The Cubby House Challenge is an annual auction held in Melbourne raising money for the Kids Under Cover organisation to prevent youth homelessness.
A previous blog post on The AEC covered some of the fun (and wacky) entries to date. Below however is one of my favourite home fitout designers' 2015 entry - designed by the Doherty Design Studio and built by Visual Builders.
The Vardo Hut was designed by Mardi Doherty, whose inspiration came from memories of her own childhood: "Cubbyhouses represent some of the happiest times of my childhood and, today, play an essential role in my own children's recreation and creative development. I wanted our Vardo Hut to stimulate that same happy, escapist feel for other children, while also sitting in harmony with the garden."
Doherty Design's previous projects have displayed a knack for crafting spaces that pay close attention to materiality and detailing - combining a sense of play with functionality.
And the Vardo Hut continues this sensibility, the form mimicking the frontage of a traditional Gypsy Wagon and the fitout utilising a selected material and colour palette to create a number of fun and intimate "chill out" spaces.
The exterior's curved semi-transparent platic roof cleverly allows light in, whilst the forms vertical timber slat cladding fitted with mesh for creeping plants and a ledge for storage and display creates a homely feel. A ladder to a loft and various sized circle window cut-outs with tilted shutters invite the children to interact with and manipulate their environment.
The multiple points and methods of entry engaging the young mind and offering a sense of adventure, whilst encouraging physical development through the use of co-ordination and gross motor skills.
Inside, a natural ply structure, wall and joinery finish is combined with artificial grass, a black net and coloured window and cabinetry inside faces.
The hut won People’s Choice Award and sold for $9000.00 at an Auction, the highest price reached out of the six entries and well over its reserve of $6500.00.
Via Habitus Living.