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How to Choose Color for your Home Remodel

Home Architecture Tips: #3 in a Series of Design Tips from a Seattle Architect. During a remodel, choosing colors is usually quite a different experience than when simply decorating, or designing. Instead of focusing on a wall color from the start, we usually get pins, clippings, and general ideas to pull from which helps us narrow a palette to what makes our client feel comfortable (in their home). Usually the big decision starts out as a time of terror for our clients, but they soon realize that color is an opportunity for creativity and self-expression - in fact, one of the most fun parts of our interior design work is when the time comes to select the paint! So how do you start? We suggest several criteria to consider when putting together your palette. First, think about how you feel comfortable in your home. Color has a direct affect on how you feel; it can promote calm and peace, boisterous laughter and rowdiness, restraint and orderliness, and

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Dare to Downsize: Edmonds Remodel

A common misconception about home remodels is that they are for expansion and grandeur; in reality, the goal of many of our remodels is to create a better fitting home environment, and sometimes that even means downsizing! Our clients had purchased this modest rambler in Edmonds a few years earlier and were renting it out until they were ready to simplify their lifestyle and move towards retirement. Once their children were launched, we embarked on a design effort to transform the house into a Japanese-style tea retreat. The result was a full remodel incorporating aging-in-place strategies such as having no steps (only one minimal step at the entry), wide doors for walkers if needed, easy access to the gardens, and a walk-in shower, etc. Although both spouses continue to work, the goal is to have this be the owners last abode; the toughest task was for them to pare down their lifelong accumulation of belongings as required by such a reduction in house size! Although the house retains

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These Are a Few of Our Favorite Things: Filling Your Remodel Wish List

Home Architecture Tips: #2 in a Series of Design Tips from a Seattle Architect. After schematics are fairly solidified (and sometimes even before!), homeowners should begin to look at what they want to put into their new home or remodel in terms of appliances, tile, stone, lighting, plumbing fixtures, and accessories like towel bars and cabinet pulls - all of which go into a "spec", or specification, document. Depending on the homeowner, finding all of these in a matter of months can be anything from a dream shopping trip to a daunting task. For everyone's sake, we thought we would compile a list of our top five favorite places to go in each category to help owners fill out their spec. To start with though, if you haven't already, visit Houzz.com to browse and collect in your own folders images of any kind of style or feature or detail that you can imagine. Houzz offers millions of

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Bringing the Outside In: Making Windows Work in Residential Architecture

Home Architecture Tips: #1 in a Series of Design Tips from a Seattle Architect. One of the big advantages of living in the Puget Sound area is that just outside there is an awe-inspiring view of the surrounding environment. You don't have to live on a bluff to have this experience either -- just open up the walls of your home to let the outdoors in. Opening up walls, adding a light-filled addition, or even just building a new skylight can move mountains when you consider your morale and the value of your house.  For those with a view of the Sound, Cascades or Lake Union, its a clear choice to add some glazing into your life. For others without that mega-view, however, it can be harder to realize the benefits. If you have a garden you love or there's a special focal tree outside, you can open up to let this always-changing bit of nature

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