Dear Earth, Happy Mother’s Day! 5 Homes That Worship Their Roots by Celebrating Mother Nature

Mother’s Day is one day of the year when a mother’s boundless and perpetual necessity is recognized. This year, Buildofy recognizes Mother Nature’s necessity, narrating tales of homes that equally respect the wishes of their often-overlooked creator.

Dear Earth, Happy Mother’s Day! 5 Homes That Worship Their Roots by Celebrating Mother Nature

Imagine, being on duty 24/7, with unapproved leaves, on a job that pays only through cheques of appreciation and incentives of gratitude other times, attenuating to the taunts, judgments, and mockery. This alleged designation is of a ‘Mother’; often referred to as ‘Ma, momma, mommy, mamma’ and a gamut of terms universally, with an equivalent job profile and prerequisites. Persisting in this promotion-less job, suddenly, a not-so-random day in May, traces the vestiges of their strife and struggles; offering these employees a day, to relish the courtesy.

As we commemorate the day and warmly embrace our momma, let’s not only peck our biological mothers today but also ‘the demigod of mothers’, Mother Nature. Posing as an ultimate giver; that carried and tended to generations, becoming a steadfast accomplice in the sacrosanct ceremonies of mollycoddling and bringing them up.

While we look around noticing the greenery, let’s depart on a safari in Buildofy’s archival wilderness, to laud homes that honour their mommy- Mother Nature!

Blue House

Pune | Maharashtra

Along the flourishing yet treacherous terrain, on the outskirts of Pune, a teal freight container is anchored, protesting against the ghastly trend of ‘use and throw’. Designers at Studio Alternatives, sourced Blue House from the depth of the oceans, aligning it to the site’s hilly terrain, while bearing witness to the recital orchestrated by the natural beings.

Sticking to the firm’s eco-conscious ideologies, three freight containers mimicking the setup of Jenga, shape this abode, leaning on isolated stereobates placed only at the containers’ pegs. The abode deftly perched on a steep hummock omits the cut and fill processes, “(For)Container homes...we don’t need to destroy the soil and create a flattened land,” Sonali of Studio Alternatives justifies. This unruffled setup, accords with the home’s contract of sharing its space with its original tenant; flora and fauna, without interrupting their daily rituals. During monsoons, this unprocessed terrain directs water downhill. While some seeps into the ground, recharging the water table, the excess water is collected through a drain, providing residents with ample water resources for their future.

Correspondingly, the inner sanctum clears the path for the organic waft and birdies to trail their natural course, courtesy of the gamut of openings. In the bedroom above, an entire wall of windows concaves, advocating nature’s wishes and fostering the growth of a nascent tree.

As a result, the surroundings too, pull a rabbit out of the hat; orchestrating a chiaroscuro and humming symphonies of natural ventilation in the abode. “We are always seeking peace in some form but peace can be the present... little bits add up and it makes your life peaceful and quiet,” recites Sonali.

Watch the Film: How Did They Build This Container House in Pune Climate? (House Tour).

Download House Plans: Blue House eBook

Contact the Architect: Studio Alternatives


Nasik | Maharashtra

Our mind often wanders to a land, far away from the bustle of a city, where a hill is shrouded with a verdant, velvety duvet, and surroundings are saturated with soft lullabies. Settling in this faerie is often an evanescent thought or a concoction crafted by the city folks exhausted of the mundane. Manifesting this fantasy, the greens at Design Jatra fabricated a rugged home christened ‘Terra’, blending the names of its owners.

Negotiating with the site’s contours, lush greenery, and natural streams; a stone structure serenely emerges on a gentler part of this slope that gradually dips to a river. Shardul Patil of Design Jatra further reasons, “The only vegetation that was near our site was here (near the lake)… these spaces were amazingly active and we just wanted to conserve them”. This prevailing unbuilt demarcates the boundaries for the built, fostering a spatial dialogue between the ecological and the manufactured. A series of flora species migrate to the assembled landscape, receiving a notification of compliance from the prevailing varieties.

The river and the forest’s cool wafts meander without changing their course, reaching every nook of the porous structure and beyond, owing to the gallantry of the abundant openings. Above an attic abides by the corresponding brief of sheerness, while Mother Nature rewards its inclusivity by exorcizing the hot air from the sanctum. The plot’s almost untouched terrain, remunerates the home with a vaulted space to stargaze or camp outside. To mimic nature’s comprehensive features, a quantifiable area is afflicted with the cut-fill process, offering locals a chance to revive the indigenous techniques.

Terra conspires with its iridescent surroundings to become a humble abode, encountering simplicity in the embrace of nature. “Primarily this house is about making these (familial) bonds, making these relationships with the context, with oneself, with the materials, with each other… with the village,” narrates architect Shardul Patil.

Watch the Film: This Eco Friendly Home in Rural Maharashtra Involved Village Craftsmen (House Tour).

Download House Plans: Terra eBook

Contact the Architect: Design Jatra


Cochin | Kerala

The state’s nickname ‘God’s own country,’ brings a vivid picture of sprawling verdancy with a foggy atmosphere where the native wildlife saunters. On the outskirts of these unequivocally lands, where the city pace negates giving rise to sprawling verdant pastures, Alarine (a moniker, derived by blending its owners’ name) literally phoenixes from the earth. Moulded by Zarine Jamshedji and the team at her eponymous firm, this monolith abides by the architect's eco-conscious way of living, serving as her home.

Coalescing with a vast paddy field ahead, on an almost plain part of the contour, Alarine materializes with a humble elevation, a green roof, and is deficient of excessive cut-fill. To make space for the movement of their pets and the gamut of fauna attracted by the paddy fields, this void home becomes an absolute, chick magnet, alluring everyone to pass through it. Due to this abode’s pellucid character, nature offers its best soldiers- symphonic lullabies and tranquil wafts to battle the harsh climate of Kerala. “It wasn’t about having a house with a view, it was about enjoying nature in all its forms, not just greenery, animals, insects, birds; they are part of our co-existence,” Zarine of Zarine Jamshedji Architects reasons.

Beyond, the unhinged contours bring the excess rainwater to a series of drains crafted with pebbles to replenish a prevailing pond that enjoys the view of the paddy field. This pond restocks the groundwater table and serves the residents’ requirements during water shortages. As the abode employs Schnell panels and clay cladding instead of concrete, the surroundings sanctify it with a cool microclimate and a gentle vibe of serenity.

The walls of this selfless abode tell compelling tales of its surroundings in their purest forms, with the utmost respect. “Our concept for the house wasn’t, an architectural concept, it was a way of life,” Zarine gushes.

Watch the Film: Built in 6 Months, This Home in Kerala Redefines Sustainability (Home Tour).

Download House Plans:  Alarine eBook

Contact the Architect: Zarine Jamshedji Architects

Banni Residence

Malavalli | Karnataka

On a stroll, away from the barbed assemblies of the city, in the quietness of lush greens where the symphonies of nature are raucous and its movements are candid, a voluptuous abode transpires. A prenup protecting the environment is signed between Banni Residence and the natural settings of a town in Karnataka, in the presence of the revered Vastu Shilpa. The environmentalists at Jaisim Fountainhead, thus, procure a front-row seat to witness the exchange of nuptial vows between the built and the unbuilt.

Almost masked by the lush embrace of the verdancy, Banni Residence twists and turns as per the flora and fauna’s directions, without shackling its nomad character. On the white-auburn façade of the fluid walls, nature proclaims its presence by painting the blank walls with long strokes of creepers. Under Banni Residence’s roof, the birdies and Karnataka’s moderate breezes, meander around without even perceiving the bounds of the home, courtesy of the sheer boundaries.

Further, the surrounding vegetation creeps into every bone of the abode, courtesy of a ligature of massive openings. The flux of ventilation streaming in the home is managed by these openings without interrupting the cavorting path of the surroundings. “Then we have a heat extractor on top, being the topmost point it's very easy for the hot air to escape from there,” explains Shruti Vedavyas of Jaisim Fountainhead. The steadfastness of this habitat is rewarded by Mother Nature, with ample natural light and ventilation, cutting down the usage of artificial appliances.

“We reverse the process of functional design and pushed it into this space, this land simply absorbed it, although it does a tremendous challenge of soil and drop… but it (nature) worked with us” explains Jaisim of Jaisim Fountainhead.

Watch the Film: An Organically Designed Eco-Friendly Home Welcomes Nature Inside (Home Tour).

Download House Plans:  Banni Residence eBook

Contact the Architect: Jaisim Fountainhead

Shikhara Residence

Trivandrum| Kerala

Swaying green fields, chipper of the birds, tender caresses of the breeze, and a tranquil state of mind, are often a prerequisite for the holidays away from the clamour of the city. Consequently, a trekking trip to the lush countryside of Kerala amidst the flourishing verdancy combined with tropical breezes often poses a revelation, of calling it home perpetually. So, a travel enthusiast makes these natural settings a home, titling it Shikhara Residence, with the help of the Wallmakers.

Attuning to the hilly terrain and the greenery around, a barren fragment perched above a hummock was stippled with the congruence of two triangles. In the hilly areas, the ground creatures often meander on their terms with a fair knowledge of the terrain; this abode thus leaves their trails untouched, skipping excess cut-fill processes. To avoid anomalies, for the fauna and the vegetation and to combat the meanness of the sun, the architect borrows the debris from Mother Nature, to create a disguising shading device.

As the terrain alters, the breezes amplify blowing at a rapid rate. Adhering to this speed limit the home presents crevices of the shading device, magnanimous openings, and pin holes of aluminium mesh; for the winds to flow without changing their paths.

“Very often we do not have clarity about the spaces we make, more wonder and surprises come while making it. So, that is learning in Shikhara,” gushes Vinu Daniels of the Wallmakers.

Watch the Film: Built Out of Building Waste, this Home is a Learning in Sustainable Architecture (Home Tour).

Download House Plans: Shikhara Residence eBook

Contact the Architect: Wallmakers

To watch the complete home tour, peruse the drawings in detail, and browse additional photographs, visit Buildofy. While there, don’t miss out on the other eco-conscious contemporary homes across India.