Design Freedom, inc.


Services Provided
Full-service architectural design for homes, additions, and remodels. Conceptual design, consultations, and construction review. Licenses: Florida #AA26001283, Virginia #0407-005832.

Areas Served
Tampa Bay & Central Florida, Northern Virginia

Business Description
Love your forever home more! Together we'll design a home or remodel so you save money, save space, and stay in place: save money long-term, become energy efficient, add the things you want without adding square footage, use easy to clean quality materials, and assure that you can stay in your home no matter what life brings you! Cathy Svercl, Owner/Architect

Certification and Awards
Our project Lakefront Green Home Remodel has won Silver in the Energy-efficiency Retrofit category of Qualified Remodeler's Master Design Awards for 2012. This project is an Energy Star certified home and a Gold Certified Florida Green Home with the Florida Green Building Coalition, Inc.
Location:
Clearwater, FL US 
Contact:
Cathy Svercl 
Type:
 
Address
2160 Victoria Drive,
Clearwater, Florida,
United States, 33763 
License #:
AA26001283 
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
there are some great professionals in all states who can design and build or remodel to your custom specifications. look for accessible, universal design, and aging-in-place in their advertising. Houzz has some great photos of accessible bathrooms that don't look like a hospital, too. search for the same terms. how you maneuver will be key to what your bathroom needs, and how it looks.
p.s. we work in the Tampa Bay & mid-Florida area.
3 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
this is a photo of a neighbor's house - their original front door was in the corner like yours. they pulled it out a little and added a gable roof. the new door and gable are 45 degrees angle.
3 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
Bonnie, you might try reaching out to local contractors or designers who advertise that they work on accessible or universal design remodeling. search for Certified Universal Design or Certified Aging-in-Place Professionals, among many other certifications available. they may refer you to local cabinet stores or shops.
another possibility is using Ikea; you can order online and have delivered, but you will want to visit one of their stores first to check if their quality level is what you had in mind for your budget. their stores are in the Chicago suburbs.
hopefully your insurance will cover the costs. also, discuss the purchase with your accountant to see if this would qualify for a "medically necessary home improvement" tax deduction.
3 hours ago   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
DDS Design Services, LLC by Jeff Kida
Bonnie, we would be glad to come out and discuss your project with you. However, I must tell you that you cabinetry budget is very low. We offer free in home consultations. Design Freedom made several excellent points. I would add that you really need a comprehensive budget before going any further.
2 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Design Freedom, inc. likes a comment on an ideabook

Unleash Your Guerilla Gardener

Toss some seed bombs around the yard for easy, beneficial plantings Full Story
     Comment   4 hours ago
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Simple Solar Homesteading
I like cottage garden style which is organized chaos. You can do that with seed bombs and I gather wildflower seed and add in some store bought seed and just scatter them over fresh tilled soil and rake in. Water and wait. If something doesn't come up it was too weak and I didn't want it anyway lol!
last Friday at 7:19am     
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
i would think the original front door had aluminum color hardware. but black would look great too. make sure the hardware has the long lines of Mid Century Modern style - no curlicues or elaborate detailing.
4 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
search the web. i found the treads are available in Acadia Tobacco Road, as well as other accessories. otherwise, i would lean towards a dark stained tread & riser that matches the darker parts of the Tobacco Road.
4 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
to see some examples, check out a favorite book of mine, Susan Sargent's The Comfort of Color. lots of bold ideas and photos.
4 hours ago        Thanked by loveydovey71321
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
Denita
Love the idea of painting the built in cabinet. Here are a couple of inspiration pics for you. Painting the interior back coral would be awesome. Or wallpapering it.
Gaillardia show home
Dana Worlock
Mercer House
Elegant Traditional Dining Room with Custom China Cabinets
4 hours ago        Thanked by loveydovey71321
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
libradesigneye
You can easily wrap fabric scraps in color around foam core and stand them up on the back wall of the shelves to see what tones you would like. Leaving them neutral outside and adding coral on the back of all the open shelves is the easiest / surest choice - easy to repaint but choosing a coral that will work with the beige tone will mean going deep into coral mid-tones so can't be faint hearted - like http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/coralreef -

Blue is tricky here - lots of great shades with cream and tan. If you had dishes with blue on them, I would need to see them - blue greens in widely varied shades - jamestown blue -ish navy or heading towards (thousand oceans) is something else. Classic bm province blue / / another option. The casework with the carving is traditional and classic, so with creamy trim I think you keep the creamy face and shelves and do color behind - maybe just hit the carving areas at the top and on the door with a little bit of antiqued tinted wax. Again, you can try different inserts to get the right shade of blue - cut foam core to the shape of the back of the shelves then trade out wrapping fabric around and putting it up - take paint chips to the fabric remnant aisle and buy 1/2 yard samples . . if I wanted a classic blue I would look to doing the inside back with http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/newyorkstateofmind
kind of traditional but bright enough to wowsa there . . . especially with creamy dishes . .
4 hours ago        Thanked by loveydovey71321
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
typically 4 inches apart, center of hole to center of hole. you can adjust that, of course.
4 hours ago      Thanked by jeannemarkell
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
sstarr
Usually a template sheet or other information is included in the packaging...?
4 hours ago   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Sequins
Faucets are either 4" centre or 8" centre apart. It says on the box.You can also ask the plae you purchased from, or it may affect the plumbing.
4 hours ago   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
map out how you work in your kitchen now. are you carrying everything from the fridge over to the counter near the stove to prep? then bringing water to the prep area? perhaps a long island in the center of the room - with eating counter where the table is now - and take out the peninsula to extend island to that area? that way, the sink & stove could stay where they were, but the prep area would be closer to both.
April 8, 2014 at 3:38pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
looks like previous owners just couldn't find correct size sliding doors. looks like you have enough room that you could replace with pair of French doors or pair of paneled doors.
April 8, 2014 at 3:25pm     
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
sally78
Does the uneven mirror sizes bother you enough to replace the doors? I'm not sure it would bother me. But, if it does bother you, as above, there are other options.

I think it would be handy to have full-length mirror in your bathroom. So, the doors are probably handy in a way, if a bit odd.

It looks like you have a spacious bathroom, so you could change to two hinges doors with no mirror. Trade off would be getting rid of the handy full-length mirror along with the odd appearance.

Good luck with your decision. Happy Decorating!
April 8, 2014 at 9:24pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Spectrum Skyworks Skylights & Canopies
Barn door in glass mirror
April 8, 2014 at 10:24pm   
Sign Up to comment
Design Freedom, inc. commented on a discussion
     Comment   April 8, 2014
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
everything you see or touch that hasn't been completely finished. go room by room, look at everything from ceiling to floor, turn clockwise so you don't miss anything. open doors, drawers, windows, etc, turn off and on switches. go slowly and carefully, looking for anything that draws your eye - scratches, paint drops, etc.

discuss each point with your contractor - make a decision which ones need to be fixed before you move in (for example, light switches not working), which ones can wait (a knob on back-order, for example), and which ones you can live with.
April 8, 2014 at 3:19pm     
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
because of the ceiling shape, i would propose you not put crown molding in this room. however, to match other rooms or make it continuous, i drew my design over your photo. anything above the crown molding should be painted the same color as the ceiling.
April 8, 2014 at 3:06pm        Thanked by ognatalie
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
sally78
Crown molding doesn't work in all situations. Design Freedom's advice is very sound. Don't use it in that room, unless there is no way to "not use it"….

Happy Decorating!
April 8, 2014 at 9:38pm      Thanked by ognatalie
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
ognatalie
Thanks all! I think we will not put molding on our second floor then!
April 10, 2014 at 12:29pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
we'd recommend installing the glass tiles to backerboard, not mirror. use a "Bright-white" with glass tiles, since anything else will affect the perceived color of the tiles.

for direct attachment to mirror, maybe try a glass tile adhesive, instead of a grout, to mount directly to mirror. or silicone could work, too. never assume, always make sure the mirror is secured to the wall before you add anything to it.
April 8, 2014 at 2:48pm        Thanked by happynons
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
Margaret B
I did not attach to the mirror, it is attached to the wall.
April 9, 2014 at 6:24pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
happynons
Oh now I see that. I'm kinda afraid now because of the weight. Your work is beautiful.
April 9, 2014 at 6:50pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
we used Cree LED lights - 4, 5, or 6 inch depending on location & spacing & light requirements.

April 8, 2014 at 2:34pm     
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
not sure we understand what you need to do. perhaps a photo of what's there?
April 8, 2014 at 2:31pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
search for "under deck ceilings" and several products and photos will show up.
April 8, 2014 at 2:10pm        Thanked by yukonhome
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
sally78
We heard about under deck ceilings---a great idea---but we found the cost not worth what was our need (which was just for casual use as a place to sit---no water problems)….

Maybe, the price has come down or maybe your need warrants the expense.

In any event, good luck with your problem solving.
April 8, 2014 at 9:16pm        Thanked by yukonhome
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
yukonhome
thank you for your comment - most appreciated!
April 11, 2014 at 7:32am   
Sign Up to comment
Design Freedom, inc. commented on a discussion
   Comment   April 4, 2014
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
Paint Benjamin Moore "Dry Sage"
April 4, 2014 at 6:46am   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
do you mean some type of faux ceiling design - fake beams (not structural)? what style are you considering for the room? what is the length, width, and height of the room? view the photos here, find something you like, and we can help with the main principles or guidelines: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/query/faux-beams
April 3, 2014 at 11:06am        Thanked by justarek
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
a local garden center will have designers (or can refer you) that can help you plan out the yard and narrow down plants that will work in each area. later on, you can wander around the Big Box stores for more plants and trinkets. just start with a good solid plan first.
April 3, 2014 at 11:00am   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
216sharon
It can also be helpful to get a gardening book written for your state or area. Start asking questions of your neighbors that have plantings you admire. Read your newspaper's home and garden section. Allow yourself some time...gardening is a gradual process. I also wonder if you will see progress in those beds as spring moves on. Often there are bulbs and perennials which do not make themselves obvious at all times of year.

Twitter @216Sharon
April 3, 2014 at 11:14am     
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
windows - traditional for your Cape Cod style house would be double hung with 6-over-6 panes for the downstairs windows (currently you have 8-over-1). upstairs looks like only 1-over-1 will fit.
shutters - it would be nice to replace these with properly sized shutters - wider on the downstairs, and just one shutter on each gable window.
solid square columns would be more in keeping with the architecture - perhaps a more natural material for the stoop and future patio - bricks or flagstones
have fun!
April 3, 2014 at 10:53am      Thanked by oliveannie
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
you should cover the insulation to prevent breathing it in, but also to prevent fire downstairs from spreading upstairs. the easiest might be using wood 2x cut to fit each individual space, then paint to match. cover gap between 2x and wall's drywall with trimwork. (install a vapor barrier if required in your area, too.) 1/2" drywall or 1" solid wood will meet fire code.
April 3, 2014 at 10:45am   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
kitchen pantry cabinets come 24 and 12 inches deep - plus door thickness & any knobs/handles. you could also use 2 sets of wall cabinets stacked on top of one another - just make a base or legs for the bottom one - or hang on wall for floating effect. you'll want to leave about 3 inches from bathroom door to cabinet to allow for door handle (and door casing).
April 3, 2014 at 10:22am   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
Alisha Harper
Have you thought about mounting a sliding interior barn door to the outside of the bathroom? Sliding barn doors are an excellent solution for when traditional swing out doors cause an inconvenience! They look great too! I work for Basin Custom, a custom metal shop that specializes in interior sliding barn door hardware. Check out our online Houzz portfolio: http://www.houzz.com/pro/basincustom/basin-custom

Our website is: www.basincustom.com
Here's a few of our projects!
April 3, 2014 at 10:31am     
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Eagledzines
A pocket door would solve your problem too. If you choose to open it against the cabinet you could use a door stop that sits on the hinge to prevent it from hitting the cabinet.
April 3, 2014 at 12:29pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
i would prefer more counterspace between the sink and the stove, which is where a lot of the prep work is done. 48 inches length ideally.
also, suggest you darken and thicken the lines on your drawing so we can see it better.
April 2, 2014 at 3:04pm      Thanked by janduckworth
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
janduckworth
Eagledzines: Thank you for the advice! Thanks for the 48" advice between fridge and island. I will make sure we have the clearance. The fridge we are looking at is counter depth, yes. I will definitely do upper cabinets on the stove side. I like the angle idea on the island. I think that may also help with going from the fridge to the sink (hopefully). I've decided to not do the banquette. I think we'd get more use out of the seating at the peninsula. (Thanks for darkening the drawing...I misplaced my original! Too much paper!) I appreciate your help!

Maggie: that is a door near the sink yes, leading to the backyard. On the other side of the peninsula is the dining table. We did have a designer come to our house. Unfortunately, our experience was a waste of money, and I wasn't willing to waste more trying someone else! I will look for the article you mentioned. Thanks!
last Monday at 3:37pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Eagledzines
Your welcome. Best wishes on your project!
last Tuesday at 6:32am      Thanked by janduckworth
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
we never specify a solid white - but something speckled or patterned will work. bathroom counters don't get the heavy use of a kitchen (red wine, tomato sauce, lemon juice, etc).
April 2, 2014 at 3:02pm     
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
chery_connolly
Thank you for your comments!!! We are looking at Cambrian Whitehall. :0)
April 2, 2014 at 3:22pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Coop 15 Architecture
I had white quartz with very fine, subtle gray speckles (Caesarstone Blizzard) in my previous master bath and guest bath, and it was terrific. Doesn't show toothpaste, or my silver gray hair...
April 2, 2014 at 4:01pm     
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
questions for you! does your kitchen have a lot of natural light - and is it western or which direction? secondly, what type of lighting does your kitchen have - yellowish glow or more white? and third, is your kitchen open to any other room, and what color is that painted?
April 2, 2014 at 3:00pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Dytecture
Photos of the kitchen would be helpful.
April 2, 2014 at 3:05pm   
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
you still have choices! easiest would be painting all the walls the same. however, you already have different types of flooring, so you could paint the rooms based on which flooring. what can you see from one room looking into the others? perhaps use a neutral color on all the walls you can see, then put different pops of color on the "hidden" walls.
April 2, 2014 at 2:58pm      Thanked by sarahq12
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Dytecture
Start with one color throughout first and add acent colors as needed.
April 2, 2014 at 3:07pm      Thanked by sarahq12
Sign Up to comment
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
Design Freedom, inc.
take a photo of the front of your house and post it here (even though it won't have the final colors on it). the style may help us figure this out for you.
April 2, 2014 at 2:54pm        Thanked by kendravicknair
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
PRO
GN Builders L.L.C
Take a look at Timberline Natural Shadow Weathered Wood color...
April 2, 2014 at 3:20pm     
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
libradesigneye
Kendravicknair, may I suggest that neither of those shingle colors is ideal? You have a lovely space but a roof has some unique properties that can make a difference long term. One, the darker the roof, the more flexibility that the house and colors below can have - the roof needs to be darker than the house and both of these are very mid-tone. Roof is more like a mans hat than a womans - doesn't need to match but can't clash. So, when you go earth tone, you have limited all your colors below to earth tones forever. If you have any gray / fieldstone etc. on the house - pick the deepest charcoal (not black) that you can, and you will see that it is the best choice for your house long term.
April 2, 2014 at 3:20pm   
Sign Up to comment
Design Freedom, inc. likes an ideabook

Kitchen of the Week: Pushing Boundaries in a San Francisco Victorian

If the roll-up garage door doesn’t clue you in, the blue cabinets and oversize molding will: This kitchen is no ordinary Victorian galley Full Story
     Comment   March 31, 2014
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
cherylahjones8
Very nice. The colors are wonderful!
last Monday at 4:48pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
mahreeuh
I dig it!
last Friday at 7:25pm   
Sign Up to comment

Sign in to see 2 reviews

Review by Craftsman Construction:

I have worked with Cathy on a very large residential project. This project was very complex and required a large amount of integration between the Architect and...
Sign in to see more

Review by bdupreejt:

We engaged Cathy Svercl as our architect because we wanted someone who was fully committed to the "Not So Big House" concept as well as "green" innovations and ...
Sign in to see more

Reviews by Cathy Svercl (3)

Review for Craftsman Construction:

Jerry was very easy to work with as he appreciated the skill the architects brought to the table. I appreciated his attention to detail during the very large, m...
Sign in to see more

Review for Adolf Construction:

With a long history of high end residential projects, Adolf Construction had the experience and insight we needed on the whole house remodel project we designed...
Sign in to see more

Review for Busby Cabinets:

Beautiful, high quality cabinets that came with outstanding customer service! Our clients were very happy with the high level of quality that was maintained fr...
Sign in to see more
© 2014 Houzz Inc.
Houzz® The new way to design your home™