All posts tagged designtip

Design Tip : Double Duty

A 1/4″ steel frame around the vanity mirror at our Aspen Drive project doubles a s a shelf. For the client’s vacation property it was important to have easy access to the contents of a toiletries bag, but without cluttering up the countertop.

Design Tip : Customization

When a piece of furniture needs to be custom made, site specific design is often the best solution. We designed this entry console for our Heather Park project and collaborated with local craftsmen for the fabrication. It needed to stand alone in conveying the client’s personal style – quiet and refined with attention to subtle details. It also needed to fit in a tight space and stand up to occasional bumps in a high traffic area. A steel base allowed us to design a delicate looking tapered leg and maintain the required robustness – and we were able to finish the steel with a matte powder coating colour matched to the high- gloss lacquered cabinet. Soft grey on the outside, the touch latch drawer reveals an oil walnut interior.

Design Tip : Precision

Clean, modern design starts with precision work behind the walls. This is the master ensuite in phase 1 of our Percival Lofts project. To get it all right – and be true to modern design phrases like “trim less sliding glass doors”, “concealed hardware” and “flush mounted tile and millwork” – takes extra care in the design and drawing stages so the studs and rough-ins are in exactly the right place. And that’s exactly what we do as designers: we start at the end and work backwards – so the contractor can start correctly at the beginning.

Design Tip : Consistency

A home tells many stories, but they should be from the same book.

Our clients at this heather park residence have decidedly modern aesthetic even though the home they purchased was recently renovated in the craftsman style. Unfortunately, that reno included a monolithic contemporary fireplace ( before photo on our Facebook page)that just didn’t fit with the craftsman house or the modern furniture we are about to install.So we designed this craftsman fireplace to fade quietly into the background. the millwork matches wainscotting and the marble echoes a new pastry island in the adjacent kitchen. Now the house has a single historical narrative, so the new residents can start telling their own story.

Design Tip : Highlighting

A strategically placed lamp can light up a dark corner and highlight the things you love. Like this Gatto Piccolo lamp from Flos in our Paris Annex Loft, lighting up a font clock from Established and Sons and a vintage camera.

Photo : Josh Dunford

Design Tip Tuesday : Balance

The trick to a casual, carefree picture wall is to find the right balance of order and chaos. Uniform spacing between the frames and a consistent frame and matting colour are good places to start. In our private study project, we kept the strongest coloured artwork in the centre to provide a visual anchor as well. To give it a bit of subtle interest, we varied the frame widths and depths and framed one in black to help incorporate the wall lamps. The most important thing though: start with art and photos you love!

Design Tip Tuesday : Quality

A good faucet is like a good handshake: it conveys welcome, trust and confidence through our sense of touch. the lever on this one in our colourful condo project is perfectly smooth and solid – you can actually feel the german engineering. Our experience is that quality design and materials have a positive correlation to the longevity of plumbing fixtures that gets used as regularly as the sink faucet – so an investment today means a lot less leaky faucets in the future.

Design Tip Tuesday : Ergonomics

Washroom countertops should be a comfortable height for washing up – which might seem obvious, but most are built too low. We start with 36″ and adjust for each client. When compared to the common height of 32″, it requires much less bending over to rinse our hands or splash water on our faces. Design within reach.

Photo : Lucas Finlay

DesignTip : Grouping

A favourite chair should be paired with two essentials: a table (to hold a drink) and a lamp (for reading old-fashioned periodicals). “The grouping” is one of the most fundamental design tricks in the book when making a sitting spot both functional and comfortable. The fun part is sorting through the infinite possibilities for a combination as unique as each client’s personality, like our muse for this Gastown Loft.

Design Tip : On Design

Design can be seductive. The bathroom is often the place we go to escape, relax and recharge so we used this Spoon XL tub from Agape in our bachelor pad project to create a spa- like feeling of quiet. While it functions as a tub , it doubles as a sensual sculpture – it’s simple form and minimal surroundings are calming to the eye. It is the centrepiece of the loft’s private spaces, tempting us to unplug and unwind.