A High Desert Home Slides Open Like a Swiss Army Knife
With an abundance of outdoor activities and a laid-back culture that celebrates great food, the small city of Bend and its high desert landscape charmed Nancy Burfiend and her partner, Joey Reiter, into buying a plot there for their next home.
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The couple’s vision was for a contemporary retreat where they could recharge in nature. From the earthy, desert-inspired palette to the large expanses of glazing that create a seamless connection with the outdoors, it was their desire for an indoor-out living experience that drove the 2,670-square-foot design.
"The house is organized as a series of light-filled spaces—entry, courtyard, living, terrace—that blur the boundaries between the domestic and the desert," the architects explain.
"Even in more personal spaces, hidden skylights and unexpected windows help capture the surrounding sky and landscape."
To achieve this sense of expansiveness while preserving privacy, the firm added operable panels that give the homeowners greater control over the layout. Likened to a "Swiss Army Knife," the High Desert House features eight interior sliding panels and two hinged wall sections that can be manipulated to conceal or reveal spaces.
The property features two bedrooms and two-and-a-half bathrooms. The cabinet wall between the master bedroom and living room is comprised of five sliding panels for concealing or revealing the space, while a hinged wall-section can convert a seating area into a guest room.
"The home’s clean lines and simple, light-filled volumes create a backdrop for evolving collections: a row of vintage catcher’s masks, softballs, and large industrial gear," add the architects.
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Architect of Record: DeForest Architects
Builder/General Contractor: Young Construction Company/Doug Young
Structural Engineer: Evergreen Design Company/Lori Brown
Landscape Design Company: Heart Springs Landscape Design, LLC/Chris Hart-Henderson
Lighting Design: Brian Hood Lighting Design/Brian Hood
Interior Design: NB Design Group/Nancy Burfiend