We fell in love with this house the moment we saw it. It’s an architectural wonder one simply doesn’t get to see every day. Nestled in the countryside of Bernardsville in central New Jersey lies this masterpiece dubbed “The Bunny Lane House,” an exceedingly modern home that has an eye-popping and unexpected not-so-modern twist inside.
Situated on three acres, the home was designed by architect Adam Kalkin and is a “prefab” house; that is, the home is made from recycled shipping containers, which can easily be transported. The outer shell of the home is an ultra-modern industrial shed with cool custom roll-up doors—perfect if you want to bring outdoor living inside.
Taking a full year to complete, Bunny Lane House has a remarkably cozy interior despite its voluminous spaces. The exterior is a blend of modern and contemporary, but the inside features a traditional (and wondrous) surprise. We asked the architect what his inspiration was to build such a unique home. His answer was straightforward and therefore unexpected. “I just had two babies and needed a place to raise them,” Kalkin said. “The house is a cradle for childhood.”
On one end of this singular, impressive structure is a three-story wall consisting of nine rectangular rooms with a showy wall of windows sealing them in. A metal staircase leads to the second floor and a jaunty spiral staircase leads to the top floor. All rooms are the same square footage and feature exposed brick walls, a warm, traditional contrast to the otherwise modern home. The living room is the largest part of the house, boasting comfortable seating that maximizes its gorgeous high ceilings. It’s quite a sight. The unquestioned centerpiece of the residence is the what-is-this-doing-here? Traditional, two-story 1880s farmhouse situated smack in the middle of the home. It features a wrap-around porch and cozy rooms with colorful antique furniture. It looks as if it were plucked from behind a white picket fence and gently placed in the modern marvel. The contrast of the Jetsons-like house and the traditional interior is ingenious. The result is just stunning. How did Kalkin come up with this plan for his home? “The world is a composite of the new and old so it is natural to work that way,” he said. “It’s the world we live in. I love to build things and see ideas become set into work. Every building changes the world in a real tangible way.”
With its striking architectural details throughout, Kalkin says the kitchen is his favorite part of Bunny Lane House. “The kitchen is its organic soul,” he said. “It’s the place where raw materials of the earth are magically turned into thought.”
Dreaming up—let alone designing and building—a house as monumental as this is equally challenging and exciting. There aren’t too many primary residences like Bunny Lane House around that should be admired. It’s safe to say that this modern marvel will keep turning heads for years to come. As it should.