Handled With Care

February 6, 2013
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  In 2005, Krzysztof Kwiecinski moved into his late grandmother’s Warsaw, Poland, apartment. Not wanting to strip the home of its former life, he worked with local architecture firm Centrala to create the Hardbox, a 12-by-10-foot freestanding unit from pieces of his grandmother’s hodgepodge collection of furniture.

    In 2005, Krzysztof Kwiecinski moved into his late grandmother’s Warsaw, Poland, apartment. Not wanting to strip the home of its former life, he worked with local architecture firm Centrala to create the Hardbox, a 12-by-10-foot freestanding unit from pieces of his grandmother’s hodgepodge collection of furniture.

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  Kwiecinski’s 800-square-foot apartment (with its walls sheathed in flowing white curtains) is nicknamed the Softbox, in direct contrast to the Hardbox.

    Kwiecinski’s 800-square-foot apartment (with its walls sheathed in flowing white curtains) is nicknamed the Softbox, in direct contrast to the Hardbox.

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  Kwiecinski and the architects at Centrala followed one rule when putting together the Hardbox: No panel could be the same color or shape, nor could they alter design details like moldings or keyholes.

    Kwiecinski and the architects at Centrala followed one rule when putting together the Hardbox: No panel could be the same color or shape, nor could they alter design details like moldings or keyholes.

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  Inside, the Hardbox contains a kitchen, toilet, shower, bathtub, foldout guest bed, and storage.

    Inside, the Hardbox contains a kitchen, toilet, shower, bathtub, foldout guest bed, and storage.

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  Among the pieces that comprise the Hardbox are both doors and doorposts—even one lined with faded pencil marks tracking Kwiecinski’s height as a growing boy.

    Among the pieces that comprise the Hardbox are both doors and doorposts—even one lined with faded pencil marks tracking Kwiecinski’s height as a growing boy.

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  In addition to the storage space hidden in the Hardbox, the white curtains of the Softbox apartment roll out of the way to reveal built-in shelving along one side of the unit.

    In addition to the storage space hidden in the Hardbox, the white curtains of the Softbox apartment roll out of the way to reveal built-in shelving along one side of the unit.

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  The flowing curtains of the Softbox open to reveal a bedroom at the opposite end of the apartment from the Hardbox. Read more about the Hardbox in our September 2009 issue and visit Centrala’s website for a video of the Softbox and Hardbox in action.  Courtesy of Justin Reid.

    The flowing curtains of the Softbox open to reveal a bedroom at the opposite end of the apartment from the Hardbox. Read more about the Hardbox in our September 2009 issue and visit Centrala’s website for a video of the Softbox and Hardbox in action.

    Courtesy of Justin Reid.
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