— 18 May 2020, 15:44 by Emma Ward-Lambert
With this week marking the 10th anniversary of Ström Architects, we have been looking back at where we started, our journey to this point, and looking ahead to what the future will bring.
Ström Architects started in May 2010, with Magnus toiling away on his own in his spare bedroom-cum-office. A decade later, and we are an award-winning practice of 8, with a proud collection of contemporary new-build houses to our name.
From the humble beginnings of Magnus’s first office space, the practice’s portfolio grew from local new-build and renovation projects, to larger and larger scale private homes across the country and worldwide. What hasn’t changed throughout this time is the care we take over getting to know our clients, our fanatical attention to detail, or the practice’s core principles. Founded upon Magnus’s design ethos, the practice puts love of nature, light and materiality at its centre. Following many of Modernism’s features, we believe that architecture should be both purposeful and beautiful; decoration for the sake of it is unnecessary and insincere. We celebrate simplicity, clarity, and timeless, intuitive design.
The last 10 years have been both hard work, and extremely rewarding. To turn Magnus’s dream of running his own practice into the reality of Ström Architects today, has required many late nights in the office, a few heated discussions about planning policy, collaboration with great consultants, passionate debates over design reviews, some truly fabulous clients, and a great team in the studio. As with almost anything really worthwhile, our growth has taken time, patience and dedication; we are proud to be a small team – our size means we have to be selective, and we can bring a personal touch to our projects. Specialising in one-off private homes, we put the human aspect of architecture at the forefront, and place great importance on the relationships that we build with our clients – many of whom remain firm friends of the practice today.
The combination of our strong practice ethos combined with working closely with our clients, has lead to our projects being recognised nationally and internationally in several awards. Most prominent was The Quest – a single-storey, cantilevering house in Dorset. We have been honoured by the widespread attention that the house found in the press and in awards, having won or been shortlisted for over a dozen awards – most notable being its shortlisting for RIBA House of The Year.
Whilst we continue to appreciate our presence in publications and award listings, what we feel is the greatest marker of success is the on-going flow of new projects. The briefs and projects have continued to grow in size, complexity and aspirations, and this continuous progression for us is both a welcome challenge and a feather in our caps. We now have projects across the world, from Barcelona, to Virginia, and all the way over to New Zealand.
Whilst we don’t know exactly what the next 10 years will bring – especially during these uncertain times in which we now find ourselves – we know that Ström Architects will continue to work with passion, clarity and precision. We look forward to building on our past successes, continuing to learn and grow, and gaining ever-more work across the world.