Take me to Church, Norm Architects

They can have their basilica and cathedrals - this is my sort of church. A temple of 
Soft Minimalism, by the most high Norm Architects.

It's their latest project, a beachfront home in Kattegat, Norway. 

Keeping with the church metaphor, this summerhouse is intended as a place of retreat, a place of profound calm and peace. Every design choice and architectural feature aligns with that intention, while blending seamlessly with the wild nature outside.  

The light tone-on-tone palette of materials was a very conscious decision by Norm Architects, not least because it amplifies natural light and by doing so, highlights and celebrates the transitions of day. This is a place to slow down and notice the little things, like the changing light at dusk... 

We love the choice of brick flooring - it's a traditional choice that pays homage to Danish Mid Century modernism, but also lends a subtle pattern play to the spaces. 

A framed view of the essentialist kitchen from the sunken living room.

One of our favourite details: the quiet drama of the extra-wide doorway jambs. 

What's that famous Eames quote? The details are not details. They make the design.

I spy inbuilt, integrated storage - the perfect way to keep the sanctity of simplicity.

Another detail I spotted and loved - that little first stone step up to the hallway on the right there... see how it's a different material to the rest of the steps? And see how it mirrors the hearth? 

The use of Douglas Fir planks to cocoon the interior (from flooring to walls and wrapping the ceiling) brings warmth to the space, and continues the blurring of boundaries between indoors and outdoors.

Another example of how they've beautifully blurred the boundary between indoors and out; this bedroom is a breath away from sleeping under the stars.

A space so perfect it could be a painting. We love the textured plaster walls and tub, the extra-deep sill/frame, the huge picture window that would make it feel as if you were bathing outside amongst the trees. 

Very clever shower - with the use of two doors, one glass and one thick timber, it becomes either an internal shower or an outdoor shower for when you come in off the beach...

There's also a second bathroom, with an open-sky shower...

Here endeth the blessing.

All photography by Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen for Norm Architects

Invite some of this inspiration and aesthetic into your own home:
Shop Soft Minimal - the coffee table book from Norm Architects.


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