Dwell’s Favorite Home Design Ideas and Photos

A family’s getaway in the California desert includes a spa-like main bath with a large soaking tub that connects to an outdoor shower.
This Venice, California, home promotes indoor/outdoor living with large openings, courtyard spaces, and ever-present views of greenery.
Inside, rustic elements (like wood beams and whitewashed wood) nod to the structure’s former life, while walls of glass, black metal accents, and sleek furnishings give it a fresh, new look. After the renovation, the couple loved the guesthouse so much they decided to make it their full-time dwelling.
No whiteware here. In this moody apartment in Berlin, multi-toned charcoal gray subway tiles make up the backsplash, which contrasts with the pop of rosy color on the kitchen cabinets.
Using wood pallets, a common shipping material,  is a cost-effective (and, if they're reused, also eco-friendly) solution for a low-lying mattress that doesn't sit directly on the floor. Its wood construction pairs well with just about any color palette, and it can also be painted.
The sunken living room is just one of many grade changes inside the structure. “We were adamant that we didn’t want something domestic,” says Andrew. “We wanted something surprising, that was hyper-animated, and that, when you moved through it, changed all the time.” The sofa, designed by the couple and Levenbetts, is upholstered in cotton velvet. The Habibi side tables are by Philipp Mainzer for e15, the fireplace tools by Fort Standard, and the doors by Fleetwood.
Sited in the Whitefish Mountains of northwest Montana, the nooq cabin was built in 2019 by photographers Alex Strohl and Andrea Dabene. The Scandinavian-style home features three gabled sections with expansive windows overlooking the surrounding slopes.
A custom walnut-and-steel coffee table from Jobe Fabrications anchors the living room. Fenton and Fenton armchairs are paired with a Texas Leather Interiors sofa. Drophouse Design crafted the fireplace copper wrap, and Thomas Studio and Foundry treated the metal to create a unique copper patina that matches the kitchen hood fan. Limestone is part of the exterior landscaping, but makes its way into the home as well to act as the base of the fireplace. Each piece is seven feet long, and puzzles together.
A tiny outbuilding offers a cozy living space inside a simple shell.
Because of its irregular, otherworldly form, and how it seems to be suspended in midair, the cabin was named "Ufogel," which is a melding of the acronym UFO and "vogel," meaning bird in German.
Ryan McLaughlin watches the sunset from the deck of the 160-square-foot tiny home he built, with no prior experience, at his parents’ horse ranch in Georgetown, Texas. Soon, the trailer-mounted cabin will be moved to a vineyard, where it will operate grid-free and be available to rent for short stays.
Measuring only 180 square feet, this exquisite, off-grid tiny home features a big sense of style.
Generations of family have lived on this wooded, waterfront site, where architect Will Randolph has built a weekend getaway for less than $70,000.
The Lost Whiskey Cabin stands on a rocky bluff overlooking Virginia's countryside.
Watch the Northern Lights from the comfort of your warm bed at Panorama Glass Lodge Iceland. Designed by the Estonian company ÖÖD Homes, the two 200-square-foot prefab cabins are thoughtfully made for small-space living. Each has a bedroom, living room, bathroom, and kitchen.
"We imagined how six people would use the space and developed the shape accordingly," says Hello Wood cofounder Dávid Ráday. "We took inspiration from the design of space capsules, and the cabin was refined step by step before reaching its final form."
Dining
Another one of Baumraum’s prefabs has found its way to Switzerland’s beautiful, lush countryside. Baumhaus Halden is a steel-frame structure held aloft by four wooden support beams. Prefabricated in Germany and then transported to its locale and assembled in just a few days, the 236-square-foot cabin has expansive decking and a beautiful, wood-clad interior.
Five tiny glass cabins on Sweden’s Henriksholm Island allow travelers to unplug from the noise of their technology-driven lifestyles. The “72 Hour Cabins” are Norwegian spruce structures that offer peace and quiet with minimally furnished yet cozy interiors.
Established in 2005, Kithaus has a range of ADUs and sheds in a range of sizes and price points with nearly a dozen options in terms of materials, cladding, and inclusion of kitchenettes and bathrooms. Their k6 model, which comes in at 280 square feet, is priced starting at $80,500 for one outfitted with a kitchenette and bathroom; the extended k6 model, at 330 square feet, starts at $89,700. Additional features that can be added on include canopies, decks, louvres, and bronze anodizing for the exterior.
The concrete hearth at the fireplace has angled sidewalls and a bevelled edge.
The arched windows provide a treehouse-like experience for some of the bedrooms.
Dual-glazed, low-energy glass and extensive shading allows the wall-to-wall windows to meet California's stringent building energy codes. A Herman Miller Spun chair by Heatherwick Studio is featured around the fire pit.
With a comfy bed, a built-in kitchenette and plenty of storage, this tiny trailer will provide all the amenities needed for a quick getaway.
The entryway is tucked behind a thin steel wall, shielding it from the kitchen. The designers created a six-inch shelf on the kitchen side for storage.
Outside each of the cabins a large patio provides space to relax and dine.
The Franklin stove adds an authentic touch to the updated cabin.
“My grandfather, George Fasullo, was an architect who died before I was born,” says architect Ryan Bollom. “My mom used both of our drawings as wallpaper in the secondary living space.” During the lockdown, Bollom formed an extended bubble with his parents, and he and his wife, also an architect, used the space as an office.
Ice Green marble from Signorino Stone forms the backsplash and countertops. The island bench was custom built with 2PAC grooved MDF in the front and Tasmanian oak legs. The bespoke kitchen hood is made from folded metal with a bronze detail seam up the middle.
To open up the backyard, the architects removed the existing timber enclosure that once covered the pool.
The timber used in the scaffolding and off-cuts from the framing were kept and redeployed for furniture and accents on the walls—such as the timber block in the primary kitchen.
The Deep Thoughts Chaise from Blu-dot sits atop a rug from Rugs.com.
Den's A frame house is designed with 1,000 square feet of living space.
Our experts advise on choosing an area rug by pile, construction, size, and placement—and how much it’ll cost.
A new HVAC system fills the space between the brick columns at the windows. It’s a more graceful, streamlined treatment than in-wall units.
Floor-to-ceiling shelves and storage bookend a cabinet that conceals the television.
The dining room, which features an original pressed-metal ceiling detail and fireplace, has a large window that opens directly to the sidewalk. The step down from the dining room to the living room represents the junction between the original terrace and the newly built addition. The exposed steel beam running above this junction is also new. "In opening up the house to the courtyard, we had to remove two walls," says Joe. "The steel beams and column support the upper floor of the original house in this area."
The oak ceilings are about 16.5 feet high in the living and dining room.
The dining and kitchen space opens up directly to an expanse of grass that leads to the water’s edge.
The living room is furnished with pieces by some of the greatest names in vintage design, such as Hans Wegner, Eero Saarinen and Charlotte Perriand, and also more recent pieces from the 1900s by Philippe Starck, among others.
The cabinet has an antique look, but it was designed and painted by Zachary.
Zachary designed a new cabinet in walnut to anchor the room. The wood tones are a warm counterpoint to the butter-yellow sofa. The coffee table belonged to the owners.
In Guang’s office, Chen designed a lacquered desk to join the Philippe Starck chair, Louis Poulsen desk lamp, and Chinese folk "drum stools."
The addition of the antiqued mirrored panels amplifies natural light that the living room receives from the adjacent sunroom.
There are many textures at play in the living room—the board-formed concrete ceiling, the light brick wall, wood paneling, and the terrazzo floors. "The texture of the timber is reflected in the concrete," says Peake. The lightwell adds an additional internal light source and another spot to insert greenery. The Vibia Palma wall sconce from Koda Lighting is affixed to the wall over the sofa.
Large windows and a white bedspread lend an airy atmosphere to a California bedroom in the first home Geremia designed from the group up.
The multicolored cushions were designed by Acuña and fabricated by Viviana Cortes.
Another view of the master bedroom.
A ladder in Skye's bathroom leads up to a secret passageway.
The oak cabinet in the living room was another secondhand find. “It had the exact measurements of the wall,” says Annemie. “We just needed to hang it.” The throw blanket is from La Femme Garniture while the pillows and pendants are custom.
Given the home’s tight and efficient footprint, the architects sought to use simple materials and strategic moves to delineate different spaces and uses. The lower ceiling height of the living room, for example, distinguishes it from the dining area, which has a taller ceiling.
Koto’s charred-timber workspace is an exercise in wabi-sabi design that embraces imperfection amid the natural world.  The carbon-neutral structure is built from natural materials, and it can operate both on- and off-grid.
Wallpaper and floral patterns liven up another bedroom.
A custom-made black walnut dining table is surrounded by chairs from Matthew Hilton Designs. A Lindsey Adelman chandelier hangs overhead. The team chose to paint the dining room in Railings by Farrow and Ball to create a mood apart from the airier kitchen and living area.
Nina’s goal in the bedroom was to create a "simple, soothing" space with a focus on light. Handmade indigo pillows from Mali and a tranquil beachscape photograph taken in Iceland embody the nature-inspired connection between African and Scandinavian design.
“My brother-in-law is an avid gardener, so pairing rooms with gardens, and experiencing the house as a series of spaces with different relationships to plants and trees, evolved naturally,” explains George.

Dwell's favorite photos of modern homes and design ideas. From midcentury gems, prefabricated units, and eye-opening renovations, to shipping container construction and custom trailers and campers, these projects display the best from Dwell Magazine and submitted by the Dwell community. Here, you'll find ideas for every room in the house, whether it be kitchen, bath, bedroom, living, or dining—and beyond.