The traditional concept of multi-functional spaces is deeply rooted in Asian culture. In Japan, the modular rooms would change in size with the use of the shoji sliding doors. Two six mat tatami rooms could transform into a twelve mat room where the family could enjoy their meals together by opening the shoji doors and placing low tables. By sitting on the floors with just the zabuton or cushion, there was no need for chairs, which would otherwise occupy a large amount of existing space. Flat cushions on the other hand need very little space. In the evening, a family of four would divide the rooms back into two bedrooms, remove the low table and pull out the futons or mattresses on the floor. With the simple action of sliding the doors closed, it created immediate privacy.
Today’s lifestyles are different because we are more accustomed to the modern amenities and comforts. We enjoy watching T.V. on a large screen, sofa’s and beds are more comfortable to many and we all enjoy audio visual gadgets and electrical appliances. My girlfriend and fellow interior designer, whose blog is Vox Architectae, sent me this link to a Hong Kong architect, Gary Chang’s, amazing and innovative design on multi-funcional spaces, “A Tiny Apartment Turns into 24 Rooms”. As many of us understand the premium of space in a large city, this brings multi-function to a new level! Wow! Enjoy this new perspective and please share your thoughts with me on his ideas!