Paul Archer Design


Lawrie Park Gardens

Classic modernist family home, strikingly simple, organised around a vertical void.


This 1950s detached house was in need of a makeover to suit a modern and growing family. Light wells and open spaces create a spacious experience, polychromatic renders play with shadow and form, all whilst paying homage to the feel of a modernist home of mid-century London. Bespoke joinery and polished concrete flooring create a sleek look that is simple in appearance yet detailed in execution.

Originally, I was looking to make alterations to an existing property to achieve something both more liveable and more unique. However, with the guidance of PAD, it soon became apparent that a new build would present a far greater opportunity to realise the brief and from that point, the design quickly evolved. The resulting house was created on the relatively modest footprint of the original building but still succeeds in creating a great deal of usable, adaptable living space as well as a profusion of natural light.

Project description

The clients approached us to modernise their existing 1950s home to make better use of interior space. However, as work started, they learned they would be expecting a baby girl and so the brief was expanded into a design for a family home. It was decided that a new build house would be the most efficient way to achieve this goal, to ensure they were getting the most out of the site.

The structure is inspired by the iconic Rietveld Schröder House in Utrecht—an architectural landmark of the De Stijl movement. Designed around open-plan living, Schröder House’s characteristics of total fluidity between interior and exterior questioned the notion of what a family home could represent. These principles of shared spaces, clean lines, and geometric forms were carried through in our design of Lawrie Park Gardens.

The form of the house has been created with a series of interlocking volumes derived from the key structural elements of the original house. Central to the plan is a void creating a double-height space from which natural light is allowed to flood through a large roof light. Kitchen, dining and living spaces are open-plan and interwoven between the two floors. Openings in walls have been used to borrow light and form clear lines of sight through the property. With the owners' desire for the space to be versatile and adaptive to family life, sliding partitions have been chosen to separate spaces when required.

Material design

The rendered exterior walls are in three tones of grey, highlighting the interlocking forms.


Before GIFA
113.4 sqm
After GIFA
167.7 sqm
£2385.25 / sqm
PSK Group
Structural Engineer
Fluid Structures Limited
Oliver McGivern

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