why architecture is important and how your home contributes

Why Architecture Is Important – And How Your Home Contributes

why architecture is important and how your home contributes

photography by Lisa Russman

To create the spaces in which we live, work and play, architects focus on more than design – they’re also mindful of economies, natural environments, political climates and more to deliver the best behavioral, physical, and financial outcomes for inhabitants. 

Architecture is important because it also tells stories. Everything from the layout of a home to the building materials used is a reflection of the time and culture in which it was built.

We learn a lot from historical structures, such as the narrow staircases and light-reducing arrowslits in European stone castles – that must not have been easy to navigate, but it shows how inhabitants valued protection and legacy over comfort! 

We also can learn a lot about the future from Architecture. Why are tiny homes growing more popular? Why are “yurts” making a comeback? The answers reveal a lot about how society today utilizes natural resources and values mobility over permanence. 

When building a home, it’s important to keep in mind why architecture is important, what your home says about you now, and what it might teach others about you later!

Home Layout And Materials Matter To Society 

The flexibility, flow, and format of each home not only determine one’s daily productivity and interactivity – but they also can serve as “branding” for who you are and how you operate. 

When you visit a new friend’s home, what’s the first thing you notice? Size! We instantly feel we learn something about one’s lifestyle based on how small or large one’s home is. 

Then, when inside the home, you might notice bamboo flooring they’ve installed or high-efficiency heating and cooling systems they’ve invested in. You might then assume how environmentally conscious they are or how long they plan to stay. 

The attribute that most often goes unnoticed, however, is the style of the home – which accurately reflects much more! 

Architecture is important because while historical homes in the Garden State vary greatly in design, home builders in New Jersey have lots of room to explore.  

For example, if you live in a Cape Cod colonial, you might enjoy family dinners by the fireplace and the comfort of second-floor bedrooms. If you renovate a Grand Anne Victorian, you might like reading on a porch and intricate design.  Or, if you build a contemporary home with open floor plans, though more minimalist and modern, you might be more community-oriented. 

How Functionality Creates Culture 

Why is architecture important? How we design our homes expresses who we are! Are we creative or reserved? Do we lead organized or organic lives? Are we well-traveled or homebodies? Our homes can tell!  

The functionality of each space also shares the story of who we are, what we do, and how we interact with others. For example, the desire for a mudroom or finished basement might indicate young children with active lifestyles, whereas the addition of a raised outdoor deck suggests homeowners who like to entertain guests. 

A home also speaks to one’s level of security. Do you pull your car into a garage or are you comfortable leaving it in the driveway? Do you prefer window shutters that can be opened or closed? 

Your home’s front exterior can be the most telling. Are there walkways and yard lamps leading up to your home? Is the door tall and imposing or classic and charming? It’s amazing how simple it can be to determine how guests are made to feel when visiting and it’s important to know how others might be encouraged or discouraged from entering your space. 

When building a home, communicate with your architect about why architecture is important to you and what you want your home to say about you and the world you live in today!


Window shopping? new jersey architects weigh in on window designs

Window Shopping? New Jersey Architects Weigh in on Window Designs

Window shopping? new jersey architects weigh in on window designs

photography by Lisa Russman

When building a home in New Jersey, you want to make sure the windows that keep your family safe also reflect your interior and exterior design preferences. The good news is NJ architects have many options to choose from when installing windows! Some maximize light while others promote flow, but the most important elements to keep in mind are function, safety, and design for East Coast living.

“Classic” Window Styles

Single-hung and double-hung windows, the most common and economical window types used by NJ architects, slide vertically, with both stashes able to be moved (and more easily cleaned) on double-hung windows. In cottage windows, the upper sash is shorter than the lower.

Slider windows operate much like double-hung windows, yet open horizontally and typically provide more unobstructed views to complement more contemporary New Jersey architecture.

Casement windows, hinged to open at the side, create tighter seals than double-hung and slider windows and are therefore ideal for colder climates and harder-to-reach locations, such as over sinks.

However, if natural light is most important, bay windows are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. While more expensive, these angular, multi-plane windows project out from the wall to increase viewing areas and create additional space inside the home, including window seating or shelving. Most also include side windows that can be opened. Bow windows are bay windows that create a smooth curve rather than angles in the exterior and interior of your home.

Windows for Every Function

New Jersey architects know how home builds and renovations vary drastically across the region. That’s why there are windows specifically designed for tight spaces and fickle climates, too.

Awning windows, for example, are hinged at the top to open outward – even in light rain or snow. Like casement windows, awning windows provide excellent insulation and ventilation options, while hopper windows, which open inward, make efficient use of small spaces in bathrooms, basements or closets. 

However, if you need both more shelving and natural light, garden windows, or box-style windows, extend outside exterior walls for maximum viewing and are ideal spots to grow indoor plants.

Lastly, skylight installations, while more expensive, are a good option for natural light and ventilation when exterior wall space is limited.

Aesthetic-Only Window Designs

Windows are a great way for NJ architects to add design elements to your home!

Picture windows, for example, create dramatic aesthetics and unobstructed views while filling rooms with natural light, while arched windows give New Jersey architects a way to vary architecture design by adding rounded tops to standard windows.

There are also accent windows to make your home design pop while letting in more light. Radial windows (semi- or full circles) and geometric windows (triangles, diamonds, trapezoids and more) are statement-makers, while transom windows (typically square) can help break up or accentuate door and window designs in unique ways.

Safety First

While design and function are extremely important, you must also consider your family’s safety.

Storm windows, or exterior windows installed in the same frame as current windows, are typically installed by New Jersey architects due to the region’s prevalence for hurricanes. The additional layer also blocks drafts and prevents heat loss during cold weather months.

Egress windows, often required by code, provide escape routes in attics or basements while also increasing light and ventilation.

Both window types provide great ways to increase the value of your home while keeping your family secure.

The cost of windows varies based on design, size, materials, and glass, with labor rates fluctuating based on location. Still, when building a home in New Jersey, there are many options to choose from – especially when working with knowledgeable NJ architects!


what-nj-architects-are-saying-about-how-to-Incorporate-the-latest-smart-home-tools-and-designs

What NJ Architects Are Saying About How to Incorporate the Latest Smart Home Tools and Designs

what-nj-architects-are-saying-about-how-to-Incorporate-the-latest-smart-home-tools-and-designs

photography by Lisa Russman

Whether you are building a new home, adding on to your existing house, or looking to remodel, upgrading to smart home technology can improve your life and lower your bills. Residential architects in NJ are using these tools more frequently in their designs as consumers see the value they add. What are smart home tools, and how can they be incorporated into the design and build of your home? 

Understanding Smart Home Tools and Technology

Smart devices are those that connect to each other or the wider world via the internet. When appliances, gadgets, and other technology can send information, take specific commands, and communicate, then life becomes more comfortable and your home runs more efficiently. Today, smart tools include everything from lights to doorbells, from appliances to clocks.

These types of features allow for home automation, which enables you to control various features and functions in your home with just the press of a button. Say you are playing with your kids but need to get dinner started. Smart technologies can allow you to start appliances, like a stove or crockpot using an enabled device, like your phone, from wherever you may be. Life in New Jersey is busy, these technologies can make your life easier.

What Smart Tools do New Jersey Architecture Firms Recommend?

We love technology that makes your life easier, helps you save money, and keeps your attention where you want it to be, which is making memories, not managing your house. The best smart tools are those that complement your lifestyle and automate tasks that take up time in your regular schedule. For example, if you have a pet, then investing in a smart feeder ensures that your four-legged friend gets fed on time while managing his portions. It can even order more food for you when you are running low.

Other smart design features cater to your entire home and can help save you money, too. A Wi-fi enabled, learning thermostat can make sure that you and your loved ones stay comfortable, that your house is protected from harsh weather, and that your utilities remain low. You can control the temperature of your home from wherever you are, which means you can keep the temperature low when no one is home and adjust the system using your phone as you head back home. Smart thermostats also alert you to potential problems, so you don’t have to wait until your pipes burst to find out your furnace when out. 

Also, New Jersey architecture increasingly includes smart technologies that control and monitor home security. Smart locks can allow children, neighbors, or trusted friends into your home via keypad or smartphone without the need to share keys. Indoor and outdoor surveillance cameras can help you keep an eye on your home and loved ones when you are away, too. 

Smart lighting allows you to control the lights in your home from your enabled device, including when you aren’t home. The latest offerings in this category even enable you to program the brightness and color of each bulb, so you can have the exact ambiance you want in each room. And you won’t have to come home to a dark house ever again!

Smart technologies are available to help you manage your sprinkler system, to control the heating and air vents in every room of your home, to detect leaks in at-risk areas of your house, and to open and close blinds for light and privacy. You can even find smart versions of kitchen gadgets and small appliances, as well as larger electronics like refrigerators and stoves. 

Talk with your residential architect about how smart home technologies can improve your home’s design and function and what value they can offer to your family. 

 


building-a-house-in-nj

Building a House in NJ? Understanding the Various Roles of Everyone Involved with Your Design and Construction Process

building-a-house-in-nj

photography by Lisa Russman

Building your dream home in New Jersey is a fun and exciting process. It’s also stressful, long, and sometimes tedious, but when your entire family is happy with the finished product, it is definitely worth it. You may not even be aware that there is an entire team of people dedicated to making your dreams come true. 

Whether this is your first home or you are an old pro, it can be beneficial to know all of the roles and responsibilities of the various people on your team. While not every home project will include all of these roles, knowing they exist can help you determine if you need additional support on your side. 

The Architect

Your residential architect is the person who designs and creates construction plans for your home. They work with you to evaluate your site and translate what you want and need into a preliminary design. Working within your constraints for house building costs, they will help you craft your construction budget, including the overall cost of ownership, including taxes, maintenance, and upkeep. 

Once you have approved the design, the architect then translates this into schematics for your contractor and other construction professionals. This process includes hiring necessary specialists, such as engineers, consultants, and surveyors, to ensure that your design can be built safely and effectively. Your architect becomes the final authority on your home’s design before taking it before your local board for approval. 

The detailed drawings generated are then used to garner bids from construction professionals who will later construct your home. The architect then takes on the role of a project manager, overseeing the building of your home from start to finish. He will coordinate with the rest of the team to ensure completion and adherence to your budget. 

Lenders

This part of your team focuses on making sure you have the money you need, when you need it, to keep your construction project moving forward. They may help you with financing for your lot, house, or both. They can also assist you with building a house budget for now as well as once construction is complete. 

Engineers

Depending on the complexity of your build, you may have more than one type of engineer who needs to be a part of your team. Structural engineers, civil engineers, and others are your logistics gurus, making sure that everything will work and that safety is a top priority. Engineers are there to assess any limitations that might be a part of your home’s design and make sure that your finished house is structurally sound and meets local building codes. 

The Contractor

Contractors or home builders in NJ will coordinate with the architect to manage the actual building of your home. They will monitor safety, hire subcontractors, assess job completion and quality, and communicate with the rest of the team about problems, change-orders, and provide solutions or coordinate with the engineer when necessary. 

Subcontractors

These are tradespeople who specialize in various systems, materials, or processes that are needed to finish your home. These include plumbing, electrical, HVAC, landscape, and finish carpentry specialists, to name a few. They report to the contractor and architect. 

Inspectors

At various stages in your construction process, inspectors will need to ensure that your home meets local requirements. Building inspectors make visits to your site, sign off on required paperwork, and control whether you can continue building. Your contractor or architect will schedule all inspections with your town’s inspector to keep your build on schedule. 

You have a lot of people to help you during your home construction process. Be sure to ask for help whenever you need it. These people are here to help you and support you every step of the way during the construction of your house. 


Green=Building-Materials-from-NJ-Architects

Get the Latest Ideas on Sustainable and Green Building Materials from NJ Architects

Green=Building-Materials-from-NJ-Architects

photography by Lisa Russman

When you’re building your new home, you have a lot of decisions to make. Among these are the materials that you use for both the interior and exterior structures and surfaces. Architecture that includes green and sustainable materials not only reduces the carbon footprint of your project but can also save you money in both construction and upkeep. What materials are architects in NJ using to minimize waste and build more eco-friendly homes? And what does it mean for a material to be “sustainable” anyway? 

What Makes a Material “Eco-Friendly”?

There are many ways to define “green” materials, and you will need to decide which is most important to you. For example, substances that are recycled or made from existing components mean that fewer natural resources need to be used. Materials that allow your home to be more efficient and use fewer natural resources over the life of the house are also much greener. 

Products sourced locally require fewer resources to transport. And materials that last a long time and are appropriate for the climate or application could also be a consideration. That means you won’t need to replace them as often, which means lower resource consumption across the lifespan of the structure. 

The Latest Sustainable Materials Used by New Jersey Architecture Firms

So, which materials top the list for their eco-friendliness? Here are our top six picks. 

Bamboo

With fantastic durability and a high strength-to-weight ratio, bamboo is a prized construction material. And because it has a high self-regeneration rate, supplies can be replenished much more quickly than traditional wood. Bamboo makes an excellent option for many home-building applications, and it takes far fewer resources to transport than other conventional materials. It can be grown without replanting in many different climates, as well. 

Recycled Steel

When your new home design incorporates steel elements or requires beams or girders, look for recycled steel, which uses much less energy to create then new materials. In fact, recycled steel uses only 25 percent of the energy required to make new metal. And it means less junked cars and other materials in landfills and scrapyards. 

Sheep’s Wool

For a green alternative to insulate your home, try wool instead of fiberglass or spray foam. Wool lasts longer than other natural options, and it can be regenerated more quickly than other alternatives, like cotton. As more people seek out and adopt natural materials over synthetic ones, new options such as this, which was not even on architects’ radar a few years ago, will continue to enter the marketplace. 

Precast Concrete

As a natural and fully recyclable material, concrete is often high on green builders’ lists. When you opt for precast panels, which are made off-site and brought it, you also decrease waste and cost because you are benefiting from economies of scale. Concrete is strong and durable, and today’s finishes raise to a level of elegance never before seen.  

Reclaimed and Recycled Wood

When you reuse timber that has already been harvested and refined, you are saving energy costs as well as preventing further deforestation. You can use recycled wood in all aspects of home construction, from stud walls to flooring, and because it is a hardy material that lasts, you won’t have to replace wood materials quickly. 

Recycled Glass

From flooring to countertops to tiles, recycled glass can be used to create many beautiful and durable surfaces in your home. Glass is a 100% recyclable material, and several companies are now creating exquisite glass tiles and larger surfaces from industrial and residential waste. Glass makes an excellent alternative to resource-heavy materials like granite or marble. With unlimited colors from which to choose, your interior design will never suffer when you opt for this green material. 


Let’s Talk Insulation building a house in nj that will stay comfortable year round

Let’s Talk Insulation: Building A House In NJ That Will Stay Comfortable Year-Round

Let’s Talk Insulation building a house in nj that will stay comfortable year round

photography by Lisa Russman

When you are planning to design and construct a new home, you will also be building a house budget for your new lifestyle. And while you may think a lot about the various systems and finishes you invest in during your build, you should also be thinking about those materials that are going to keep your house comfortable and protected for many years to come. Most people think only about their HVAC system when it comes to keeping their home and family comfortable both during hot and cold months.

But, home builders in NJ know that the most important investment you can make is in your new home’s insulation. When calculating home building costs, you need to think not only about what materials will cost you now but how much money they may spend throughout the life of your home. Choosing the right insulation materials upfront can help keep your utility bills low and your family comfortable for years to come. 

Home Insulation Basics

Why should I care about my home’s insulation? For starters, insulation is what keeps heat from migrating through the walls and ceilings of your home. When heating and cooling your home uses up to 70% of your total energy consumption, the more of that heat that stays put (inside during the winter or outside during the summer) and keeps you comfortable, the less energy you are using. 

The other benefit of insulation is that it dampens sound, which means you won’t hear everything going on in your house at all times when walls, floors, and ceilings are adequately insulated. Insulation also helps protect your home from moisture damage by preventing condensation where extreme temperatures collide, such as on the roof or around windows and doors. 

Heat naturally moves and seeks out areas where the temperature is lower, and the more you can resist or stop this from happening, the more stable your home’s temperature will be. The effectiveness of your insulation is measured in its thermal resistance rating or R-value. The higher the value, the better your insulation resists heat flowing into or out of your home. 

Well over half the homes in existence today don’t have enough insulation. In fact, more than 800 trillion BTUs could be saved annually in the US alone if houses had proper insulation. And when you invest in the right level of insulation for your new home, you can save money as well as contribute to the reduction of fossil fuel consumption. 

The Best Options for Insulating Your NJ Home

There are many different products available to those building a house in NJ today. Some are synthetic, while others are made from natural materials. Each has its advantages and drawbacks. The most commonly used insulation materials include: 

  • Fiberglass batts and rolls- This is a traditional, synthetic material that is often installed between walls and inside roofs. It is fire resistant and inexpensive.

  • Radiant barriers- Rigid panels that have one side covered in a metallic, reflective coating. These are generally used on roofs to deflect the sun’s heat and trap warm air inside the home.

  • Blown-In Insulation- Whether made from natural or synthetic materials, blow-in insulation is a loose material that can be blown into walls or attic spaces. Typical materials include cellulose, sheep’s wool, recycled fibers, mineral wool, or fiberglass.

  • Spray foam- Made from various synthetic or natural materials, a liquid is sprayed into place, where it expands and hardens into a rigid foam structure. This is an excellent application for irregularly-shaped areas or insulating around obstructions.

  • Rigid foam board- Often used in exterior applications to provide continuous protection to the outside of a house. Rigid foam board offers a great deal of R-value for its weight and thickness. 

Talk with your New Jersey architect about which option or options make the best choice for your design and site. 


home building

An Open Letter To Our Builders & General Contractors

home buildingLooking back at 2019 and years prior, we are tremendously thankful for all of the excellent general contractors and building companies with whom we have had the honour to collaborate on projects.  Without the experience of these professionals, our projects wouldn’t become a reality for our clients; clients for whom we are agents. And our business would have a short life.

Architects know very well drawings are not crystal balls that prophesize the future perfectly. To endeavour that they do is simply unrealistic. They are called plans for a reason; they represent what our clients would like to achieve, what the architect would like to design, what building codes are applicable to the project to keep everyone safe and are meant as a graphic collection of instructions to be tested and realized during the construction process. By nature, it is not plausible to execute a set of drawings 100% to a tee, as drawn, by a builder or anyone. The process of construction translates a drawn concept to reality; there will be instances that need to be readdressed by all parties involved in the project.  If all parties involved are on board with that process a happy environment and successful project will ensue.

Great builders have a ton of experience with how buildings and houses are put together. They continually expand their knowledge with the latest building techniques and available materials. During the course of building a specific project, they can identify information that is missing and, in many cases, know an alternative way to build a certain element. This is especially the case with architect’s drawings that were expedited in production for a variety of reasons; usually, because of the need to accommodate the client’s schedule or due to the professional fees they agreed to pay, leading to more instances of abbreviated information or details; though, not compromising safety of construction.

The best builders identify any additionally needed information and know to bring it immediately to the attention of the architect to provide an answer.  The architect’s answer is provided by certified sketch, letter or combination of both, whether the subject is about structural loads, roof eave details, window units, or any of the hundreds of areas from foundation to rooftop.

The design and building process is an on-going dialogue between architect and builder.  We rely on the relationships we have with builders so that a successful project can be realized and for our mutual clients to be happy. Similarly, builders rely on architects to be the ‘first responders’, main resource and professional expert in providing supplementary information, details, and sketches, so that nothing is left to assumption or answered from an unrelated source.

Thank you to all of our great GC’s and Builders! Couldn’t do it without you!

Looking forward to a great 2020 together.

Mike


Why Newly Built, Custom Homes Can Change Your Mind on What a House Can Be

To Buy or Renovate? When Architectural Remodeling is the Smart Choice for Your Family

Why Newly Built, Custom Homes Can Change Your Mind on What a House Can Be

photography by Lisa Russman

At some point, your home may stop feeling like your home meets all your needs, or it starts to look tired and rundown. At these crucial moments, every homeowner has to make the dreaded but important decision. “Should I buy a different house or renovate the one I own?” While buying or building something new makes sense in several situations, architectural remodeling may be the best choice for your family. Here’s how you can tell. 

Do You Have Enough Space?

While a growing family is often a reason to find a bigger house, it may be that your current home is big enough, but you are not utilizing the space well. Residential architects can help you reconfigure the floorplan of your home to keep the same footprint but add another bedroom or bathroom within the existing structure. These masters of architecture design are great resources for helping you use the space you have more efficiently, which can allow you to keep your home and avoid a costly move.  

Do You Love Your Current Location?

Many people want to stay in their current home and make it work with a renovation or remodel because they are happy with the location, love their neighbors, or are content with their current commute time. Location is always a leading factor in the search for a home, and if you’ve already checked that item off your wish list where you are, remodeling the space could be the best decision. When you renovate, you can make the choices that will turn your house into your dream home, giving you the flexibility to customize and make it yours. 

Does Your Current Home Offer Something Unique You May Not Find Elsewhere?

Sometimes, the deciding factor for staying put is that your current location offers something unique that no other home really can. Maybe you adore your view, appreciate the privacy your current lot affords you, or live very close to family members. These are factors that will be hard to replicate in a new home, so staying where you are and considering architectural remodeling of your current space is the best option for retaining these benefits. 

Have You Already Made Significant Improvements?

Moving to a new home may be exciting, but it brings a lot of unknowns, including how quickly you’ll need to make significant improvements, like a new furnace or roof. If you’ve recently invested in major projects such as these in your own home, staying where you are could alleviate a lot of unknowns. If your home is structurally sound, it can be much more economical to invest a little extra in a home remodeling project than to buy a different house. 

Do You Have the Time to Wait for Renovations?

Those who opt for an architectural remodeling project over moving will need to wait for all their home improvement projects to be finished before enjoying their new home. When you factor in the time it takes to pack and prepare for a move, sell your home, unpack, and fully settle, a home renovation may not take much less time, if you plan it well. If you choose to remodel the entire home, you may need to move out if you want to speed up the process. If you have time to wait for this to be completed and patience is a virtue you have, then waiting for your dream home will be worth it. 

Do the Disadvantages Outweigh the Benefits of a New Home? 

If you want to downsize, relocate, or really hate something hard to change about your current home, then building or buying a different house may be the better choice. Taking the time to consider these questions will help you explore your options and determine what is best for you and your family. 

 


Tips for Building a House When You’ve Never Owned a Home Before

Best House Designs for 2020: What the New Traditional Home will Look Like Soon

Tips for Building a House When You’ve Never Owned a Home Before

Photography by Lisa Russman

Traditional homes remain some of the most popular among homeowners today. While the traditional design has always meant the celebration of styles and architecture from many different periods, the updated traditional home of tomorrow will provide the perfect outlet to combine modern design features with those from other aesthetics and offer some of the best house designs for the upcoming year. 

What is considered to be traditional is actually a blend of many different styles and eras and often includes pieces from many periods. Most traditional decors, though, include matching furniture, heavy window treatments, many different patterns in one space, and the strategic use of saturated colors. What’s not to love? Modern traditional homes, though, have taken the best of this and combined it with cleaner lines, more function, and even bolder mixing of periods and textures to create an updated, fun, and elegant look. The best house plans for 2020 are eclectic, giving you the paramount of many styles and the opportunity to incorporate all that you love rather than feeling confined by one look. 

The Updated Great Room

While traditional architectural designs for houses usually embrace separation of spaces for specific purposes, modern families are clamoring for great rooms that combine eating and cooking areas with functional social spaces. Why not have both? The contemporary traditional style can still include open-concept design but delineate spaces using color, texture, flooring, and other design choices. Keeping lines clean and color palettes neutral will help tie everything together, but there’s nothing that says that your great room can’t still include a beautiful hutch for your dishes, an inlaid table where everyone can eat, and decorative light fixtures and elements that lend elegance and flair to your eating space. 

Traditional Meets Minimal in the Master Suite

While traditional interior design for the master suite would typically include multitudes of colors and fabrics, why not switch it up by combining the simplicity of a minimalist look with some exciting period touches? Create a monochromatic base by choosing carpet and wall covers that are neutral and nearly identical. Then, bring in punches of color and texture using traditional fabrics, rugs, window treatments, or wall hangings. Selecting pieces with varied patterns but a common color is a way to tie it all together. 

A New Take on Traditional Furnishings

In the past, having a traditional home meant lots of heavy, dark, and possibly dated furniture. Going in the opposite direction, a modern home lacks detail and may feel cold and uncomfortable for many. The happy medium, once again, is a new traditional design. With larger, more comfortable furniture that still has excellent lines and plenty of fun details, this new take on a classic gives you plenty of character and unique touches. 

The Window Treatment Gets a Pare-Down

We all remember the heavy, often dark, overly fussy window treatments of the past several decades. These types of curtains, swags, and valences are a surefire way to make any room look dated, but the traditional design still calls for the use of color or texture on the windows to add interest to your space. Roman shades with bold designs, funky curtains with sumptuous textures, or solid shades that hang from ornate rods are sufficient to block out the sun, give you privacy, and add the right elegant touch to your updated traditional space. 

Traditional Design Brings the Best Ideas Together 

When modern families combine to form new unions, second households, or blended units, that means that there is an opportunity to bring everyone’s favorite furniture and decorative pieces together and celebrate them all. By combining the best of all your extraordinary pieces, your home becomes a reflection of your life before, now, and for the future. The best traditional interiors are those that showcase many styles, which means everyone gets to keep something that they love when households combine.


Farmhouse Architecture and Interior Design- What You Need To Know To Achieve the Look You Love

Farmhouse Architecture and Interior Design: What You Need To Know To Achieve the Look You Love

Farmhouse Architecture and Interior Design- What You Need To Know To Achieve the Look You LoveThe modern farmhouse look has become quite trendy in the past several years, and while this style of design can have many variations, there are generally some key features that distinguish this from other forms of architecture and interior design. If you are remodeling or building a new home and want to achieve this new take on a classic look, then here’s everything you need to know. 

Architectural Design for Today’s Farmhouse Look

Among the architectural elements that are most commonly associated with the modern farmhouse, the gable roof is by far the most ubiquitous component. Unlike the hip roofs of many suburban homes, the gable roof has two sloping sides, often with a steep pitch that creates a 45-degree angle where they meet. Gables give your home height and drama, and when they are covered in metal roofing materials, as many modern farmhouses are, it is a dramatic effect. 

Tall, double-hung windows allow every room to enjoy plenty of natural light while still being reminiscent of your grandmother’s old house. The most common exterior choices for farmhouse design are board and batten or lap. With modern materials, including fiber cement, vinyl, and engineered wood, your options for colors and textures means you can customize your home’s exterior and stand out among the neighbors.

No farmhouse design would be complete without a porch. Front porches, back patios, and wrap-around verandas are all worthy options to complete the exterior design of your farmhouse. Be sure to hang a porch swing and create cozy, outdoor living spaces to ensure the entire family will be able to enjoy this impressive and functional part of your home. 

Interior Architecture Options for your Farmhouse Family

The farmhouse design has risen in popularity, in part because the style is more relaxed, family-focused, and embracing the chaos of daily life, much like today’s families. Entering into a house of this design feels warm and welcoming, and living inside allows you and your loved ones to enjoy the simple moments together. 

Layouts for a modern farmhouse generally revolve around the kitchen and eating spaces, with a great room design that can be customized to fit your needs. Because you want to take advantage of the natural light and outdoor spaces, as well, cozy nooks outside and large doors that lead to the porch are also common. 

The biggest draw for both the architecture and interior design of today’s farmhouses is that they are built for practicality, and choices are made based on function and usage, not just aesthetics. Furniture is comfortable and meant to welcome visitors, not leave people wondering if it’s okay to sit. Materials are natural and durable, meaning they can withstand whatever the kids or the furry family members can dish out.

But this form of architectural design isn’t stuffy, which means furniture doesn’t all have to match, you can choose different materials to define specific spaces, and everything is created to help all who enter feel at home. You can personalize your modern farmhouse with the vibe that speaks to you, including details that recall the Great Plains, a beautiful vineyard, or your ancestral home. 

Architectural Design that Combines The Best of Both Worlds 

The attractiveness of the modern farmhouse style is a story in combining opposites in subtle but effective ways. These homes offer the chance to integrate airy and dense, old and new, light and dark, natural and man-made. Those with minimalist leanings as well as anyone with a more traditional sensibility can find a way to bring different design elements together to create something they will love.