Whitney Sander

Whitney Sander

Sander Architects is the international award-winning firm whose approach to contemporary residential design has been making waves in the architecture world. Their Hybrid House uses components of prefab technology to create homes that are custom designed for each client. Homes that are not only green but also very high design. This is a time of extraordinary change for practitioners in the design fields and Sander Architects is a young exciting firm determined to be at the forefront of green architecture.

A Warehouse Called Home | Sander Architects, Building The Briard House

sander architects briardhouse 01 A Warehouse Called Home | Sander Architects, Building The Briard House

Residence for a Briard came out of conversations with the owners who found an old bungalow in Culver City and initially considered a renovation. After discussions with architect Whitney Sander they realized that they could take advantage of his Hybrid House to build a ground-up duplex for only slightly more than the proposed reno budget.



The gauntlet they threw down: to build the greenest house that had ever come out of the Sander practice.



    Learn more about the buildings design and the people who brought the Briard House to life, in our previous post here on G Living.
    Introduction | Mr Whitney Sander, Architect
    Introduction | Catherine Holliss | Interior Designer
    When the rain has passed
    Introduction | Home Buyer Thomas Small
    Introduction | Home Buyer Joanna Brody

The challenge: a very tight budget.



The third issue was Hobbes, the Briard for whom the home is named: not only a huge dog but a huge factor that influenced everything from stair design to finishing materials. This is an instance when it was important that a design “go to the dogs.”

Hybrid House was one of the things that attracted the clients to the Sander. The firm’s strong design reputation was important too as the client is one of the founders of the Architectural Foundation of Los Angeles.

The short list: very modern, very green, very dog friendly.

Residence for a Briard is the greenest Hybrid House ever built. Strategies and materials include: greywater systems, passive heating and cooling strategies, cistern to capture rainwater for watering landscaping, recycled blue jean insulation, sunflower seed wall board, bamboo flooring, marmoleum, structural steel frames from recycled steel, and more.
Case Study House for the 21st Century? Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

When the rain has passed

whitney sander briardhouse 03 When the rain has passed

A look back at Architects Whitney Sanders Briard House

Now that the rain is gone (for awhile, anyway) we are back on track. The prefabricated shell was completed six weeks ago, and the erection of Green Sandwich Technology panels, and rough framing inside, has filled up the time since.

These images show the green sandwich being installed. It’s an amaziung material: able to create tall buildings at a single bound… it almost arrivces with a cape. These panels are 28 feet tall, and were erected in ten days. The material also allows for on-site changes. For instance, this week we will add and subtract: literally. I will direct our installer to cut a bit here, add a bit there, to sculpt, quite literally, a 28-foot tall sculpture. What I am trying to do, recalling our original model:

whitney sander briardhouse 02 When the rain has passed

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Introduction | Home Buyer Thomas Small

briard house thomas small 01 Introduction | Home Buyer Thomas Small

Post by Sander Architects Client Thomas Small (The Briard House)

Hello and thanks for visiting! I am Thomas Aujero Small and along with Joanna and Hobbes, am one of the owners of this house. There is so much to say about this house and how we have all arrived at this point in time that I don’t know where to start. But maybe I should start with Whitney, as it really is entirely his fault. We never intended to build a house, at this stage in our lives. We wanted to move out of our town house and move up, modestly, into a different house, that we might improve or renovate. We searched and debated, over a couple of years. We decided on Culver City, as the last affordable place on the west side and looked seriously at a few properties. Our real estate agent, Colin Maduzia was a joy to work with and infinitely patient. We gradually discovered that the Rancho Higuera neighborhood was exactly what we wanted, and that Carson Street was excellent. Beautiful, mature laurel fig trees and wonderful old street lamps line the sidewalks of a long block that ends in a cul-de-sac. You can walk to downtown Culver City in ten minutes, and the Helms Bakery complex as well. The new transit station for the Expo Line of the light rail that will go downtown will also be built very nearby, hopefully within the next few years. So, location, location, location, we found a gorgeous, sustainable location. Walking, and public transit, what a surprise in central Los Angeles!

briard house thomas small 02 Introduction | Home Buyer Thomas Small

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Introduction | Home Buyer Joanna Brody

joanna brody Introduction | Home Buyer Joanna Brody

Post by Sander Architects Client Joanna Brody (The Briard House)

Hello everyone and thanks for visiting. I am Joanna Brody, one half of the Brody-Small client. I own a public relations firm that focuses on social and environmental causes and issues (www.brody-pr.com – shameless plug #1). Commissioning this house has been nothing short of an amazing experience and a total blast. When we tell people we are building a house, responses range from “I’ve always wanted to do that” to “I hope your marriage is strong” to “Are you still speaking to your architects?” Well, we are privileged to be able to do this, our marriage is stronger than ever, and not only do we still speak to our architects, we socialize with them on a regular basis and they have become dear friends! (www.sander-architects.com – shameless and totally deserved plug #2). And we have an amazing contractor to boot, Sean Icaza of Icaza Construction (shameless and totally deserved plug #3).

Now we gave this team some tough, tough criteria: A piece of art (Whitney only does art), green and inexpensive. It’s sort of like the saying – You want it fast, cheap and good? Pick two! Well our amazing team is succeeding on all three fronts. We have been blessed with a talented, creative and push-the-envelope group of architects, designers, builders and subcontractors who are excited to bring this project to life despite – or maybe because of – the ultra-challenging brief.

briard house whitney sander model Introduction | Home Buyer Joanna Brody

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Introduction | Catherine Holliss | Interior Designer

catherine holliss Introduction | Catherine Holliss | Interior Designer

I am Catherine Holliss the designer in charge of the interiors and the materials on the project.

The architect, Whitney Sander and I collaborate on the choice of finishing materials and other details for the building. That means that I present materials and ideas for the flooring, the wall coverings, the kitchen cabinets, the fixtures, the bathrooms, the exterior finishes, colors, and the list goes on. I like to think that this level is where the texture gets added to the ‘canvas’ of the architecture.
The clients, Joanna and Thomas are passionate about green, eco-friendly materials and solutions and so are we – it has been a marvelous collaboration from the very beginning.

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Introduction | Mr Whitney Sander, Architect

whitney sander architect 01 Introduction | Mr Whitney Sander, Architect

Hello and thanks for visiting the site. My name is Whitney Sander, and I am the architect of the House for a Briard. I have been working in architecture since 1974, and have been on my own for almost twenty years. My firm designs residential and commercial projects that are contemporary in design and green in ethos. We search for the leanest, most up-to-date materials for our projects, most of which are actually strikingly beautiful. I always try to start simply in each prjoect, because complexity will necessarily follow. I also give each project “good bones:” a regular rythm of structure which means it will be simply built. This means that many of my projects show columns at regular intervals, and walls and spaces move around them.Designing this house has been a magnificent experience.
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New York Times Features The Briard House

whitney sander briardhouse 08 New York Times Features The Briard House

New York Times
By MICHAEL WEBB

THOMAS SMALL is an accomplished cook, so it’s important for him to try new and exotic ingredients every now and then. When it came to the construction of his eco-friendly house, that’s exactly what his architects gave him. After all, crushed sunflower husks and shredded blue jeans don’t sound like typical building blocks.

But in the world of green design, such ingredients are not rare. So now, Mr. Small and his wife, Joanna Brody, along with their two very young children and a pair of large French Briard dogs, share a prefabricated urban building that has become an example for others looking for creative ways to go green. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Introduction | Catherine Holliss | Interior Designer

catherine holliss Introduction | Catherine Holliss | Interior Designer

I am Catherine Holliss the designer in charge of the interiors and the materials on the project.

The architect, Whitney Sander and I collaborate on the choice of finishing materials and other details for the building. That means that I present materials and ideas for the flooring, the wall coverings, the kitchen cabinets, the fixtures, the bathrooms, the exterior finishes, colors, and the list goes on. I like to think that this level is where the texture gets added to the ‘canvas’ of the architecture.
The clients, Joanna and Thomas are passionate about green, eco-friendly materials and solutions and so are we – it has been a marvelous collaboration from the very beginning.

Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

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