House J – A Contemporary Renovation for a Young Japanese Family

This project from Japan, dubbed J House, involved the renovation of an older apartment to make it fit for a young family. Located in Kawasaki in the Kanagawa Prefecture, the apartment is set at the boundary between the old town and a newly developed district.


J House - Domino Architects - Japan - Kitchen - Humble Homes

The redesign was undertaken by Domino Architects. They attempted to create a floor plan that would meet the occupants needs, taking into account their children and the way the space will need to react to them as they grow up. No small feat given that the apartment is just 731 square feet (68 square meters).


J House - Domino Architects - Japan - Living Room - Humble Homes

To create a more flexible layout, they tore down a lot of the partition walls and replaced them with “wooden boxes”. The boxes house various areas, be it the bathroom, or just a storage closet. Varying degrees of fluidity between the spaces is achieved through the use of sliding partitions.


J House - Domino Architects - Japan - Study - Humble Homes

The revised layout isn’t too dissimilar from the original. The floor plan is roughly divided up into two main sections; shared and private living spaces. The private spaces, such as the bedroom, bathroom and toilet are found to the back of the unit, near the entrance.

J House - Domino Architects - Japan - Bedroom - Humble Homes

The shared living spaces are located at the front so as to take advantage of the large windows that provide a view of the town below. They’ve opted for a relatively large kitchen and dining area, followed by the living room that features a shelving unit running the length of the room.


From the architects: “We used a variety of textures and materials in tangible areas to give a rich, tactile sensation to the experience of the space. These including lauan woods, smooth plastics, motars and rough concrete blocks.”

For more Japanese properties check out this house in Takarazuka that occupies an awkward and exposed lot. Or, Chiharada House, a cylindrical home with no less than 5 staircases. See all Japanese houses.

Via ArchDaily
Photos: Gottingham

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.