The Cubby House by Edwards Moore


Australian studio Edwards Moore have renovated and extended an apartment in Fitzroy, Melbourne, featuring fitted furniture made of oriented strand board, concrete floors and reflective surfaces.

Called Cubby House, the purpose of the renovation is to provide an additional floor to the existing apartment, influenced by the Raumplan concept  of continuous living spaces developed by architect Adolf Loos in the 1920s.

A rotating wardrobe doubles up as wall dividing the space.

The apartment overlooks a public swimming pool.

Photographs are by Peter Bennetts.

The following information is from the architects:

Cubby House


Extension & renovation of an apartment overlooking an adjacent public swimming pool.

The Concept
To provide additional floor area for an upper level bedroom/study space and new bathroom with the lower level acting as the main living space. Inspired by the ‘raumplan’ concept – designing continuous spaces for living rather than regularly divided floors with limited flexibility – the house has minimal doors and walls. Incorporating pool views and making it part of the interior, using reflection and raised planes – new surfaces at the rear of the space are reflective to enhance the ambivalence between interior and exterior.

Lower Level
Featuring a raised ceiling level and an elevated kitchen floor (as part of the staircase) to allow views out and to the pool whilst cooking, with a semi-enclosed balcony performing as part of the living space. A sliding reflective gold box acts as a lobby door, screening the toilet as well as comprising wine storage. This space also includes a bookshelf with an incorporated dog kennel.

Upper Level

New steelwork provides the structure for the new roof form, with a double height void running through the house to the new roof light. Left partly exposed, the steelwork & bracing create a dynamic with the new roof form. The angled ceiling to the bathroom pod enlarges the upper level space and integrates a hole punctured to allow for the shower.

Overlooking the pool, the shower space also provides a view to the sky through the roof light. Glazed panels at each end of the bathroom heighten the presence of natural light and allows for views whilst maintaining a degree of privacy.

Rotating to create a small study or guest bedroom space, an OSB wardrobe with gold reflective plane facing the pool defines the bedroom space. A small external terrace provides a more private, intimate space to the bedroom area and provides natural ventilation through the house.

A contrast is created between sharp lines and rough surfaces.Reflecting a neutral palette – reclaimed limed timber, OSB, sisal, vic ash and white concrete floor. Joinery elements include the bookshelf, sliding mirrored gold box, and rotating wardrobe element which acts as wall.


Architects: Edwards Moore
Construction date: 2009/2010
Contractor: Truscorp Building & Construction

Posted on Saturday April 10th 2010 at 12:44 am by Catherine Warmann. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • kv

    I wonder what the finish is on the OSB – nasty, splintery stuff.
    I like the design though

  • lior

    i think that the design is very clever and there is definatly improvment to the quality of life in such a small space. the smart planning make it look much bigger.
    making the furniture from oriented strand board was the wrong choise to my view, as it doesnt fit with the simple planning, flooring and the overall design.
    overall i think it is brilliant…

  • Gooood!!

  • William

    I want to like the raw finish but it appears hazardous to knees and elbows.

  • I find interesting the strand board, but there are a few details that really don’t click: the bath area in the bedroom, especially the tiles; the green stripy glass in the other bathroom and the smoke glass/mirror. I thing the strand board is really rich and these details make the space unbalanced.
    Adolf Loos’ spaces were extremelly rich, but somehow elegant.

  • Seth

    OSB is back with vengeance!

  • philip

    simply devine!,
    delicate use of materials and clean elegant lines. -wow

  • frank

    good to see some new names coming from melbourne – great work!

  • Zaedrus

    The OSB is a an odd choice – usually given to tight budget projects or those of a raw industrial aesthetic. This appears to be neither, noting the high end fixtures (the tub alone is $9k USD) and furnishings. It’s almost there, but the material doesn’t provide the warmth this project wanted.

  • Jason

    Some nice spaces and ideas in an upmarket flat ruined by using OSB. To me this shows a lack of connection between making and designing skills.

  • RK

    I’ve used OSB before and when sanded and waxed it’s a nice smooth yet textured surface with none of the flaking chips.

    I think it’s a beautiful project with a harmonious balance between the roughness of the original warehouse and refined joinery.

  • Kate Stanley

    The space, (having seen it before renovation) now has clean, open spaces and a sense of light lending out into the swimming pool below. It blends a great feel of continual holiday and country home! Shamon!

  • guess what happens if strand board gets wet or damp? It desitegrates like a *mission impossible* tape.I´d only use it to make a stand for a cheap trade fair.

    p.s. unless this is a *first world strand board*.

  • Marianne

    not if it’s varnish… I have a home made table made of strand board, and it does not desintegrates when I drop water on it !!

  • esz

    Not practical using strand boards in areas or places that easily gets wet. Nice planning though! Over all fantastic!

  • R85

    Have they put that sink on the wrong way around?

    • It certainly looks like it!