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Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House Interlock House
Interlock HouseEffingham, IL

This house was built in Southern Illinois in farm country near the city of Effingham for a family of three and their many guests. They were previous restaurant clients for Firefly Grill, which turned out to be very successful, and so this house re-started the creative collaboration. They wanted a house that was to be different than others in the area, which is how their restaurant was and how they also saw themselves. It was also to be a family home on a day to day basis but also as a holiday destination for many others. Their primary aspiration was to have a spacious living-dining-kitchen space connected to a yard with a pool – and all with views of the trees and the sky. The rural site was cleared of the immediate trees with the surrounding ones kept to create a ‘room in the forest’ – where the light and colors change throughout the seasons.

The home is designed to be two ‘interlocked’ buildings that play off of each other functionally and geometrically – and only touch at one connecting hallway. The first building is the wood stained blue angular shaped one which contains the main spaces: the live-dine-cook space, three bedrooms, bathrooms, and the basement. The roof ascends in height as it goes from the master bedroom at one end to the living room at the other – both of which aim axially out to the forest. The living room end leads to a cantilevered deck that projects over a steep ravine as a counterpoint to the rest of the place which is essentially a plateau.  The angle forms the semi-courtyard shaped yard that is south facing and focused around the pool. At its fold point on the outer is the entry, which establishes a portal to the front yard. The other ‘building’ is the three-story Corten ‘barn’ that is the garage with two floors above that include a work studio/guest house with its own loft above. The barn roof spans over the blue angle and then lands on columns at the yard, which creates a shaded veranda. The visual effect is like a linear bar piercing a hollow box.