Home Design

Since 1982, we’ve designed sensibly-sized, one-of-a-kind homes nestled into their Pacific Northwest settings. It’s what we love to do.
The process of designing a home has several phases, from gathering information to putting the key in the front door:

Pre-Design and Schematic Design

Before exploring design ideas, we take in the ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ information about the project—needs and requirements, budget, site conditions and zoning requirements; as well as desires about the look and feel of the house, and the spatial qualities of rooms. We walk the land. We encourage homeowners to read books such as Home by Design to be able to discuss the guiding ‘design patterns’ for the home.

We’ll then take this base information and explore site plan and building concepts to establish the direction for design.  We’ll produce scalable schematic drawings for the site layout and building, and a 3D computer-generated model showing ‘fly-by’ views. The building plans will show likely furniture arrangements and exterior material suggestions, yet the drawings are preliminary, meaning the design is still very malleable. We can question the base design criteria, shift direction if needed, and explore new ideas. When the design feels like its on track, we bring in the perspective of a building contractor to come up with a ballpark estimate of construction cost.

Design Development and Construction Documents

When the Schematic Design and Preliminary Cost Estimate is approved, we move forward with developing the construction details, building systems and specifications. We work with a structural engineer on lateral and gravity engineering design, and integrate the results of this work into the permit drawings. The final ‘deliverables’ for this phase include all information required for a permit, plus non-structural and non-code information such as built-in cabinet details and material selections.

Construction Consultation

Prior to construction, we can assist the homeowner in interviewing and selecting the building contractor, and in negotiating a construction contract. Once construction begins, we offer a range of levels of service to assist in the project being actualized in line with the design intent, detail, schedule and budget. We’re available to answer questions from the contractor and homeowner to clarify details, provide additional technical information, or to refine the design. We review the construction at various stages, and work with the craftsmen and owners to bring out the special ‘magic’ of what is being created.