The Seattle Modern Architecture and Design Society and the Seattle Architecture Foundation will be giving their annual peek into six Seattle homes the last weekend in April, both brand-new construction and modern takes on older homes. The eighth incarnation of the self-guided tour gives participants a chance to speak with not just architects and designers, but the occupants, too—giving a glimpse into day-to-day life in the homes and buildings.
It’s kind of like when you go to a real estate open house for fun, only no price tags and more education. Plus, with modern homes popping up everywhere, it’s a great opportunity to demystify their interiors.
The tour is Saturday, April 27 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; tickets are $40 or $50 day-of, available on the Modern Architecture and Design Society’s website.
Here’s a look at four of them.
Best Practice, Hybrid Design, and Steven Lazen | Interior: Kailin Gregga, Steven Lazen, Rob Humble
We toured this house, a dream project by architects and life partners Kailin Gregga and Steven Lazen back in February, called “Big Mouth House” because of its giant, pink protruding front window, which a friend once Photoshopped teeth onto. Big Mouth stands out from a lot of its boxy brethren not just by putting color first—a theme that continues throughout the interior—it’s also part of a clever multifamily configuration with two other townhouses and has its own ADU.
E. Cobb Architects | Landscape: Erin Lau Design | Interior: Tanya Brunner
This Victorian home on Millionaire’s Row—a collection of ornate, more than century-old homes by Volunteer Park—survived to the modern era, but had lost some of its original features. Its latest occupants wanted a way to preserve the vintage parts of their home, but streamline it with a modern sensibility without doing too aggressive of a remodel. The end result preserves the grand entertaining spaces and, with upstairs rooms that show the roofline from the inside, unlocks more of the home’s shape. The frontage combines a more modern entry surrounded by original details.
Recessed guest house
E. Cobb Architects | Landscape: Alchemie
We haven’t seen a lot of earth-sheltered homes lately, but looking at this recessed home on the southwestern shore of Lake Washington makes us wonder why we don’t have more of them in Seattle. This is a one-bedroom guest house for a much larger (and above-ground) home still under construction behind it, but it stands alone. While it’s low-key from the outside, it’s built for some big indoor-outdoor living.
Magnolia modern home
Stan Hanson | Landscape and interiors: Heidi and Rick Ward
This one resists the stark look that can happen in modern homes with bright built-ins, sometimes with an almost midcentury aesthetic, like wood-slat dividers and sliding wood cabinetry. It built as the family home of Rick and Heidi Ward, both modern home professionals—Heidi Ward is the broker behind real-estate blog 360 Modern. The late Stan Hanson of Stillwell Hanson designed the home in 2007, and the Wards say the home is “in loving memory” of him.