A Beautiful Fusion of Midcentury and Modern: The Fig Tree Pocket House

Fig Tree

The Fig Tree Pocket 60s House was in a worn out, outmoded and dark state when its owners approached Brisbane-based Bligh Graham Architects. As the name of the home suggests, the flat roofed structure is a 1960s design. Previous renovations had been executed poorly and to accommodate a family with three sons, the design team decided to strip back closer to the original design structure and from that starting point, bring modern life into the home.

Fig Tree
Fig Tree
Fig Tree
Fig Tree

Rather than imitating the original design, the renovation builds on the existing bone structure, which was in such poor shape that much of it had to be replaced. The new design creates an open relationship between interior spaces as well as with the outdoor spaces, which include a deck, grass terrace and courtyard. The project was brought to completion in 2019.

Fig Tree
Fig Tree

The home is situated on a slope and from the side view it escalates in three layers. The lowest level is the pool. A recreation room and garage are found one ‘step’ up, on top of which a deck and the living area are located. The home’s open plan dining area and kitchen follow the living area and lead out to the courtyard. The Master bedroom suit is near the garage to the West and the children’s bedrooms are located on the east side of the building.

Fig Tree
Fig Tree
Fig Tree

The original design included central clerestory windows, which now run across almost the entire width of the house. To add more light, openness and forge a stronger indoor/outdoor connection, floor to ceiling glass doors slide open from the central dining area to the courtyard.

Wood takes the main stage throughout the open plan living, dining and kitchen areas. A new plywood ceiling paired with similar wooden flooring and interior furniture gives the space a sleek, natural look. Splashes of blue and patterned green decorate bits of wall and serve as backboard to storage space.

Photographer Toby Scott