Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

 

Edgley Design’s Pear Tree House is an outstanding family home in the leafy suburb of Dulwich in South London. Formerly the site of a Victorian fruit orchard, this residence has been designed around a 100 year old pear tree which sits smack bang in the middle of the large back block site. Call me romantic or call me naive but I love that this project resists the developer instinct to subdivide into a multi-unit scheme and instead strives for a generous and well designed single dwelling.

Upon entry, Pear Tree House may appear to be modest and compact but unbeknownst to the passerby, it opens up to an expansive block beyond. The house is made up of two volumes that are connected by a glazed walkway that takes you past the large inteyrnal courtyard. Most of the building’s glazing fronts this courtyard where the pear tree majestically sprawls out. The architects played with the idea of turning the house inwards in order to create a feeling of privacy from surrounding terrace houses and to take advantage of light and air flow that is able to benefit both volumes.

 

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

Pear Tree House by Edgley Design | Yellowtrace

 

Concrete and timber are the dominant materials used for both the exterior and interior of the house. From the exterior, the building has a board-marked concrete base which complements the black timber framed upper level. Accents of aluminium and warm timber battens help to create a sense of repetitive verticality. These striking vertical elements give you the sense that you are looking through the tree trunks of the old fruit orchard. It was important that the house was informed by its surroundings and responded to its immediate context. Many of the building’s construction materials have been reused and the use of local larch timber helps the house blend into its wooded environment.

The highly contrasting black and grey exterior give way to a more subtle yet stunning interior. Board-marked concrete walls are left exposed but are warmed with the use of oak veneered joinery and brass detailing throughout. The common spaces feel equally sophisticated and comfortably domestic. With the help of the glazed walkway link and void spaces, the volumes are incredible light filled spaces and are also spacious and materially rich. I love the green banquets in the sitting room which are an awesomely retro touch adding a glint of colour to an interior of mostly muted tones.

Pear Tree House is Jake Edgley’s own house and was the deserving recipient of the RIBA London Award 2015. What I find surprising is that this was a self built project that relied on friends to help construct. I’m slightly dubious of this fact but ultimately super impressed by this house that has been well executed, carefully crafted and contextually considered.

 


[Images courtesy of Edgley Design. Photography by Nick Worley.]

 

About The Author

Fenina Acance

Architecting away in Melbourne, Fenina is a shameless fashion, art and design fanatic who loves defying the relentless Melbournian uniform of black on black on black. Often spotted strutting a boisterous mix of pattern and colour, her eclectic love for the bold, raw and textured fuels her passion for design and contemporary art. When not indulging in Cy Twombly’s sensitive scribbles or Serra’s evocative sculptural forms, her love for everything Italian consumes the rest of her time. Whether it’s the language, design or food (especially food), Fenina is obsessed!

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