At IXA, a physical 3D model has always been an integral part of our design process. The above is our recent project, which comprises a tertiary education institution and accommodations for the students in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

An architectural study model allows us to better imagine and visualize our design intent, as well as to improve on the detailing subsequently beyond the typical 2D drawings. The form of a model allows us to better communicate our expectations of the scheme with our clients and fellow consultants. With a study model at an early stage, the overall forms and spaces can be explored and developed accordingly.

In this post, take a glimpse at part of the process where the entire office chipped in to finish up the final portion of the model. We are glad to have had a team of NUS interns who assisted us during the work. The process involved preparation of drawings, laser cutting, assembling, and refinement of the intricate parts. With much planning, dedication, and hard work, we finished the model in high spirits and satisfactorily.



Craft is at the core of architecture. Craft, in the context of Architecture, brings an added richness to a building design through the careful consideration of details, textures, light and shadow. Here at IX Architects, we embrace the exploration of craft and materiality through our projects.


Concrete is a mixture of sand, rock and cement. While concrete is commonly known as a structural material, we get creative with the appearance of concrete – utilizing the material to achieve a strong aesthetic and tactile quality.

a) Off form Concrete

This refers to concrete that has been cast through the use of formwork – the moulds in which concrete is poured or placed. Interesting textures could be achieved through varying the surfaces of the formwork that shape up the concrete.

Concrete feature wall, 22 Greenleaf Place, Singapore
Off form variations

b) Rough Cast Concrete

Rough cast concrete is a course, weathered concrete finish that is highly tactile.

c) Concrete Imprinting

The creative utilization of flora and fauna to create imprints in concrete

Imprinted Concrete Variations, IX Architects Office, Singapore
Imprinted concrete floor, 22 Greenleaf Place, Singapore


A popular material, brick, is known to withstand corrosion and resist fire. The beauty of brick has withstand many centuries and this long-lasting material serves as a distinct style or feature to any place. It is easy to work with and easy to maintain.

a) Brick-laying Patterns

With masonry skills, various brick patterns can be laid out and designed. Brick patterns add interest to a building, giving a natural aesthetic look.

Example of Brick-Laying Patterns
Factory, Surakarta, Indonesia
Project 2020, Cambodia


The use of metal is considered to be innovation and practical in architecture. With its tensile strength and durability, it allows both construction and creativity to be in larger scale. Their potential can be harvested in forms of fixtures and façade as well.

a) Scrap Metal

Scrap metal can be refashioned and rejuvenated into features, becoming the focal point.

Scrap Metal, IX Architects Office, Singapore

b) Sun-shading Device

Metal is shaped into unique shapes to act as a customized sunshade.

Sun-shade, Kara Office, Singapore

c) Facade Screen

Beyond its structural usage, metal is explored and utilized as a decorative yet functional façade.

Street view, Chee Chung Huay Temple, Singapore
Reception, Chee Chung Huay Temple, Singapore
Facade Screen Prototype


With a hollow stem, bamboo is a woody grass plant that mostly cultivated in tropical regions. Architecture today has extended the use of bamboo to buildings and homes. It is highly sustainable and has proven its worth in many works worldwide.

a) Bamboo Screens

A series of bamboo creates a translucent facade that amplifies the space.

Eco Factory, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Bamboo Screens


Wood is a versatile and renewable material widely used in architecture and construction. The incorporation of wood adds to beauty and warm of a space, whilst harnessing the natural benefits of doing so. It is eco-friendly and enables a flexible usage.

a) Plywood in Model Making

Plywood is a form of engineered wood made from thin sheets of wood. The ease of use and advantages of plywood attributes to its common usages, such as model making.

Laser-cut Plywood
Green Rhapsody, AUDE Exhibition @ URA, Singapore


Commonly used in tropical climate, rattan is a naturally renewable palm. It is used for furniture, handicrafts and other building materials and it is an invaluable material.

a) Rattan Screens

The use of rattan in screens creates visually pleasing patterns and promotes ventilation as well.

Various designs of rattan screens
More Than Just A Library, Cambodia
Vesak Day Art Installation, Vietnam

Top Icon