New construction involves a very different kind of design process than remodels or additions for several reasons. In our renovation work, we must always address the condition of the existing structure—including necessary maintenance, structural issues, code and the possibility of unseen conditions—beyond the particular goals of a project. We also have to consider how our new work relates to and ties in with the existing design, both stylistically and technologically.
For these reasons, remodeling and additions inevitably involve working with constraints of various kinds. Believe it or not, these concerns help keep our work varied and interesting, in that we have to use our problem-solving skills and creativity to properly attend to the many issues at hand. We feel a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction as we fix long-standing problems while also renovating and adding on to our clients’ homes.
With new construction, on the other hand, many of the usual constraints fade away and we can focus our attention and talents almost exclusively to our clients’ vision for their new home. We work with them to get just what they want—within the limits of their budget, of course. Regulations can be a possible limitation, but tend to be less of a factor with a new home compared to an existing one.
A current project is a case in point. This home is for a couple and their extended family and is designed for both functionality and aesthetics. Private spaces are zoned so that the residents and guests are at opposite ends of the house, with shared common spaces in between. It takes advantage of its site, with its expansive views of the Cascade Mountains. An outdoor living porch and a private library round out the home’s spaces.
The real opportunity in the design, however, is that it is carefully tailored to the clients’ aesthetic vision. Whereas the tone of a remodel might have been set with what existed before, in this case we have been able to pursue our clients’ vision in a relatively free way—not beset with the constraints we tend to encounter in our remodeling work.
Working in close collaboration with our clients—who sent us ideas and suggestions from their Houzz “Ideabooks”—we helped bring the design ideas into focus. As you can see in the images throughout this post, our digital modeling capabilities—something we use in all of our design work—allowed us to construct a virtual model of the house. Our clients could look at these images and even walk through their virtual home and see how the design and selections work together to achieve their vision for their new home.
Our 3D modeling is a useful tool to explore ideas, and lets both our designers and our clients confirm that the design has cohesiveness and meets their aesthetic vision. This helps make the construction process more predictable and less stressful—always our goal!
Finishes in the common spaces have been selected for a clean, fresh and light look, as you can see in this rendering of the living room from the kitchen.
In the private areas, warm materials work to bring about a cozy feeling.
The exterior takes advantage of east-facing views of the Cascades. The library, breakfast nook, living room, and master suite all have expansive views and windows that let in lots of morning light.
Having done our careful planning, we have now started construction. The foundation is in place and framing has begun. Stay tuned for updates as construction progresses. We look forward to sharing the journey with you!