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CTA Blog

Beauty, Function & Pragmatism in Houses & Remodels

As both Northwest architects and contractors, I like to think these words apply to the work we do. Whether its a remodel, addition or new house, your building project should be about these values, no matter who does it. It may be about price, but its also about enjoying our lives in our homes. We at CTA believe a home should be a joy to live in, and that is the essence of our work.

Beauty: Your house should be beautiful to look at, from the outside and from the inside. It says something about the owners. Living in a lovely home brings pleasure to its inhabitants, and allows them to further express their own creative selves. After all, your home is the one place where you can be truly free to express and surround yourself with the things you love and value. Living inside nice volumes and spaces, surrounded by well crafted details, nicely used materials, and an appropriate color and texture scheme affords a sense of calm in this busy world. Important also to a home with soul, is its connectedness with the outside world. Windows and opening spaces that bring Nature into your home further enhances that spirit of calm and sustenance that enables a home to be truly nourishing to those who dwell within. Sometimes we want to blur the distinction between inside and outside so as to allow Nature to bring her beauty and sense order to us.

Function: The home should function well and serve the needs of the inhabitants. It must provide ample space for activities of the household. This doesn’t necessarily mean large — it can mean well laid out and thoughtful. When you look at floor plans you want to think and imagine how you move through the spaces, and how you use each space, including the outside spaces. Further, the mechanics of the house must integrate well with a multitude of activities, i.e. heating, cooling, cooking, bathing, watching movies, turning on lights & music, watching movies, going on line, etc. This should be a seamless integration with the building’s inhabitants’ habits. The mechanics are simply well chosen tools to support the life within.

Pragmatism: This means that the house was well constructed, in a reasonable manner, no matter how large or small the project. Materials should not be wasted and green building strategies should be always employed. It is your shelter from the elements, your retreat and sanctuary, and a place for family and friends to gather and enjoy.

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