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The Pit House: Modern Small Home in Japan

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The Pit House is a modern small home in Japan designed by UID Architects.

It has about 1487 sq. ft. of total floor space inside, so to most of us, this not that small at all.

But to others, it might be. Either way I thought it was so unique I had to show you!

And any one of us can take some of these design ideas and incorporate it into our own DIY build, right?

The Pit House: Modern Small Home in Japan


Images © Hiroshi Ueda/UID Architects

The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan The Pit House: Modern Small House in Japan

Images © Hiroshi Ueda/UID Architects

Pit House(2011)
principal use : house
structure: steel structure
site area : 95.41sqm
total floor area : 138.23sqm
building site : Okayama
completion date : 2011.10
structure design : Yasutaka Konishi
garden-build : Toshiya Ogino
photos : Hiroshi Ueda

source: UID Architects


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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Cahow
    May 11, 2015, 1:42 pm

    The following is a compliment: this reminds me of the BEST & BRIGHTEST of “Mod” homes in the early ’60’s. They were SO different from the Scandinavian farm houses of my childhood that they were my inspiration to become an architect. 😀

    I truly don’t care how many square feet a house has or has not; I can almost always find some source of inspiration from them, be it inside or outside.

    • Cahow
      May 12, 2015, 10:02 am

      Since seeing this house, I have been haunted by it’s beauty. So, I did a *bing* search of “The Pit House, Okayama, Japan” and came up with a score of nice articles. Oh, and the architect that designed it? He’s ONLY 38 years old!!!! Wow.

      For anyone into the geekier side of lovin’ architectural renderings, THIS link shows the entire blow-apart floor plans and some very nice additional photos. http://www.designboom.com/architecture/uid-architects-pit-house-in-okayama-japan/

      • Alex
        May 12, 2015, 11:09 am

        Thanks for sharing Cahow! 🙂

      • Cahow
        May 12, 2015, 11:15 am

        You’re so welcome, Alex. Thanks for approving the link.

        I know that your fans enjoy seeing floor plans, when available. 😀

  • Karen R
    May 11, 2015, 2:59 pm

    This is fantastic! To the “tiny house” purists, please remember this is approximately 1,000 square feet less than the average new home in this country, and we each have different wants and needs.

  • John
    May 11, 2015, 4:04 pm

    I have mixed feelings about this one. It boasts exceptional architectural forms , but it doesn’t feel like a house i would want to live in. Looks like a form over function design.

    • Bonnie Lynch
      May 12, 2015, 3:28 pm

      I feel the same way. This house would make somebody happy, and it would even make me happy as a vacation rental, but I can’t imagine having it feel like a permanent home.

    • Rue
      May 15, 2015, 12:07 pm

      You took the text right out of my keyboard, as it were. 😉

      I know round spaces are supposed to feel organic and womb-like and all that, but in this design, they seem to interrupt the space and make it tricky to accommodate furniture.

      I do like the finishes, though….surprisingly warm for a modernist interior.

  • Michael
    May 11, 2015, 5:04 pm

    Beautiful, its my taste and it doesn’t look overloaded but interesting.
    Doing a minimalist design creates optically more space and beside that its easy to keep it up. Well done.

  • Randy
    May 11, 2015, 8:04 pm

    The outside of the structure is a little lacking personality for my taste, although the outdoor spaces are great. BUT the interior is terrific. I love the forms, textures and colors. I think the areas look very functional too.

  • Christine
    May 11, 2015, 8:53 pm

    One of the things I love about this site is the open mindedness and permission for creative flow! I love this home and think it could be made smaller (would love to see that) but it’s great as is. As was mentioned it’s still way bellow the average house being built in the U.S.

    Nice work!

  • Susanne
    May 11, 2015, 11:13 pm

    Amazing how the styles can vary from place to place! I think a video walk thru would be nice (and needed) with this one…:)

  • Rich
    May 12, 2015, 9:39 am

    This is an excellent example of the best of Japanese design creativity and the chaotic nature of zoning there. Applaud their audacity; empathetic toward their neighbors, especially the ones on the right in the photo.

    Tx for sharing, Alex. Inspiring design. 🙂

  • Rich
    May 12, 2015, 9:47 am

    BTW, the concept is “old as the hills” as the saying goes: http://www.oberlin.edu/images/Art251/Art251.html

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