Sydney, Australia

After a careful design process which took over three years, The Seed House, also referred to as ‘The Forever Home’ came to fruition in Castlecrag, Sydney.

Overlooking the steep bushland above Middle Harbour, the home runs a consistent theme of natural materials and incorporates the surroundings of stone, timber, steel and concrete into the build. With minimal direct lighting used throughout, the home utilised Unios linear luminaires to create a creative and indirect lighting concept.

The core intent behind this design was to create an adaptable and healthy home that could age gracefully while developing a patina of use. Purchased in 2007, James Fitzpatrick saw great potential in the land, as rocky outcrops and Angophora trees enclosed it, this abundance of nature inspired the design to connect the outdoors with the indoor spaces.

Unique in every sense of the word; the home uses no plasterboard, nor traditional paint systems. Every material and finish has been carefully selected for its environmental performance – with sustainability being a critical component to this build and considered in each stage.

This healthy home is environmentally responsive with an intent to last a long time. The lighting design called for careful consideration of illumination through comfort, the shaping of space and invited an alternative concept which challenged the standard practice of predominantly direct lighting in a residence. The home instead, utilised indirect lighting as a source throughout which playfully bounced off walls and ceilings – placed in response to tasks undertaken in each space.

The Eclipse Strip Light runs along firm structures and interjects with the architecture to create a diffused, overall ambient light source. In a unique concept, the strip is housed into the concrete and runs underneath the stone stair treads to illuminate from below and provide a fitting, guiding light for the residents.

The forever home utilised a substantial amount of timber as structural columns, floorboards, walls and doors in the house. The consistent flow of Huon Pine, Celery Top Pine, Radiata Pine and Blackwood meant that a colour temperature of 3000K was employed to pay homage to the rich textures and natural tones of these architectural elements. Proof that responsible and carefully curated indirect lighting is of increasing prominence – The Seed House proves there is always unique and innovative ways to create light within a home while employing comfortability and functionality.

With everything carefully selected to create functional and durable beauty, the home responds to its surroundings and has longevity in its DNA. Encompassing a contemporary design that relates to a simple way of life, this forever home certainly has a journey of its own.

Architect: fitzpatrick+partners
Builder: David Campbell Building
Electrical Contractor: All Clear Electrical
Lighting Designer/Engineer:  fitzpatrick+partners
Lighting Supplier: fitzpatrick+partners
Photographer: Simon Whitbread

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