Nixon Tulloch Fortey’s adorable Cubby House pops open to allow children to play indoors, outdoors and around the playhouse. Built to resemble the recognizable gabled-roof of a Monopoly house, NTF’s Cubby is part of the annual Cubby House Challenge, held at the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show.



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Each year, the MIFGS challenges local designers, members of the building industry and architecture firms to design pop-up tiny homes, meant for child’s play, which are then auctioned off after the exhibition.

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Nixon Tulloch Fortey’s entry is a vibrantly striped structure, purposely shaped to resemble the typical child’s notion of what a house looks like, evident in childhood drawings, or game pieces. The playhouse space is flexible, able to morph to accommodate one or two children or a small group for active play. Clad in timber planks inside and out, the Cubby House has two pop-out walls that swing open to allow the outdoors in, while extending play space. The front flap opens to create an outdoor patio, while the second floor hatch opens, extending the cozy space to accommodate more than one child at play. When closed, the Cubby House can be entered through a side door, allowing one or two children to play quietly, relax, or read.

Although the structure rises to almost two stories, it was designed to be an uncomfortable and cramped space for adults, giving children a feeling that the space is their own.

+ Nixon Tulloch Fortey

Images ©Peter Clarke