written by:
photos by:
February 3, 2016
A 1,500-square-foot home in Melbourne welcomes a modern black and white kitchen, dining, and living area.
Deck of Australian addition to Edwardian home.

“From the beginning we knew we needed to remove the rear 80s extension and preserve the front Edwardian home,” architect Michael Ong says. “So, we were interested in how the two different architectural styles would work together.” The old Edwardian home can be seen in the center of the frame, through the dining room and kitchen of the addition. Merbau Decking extends into the garden, which became the focal point of the home.

Photo by 
1 / 8
Masson for Light Apollo pendants over Falcon oven in kitchen of Melbourne addition.

A range by Falcon stands in the kitchen; Apollo pendants by Masson for Light hang above the island. Polished concrete flooring acts as a uniting tone between the room's black and white surfaces.

Photo by 
2 / 8
Marcel Breuer Club Chair Model B3 in modern Australian home addition.

“We kept the tones very neutral because we wanted the colors of the garden to come through,” Ong says. “Light also plays an important role here, and again the neutral tones help highlight the changes in the light and sky.” Ong’s team used Melbourne's Ajar Furniture and Design store to supply the home's furnishings, and this Marcel Breuer Club Chair Model B3 sits off the dining room. 

Photo by 
3 / 8
Indoor-outdoor dining space of Australian home.

“Natural light was not great in this house,” Ong says. “So it was important that we came up with a concept that allowed natural light to flow through the new extension and also to the existing front part of the house.”

Photo by 
4 / 8
Courtyard and indoor-outdoor design of Australian home.

“The new living area is now nestled between the rear garden and the new courtyard,” Ong says. “We felt this approach not only respected [the clients’] interests and lifestyle, but we hope it will enhance it.” Aluminum-framed windows and doors by Capral allow the owners to bring the outside in. 

Photo by 
5 / 8
Yard between old Edwardian and modern addition.

Ong refers to the open space between the old and new structures as “the void,” and he says it's meant “to enhance the ‘pavilion’ concept" of the dwelling. Four sets of sliding glass doors surround the space.

Photo by 
6 / 8
Caroma bath and Parisi toilet in modern bathroom.

An Envy II Wall-Faced Suite toilet by Parisi sits in the home’s sole bathroom and Caroma’s Starlett 1850 Island Bath was installed next to the window. 

Photo by 
7 / 8
Recycled brick passageway between old home and its modern addition.

“Instead of extending the new living area from the existing house, we decided to build a stand-alone structure off the front house and connect the two spaces with a central passageway,” Ong says. This made the back of the home distinctive from the Edwardian front. Recyled brick was used to create the connecting hallway. 

Photo by 
8 / 8
Deck of Australian addition to Edwardian home.

“From the beginning we knew we needed to remove the rear 80s extension and preserve the front Edwardian home,” architect Michael Ong says. “So, we were interested in how the two different architectural styles would work together.” The old Edwardian home can be seen in the center of the frame, through the dining room and kitchen of the addition. Merbau Decking extends into the garden, which became the focal point of the home.

Architect 

When the owners of a property in Melbourne’s Hawthorn suburb approached director Michael Ong of MODO about a possible project, they presented a straightforward order. They liked the Edwardian features at the front of their home, but they were frustrated with the dark living room and awkward kitchen toward the back. They asked Ong, simply, to change it. Ong agreed that the house’s initial “charming” qualities gave way to a mismatched '80s renovation, but he wanted to replace it with a structure unique to their personalities. The couple spent a lot of time outdoors with their dog and cat, and they planned to plant vegetables alongside the verdant native species already growing in their garden. This was the detail Ong used to add dimension to the couple’s wishes, and he set out to create a modern addition that focused on the outdoors—all while complementing the Edwardian aesthetic everyone agreed to keep. “So often I see extensions that try to blend the new works with the old house, and more often than not, the ‘blending’ creates a confused architectural outcome that diminishes the value of both,” he says. “If we look at creating a contrast, we can address the different styles of architecture separately.” The distinctions between the old and the new, the front and the back, are what give the residence its unusual beauty.

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

45 dva 2270 persp1 cmyk 0
The prospect of retirement doesn’t just signal the end of a career; it offers the chance to recalibrate and re-prioritize in life.
July 25, 2016
18
You don’t have to choose between sustainable energy and curb appeal.
July 19, 2016
jakemagnus queensland 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
July 06, 2016
content delzresidence 013 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 29, 2016
abc malacari marwick stair 01 0
A simple set of stairs is a remodel’s backbone.
June 28, 2016
Design Award of Excellence winner Mellon Square.
Docomomo US announces the winners of this year's Modernism in America Awards. Each project showcases exemplary modern restoration techniques, practices, and ideas.
June 27, 2016
monogram dwell sf 039 1
After last year’s collaboration, we were excited to team up with Monogram again for the 2016 Monogram Modern Home Tour.
June 27, 2016
switch over chicago smart renovation penthouse deck smar green ball lamps quinze milan lounge furniture garapa hardwood
A strategic rewire enhances a spec house’s gut renovation.
June 26, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent coralie gourguechon treviso italy cphotos by coralie gourguechon co produced by isdat planche anatomique de haut parleur1
Coralie Gourguechon's paper objects will make you see technology in a whole new way.
June 26, 2016
green machine smart home aspen colorado facade yard bocci deck patio savant
Smart technology helps a house in Aspen, Colorado, stay on its sustainable course.
June 25, 2016
Compact Aglol 11 television plastic brionvega.
The aesthetic appeal of personal electronics has long fueled consumer interest. A new industrial design book celebrates devices that broke the mold.
June 25, 2016
modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
Exterior of Huneeus/Sugar Bowl Home.
San Francisco–based designer Maca Huneeus created her family’s weekend retreat near Lake Tahoe with a relaxed, sophisticated sensibility.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
angular
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent marjan van aubel london cwai ming ng current window
Marjan Van Aubel makes technology a little more natural.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016