29th May 2020

It feels as if spring has shifted into summer this week, even though we’re still in May. The biggest challenge of our home in summer is the temperature. We face south-east at the back where there’s a glass-roofed conservatory that’s our dining room, and as this is open to the kitchen and the sitting room there’s really no way of preventing this heat from just …. seeping everywhere. If you’re someone who really enjoys warmth, you’d love this set up. If, like me, you really can’t handle heat and enjoy cooler days, you’d be dreaming of escaping to a house that was well ventilated, with extensive glazing in the right places (not on the roof in other words), and open plan living where every space feels comfortable all year round.

A house like this one in Sweden, say, which has been added to my ‘dream homes I’d really like to live in’ list. I happened across this house on Pinterest, and traced it back to a feature in Residence – you can see it here – with these photos by Mikeal Lundblad (do check out Mikeal’s website as his interior photography is really beautifully composed and elegant). I was sold from that first photo above (I know, it’s my second black timber house in a week – I sense a theme here) so I had to dig a little further to discover the story of this house, which was designed by Sommarnöjen, a company that specialises in modular homes. Think clean lines, with a focus on the use of natural materials and with extensive glazing to connect each space to its location.

This house was designed as summer home for a family of four, and was intended as a contrast to their main city home. The use of materials was key to this, and the entire interior is clad in oiled birch plywood – a decision that really helps ground this house to its natural setting. As the owner said in the Residence interview: “In town, we have a completely white apartment and I want it to be clear that we are in the country. It doesn’t matter if there are notches, scuffs and marks in wood, it is beautiful anyway. If you have quality, it will be all the better with time.”

Each house from Sommarnöjen arrives on site on a lorry, already built with the kitchen, bathrooms, and everything else in place. As always, I’m drawn to this restrained palette and the idea of living in a timber cabin, where the natural grains of the wood create the decorative backdrop to each space.

See more from Sommarnöjen here.

All photography by Mikeal Lundblad via Residence.