whole design process. “We believe in listening to the client. We recognize that each project has its own unique design and functional requirements. Our emphasis on communication results in a true collaboration between the designer and the client. We make every effort to design with a fresh look reflecting the client’s taste and individuality.”
For our next Space Matters features, Frenjick and Hisako will share with us three of their residential projects here in Manila. First up is their east-meets-west design for a home in Southbay, Paranaque. Enjoy!
[Because the family enjoys spending as much time outdoors as they do indoors, the interior was laid out in an open plan, minimizing room divisions to maximize the verdant views outdoors. Even the main entrance is partially screened off by a set of 6x6-inch posts functioning as a see-through partition which sets the foyer from the rest of the interior space.]
[The interior space at the ground floor includes the living area, dining area, and the kitchen, all offering views of the garden.]
[The house’s 260-square meter floor area feels much bigger because of design’s use of an open plan layout, a continuous visual flow from the interior space to the outdoor garden, and the double-height ceiling at the living area.]
[The den/guest room behind the living area also has sliding doors that are kept open when no guests are occupying it, therefore allowing for additional cross ventilation.]
[The furnishings are an eclectic mix of modern western pieces with contemporary and traditional Asian furniture. Antique pieces, such as the mid-century lounge chair and the traditional Chinese cabinet, make great conversational pieces in the living area. Their similar colors allow them to exist harmoniously in spite of their contrasting styles.]
[The design incorporated a lot of wood components throughout the house, such as the custom made front door with kamagong wood inlay, the wooden staircase, and the solid wood furniture pieces, all of which help tie the different design elements together.]
[The large masters’ bedroom consists of an ante room with a lounging area and an entertainment system, and the sleeping area which has a view of the garden below.]
*photos by Erik Liongoren courtesy of Design HQ
Tags: filipino homes, frenjick quesada, hisako hirayama, interior design, space matters
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