The Palatine Passive House by Architect Tiffany Bowie
of Malboeuf Bowie Architecture was one of eight
homes featured during the 2016 Seattle Modern
Home Tour in April. Bowie, a certified passive house
consultant, fielded questions from tour guests curious about
passive construction. “Many people weren’t familiar with
the concept of a passive house, so it was a great educational
opportunity,” Bowie said.
Thanks to its efficient design, the 2,700-square-foot urban
infill project boasts energy usage up to 90 percent less than
standard building code requirements. The home earned
certification as a passive house in April. Its technological
efficiencies include an airtight envelope, continuous high-
performance insulation, and managed solar gain, as well as
the home management and control system Kirio, which
monitors the home’s systems, appliances, and even lighting.
A continuously filtered heat and moisture recovery ventilation
system offers excellent air quality and temperature-control,
making the home exceptionally healthy and comfortable.
Its stunning herringbone façade and clean, modern
landscaping make it a good aesthetic addition to the tree-lined
streets of the Greenwood neighborhood. Bowie worked with
architect Joe Malboeuf, her husband and business partner,
to treat the cedar siding in the manner of “shou sugi ban,” a
Japanese art form for charring cedar. Her father, for whom the
home was designed, also pitched in to help with the charring
and sealing process. In addition to its rich, elegant patina,
the treatment protects the wood and prevents the need for
maintenance. The herringbone pattern was intended to meet at
45-degree angles, but the roof’s pitch was adjusted to slightly
less than 45 degrees in order to keep the roof’s height within
neighborhood restrictions. That made cutting and installing
the siding slightly trickier, but the end result was worth it.
The home’s dark exterior means visitors are in for a
surprise when they step inside. Bowie’s father, a retired energy
consultant who enthusiastically embraced the passive house
concept, has lived abroad in Japan and Scandinavia, and
the home’s design reflects both influences. The interior is
voluminous, bright, and filled with light, natural finishes.
Large windows were strategically placed to maximize daylight.
The floor plan offers three bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, and a
loft. The master bedroom design features an open sink and
shower with a separate water closet. Bowie’s go-to white
paint color, Eider White by Sherwin-Williams, is used
throughout the home.
“Joe and I are influenced by Scandinavian architecture
that exhibits simple forms, clean lines, natural materials, and
thoughtful daylighting,” Bowie said. “We like keeping our
designs simple while adding in our own unique details or
using materials in new ways.”
More information on Malboeuf Bowie Architecture: mb-architecture.com