Design Week: The Look Book

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Once we got through the initial research, we took a more in-depth look at the photos we had compiled. What we figured out is that overall we love modern contemporary architecture and we want our house to reflect that in its design both inside and out. That said, we’d still like to maintain a bit of neighbourhood charm because let’s be honest, we’re not trying to create an art installation in the middle of the suburbs!

We tried to categorize the photos into ‘wants’ and ‘likes.’ From there we could focus in on the elements of each photo we actually wanted to try to incorporate in the house design, versus just the things we liked – for example an overall look or colour scheme. Once that was settled, we started putting together what we call The Dreamhouse Project Look Book.

Our Look Book is basically our wish list of features broken down by room or space within the house, along with our final compilation of inspiration photos and notes outlining the elements we’d like to incorporate. The plan is for it to continue to be a living, breathing document that we can build on and get more detailed with as the project progresses. Once we had the first draft of the Look Book completed, we sat down with Kevin and walked him through it to help him get the ball rolling on designing the house.

Here is what we came up with…

Must HaveNice-To-Have
Main Floor
Open concept
Modern glass or steel cable staircase
Living room w. feature wall / fireplace
Family room
Home office
Laundry room
Powder room (2pc)
Main Floor
Living room open to above
Wall of windows at rear
Functional Island (Sink or dishwasher)
At back of house with windows/door to deck
Gas appliances
2nd Floor
5th / Guest bedroom
3rd bathroom (4 pc)
Hallway to rooms overlooks living room
2nd floor laundry / laundry chute
Walk-in closets where possible
2nd Floor
4 bedrooms
Linen closet/storage
2nd bathroom (4pc)
Master bedroom
Balcony connects to main deck
Art nook over bed
Master bedroom
Lots of windows overlooking backyard
Balcony off master overlooking backyard
Massive walk-in closet (small room sized)
Sitting area
A portion of basement accessible to us
Master ensuite
Freestanding tub
All glass shower
A good sized apartment (1+ den or 2br)
Garage entrance to mud / laundry room

For the initial meeting with Kevin, we focused mostly on the exterior photos and design features since we knew he’d need that insight the most when it came to designing the overall structure and planning the elevations.

The Exteriors:

We love these 3 exterior styles…

Bowman Residence Front Exterior by Cornerstone Architects, Austin, TX

The home above is closest to what would fit our neighbourhood, but we’d like to push the contemporary line a little further. Something that sort of toes the line between ‘safe’ and ‘art installation’.

Goodwin Project Streetscape by En2 Development Corp, Toronto, ON

We’re completely in love with this house! The mix of stone & cedar siding is beautiful. Contact Iron River Construction or a similar service provider if you have similar feelings of love towards this style of design. I have a feeling quite a lot of you will feel this way. We are in agreement that we want our house to have siding as it’s main exterior design and have already started looking on sites like to find a reliable company that will be able to do this for us. And of course, we love the stunning floor-to-ceiling windows!! We’d love to incorporate a ton of natural light into our space with windows like these.

Linden Hills Contemporary – by Andrea Swan Architecture, Minneapolis, MN

The cedar lattice work here is sweet – a great and unique way to provide privacy while still maintaining the visual aesthetic! And it works so well with the exterior too. It makes you wonder if they got award winning siding contactors in Raleigh to help out, or someone of equal caliber?

Other nice exterior features…

In terms of the interior, aside from our wish list, we pretty much relied on Kevin’s expertise & left the floor-plan layout to him. The actual interior design of the house – colors, lighting, finishes &, furniture placement will come later (we’ll blog about those details in the next Design Week), but tomorrow we’ll take you through the big reveal – floor-plans and elevation drawings of The Dreamhouse!