This rammed earth tiny home concept reinterprets farmhouses with a pitched green roof and photovoltaic panels!

The Rammed Earth House in Slovenia merges traditional rammed earth building techniques with modern solar energy production methods to reinterpret the early 20th-century farmhouse for today.

Rammed earth is a sustainable building method that has been around for millennia. Dating back to as early as the 9th–7th millennium BC, rammed earth has been trusted as a reliable building method and material for homes and structures on every continent except Antarctica. Bringing the method to Slovenia, three architects Merve nur Başer, Aslı Erdem, and Fatma Zeyneb Önsiper conceptualized their tiny home called Rammed Earth House to reinterpret early 20th-century farmhouses, holding onto a traditional pitched roof and introducing modern solar energy production methods.

In conceptualizing the Rammed Earth House, the team of architects set out to balance contemporary energy production practices with traditional building methods. Located in Dobrava, a settlement in Slovenia’s flatland region, the Rammed Earth House is inspired by the famed floating roof designed by Slovenian architect Oton Jugovec. Since rammed earth involves compacting a mixture of subsoil into an externally supported framework, the three architects behind Rammed Earth House conceptualized a concrete foundation and timber framework. It’s generally difficult to make changes to a rammed earth structure, but the home’s overhang roof allows cement to be added in the case that extra stability is needed. Rammed Earth House is sheltered with an overhang green roof that works to protect the building material from the threat of erosion as Dobrava experiences rainy, temperate, and snowy seasons.

Rammed Earth House’s sustainable build allows for passive insulation and heating methods to cool and warm up the home. 

Specifically oriented to take in the sun rays during winter months and block them out during hotter seasons, the Rammed Earth House takes cues from its surrounding environment and climate to ensure comfortable, passive heating and insulation throughout the year. Windows are also strategically placed around the house to allow cross-ventilation throughout the home and changing seasons. The green roof also holds an array of photovoltaic panels to power the home with harnessed solar energy and a rainwater collector for water recycling and an integrated septic tank system. Inside, each living area is appropriately situated to benefit from the passive heating and insulation methods. The house’s north facade, for example, features fewer windows than the west facade to decrease potential heat loss during colder months.

Designers: Merve nur Başer, Aslı Erdem, and Fatma Zeyneb Önsiper

This cabin’s hexagonal extension forms an interesting geometric focal point for this rustic yet modern home

Adding extensions to your home is always a delicate job. Since it’s an extension, it should only complement the rest of your home like a pair of shoes that tie your whole outfit together. Finding balance in geometric, angular framing and exterior metal ribbing, architecture firm Reddymade collaborated with contemporary artist Ai Weiwei to build an artfully understated hexagonal extension on a Salt Point home in upstate New York.

The six-sided extension connects to and extrudes from an enclosed, glass corridor, perching above a green, hilly lawn to overlook the home’s rural landscape. The project’s metal ribbing and optic white exterior offer contemporary flairs to the extension’s farmhouse style layout and rustic setting. Setting the tone for the interior’s airy, white, open spaces, the extension’s bright exterior feels right at home. Inside the home’s extension, Reddymade and Ai Weiwei made room for two bedrooms and living space.

Adorning the walls with a curated collection of framed artworks, Ai Weiwei and Reddymade hit a collaborative sweet spot in their shared love for poetry and visual art. The extension’s gleaming inside walls provide a white canvas for furniture and a collection of artworks to take center stage. Similarly, the spotless white metal exterior merges seamlessly with the glass facades and white framing of the pre-existing home, bringing attention to and brightening the property’s rolling green hills.

“The extension was designed to be strikingly simple and minimal, which is reflected not only in its graphic language but also in its materiality. The metal rib exterior allows for a crisp edge and ensures project longevity. Through its materiality, it also has a relationship with the previously completed Artfarm on the property,” describes Reddymade founder, Suchi Reddy.

Designers: Ai Weiwei & Reddymade

Perched atop a rolling hill in Upstate New York, this minimalist home extension adds a rustic twist to a midcentury modern home.

The hexagonal add-on extrudes from a glass corridor, attaching the extension to the pre-existing home.

20th-century Italian interior design elements and glazed glass facades are brightened with optic white walls.

“Its simplicity and clarity of concept make it special. It is about adding an object to the property, on which the clients have installed sculptural artworks,” explains Suchi Reddy

Antique furnishings and modern touches tie up each room with balance in design.

“The extension has its own sculptural quality but simultaneously doesn’t feel like a showpiece. It’s humble,” Reddy continues.

Sculptural art pieces give the home a distinct personality that hovers between midcentury and contemporary design.

This house made of wood, straw, and cork is a great example of modern, sustainable architectural design!

Somewhere on the outskirts of a small village in Italy, a couple of computer scientists call a simple farmhouse, built from wood, straw, and cork, home. Before either of us get any ideas, this isn’t a modern take on “The Three Little Pigs.” LCA Architetti, an architecture firm based in Milan, has finished work on The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork– a farmhouse-style home fittingly named for being primarily constructed from wood, straw, and cork.

The two-story farmhouse has a prefabricated timber structure that reflects the style of neighboring farmhouses and barns located in the immediate area. Blending with the surrounding countryside, The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork dons a grainy exterior with cladding formed from cork, a type of insulating material harvested from the bark of cork oak trees. The home is further insulated through the use of straw, which is traditionally used as an insulator for other rural dwellings like barns and henhouses. The straw insulation consists of repurposed discarded rice plants handed over by nearby farmers in the area.

Sustainability was a top priority in constructing The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork, and the house’s commitment to energy-efficiency is exhibited through the recycled material used for insulation, as well as the cluster of solar panels found on the home’s roof. Coupling the use of recycled straw and cork for insulation with photovoltaics for solar energy, The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork stands as a self-powered home, decreasing the overall consumption of energy and emissions of greenhouse gases like CO2.

The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork was built for a young couple of computer scientists who longed to work closer to nature and live a more sustainable lifestyle. To find harmony with the natural surroundings of Magnago, Italy, The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork is a sustainable house characterized by simple architecture. Everything from the materials used for construction to the chosen methods of insulation is dedicated to preserving the home’s natural surroundings.

Designer: LCA Architetti

The combination of straw insulation and cork cladding works to keep The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork both warm and eco-friendly.

Cork is a naturally durable, recyclable, and insulation construction material.

On one side of The House of Wood, Straw, and Cork a large, glass-paned window merge into the roof to provide additional skylight inside.

The two-story home features a living room at its center with high ceilings and an unobstructed view of the surrounding countryside.

Inside, a calming mix of natural smoothed over wood and cooled down stone walls enhance the home’s simple design.

Chromatic shading flows throughout the house, allowing for sharp angles to bring out the darker and brighter shades from the natural wood accents.

This indoor vertical farm relies on hydroponics to grow crops anywhere during any season!

Since 2013, the Green Concept Award has functioned as a platform for networking and been awarded to designers who have made globally sustainable and innovative products. The awards recognize products already on the market or in their conceptual stages that stand out for their design, innovation, and commitment to sustainability. Each year, the Green Concept Award jury members finalize a pre-selection list before awarding the winning product with the year’s title. One of the products on 2021’s pre-selection list is Farmhouse, a hydroponic vertical farm conceptualized by designers at Kingston University’s School of Art.

Hydroponic vertical farming is a form of farming that ditches the need for soil, substituting in different root-supporting materials like peat moss or Rockwool, allowing plants to grow in nutrient-rich water. The five-tiered Farmhouse is stocked with trays that contain all the materials necessary for optimal hydro-plant growth, like filtered, nutrient-infused water, oxygen, and root support.

Additionally, the vertical farm comes equipped with bright lights, either LEDs or HIDs, to replace the natural sunlight outdoors so that each plant can receive special lighting according to its own Daily Light Integral (DLI). Hydroponics is a sustainable farming practice for many reasons, but a significant one might be that by tending to a hydroponic farm, like Farmhouse, crops can be grown anywhere, during any time of the year.

The food we eat on a day-to-day basis travels about 1,500 miles before reaching our plate. While picking produce up at the supermarket seems simple, a lot of pollution takes place behind the scenes, all before hitting the shelves. Delivering produce to grocery stores across the globe requires lots of plastic packaging and plenty more fuel for transportation, increasing levels of microplastic and air pollution in the process. The designers behind Farmhouse aim to cut those unsustainable practices by designing a hydroponic farming solution that can be used in any home, during any season.

Designer: Kingston University (Kingston School of Art)

The five shelves of the Farmhouse contain all the necessary materials required for hydroponic farming.

Outfitted with shelves, Farmhouse grows crops using metal trays that guide the plant’s direction of growth.

A water system, filter, and root-support material all work together to help produce crops through hydroponics.

Without the convenience of natural sunlight, hydroponic farming relies on LEDs and HIDs to feed crops with light.

Thanks to a ribbed glass pane and warm color scheme, Farmhouse can fit into any room.

Coming in denim blue, moss green, rose pink, scarlet red, and blonde yellow – the Farmhouse also comes with a simple frame and intuitive build.

A raised top shelf feeds the plants inside the Farmhouse with plenty of airflow and oxygen.