Tuesday, August 30, 2011

big plans: foyer-hall design

today we are ready to introduce another part of the plan for the house.  the foyer is supposed to be your first impression of the home right?  yet, i know a lot of people who almost never used their "front door".  still we wanted our entrance to be special and mostly we wanted a kick-ass stair as part of the whole foyer/hall space.

in our design a visitor might enter the home from the front of the house, up a cute little walk way. (unsure if this is a brick walk or pavers or something else entirely- use your imagination!)  a covered front porch with a light blue beadboard ceiling will greet you before you enter our house.  this may be the only thing that björn has said he must have on the porch so the blue ceiling is definitely happening the rest is yet to be determined.

now the door...i was planning on doing a whole post on the subject of the front door because we don't know what we want, so just imagine something awesome. you open the door and you are in the foyer. in front of you are two doors one to the first floor bath the other to the hall closet, to the left is the "grand stair" with light streaming in from the kitchen, the stair well and the small window over the built in bench to your right.

and that is pretty much it...we have designed the layout but other than that its just ideas.... i know we want cool light fixtures, a pretty chest or console table greeting you.  we are planning the built in bench on one wall and the doors to the bathroom and the hall closet will be of the beautiful panelled sort.

the stair has to be beautiful as it is seen from the front door as well as the awesome view from the kitchen. i want it to have a very simple design but still feel very elegant.  i think the space in front of the stair is great, it is roomy and will have light from the kitchen as well as from the windows on the landing of the stair.  i can imagine another chest or a chair in this area!

here are some photos of foyers & halls that we admire.  we would love to be able to incorporate some really interesting details in this space, it will be fun to see what we come up with!

i like the railing on this stair & the art placement is nice via Casa Cullen

this stair is so simple & so elegant via Amy D Morris Interiors

i love the bench in this photo & the ceiling treatment is great- via A Life's Design

another great stair with another great bench via Roost

thom filicia's stair, i love the chair set-up via Habitually Chic

how adorable is this little hall set up via Tumblr

a cute little sitting area via Cottage Living

i love the brick entry way & the wall panelling via Amy D Morris Interiors

i really love the feel of this space & the eclectic mix of things in it via House Beautiful

Monday, August 29, 2011

designers we heart : selldorf architects

we definately love annabelle selldorf of selldorf architects.  we first heard of her firm because she designed a home for a family in dunton hot springs, colorado.  björn worked here at dunton a loooong time ago and was very interested when he saw the design of this home for his old friends.

annabelle's firm is based in new york city and she has many impressive projects located there, however, we especially love the projects she has completed outside of the city which draw on their surroundings and implement beautiful materials.

Pika House- Dunton Hot Spring, CO

Pika House in Winter

Pika House Dining Area
Pika House Master Bedroom

Sag Harbour House
Artist's Residence & Studio- Sagaponack, NY
Artist's Residence & Studio

Wainscott House- Long Island, NY
Wainscott House
Wainscott House Interior

Walden House- Edwards, CO
Walden House

Friday, August 26, 2011

happy weekend: hurricane schmericane...

hope everyone has a fun & safe weekend.  i was supposed to go down to charlotte, nc tomorrow to see my sisters but i am postponing that until sunday evening when i am hoping the hurricane will have passed us by.

keep dry & appreciate the time you have to stay in & spend time doing those little things you never get to do, read a book, organize your enormous pile of magazine clippings (thats what i'll be doing) or just spend some time doing absolutely nothing!

happy weekend!  see you monday!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

big plans: kitchen design

today i am ready to show you the kitchen layout of our house.  i think introducing the plan gradually will allow us to describe each aspect of the design without overwhelming everyone with too much information. so over the next week or so we will be introducing different parts of the house to you along with concept photos that are driving the look & feel of the space.

the kitchen is a very special place for björn & i.  we spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking, reading, it really is the place where we most enjoy hanging out. so this kitchen has to be good.  it is also the center of the house, literally.  as you will find out, the design is essentially two wings with the kitchen as a connector between the greatroom / dining wing  & the bedroom / utilitiy wing.  we also knew that the kitchen needed to have a view to the street as well as open onto a patio overlooking the river.

i thought it would be cool to show those of you not familiar with computer drafting programs just what the drawing looks like on my screen so i took a screen shot of the kitchen.

Screen shot of our kitchen plan.

the different colors are associated with different line weights & different building items, walls, fixtures, cabinetry, etc.  we wanted to create a functional space & i wanted to keep a lot of symmetry on the wall facing the street with the refrigerator & tall pantry anchoring the wall & windows in the middle over the sink.

the main work zone is on the island which will have a prep sink, along with plenty of space for chopping, & rolling out pastries.  the island will be perfect for informal dining & keeps everyone in the kitchen engaged with the chefs!   behind is the stove & cabinets to house plenty of kitchen gadgets!  the ceiling in this space is vaulted with an 11' roof peak which i hope will make the space feel very expansive.  

here is the plan with a few notes explaining the different areas!

we haven't chosen any materials yet but i have collected many photos for inspiration that we are excited about.  there are so many decisions that come into play when building a house, especially in the kitchen.  while we haven't decided on much, we have decided that we love the Ralph Lauren Home color Surrey for the island at least, if not for all of the lower cabinets.  you can see that color here in Jenna Lyon's kitchen.

Jenna Lyons' kitchen via Habitually Chic
i think our kitchen will end up being mostly white, with the dark blue island anchoring the room.  i would love to see a really interesting ceiling treatment & i think the light fixtures will be an opportunity to add some style and playfulness to the space.  here are a few other photos that I have been collecting that are inspiring our kitchen finishes!  enjoy!

RL Home director of Communications kitchen via Elle Decor
I love the symmetry in this kitchen, & the white!
beautiful James Radin designed kitchen via House Beautiful.
i love the classic look of this kitchen

martha stewart's cappuchino bar via Martha Stewart
love this!

unknown via The Fresh Cottage
i think i like the light fixtures in this kitchen, again white & the beams are cool.

unknown via some minneapolis real estate magazine?
love everything about this kitchen!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

big plans: getting ready to go to colorado

björn is off working, flying around the country somewhere, & i have returned to dc to get ready for colorado.  for the past few months we have spent time in the solitude & beauty of vermont working on the house plans but now we need to be out in durango full time. 

i got back to dc on monday night & i am now busy packing up things we will need in durango.  including all of our architecture books, material samples & of course my clothes!  i am also trying to see some of our dc friends as well as visit some of my family that live in maryland.

in saying goodbye to dc/maryland i decided to take some photos of the beautiful room that björn and i have lived in off and on for the last 3 years.  this is in the apartment of his amazing grandmother in a lovely little spot called sumner village.   it is a beautiful little enclave only steps from the district line.

our room is a showcase for grandma's collection of native american and southwestern art.  we have added our own little touches over the last three years & we are super sad to leave it for the next few months. here are a few photos that i took this morning that i hope you enjoy!

Native American rugs, masks & prints.

A dark picture of our beautiful forest view.  The White House is only 6 miles from this!!

An "Indian" lamp, I made those coasters using balsa wood & the laser cutter at my old job!

A sweet little painting by my Grandfather, Elwood

Cookbook shelf; vintage lighters & purfume bottle from Venice.

Björn's dishes he picked up in Italy.

Travel books!

Björn's favorite car- Karhmann Ghia, a gift from me.

Really cool papier mache mask- Kermit likes it!

Some cool objects on the window sill.

An old soap box I purchased at an estate sale.
It holds our books, magazines, etc & fits wonderfully under the window.

Some of our favorite books, wine from a trip to Hop Kiln, & beer from a trip to Austria.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

tracks to work by: sweet tides

working on drawings tonight, found this video of one of my favorite thievery corporation songs.  too bad it is not the awesome video that played in the background of their january 2009 tour.  bjorn and i went to the show at the 930 club in washington dc and both of us were entranced by the beautiful film of a couple riding a motorcycle through the streets of paris during this song! c'est la vie~ 

i like this video too however, especially since it looks like it is filmed in the western united states--durango is a high desert, as bjorn so often reminds me when i am asking about weather proofing- so i thought it was somewhat appropriate!

i think i will download thievery corporation's newest album culture of fear tonight to keep me focused!

"sweet tides" from Radio Retaliation 

designers we heart: hugh newell jacobsen

we love hugh newell jacobsen.  not only does he remind us of my fabulous grandfather, elwood, (who is an architectural renderer and artist), but he is an architect based in washington, dc one of the cities we love. bjorn will probably never let me forgot when i had a chance to accompany a manufacturers rep to the jacobsen office and i turned it down. (oops)

both of us have been inspired by jacobsen architecture for many years now & have followed his career in the pages of architectural digest.  i think we are especially drawn to his use of classic forms paired with contemporary detailing & his excellent use of space & light.  we have looked to his designs while working on our little house & have strived to create spaces that are as bright & engaging as his works are. 

here is what architectural digest has said about mr. jacobsen:

The award-winning residential architecture of Washington, D.C.-based Hugh Newell Jacobsen has the distinction of appealing to both the proponents of tradition and those who prefer progressiveness. Since the 1970s, his compositions have consistently taken the form of a cluster of function-specific, intimately scaled buildings, combining the familiar symmetry and gabled roofs of early American architecture with Modern architecture’s unornamented façades, open-plan interiors and emphasis on indoor-outdoor living.

A House in Nantucket via Architectural Digest

A House in Nantucket via Architectural Digest

Steinglass Residence- Rockport, ME via HNJ

Steinglass Residence via HNJ

Welles Residence via Architectural Digest

Welles Residence via Architectural Digest

Monday, August 22, 2011

big plans: plan reveal update

so you are probably wondering where is it?! where is the house design? well, we are currently working with the structural engineers (hooray to dave wilson of wilson structural engineers in durango, co) to finalize plan details.   they are ensuring that the house we designed is going to stand up and not have any problems down the road.  we will be revealing the drawings soon enough but until then a little about where we found inspiration.

the design of the house has grown from many different seeds of thought. bjorn has probably been thinking about building a house since he was in college and dropped out of architecture school to study atmospheric science (he decided sitting at a computer was not for him). we have taken our experiences & ideas from our travels & strived to create a space that incorporates all of these things.

durango in itself is a very interesting place architecturally, it was founded sometime in the late 1800's because of the discovery of gold!  and like so many western mining towns it has a unique mix of victorian homes, mining cabins, & adobe dwellings. the beautiful old wood of these mining buildings was always a thought in our minds as we envisioned the house.

I love this old mining cabin in the ghost town of Ironton, CO- only a few miles from Durango.

Mining Building just north of nearby Silverton, CO via Flickr

I thought this old post office in Montezuma, CO was pretty cool too! via here.

we also have spent a great deal of time in new england, specifically western vermont where Bjorn's grandparents have a farm.  the simple shapes of vermont county farmhouses have always appealed to us.  there is something about these homes that is charming, even when they are a little worn around the edges, they seem to invite you in & say stay a while.

Love the look of the three different cladding materials.
Breadloaf View Farm- Cornwall, VT

Old Barn wood and a dark roof.
Bread Loaf View Farm- Sugar House

Simple geometry farm house.
Vermont Country Home via unknown
as you will soon find out hugh newell jacobsen is one of our favorite architects.  we admire his use of light & space, along with the simplistic detailing of his structures.  we hope to incorporate some of these details into our house.

Beautiful light, high ceilings & clean simple detailing.  via Hugh Newell Jacobsen

Beautiful clean detailing.  Great door!
Steinglass Residence via HNJ

this structure is just awesome, bjorn came across it in a book several years ago & has always kept it in his mind.  there is something so cool about the mash-up of windows used to create the facade.  it is an idea that we hope to employ in our barn-garage.

Glass House- Freetown Christiana, Denmark via Design Squish


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