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December 20, 2012
2012 is coming to a close, and to celebrate a year in modern architecture, we've collected our 12 favorite stories, one for each month. Click through for a dose of design inspiration.
Simple modern design prefab home
Looking Inward

Originally published in our December/January 2012 issue, the Marina del Rey residence of Paul and Shoko Shozi is an exercise in creating an open home that was still private. The so-called Tatami House, designed by Swiss architect Roger Kurath of Design*21, makes a courtyard the physical center of the home.

1 / 12
Modern home renovation 20th century facade
Back Storied

Without altering its turn-of-the-20th-century facade, architect Christopher Polly transformed the rear of this Newtown, Australia, home from bleak to bright. We originally ran this Houses We Love in our February 2012 issue.

2 / 12
Restoring Villa Tugendhat

It took 8.8 million dollars and two years' worth of preservation efforts to resuscitate Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat. Find out more about the restoration we wrote about in March 2012, which included a trip to MoMA's archives for research, and see the interior here.

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Originally appeared in Restoring Mies's Villa Tugendhat
3 / 12
Natural look family living room lanai with a wood ceiling
Grateful Shed

The Gamby Residence was the My House story from our April 2012 issue. The Gambys, a modern-day Swiss Family Robinson, did a lot of work themselves and with just $80,000 carved out a piece of paradise on a lush 20-acre lot on the Hawaiian island of Kauai.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Grateful Shed
4 / 12
Wooden guest cabin rooms with ladder
Time Share

Sharing a vacation home is a common arrangement. But sharing an architectural and conceptual experiment—as well as a linked basement, sprawling deck, and utility bills—takes more imagination, and that’s the idea architects Melana Janzen and John McMinn developed for their “cottage” near Toronto. Their modern cabin on the shores of Colpoy's Bay is our favorite story of May.

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Originally appeared in Four Friends Joined Forces to Realize This Idyllic Forest Retreat Outside Toronto
5 / 12
White living room with pops of color
Spanish Idyll

For our June Interior Design issue, the internationally acclaimed designer Jaime Hayon takes us on a personal tour of his newly renovated home in Valencia, Spain, offering decorating tips along the way.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in "A Home Should Never Feel Like a Hotel Lobby"
6 / 12
Modern kitchen with yellow sectioned walls and monochrome appliances
The Homemakers

We featured the Luis Barragán–inspired Los Angeles house of Laura Purdy and Juan Devis in our July/August issue. Les Guthrie originally designed the house in 1952 and architect Linda Taalman extracted the latent design intent of this quiet, mid-century-modern house while imbuing it with the warm character and spirited life stories of Purdy, Devis, a Colombian-born filmmaker and public-television producer, and their two young children.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Colorful Remodel in Los Angeles
7 / 12
Green home with wood cladding in Mississippi
Mississippi Queen

The sustainability-minded Mississippi home of architect Brett Nave, a dwell.com exclusive, is our pick for the best home featured in August. In building his house, Nave took extra care to conserve mature trees on his lot. In addition to the shade from the nearby trees, the house stays cool with the help of Zero VOC closed cell foam in the floors, open cell foam in the roof deck and Knaupf ECO Batts in the walls. A 16 seer heat pump circulates the air when it's too humid for the open windows. Marvin Low E windows and Simpson Mastermark insulated French doors can be opened up to the screened-in porch on the backside of the house, which Nave says helps create a mood that is his favorite element of the house.

8 / 12
Modern kitchen with Corian countertop and Heath Ceramics tiled wall
Borrego Springs Eternal

A long low response to the rugged landscape, Doug Paton and Stacey Chapman Paton’s house is a linear white exercise in modern entertaining. We featured the house built for parties in our September issue.

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Originally appeared in Modern Home in a California Resort Town
9 / 12
A Little Bit Country

The Springfield, Missouri, house of Hannah and Paul Catlett is our pick for October and also made it into A Photo Editor's Daily Edit column. Though the house is sleekly modern there are winks to old-time Americana throughout the property.

Originally appeared in 20 Modern Home Facades
10 / 12
Bedroom of small space apartment in New York City
Wood Works

Faced with the challenge of a diminutive New York apartment in desperate need of a refresh, architect Tim Seggerman went straight to his toolbox to craft a Nakashima-inspired interior, featured in our November Small Spaces issue.

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Originally appeared in Space-Saving Wood-Paneled Apartment in Manhattan
11 / 12
Breezehouse by Blu Homes
Touring the Breezehouse by Blu Homes

The prefab Breezehouse in Healdsburg, California, is our pick for the month of December. For more modern, prefab homes, head to your local newsstand to purchase our Prefab Comes Home issue, which covers homes including a historic A-frame home by Jens Risom and Moshe Safdie's iconic Habitat '67 in Montreal.

Courtesy of 
swain photo
Originally appeared in Touring the Breezehouse by Blu Homes
12 / 12
Simple modern design prefab home
Looking Inward

Originally published in our December/January 2012 issue, the Marina del Rey residence of Paul and Shoko Shozi is an exercise in creating an open home that was still private. The so-called Tatami House, designed by Swiss architect Roger Kurath of Design*21, makes a courtyard the physical center of the home.

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