Petersen D91 bricks helped the architects deliver on the owners’ design brief for privacy and security in a new large home that was built to the boundary.
Located on a quiet street in Glen Iris, lined with low fencing and unremarkable architecture, Haze stands out from the existing houses in a respectful and refreshing way.
Explaining why Haze is such a spectacular success, NTF Architecture director Brett Nixon said, “Engaging with our clients and enjoying what their brief brings to the process creates opportunities and promotes interesting outcomes. Because, without that input, we may never have started from that point.”
The initial brief was, indeed, challenging: To deliver a sense of privacy and security in a large five-bedroom home – built to the boundary – for a growing family (with a penchant for white box architecture) without creating an aggressive façade dominating the street.
Haze is NTF Architecture’s unique and bold response to that brief.
“We knew the brief was always going to be a bit confronting with the neighbours in its context. So we were looking at ways to soften the brief so that it wasn’t alien in its context,” Nixon explained.
The ever-calming Petersen D91 bricks were used purposefully on the front fence, garage and entrance wall.
“We just think they’re beautiful bricks sitting really nicely within a monochromatic colour scheme,” Nixon said.
Most importantly, they offer great value to both architects and owners, enabling them to deliver on the brief and more.
“One of the things that was really good about the Petersen bricks, was their soft colour and texture. A straight-coloured pressed brick would have presented more aggressively on the street. The bricks were so successful in making what could have been a fairly hard element a lot softer in its street context.
“And one of the other things that was important to the client was having a grand entry and feature stair. The Petersen bricks on the fence provided the privacy that they wanted.
“We chose Petersen bricks because they are consistent in their blend, so we got exactly what we thought we were getting.”
A spectacular white perforated metal screen, which looks like softly pleated curtains, is paired with the bricks on the front elevation. This practical design, which took a number of prototypes to get right, allows the owners to see out clearly onto the street during the day (and night) without anyone being able to look in. It’s also used at the back of the home, providing privacy for the bedrooms and a sunshade for the living areas.
Haze makes a beautiful and bold statement on this leafy suburban street. Even from the outside, it’s obvious that the house delivers everything the owners hoped for – a beautiful big family home, providing the privacy they wanted, and light-filled spaces that work really well now and will continue to do so when the children get older.
But most importantly for the neighbours, as Nixon concluded, “The front elevation sits beautifully for a house that’s so close to the street. It’s quite soft; I really like the bricks and I really like the screen.”
Photographer: Dave Kulesza