Product Idea

Modular Lego Eames Case Study House #8

  • This is a 32 * 64 Studs modular model of the so called Case Study House No. 8 in Pacific Palisades, CA, buillt by Ray and Charles Eames in 1949. With it's ground breaking steel construction and light flooded rooms, the house is certainly among the most famous residential buildings in the world today. 
  • The basic idea of the model is to combine the architecture series with the modular/city world. I am very much into display sets, so I would enjoy the level of detail the house shows (please find a link list to compare the model with the real building below), if it became a real Lego set. My 6 year old daughter would like the removable roof, walls and first floor as well as the robust construction, which ensure that it is still easily possible to play with the building. And both of us would have to hide the house from my 4 year old son, because he likes to explore rare parts and special building techniques by deconstructing everything within a minute (At least he would create a „rocket castle with garage for a motorbike“ or something like that for us, instead)
  • If you want to support this project, please also leave a comment, as that might generate an extra push in visibilty. A short ‚nice', ‚cool' or ‚worst lego building since 6097 ‘bat lord's castle‘ will do the job. Leaving private feedback would obviously also be highly appreci...

GNIHIHIHAHAMUAHAHA!

Oh, sorry. That's just the sound I made in five minute intervals when creating the model and even today, when regarding the renderings and writing this text. I've already built some lego models before, but this one really was most fun so far. I think it's a mixture of the following reasons, that made the Eames house so special to me:

The level of detail

This Lego model has exactly the same layout as the original, of course. It holds a big living room with sitting area, a kitchen, a storage room, an entrance area, a spiral staircase, a bedroom, a workspace, 2 bathrooms and a dressing room.

Please compare the following images of the real house with the Lego model.

The living room in image number 2 and :

https://www.getty.edu/conservation/our_projects/field_projects/eameshouse/images/overview2.jpg

The kitchen in image number 5 and:

http://architecture-history.org/architects/architects/EAMES/PIC/CH220.png

The furniture in image number 4 and:

https://www.eamesoffice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/S-Eames-Plastic-Side-Chair-DSR-Online-Shop_256143_preview.jpg

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Eames#/media/Datei:Eameslounch.jpg

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Eames#/media/Datei:Eames_Wood_Chair.jpg

The whole house in image number 1 and:

https://images.adsttc.com/media/images/5852/92aa/e58e/ce18/fa00/01f5/slideshow/20332522285_c6862f5436_b.jpg?1481806501

You see, it was possible to incorporate a lot of details of the real house, even on a small scale. The hanging paintings, the ladder, all the different chairs the Eames' designed, even the mosaic in the entrance, they are all there.

I have to say, my favorite detail is the pig head sculpture hanging in the living room. When I found out it is possible to use the head of a minifigure in a pig costume, I really celebrated that!

On the other hand, I have to admit there are also some deviations from the original building: The sidewalk in the corners of the model doesn't actually exist for example, but I wanted to create a smooth transition to other modular buildings.

I was also not really able to find pictures of the bathroom with shower and the dressing room in the first floor. The Eames' kept these places private. So I decided to just put a lot of the furniture they designed there and gave it an asian touch, which the house generally has.

Finally there is actually a service hatch between the sitting area in the living room and the kitchen. Unfortunately in a Lego set, the spiral staircase needs a bit more space than in reality to accomodate a minifigure so... well, the service hatch now leads to the storage room with washing machine in my model. Admittedly, that solution might be slighty less handy than the original one...

The (mis)usage of bricks

In the past, I built mostly cars and small scale architecure projects. There, the decision which bricks to use was pretty much straightforward. I experienced way more options with the Eames house. Let me list some examples:

Before I found out a white airplane cockpit together with ice cream feet would probably be the best bathtub, I experimented with several fenders and castle bows.

For the windows, I first used normal plates and small glass bricks instead of tubes and ladders. But that gave the house a very dark and heavy appearence the original doesn't have.

The lounge chair wood (LCW) next to the bed now consists of an off road car axis, two clips, a rear wing and bike parts. I tried it with 3 different fenders and a rear wing first, but the result became too big.

The functional elements

As already stated, the house should not only be a display set. As you can see in the images, the roof, as well as half of the first floor ( the part over kitchen and storage room) can be removed. Furthermore, the complete backwall can be unfolded, so all rooms are easily accessable.

The house has, like the original, not only a main entrance in the middle, there are also sliding doors at the front and back. In the kitchen, you will find an accordion door to seperate dining and working areas, allthough I learned that the Eames‘ never made use of that door in reality. In the first floor, more sliding doors can be closed to seperate the bedroom from the living room and the workspace (as shown on image 9 and 10).

Finally, I found it important to make the construction as robust as a real lego set, which was quite difficult in certain areas.

The Eames‘ themselves.

I don't know if I really have to write about the geniality of the work of Ray and Charles Eames. I mean, today every Hipster between Berlin and New York has a chair designed by them in his kitchen. Ambitous hipsters even own one of their lounge chairs or storage units.

What I find especially fascinating, is that they invented a lot of their furniture and houses already in the 40's and 50's, but it still looks modern today. And also the idea, to design all that together as couple, was probably not too common at that time.

When I built the house, it felt like this is the flat I would want to move in by tomorrow. At some points, I tried to cheat a bit, for example by moving the stairs to a slightly different position than in the original. But that immediately lead to new problems like too small surrounding rooms, etc., which showed me how well the house is designed and...

GNIHIHIHAHAMUAHAHA!

...okay, I guess I have to finish now, before this text ends up in Nerdvana. Please support and share this project, it really means a lot to me!