Empty single-family dwelling, Bremen
An optimum positioning of a house should determine the design strategy. If one wishes the master bedroom to face east in order to awaken with the sun, the children's rooms should be supplied during the day with a warm southern light. Not to be overlooked are the living areas with a terrace, which should face west in order to be to be caressed in an orange-red evening light at sunset.
It should be a natural dynamic to orient the structure to the ever-changing daily course of the sun’s rays – taking into account that this dynamic is not impeded by zoning-laws that dictate where a house has to stand. In order to make this work, many different drafts and concept-proposals must be produced, all taking into account the available continuance building’s structural parameters.
The draft proposal for a new building by a Bremen architect won the final approval.
Within the project team there was a constant dialog between the design and construction staffs; design blueprints were produced, variations were discussed and worked out, space drafts were provided, colors and materials were suggested and selected, and the free-surface planning of the architecture was adapted.
What was ultimately created was a gracious domicile upon which the sun seemingly lingered and only reluctantly left behind at the end of the day...
Contrasts generate pleasant tension and allow the historical components of the building, like stucco covers, varnished Lamberien, wooden stairs and wooden doors, as well as the purist interior, to meld perfectly together and form a unique dynamic. Expertly coordinated materials connect these style-epochs and fuse the elements to a unified form. This keen contrast-effect is strengthened by specific and effective applications of the signal color red within the whole building.
Contrasts are the salt in the soup – countless variations are conceivable – they must simply be applied concisely and with conviction...
Due to its architectural constellation this attic is flooded with daylight. A three-sided, sound-isolated glass separation to the stairwell allows the light to spill onto the underneath floors. Without any superfluous compartmentalization a generous and light-filled work and lounge area with small shower-bath and Dresser - serving as a delightful creative retreat - could be integrated on approx. 45 m². Even if this space has lost his original meaning, a high degree of quality of life has been reclaimed.
The facade still had the original coat of paint – and the tracks of time clung to it. Sheets of color detached themselves from the filigree, glazed rung windows, which steamed up in winter from the inside. The sandstone base threatened to crumble, and the roof tiles, which stood firm for many years against all kinds of climatic conditions, showed a broadly diversified color palette through their patina.
The villa was built in 1912 by a Schwetzinger architect for himself and his family .No descendant ever dared to put a hand on it – perhaps from fear, more likely from reverence.
It is a great challenge to restore an object to its original state – there must be respect for the original architectural design language, materials, and philosophy, as well as the protection of the original intent of the architect.
Minimum interventions in facade openings and subtle wall breakthroughs opened up new spaces, which were necessary to accommodate and adjust to changed general living conditions. Through special customization of the rung windows - such as double-glazing - the energy conservation measures necessary in today’s environment could be implemented, while simultaneously protecting the window’s original external appearance. Extensive measures necessary for the protection and preservation of the structural fabric of the villa were implemented. The highest objective was to restore this Art Nouveau villa authentically, and to protect the integrity of its original design.
The interior of a high-quality Fashion boutique should present itself with distinguished restraint, so that all styles and trends can highlighted without distractions. No matter which latest color or style is “up to date” the location always appears fresh and features a different configuration every season.
All shelves and furnishings acquired an unobtrusive champagne tone which blends with all the collection’s colors. Wide-surface podiums with direct spot-lighting create the perfect setting for elaborate interior decorations. Reflecting surfaces bring the rooms to life and cause some amusing disorientation.
The perfectly situated seating areas, which are aligned in design with the interior architecture, invite one to lounge and linger and perhaps even enjoy a brief chat in “distinguished restraint “...
Flexible and adaptable store construction systems were renounced, instead the positioning, structure, and organization of the merchandise was exactly and precisely defined. In this way, a straight and very logical, architectural interior design concept could be created. The reserved colors and well-chosen materials create a very sedate, masculine effect and offer an appropriate atmosphere for the presentation of high-quality products. The most important design element became the play of light and shadow, which lent this location a breath of indulgent extravagance.
The idyllic outside terrace helps create an intimate and sympathetic small-town atmosphere, where one feels unhurried and relaxed – far away from the hustle and bustle of a large city – and one is welcome to linger and enjoy the hospitality of a historical provincial town with a beguiling personality.
This is the exact thematic of this small shop. The cashier bar, the decor display surfaces, and the bench were created as a unified concept for space-saving reasons, and the changing cabins were discretely placed in an unobtrusive corner. All elements were varnished white to suggest generosity of space and to allow the bright colors of the bathing fashions to shine through.
The wonderful underwater pictures by photographer Reinhard Dirscherl – used characteristically as an underwater frieze throughout the pool shop – are doubtlessly polarizing...and with a little imagination and fantasy we can lose ourselves momentarily in the depths of the sea...
Two glass cabinets, subtending on opposite sides and taking nearly the full length of the available space, offer immediate access to vast amounts eyewear.
A cold industrial screed and display cabinets and table elements made of Makassar were juxtaposed so as to elicit tension between, on the one hand, the cool glass surfaces and industrial floor, and on the other, the warmth of the wood furnishings. The strong blue hue of the seating elements was derived from the design language of the company logo.
Adjustable standard-store construction systems with slit rails and wooden panels had to give way to the reserved interior in order to convert a standard presentation area with department store optics into a compelling high-end-product-promotion and support area with High Fashion ambience.
A strong appearance with increased presence creates a precise formula for success ..
Like a liberating blow, the measures taken to restore the structural integrity and aesthetic fabric of the house worked. Old wooden floors re-appeared, concealed wooden holding walls wanted in the interior decoration were liberated, and an old wooden staircase proudly displayed the worn tracks of old age. New facade openings were generously added in order to be near as possible to nature.
Unfortunately, the decrepit balcony construction could not survive the trip back in time for reasons of safety and prudent structural engineering. Instead, a suitable alternative was chosen in the form of a steel construction with historical support pillars, which give the impression to have been always there...
No matter which predilections play a role – the bathroom should be easy to clean and correspond precisely and suitably to the requirements of the inhabitants.
Out of a generously spaced 80’s style bathroom with the toiletries and bathing objects chronologically positioned along the walls, two separated areas which could be used independently of each other were created. The shower area made from flagstones was separated from the WC area by a sandblasted glass door.
Attention was drawn to the practicable unit furniture in which all essential utensils could be stowed away and allowed the eye to focus on the well-chosen materials. The large mirror extends the space and greets the inhabitants every morning with a smile...
For a easy-to-care-for, low-maintenance garden to be as attractive in the summer as in winter, sensible planning is required. The available surface was structured graphically and laid out with terrace surfaces of weather-resistant Bankirai, bright green grassy plains, grasses, and boxes which have a lively permanence in summers and winters alike. Only several broad-leaved trees remind one of the change of seasons and the leaf-collecting activity linked with this natural process...
The green areas are watered automatically, by means of programmable sprinkling, and the plants receive the necessary humidity through droplet irrigation devices located in surrounding earth. When darkness falls, the uncluttered, simple garden is transformed by a large number of lighting elements into a sensual paradise with a seductively romantic mood, inviting one to drop in and chill out...
A plethora of construction machines and tools besiege the building sites, as if they were being displayed in a mechanical engineering exhibit. Often this creates the appearance of many diligent "assistants" wandering around completely confused, involuntarily and loudly drilling and hammering, in order to fray the nerves of the building and construction supervisor.
Where one hammers, things fall; the building site, – which looks chaotic at first sight – slowly undergoes a metamorphosis and becomes the long desired dream house, roof-garden apartment, or purist designer-store. The client conveys a deep trust and profound confidence in the ability of the architect and construction staff to transform the wild chaos of a building site into the perfect masterpiece of his dreams...
Harmonious living spaces reflect the character of the inhabitants. They are authentic and do not shy away from expressing their identity. Our task is to discover and conceptualize this authentic identity - with sensitivity, enthusiasm and modesty - by engaging in a constant dialogue with the customer, and to let the ideas and revelations cultivated during this dialogue flow onto the architecture without losing our own identity.
Simple beauty, timeless design, and well thought-out functionality always assert themselves in the long term. Design concepts of consequence and conviction are arrived at only when instinct supersedes reason and all alternatives disappear. Compromises are not contemplated – time is precious and not to be squandered looking for alternative solutions.
Ultimately, the power to change and improve and beautify our surroundings lies in our own hands. It is a wonderful and powerful challenge to meet, and the ability to carry forth our responsibilities with joy, energy and imagination is what gives us the greatest and most profound satisfaction.
member of the Architect’s Association, Bavaria, Munich (Member No. 184327)
member alliance of German interior architects (BDIA), Berlin
After completion of her studies in 1994 at the Darmstadt FH, Silvia Decke received her diploma from the department of Architecture – with a major focus in interior architecture and design. Her dissertation „Conference and Congressional Hotel“ was presented with the "Hessian Builders Association“ prize. After working with several architectural firms, Silvia Decke founded her own business and opened her planning office for architecture and interior design.
Whether it is a modest row house or a dazzling and representative villa, a cool exhibition stand in Cologne, or a fresh pool shop in Turkey, an unavoidable demolition, or a monument-preservation and conservation task, a discreet tax office or a stylish fashion store, an adventurous attic renovation or a geometrical garden creation...
... behind every project exists a crystal-clear concept, vast amounts of enthusiasm, a meticulous attention to detail, and a love for the continuous exchange of ideas in the formative and economic realms with the construction team.
We accompany our clients from the first breath of an idea, through the planning and construction phases, up to the completion of the task. We are your project-partner and contact, and your conduit to the professional planners and all participating companies taking part in the project.
Our project blueprints are based on extensive draft work, and take into account the feasibility and the given cost frame of the project. Creativity, an interest in colors, materials, surfaces and the newest technologies are the basic prerequisites for the conversion and completion of a project task.
We regard ourselves as directors of the architectural branch, in the private sphere as well as in the commercial area. We bring the requisite professionalism, patience, and diplomacy – as well as the necessary tranquility – to the task, yet we are always prepared to think outside the box...
architecture - interior design
fon: ++49-89-44 388 400
fax: ++49-89-44 388 409
architecture - interior design
fon: ++49-89-44 388 400
fax: ++49-89-44 388 409
Dipl.-Ing. SILVIA DECKE BDIA
is a registered member of the Architect's Association in Bavaria, Waisenhausstraße 4, 80637 München. The authorization for the job title arises from this membership.
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