written by:
December 31, 2015
As another year draws to a close, please find a few favorite stories from 2015. I'd like to thank all of the architects, designers, homeowners, writers, photographers, illustrators, and editors that delivered another year of incredible modern projects to the pages of Dwell—their combined efforts made the task of picking just one per issue very difficult! Here's to 2016, and Happy New Year!
Modular Texas home facade and yard

December/January 2015: The New Prefab

A modular family compound in Wimberley, Texas. 

The Texas architecture firm Lake|Flato specializes in gracious and airy dream homes that embrace the outdoors. This project is a modern collection of bunkhouses for an extended clan of three generations. The focal point of the compound is a 16-by-28-foot deck—a kind of outdoor living room with a fireplace and a breathtaking view of the river below.  

Photo by 
Originally appeared in This Modular Compound Accommodates the Whole Family
1 / 10
Crestwood Renovation kitchen and dining room.

February 2015: A Fresh Start

Renovating a Los Angeles home by A. Quincy Jones.

A. Quincy Jones was determined to prove "that modern architecture could be available at every income level," says Cory Bruckner, author of the book A. Quincy Jones. In the late 1940s, Jones set out to improve the quality of tract housing by helping to create a planned community in Brentwood, a neighborhood in Los Angeles. Called Crestwood Hills, it was intended to contain 500 houses: 160 were built, and only 33 survive. 

This is the renovation story of one of the 33.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in L.A. Renovation Respects Midcentury Bones (While Adding Some Flair)
2 / 10
Industrial designer Lucia DeRespinis

March 2015: Interiors We Love

Profile of Lucia DeRespinis, industrial designer and Pratt Institute professor. 

“I think it’s important to train the muscles of your eye and your brain to understand nonobjective vocabulary,” says the designer, who created the iconic Dunkin' Donuts logo as well as the recognizable Eye and Spindle clocks, which were originally produced by the Howard Miller Clock Company under George Nelson and Irving Harper's names.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Meet the George Nelson Associate Who Designed the Dunkin’ Donuts Logo
3 / 10
Modern Japanese-style bathroom by George Nakashima

April 2015: Simple Modern Ideas

Sublime Japanese-style bathroom by George Nakashima.

George Nakashima's whimsical take on a traditional soaking tub for his New Hope, Pennsylvania, bathroom is a knockout space that is used by his family to this day. Nakashima designed the room in the late 1970s, after he imported a wood-fired boiler and penny tiles from Japan. He integrated the names of his grandchildren into the tiles' abstract forms and even included a moon-viewing platform enclosed by sliding glass doors.

Originally appeared in A Serene Nakashima Bathroom Survives
4 / 10
Modern Connecticut summer home renovation with swimming pool, outdoor fireplace, and pie and bluestone deck and pathways

May 2015: The New American Home 

A high-design Connecticut vacation house

In Sachem’s Head, a tranquil and remote 600-acre peninsula just inside the town limits of Guilford, Connecticut, was a run-down 1970s dwelling sited by the late Louis Kahn. The architect, who helped with the house’s initial design but died before its completion, planted the structure's foundation on the beach, facing away from the larger horizon of the Long Island Sound and toward the jagged coastline. Though the 1970s house was torn down completely, the architects were able to build under grandfathered zoning laws.

Originally appeared in 7 Modern American Houses
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Glass doors open the bedroom up to the water

June 2015: Bring the Outside In

A Copenhagen floating home.

Opposite the front entrance, this couple’s bedroom opens seaward, affording waking access to the cleanest water in Copenhagen. Resident Lisbeth Juul begins each day by diving in—just two feet from her bed.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in The Residents of This Tiny Floating Home Can Dive Into the Water Two Feet from Bed
6 / 10
Modern universal design home in Baltimore with Freedom Lift Systems for the counters and cooktops in the kitchen

July/August 2015: Today's Smart House

An accessible home in Baltimore, Maryland.

After a devastating car crash, a family rebuilds their life and creates a home that's accessible from the street through to the very back of the yard, incorporating an organic garden and orchard and a 10-kilowatt solar panel system. There's also a green roof, which is planted with herbs. “The new house liberated [us],” says the owner.  

Photo by 
Originally appeared in This Impressively Accessible Home Has a Tower That Can Be Reached by Wheelchair
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Cozy living room in the English countryside

September 2015: Furniture Makes It Modern

A British design pioneer transforms a 1970s bachelor pad into a stylish furniture laboratory.

The house, built in the 1970s, was a collaboration between Les Haywood, an engineer who spent his spare time rebuilding Aston Martins, and Hugh K. Harwood, a local architect usually restricted to designing extensions. Its design is so aberrant to rural English tastes that the 7,500-square-foot single-story with floating roof sat unsold on its 25-acre site for two years, until Sheridan Coakley and his wife stumbled across it nine years ago when looking for somewhere near to the preferred school for their children.

Photo by 

Glo-Ball T Table Lamp

695.00  at the Dwell Store
SHOP

Donna Wilson Field Day Throw - Dusk

395.00  at the Dwell Store
SHOP

Balzac Lounge Chair and Ottoman

3960.00  at the Dwell Store
SHOP
Originally appeared in Quirky 1970s House in the English Countryside Showcases an Amazing Modern Furniture Collection
8 / 10
Steel overhang exterior of house designed by Kerstin Thompson Architects.

October 2015: 15 Years of the Best Modern Homes

A house in the Australian bush built to withstand fire. 

A roof that architect Kerstin Thompson describes as a true rhomboid, or “an oblique-angled parallelogram with only the opposite sides equal” covers ceilings lined with black formply from a timber with a low flammability index.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Richly-Furnished Home Frames Striking Landscape Views
9 / 10
Upstate New York small sustainable retreat for Chilewich and Sultan facade

November 2015: Smaller Is Smarter

A sustainable home in upstate New York.

This couple opted to build small—800 square feet—because that was what they could afford without having to scrimp on materials or quality. And since the property encompasses 10 acres, they knew there was definitely room to grow.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in A Couple Takes an Unassuming Plot of Land and Calls it Home
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Modular Texas home facade and yard

December/January 2015: The New Prefab

A modular family compound in Wimberley, Texas. 

The Texas architecture firm Lake|Flato specializes in gracious and airy dream homes that embrace the outdoors. This project is a modern collection of bunkhouses for an extended clan of three generations. The focal point of the compound is a 16-by-28-foot deck—a kind of outdoor living room with a fireplace and a breathtaking view of the river below.  

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