Before this century, only noble that built Joglo house. Because it required materials more than ordinary houses, and it had to be expensive. Joglo house usually has exclusive rooms, such as pendapa (meeting room), pringgitan (a room which is used to hold a shadow puppet show), dalem agung (room at the back used as family room). Meanwhile in the main building, there are three sentong (rooms): sentong kiwa (left wing room), sentong tengah (center room) and sentong kanan (right wing room).
You can find symbols spread in Javanese life. The symbol system classification is based on two, three, five and nine categories. The two first category is related to opposite thing, such as inggil (high) and andap (low), ngajeng (front) and wingking (back).
The three category system is to neutralize those two opposite things, kiwa (left), tengen (right) and center. The five category is related to four points of compass plus the center, called mancapat. And last, the nine category system is related to eight points of compass plus the center or wali sanga shape.
Those symbols are realized in petungan (the reference number in planning and building house wrapped in Javanese symbolic system). The Javanese people used to keep this system before they build their house with ritual ceremony.
Feel inspired to build such house? These are phases to build Joglo house:
- Leveling the terrain to build a foundation. This is also to lose the “guardian”. The foundation is made higher than the ground to avoid the rainwater flooding the house. The foundation is usually made of bricks.
- Installing umpak or stones to support the poles. The measure is adjusted with the pole that will install. Umpak is placed rather into the foundation. The material is black natural stone. But some people do not use umpak and its pole, but it is planted directly. Usually, on umpak is put a decoration in padma (red lotus) shape that is considered as purity symbol in Buddha.
- Installing floor with the mix of plaster, sand, red cement and cement.
- Installing poles.
- Installing wall, usually made of bamboo, the combination of bamboo and board, board or brick wall.
- Installing window and door.
- Installing roof. The important part from Joglo roof is brunjung, which is placed highest and supported by the main pole. It has a shape like rolled back pyramid.
The important thing I notice is, in making each part, Javanese people always do a ceremony. It has purpose to bring goodness of the house itself. And after, the Javanese treat their house as a big mountain that becomes a life source.
Of course you don’t have to do the exact things as a Javanese. You just may apply some of its shape, example on the roof or the global building.