The Bainbridge Farmhouse: Completion!


modern farmhouse


Fulfilling a lifelong dream of building a home on their family’s land, our clients have recently moved in to their new home in the woods, surrounded by tall firs, fern glades and birdsong. This is an intentionally small, simple house, drawing on Bainbridge Island historical references: simple farm structures, Japanese rural dwelling influences due to that unique aspect of the island’s history, and including the warmth and connection to nature that Craftsman architectural elements can offer.


country livingFront entryway








Now that they are retired, this home is a “down-size”. With only 2200sf, all living spaces are open and connected. On the main floor is a master suite as well as an additional bedroom and bath to accommodate visitors. A second floor loft doubles as a quilting workspace and future grandchildren’s sleeping loft. Generous attention has been paid to storage and mudroom spaces due to the reality of country living! The house has been designed so that the owners can “age in place” with wide corridors and doorways, a one-floor living area, and an abundance of natural light.


beautiful dining room


New kitchen design


modern farmhouse loft


covered porch modern farmhouse


We have been sharing the progress of this project on our blog since the very beginning, from the initial sketches to the early construction as well as a later look at construction nearing completion. We invite you to take a look back and learn more about the project and the process!

bainbridge island farm house architecture | CTA Design Builds | Seattle Architects 

Craftsman Homes Seminar this Saturday!

Julie will be giving a seminar this Saturday, October 6th, at 1:00 at the Wallingford Historic Homes Fair!

Craftsman Homes in the Modern Age: Craftsman homes were traditionally, and intentionally designed to create a cozy hand-made retreat; a sanctuary that would provide connection with nature and sustenance to the soul. This lecture will illuminate that original design rationale to guide you if you’re planning to remodel an existing home, or build a new Craftsman style home.

craftsman home architecture details

Close up of a craftsman home in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle.


For more information, visit

poster for wallingford historic homes fair

Five Design Tips for the Perfect Mud Room

Five Essential Mud Room Tips


It’s that time of year here in the wet Northwest that we’re all going a little crazy with the weather, and trying to get outside in spite of the rain. And when we come back into the house, we face what seems like a growing mountain of wet coats, shoes, gloves, pocket junk….you name it…right at the entry area. Inevitably this mess creeps into other areas of the house. It can feel like a hopeless battle!

As Seattle Architects all too familiar with this problem, it’s our belief that if you can design a hard-working entry zone that can store all this stuff in a way that functions efficiently, the entire house will benefit and feel neat and organized. So what are the secrets? Here are 5 critical elements:


Allow enough room at the entry to enable someone to remove shoes, coats, look in a mirror to adjust hair or a hat. And space enough for 2 or 3 people to stand comfortably and chat… saying goodbyes before heading out the door. Flooring material here is critical: something that can handle wet shoes and dirt without high maintenance…like tile or linoleum.


A little touch that is all too often forgotten  A nice flat space by the entrance and exit to this room is essential to put down keys, mail, a bag of groceries etc.


A little extra thought here goes along way. Make sure to have a place where you can sit down to take off shoes or boots, or set down shopping bags as you take off coats. This might be a bench, seat, or chair.


Make sure to plan to add a cubby niche or drawers for storage of small door-zone items: handbags, keys, sunglasses, flashlights, and other “junk” that accumulates in this area. We also find that a small cubby/shelf that has electrical outlets for devise chargers is very popular; here is where all family members can dock their iPods and cellphones, then grab them on the way out the door!


Of course the essential element of a good entry area is a coat closet. I don’t think you can ever have enough coat storage space!….and shelves for shoes, boots, hats and scarves.

So depending on the style of your home, the overall question is how formal or casual the design might be for this entry zone. If this zone is your front door where visitors enter the house, you might want to hide much of the items stored here behind closet doors and in drawers, giving the area a more formal feeling.

Ideally, this zone is where you and your family enter the house very time you enter, so if it’s a back door or garage entry, the space could be much less formal than the front entry. It’s design could be more open and casual, with coat hooks, cubbies for back-packs, a ball bin (for kids sports equipment!) etc.

A terrific resource to learn more on this hard-working component of a home is Sarah Susanka’s Not So Big website.