Archive for Blog

How to Set a Budget for Your Renovation

How to Set a Budget for Your Renovation

The first conversation any client wants to have is cost. Renovating or adding on to your house is no small investment. And we’ve met plenty of homeowners who abandoned their home improvement plans once they got a clear understanding of cost. Avoid this by setting your…

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Cabinets: Toe-Kick versus Furniture Base

Cabinets: Toe-Kick versus Furniture Base

[Originally published as Design Tip #18 in our weekly newsletter] Here’s a design tip that’s handy for cabinet shopping. One of the details you’ll select with cabinets is the base profile. Most kitchen cabinets are designed with a toe-kick. This is a 4” space at…

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Why Do Contractors Cost So Much?

Why Do Contractors Cost So Much?

People often ask me, “Why do contractors cost so much? How can they possibly justify those prices??” Usually, this question comes from a handy homeowner – someone who’s done a lot of work to their own house. If you remodeled your powder room for $1,800…

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Don’t Shop for Tile Online

Don’t Shop for Tile Online

As a millennial and a veteran online shopper, it pains me to admit that I’ve found something you shouldn’t shop for online: tile.   And it’s not for the reason you’d think.   I’m very comfortable with the fact that color rendition online won’t be consistent…

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Design Tip No. 15

Design Tip No. 15

Old House Style Spotlight: Cape Cod [Originally published as Design Tip #15 in our weekly newsletter] Commonly called Cape Cod style houses or simply, “cottages”, the New England traditional folk house has been around since the 1600s and can be found all over the east…

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Shop Like a Pro

Shop Like a Pro

A major part of the renovation process is shopping. For better or worse, there are so many products and finishes on the market that finding the right thing (for the right price) takes strategy. Unlike a shirt or a camera or a cell phone, you…

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The Client’s Guide to Being Pushy

The Client’s Guide to Being Pushy

In addition to the services I expected to provide as an architect – drawing, modeling, product research, etc. — I find I give a lot of social and psychological advice. Renovations bring out the best in people. And since that last sentence is written and…

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Ikea PAX Closet Organizers

Ikea PAX Closet Organizers

[Originally published as Design Tip #14 in our weekly newsletter] When it comes to closet organizing systems, there are a ton of options. For almost all of our projects, we design around the Ikea PAX Closet System. If you want to go above and beyond a simple…

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High Rise Modern in a Suburban Basement

High Rise Modern in a Suburban Basement

“I want big-city, high-rise modern, and I need it in my daughter’s suburban basement.” When Diane first reached out to us to discuss her project, she faced a major transition. She was living in a sleek, urban condo that overlooked the Nashville skyline. And she…

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Renovating Is Cheaper Than Adding On

Renovating Is Cheaper Than Adding On

Even complex, messy renovations cost less than building brand new space. Read on to figure out if you really need to build that budget-busting addition or if renovating will do the trick. Designing a renovation is hard. Taking a jumble of existing rooms and figuring out…

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