Naturehumaine's steel-clad Sorel House
designed to stand out from its neighbours

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Skylights puncture the gabled roof of this suburban house in Montreal by Canadian studio Naturehumaine, while a sheltered terrace overlooks a wooded garden (+ slideshow).

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

Naturehumaine designed the single-storey Sorel House for a young woman who wanted to be close to her family. The brief was to create a modern home that stands out from the numerous brick buildings of the surrounding neighbourhood.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

"We were faced with the challenge of designing a contemporary single-family home in the middle of suburbia, amidst a sea of Victorian-inspired residences," said the architects.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

To create a counterpoint to the brick, steel panels were used to clad the exterior of the building, complemented by a series of black-framed windows.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

A gabled roof sits flush with the building's facade, which looks like it has been folded in the middle. The entrance sits within a recess that provides a sheltered porch.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

"Chamfered cuts in the roof both create dynamic angular perspectives and create intimate covered exterior spaces such as the front entry," the architects explained.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

At the back of the house, a terrace with a slatted timber balcony looks out over a wooded garden.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

Glazed doors open into the interior living space from the sheltered terrace, where white surfaces reflect natural light into the space and allow the family to inject their own personality into the design.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

Contrasting with the neutral colour scheme, a black-framed triangular window sits in the join of the gabled roof. There are also two skylights, separated with a bright yellow partition.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

"Southern light is brought in by two majestic skylights positioned at the centre of the house and an angular yellow volume divides the skylights, warming the light and diverting its direction," the studio said.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

An extractor unit suspended above a freestanding kitchen worktop is clad in the same locally sourced timber used to panel the interior doors, while wooden floorboards run throughout the property.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

The master bedroom and bathroom are positioned along the south-west wall and a dining room sits next to the terrace.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine

At the front of the house, the entrance hall connects to a garage and office space, allowing the client to work from home.

Photography is by Adrien Williams.

Here's some more text from Naturehumaine:


Sorel House, Montreal, Canada

We were faced with the challenge of designing a contemporary single-family home in the middle of suburbia, amidst a sea of Victorian-inspired houses. The client purchased a vacant lot in Sorel, a suburb of Montreal, to be close to her family. She imagined a house that would stand out from its surroundings.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine
Site plan - click for larger image

The form of the house was created by offsetting 2 rectangular bars in plan, bridging over them with a gable roof and chamfering the corners. These chamfered cuts in the roof both create dynamic angular perspectives and create intimate covered exterior spaces such as the front entry and the screened-in porch.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine
Floor plan - click for larger image

A small footprint of 1200 sqft was used on a generous sized site, leaving the existing trees undisturbed. The house was oriented perpendicular to the road, creating a semi-private wooded garden on the north side of the house. Southern light is brought in by two majestic skylights positioned at the centre of the house. An angular yellow volume dividing the two skylights both warms the light, and diverts its direction.

Sorel House in Canada by Naturehumaine
Section - click for larger image
  • Z-dog

    Compared to the bleakness of the outdoor photos, that yellow wedge is an object of utmost joy.