Architecture 557 Ideabooks

We spoke with two Best of Houzz architects, Nils Finne of Finne Architects and Matthew Coates of Coates Design, to get the inside scoop on what architects do,...
6 Reasons to Hire a Home Design Professional
Who hasn’t heard that regular trips to the dentist can prevent the spread of tooth decay? Even though sitting in that chair isn’t the most enjoyable way to spend time, most of us know that a dentist has the knowledge and expertise to check all aspects...
So You Want to Build: 7 Steps to Create a New Home
Whether building new or renovating an existing structure, creating a new home is a journey of discovering who you are, what you want, how you want to live and where you want to be. It's a chance for you to define your relationship to the world, to your...
Architect's Toolbox: The Sketches That Spark a Home
With everything that goes into building a house today, it’s tough to imagine where everything starts. How exactly do you communicate your ideas to another person, and how does an architect interpret things like “indoor-outdoor flow, lots...
10 Advantages of the Humble Ranch House
Since falling from favor in the 1970s, the ranch house has languished on the bottom rung of the architectural food chain. Critics deride...
3 Surprising Essential Tools for the Modern Architect
What do you think architects do all day? Most people envision someone sitting in front of a drafting table, with pencil, eraser and straightedge, drawing into the wee hours of the night. Contrary to this stereotype, most firms have replaced old-school...
Tell a Story With Design for a More Meaningful Home
I just finished listening to the TED Radio Hour piece about storytelling. While it shouldn't come as a surprise that books, plays, poems, paintings or music tell stories, many folks...
How to Read a Floor Plan
The floor plan, or plan, is the most common of all architectural drawings. From builders to architects, Realtors to appraisers, everyone uses a floor plan. More than likely this is because the floor plan is the one drawing that tells us the most about...
Who Needs 3-D Design? 5 Reasons You Do
As a client, how can you avoid paying for design work you don’t want? Making sure you know what you're getting before you have it built helps. Today there is no better way to understand and have a feel...
5 Tips for Working Virtually With Your Architect
Whether a home is big or small, building it comes with plenty of challenges, especially if you want to build in an area where navigating the design review board is difficult and time consuming. Working with a local...
Architect's Toolbox: 6 Drawings on the Way to a Dream Home
From thumbnail sketches to detailed construction drawings, architects and other design professionals produce all sorts of drawings. While these drawings can be quite beautiful in their own right, their purpose is twofold. First, they help flesh...
The Truth About 'Simple' Modern Details
One of the projects that I've been working on is a set of additions to a 1970s modern house in a North Shore suburb of Chicago. This house has all of the modern architectural design features: large walls of glass, reveals, a low-slope roof with interior...
8 Wonders of Imagination in Architecture
“I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” You might think a quotation like this is from an incredible artist...
Iconic Architecture: 10 Must-Know Modern Homes
On some days it seems that modern architecture has 10 times as many detractors as proponents, even though the movement has influenced a great deal of residential architecture — from open floor plans to means of construction. Some of the dislike for...
Off the Grid: Ready to Pull the Plug on City Power?
“Most men appear never to have considered what a house is, and are actually though needlessly poor all their lives because they think that they must have such a one as their neighbors have. … Shall we always study to obtain more, and not...
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