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Matters of Taste: Determining Your Style

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When embarking on a new design project, an important question that will inevitably come up is, “What’s your style?”. While describing a fashion trend such as ‘punk’ or a general life attitude like ‘laid back’ can be done easily with buzz words and catch phrases, such terminology within architecture can have a profound impact on the project at hand. Terminology within architecture implies specific detailing, material choices and an overall look and feel. It is important to recognize the various styles of architecture and determine what best suits your tastes when approaching a design professional with a new project. The challenge is understanding which styles are most appealing, why they […]

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February 20, 2012
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Let’s Be Practical: Selecting Products

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Many posts to this point have dealt heavily with the importance of choosing the right design professional, understanding what designers and architects add to a job, and adding value to a project. This month we take a closer look at one of the more practical concerns many jobs face: selecting a product. While many clients may feel this is an easy task of selecting what looks best or fits the budget, there are a few more points to be considered when making a choice. A design professional will be well versed in working with product suppliers and can easily catch mistakes and avoid pitfalls. Below is a candid example of […]

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January 18, 2012
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Architecture: Product or Service?

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Before you engage an architect or designer for a new project, think about what you expect to get out hiring a design professional. Beyond understanding how to choose the right design professional, there needs to be clarity in what an architect or designer does. While it is easy to simplify their job into buzz words like ‘plans’ or ‘construction drawings’, design professionals are unique in that they blend art and science together to create a finished product. One of the biggest misconceptions and points of contention within a project is whether architects provide products or services. By understanding the process a designer goes through, you’ll have a better understanding of […]

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Value: What’s your project worth?

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A concept that is both prevalent and relevant, especially due to the current economic conditions, is the idea of value. The concept of value is applicable to how we spend our money, and the perceived worth of what we receive in return. It is especially important when it comes time to decide on whether to pursue a design project. Design is very subjective, so it makes it quite difficult to determine the value of a design project. Even if a project is deemed necessary and makes good economic sense, how does one make a value judgement concerning the most detailed decisions? Something as (seemingly) insignificant as choosing between a fluorescent […]

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Evaluating Design: how your project can have integrity

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For many, the merits of hiring a design professional for a project are obvious. For some, however, the value added by a design professional is not readily apparent. To understand how a design professional adds value to a project, one must first learn how design is evaluated. If all design is created equal, then it doesn’t make sense to hire a designer with extensive training and expertise. However, if it is established that some designs are better than others, then a value proposition can be made. Let’s look at how designs are evaluated to understand why hiring a qualified design professional adds value to a project. Design is a process. […]

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October 18, 2011
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Creating from Chaos: Turning your Design Project into Reality

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Most people who visit the Archability site and read the blog have at least one design project they would like to implement either now or in the future. The type of project may include a newly landscaped backyard with defined outdoor rooms. For some, it might be a kitchen or bathroom remodel project that includes simple updates or complete gutting. Others may have the desire to add another room or floor to an existing house. Still others may have dreams of designing and building a custom home on a new piece of property. Whatever the design project may include, each one has a unique set of challenges and obstacles that […]

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Choosing the Right Design Professional

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Choosing a design professional for your project can be a daunting task. There are plenty of articles which detail the practical steps of choosing a designer: review their portfolio, interview them, and ask for references to verify their skills. These are all great places to start, but these practical steps alone can’t help you decide between multiple well qualified prospects. By using the criteria below, you can evaluate each designer more thoroughly and choose the best match for your job. Knowledge is essential to every job. Knowing the practical steps to carry a project from inception to completion is the key to success. To distinguish between several design professionals, first […]

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Writing an Effective Project Brief

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Once your project is posted, it will get exposure.  But that exposure will not necessarily translate into interest from providers.  Getting the best results for your architectural or design projects, and generating optimum interest from providers is often determined by how best you describe your project.  The best projects are borne from briefs that are open enough to inspire ideas, while being specific enough to feel workable. Whether you are a designer or a client, an effective project brief is the single most critical factor in ensuring a successful collaboration .  A project brief is a document focused on the desired results of project.  It should primarily focus on the […]

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Tips for Effective Bath Design

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There are so many ways we can shape and change our space to make it exactly what it is we want it to be. More and more, this idea has been expanded beyond the attention paid to our living rooms to other public spaces—and particularly to bath design. The bathroom is an interesting space, indeed. Though it is certainly a public room of the house, it is also one of the most intimate spaces in the home. Some our most mundane tasks are performed in the bathroom, and also some of our most personal. Between all of these tasks, too, most of us spend a considerable amount of time here. […]

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Curb Appeal, New Eyes, and How Archability can Help

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I’m sure just about everyone is aware of the many difficulties the residential real estate market has been facing and may continue to encounter for the foreseeable future. According to the experts a combination of issues has contributed to the problem – over-building, foreclosures, sub-prime mortgages, and poor lending practices are all terms that have been included in the discussions. If you have a home listed for sale or plan to put one on the market shortly, in all likelihood you’re experiencing the frustrations of trying to move a home in this depressing climate firsthand. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that sales contracts for previously occupied homes fell […]

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