Das Haus 2019: Living by Moods creates an appetite for open-plan homes

Room to breathe, a space for action, a place for small escapes and a den for sleeping half hidden behind rotatable panels – this is what Das Haus by Studio Truly Truly presented at the international interiors show Imm Cologne 2019, which ended two weeks ago.

07.02.2019 Australian designers Kate and Joel Booy demonstrated their self-confidence and artistic sensitivity in their take on a residential home for the design event with a strong tradition: their open-plan living concept created a stunning sight with its strong colours, fine details and well-proportioned open spaces. It was a Haus with nothing superfluous that did not illustrate their concept of living by moods, and yet their design was far from being stark or cool.

cocinas, Ernestomeda, Giuseppe Bavuso, mesa giratoria Cyclos, mesa SteadyTable, mobiliario de cocina, muebles de cocina, sistema Medley, Soul

The designers did away with fixed partition walls, replacing them with zones skilfully attuned to each other in material, colours and dimensions. They created an atmosphere of warmth in the home living installation constructed by Imm Cologne in the Pure Editions Hall 3.1. It was an atmosphere that made anyone entering Das Haus feel instantly at ease. Soft furnishings for the walls, the floorings and bed, solid kitchen blocks and heavy furniture, new prototypes and old classics, lighting and accessories, design objects and art all came together to form a groundbreaking blueprint for interior design that represents a new generation of home living.

Das Haus 2019: an experimental platform for zoned living

As trained graphic designers, we make a real point of ensuring that the things we design communicate. With this project we had the rare opportunity to work with everything that makes interior design and to see how the furniture, lighting and textiles interact, says Joel Booy. And as we personally see our home as a place of tranquillity, that’s what we wanted to make Das Haus as well. And they succeeded. The kitchen was the starting point for their design, explains Joel Booy, because it has always been the focal point of social life. Fascinated by the kitchen’s colours, they juxtaposed the vivid yellowy-green of the tiles (Made a Mano) with brushed stainless steel (Alpes Inox) and the soft yellow shades of the heavy upholstery fabric (Kvadrat) enveloping the whole house. The coolness of the semi-transparent, half-mirrored glass room partition was absorbed by its warm plum red.

Active, the dominant zone, encompassed a kitchen broken down into several solid blocks, a kitchen counter that descended into a bench, a large, multifunctional table and a generous seating group gathered not around a television set but an imaginary panoramic window – represented in the trade fair version by a wide entrance. The colours and light in the Active zone had an invigorating brilliance. The tone in the living area was set by gleaming lime-coloured tiles paired with the stone and metal of the smooth surfaces and rectangular lines, which led down to the softer materials and lower forms of the Reclining area. This zone was dominated by rounded shapes and slightly darker shades.

An organic floor plan instead of fixed walls

On the other side, a wall of plants reaching several metres high formed the circular Reclusive area. It provided a kind of enclosed garden where the residents could retreat for a quiet moment’s reflection or come together for more intimate family gatherings. The sheltered, slightly dimly lit space gave rise to a very special mood, one that the sight of the natural, slow rhythm of the plants was designed to strengthen. To conclude there was Serene, formed of a gently illuminated bathing area and a space separated by rotating Viennese rattan screens – not much larger than the new solid-wood bed that filled it.

So, cool is something that the eighth edition of Das Haus – Interiors on Stage certainly wasn’t. Despite its simple, minimalist forms and somewhat sparse decoration, visitors could almost bask in its warm colours and soothing clarity. The roughly 180 square metres of Das Haus were structured and designed around moods instead of functions. This year’s guests of honour believe that this way of living is far better aligned with today’s and, above all, tomorrow’s needs than the conventional three-bedrooms-plus-kitchen-hall-and-bathroom.


How and where people work, eat, and consume entertainment today is becoming more and more fluid, and the boundaries between these different activities continue to blur, says Kate Booy. Her husband, Joel, adds: Our vision of the home is not about efficiently accomplishing a lot of tasks but rather breaking away from the demands of the outside world and finding your own rhythm. It’s about consciously taking time for mundane activities and giving them the value of something worthwhile.

Kate and Joel have done a fantastic job, says Dick Spierenburg, Creative Director of Imm Cologne. We naturally get to see the initial plans in the summer, but it’s always exciting to see what Das Haus really looks like at the end. With this project, we consciously want to provide an opportunity for young designers who have a real feel for interior design that reflects the emerging attitude towards life on the horizon. Studio Truly Truly combines this sensibility with an extraordinary instinct for high quality craftsmanship. And this is something you can see in their Haus, says Spierenburg, delighted with the installation.

Das Haus – half portrait of the designer, half model home

Thus, the design duo’s love of the materials that they work with was clear in their vision. Glass and wool, wood and metal were bathed in the unique lighting that Studio Truly Truly skilfully staged with a further development of the Typography Lighting System (Rakumba). The materials exuded a charm that visitors could not resist. They didn’t just take photographs; they felt, patted and stroked. Das Haus may have been made from the finest materials, but it was still a blueprint of a home that visitors could behold, try out and touch. However you feel, this is living by moods.

The Das Haus – Interiors on Stage installation is a simulated residential house at the Interior Business Event Imm Cologne. Every year, a new designer is nominated and, based on their plans and designs, the fair organises the erection of an approximately 180-square-metre house in the Pure Editions area, Hall 3.1. The furniture, colours, materials, lighting and accessories are also selected by the designer, rendering the finished house an individual, integrated configuration of interior design. The project looks at contemporary furnishing trends but also at the aspirations of the viewing public as well as social change.

* For further information: www.livingkitchen-cologne.com / www.imm-cologne.com

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