Kim over at Desire to Inspire has put together a collection of images from a few of the projects of Berlin’s Karhard Achitektur + Design, ranging from bright compact apartments to wood-lined family homes. The firm has a few calling cards, but its designs are incredibly varied and unique from project to project. Working with both new buildings and renovations equally, Karhard diligently tailors the look of each room to its purpose and creates a few overarching themes in every individual residence. Sometimes, the architect works with other interior design companies and even independent artists to create interiors that are truly unique. Blending textured wall coverings, patterned built-in elements, and coordinated furniture and decor, the firm’s projects each have an thoroughly individual persona.
The first of Karhard’s works profiled here is seen above, with elegant tones both dark and light creating a sophisticated atmosphere, aided further by minimally smooth finishes and well-placed lighting. The second project in the gallery is much lighter overall, with mostly white walls and an open layout. The atmosphere there indicates artistic tendencies, whereas the previous home indicated professionalism. The third project is an apartment and music studio which contrasts high-style wooden wall sections and other natural materials with modern aluminum and stone touches to great effect, creating a space that is at once cutting-edge and seamlessly comfortable. The final project is a unique bathroom inside a house in Berlin, constructed mostly from smoothly-finished concrete. The versatility of Karhard Architektur + Design’s portfolio shows that even in a renovation situation, a few well-thought-out changes of materials and furniture can truly transform a space.
The first Karhard project we’ll take a look at is this classy, contemporary renovation of a family home. The main living spaces of the house were completely reinvented by changing around wall materials, coordinating the color palette of each room to give every space its own personality, and replacing existing furniture with elegant current and midcentury pieces. The dining room and kitchen are the darkest parts of the renovation, the former given a series of black brick-patterned wall sections, and the latter’s cabinetry replaced by rough, dark-stained wood.
The colors of the living room are decidedly less dark than in the dining room, but each color is diluted to keep the area from seeming truly bright. The result is a room that feels spacious, but doesn’t lose its intimacy of atmosphere.
The size of the living room allows for two different seating areas. This one is the more formal of the two, with well-cushioned chairs reminiscent of those in 1950s waiting rooms centered around a minimal coffee table. A brass light fixture above gives permanence to the area, making it an integral part of the room.
The second interior we’ll cover here today is a collaboration between Karhard, a residential materials designer, and a Berlin artist. With white and other bright hues used throughout, the tall ceilings and open entryways of the main living spaces are enhanced intelligently, making the dwelling feel larger than it is.
An artistic accent wall made of painted wooden planks provides a visual division between the kitchen and living room without actually separating the two with a wall. Along the exterior edge of the apartment, a row of tall windows continues unhindered from the kitchen to the main living space.
Each of the major rooms of the flat has a wall section finished in a bright color other than white. In the kitchen, that color is a cool light blue; in the living room, it’s a warm orange-red.
An additional recreation room off the living room has some subtle distinctions which give it a more unfinished, DIY appeal. The floorboards are set a little wider apart than in the next room over, the rear wall is sponge painted instead of rolled, and open-faced shelving throughout allows residents to display records, books, and other belongings in their natural state of use.
An indentation in the near wall of the apartment, an original feature from before Karhard’s work, provides a place for a sizable, precariously towering collection of books.
The apartment’s master bedroom has smooth black flooring and low furniture, accenting the height of the room. Up top, the ceiling is shaped in a wavy fashion, a subtle yet bold touch not often seen anywhere else.
The third Karhard project seen today is extremely different once again, but a few general themes have started to emerge. A smaller space than the previous two abodes, this Berlin apartment may pack the biggest design punch of them all with great attention paid to built-in decor.
Truly natural elements like the a tall leather dining table bench and tree trunk table base blend with modern touches like a silver-finished kitchen for an interior that has an urban flair but a heart in the wilderness. Many different types of wood are found here, from the nearly grey boards underfoot to the dark-stained wall sections placed carefully throughout.
Elsewhere inside, sliding partitions can be moved aside to open an in-house music creation space to the rest of the apartment. This room’s production desk swivels 90 degrees to connect the studio to the room beyond it when the partition is opened, and forms a straight line with the room’s shelves when closed.
The final creation to look at today is an upstairs bathroom renovation centered around the use of concrete for as many fixtures as possible. Smoothed concrete is used as a basin for the bathtub and sinks, while more traditional tiles are cut rectangularly to cover the floor.
The use of so much concrete is noteworthy in a room like this bathroom, where finishes must be smooth and clean to avoid injury while washing yourself. The basins here are almost a proof of concept, showing that concrete can be every bit as inviting as more conventional bathroom materials.