Universal Design for the Bathroom


Regardless if homeowners plan to sell or stay for years, redesigning a bathroom is a common renovation most people will encounter. Bathroom design holds a key to making homes more usable for not only their present inhabitants and visitors but also future owners and generations. Designing a space with that philosophy in mind is called Universal Design.

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Building Your Custom Home Series: Simplifying the Selections Process

When you are building your home, the selection process is perhaps one of the most eagerly awaited events for our clients. This is when you finally get to pick out all of the “stuff” that goes into your homes. From faucets, lighting and exterior colors to flooring choices, bathtubs and tile, nothing is quite as exciting as seeing the details of your home come together.

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Choosing the Right Kitchen Lighting

While probably not top priority when designing your kitchen, the type of lighting you choose is an important decision – one that will affect how much you enjoy your new kitchen space.

Unfortunately, it is sometimes easy to overlook lighting until most of the budget has been eaten up by other expenses. The problem with doing this, though, is that you end up leaving one of the most important kitchen components to chance.

Proper lighting is vital to the safety and functionality of any kitchen, as well as the joy of spending time there.

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Building Your Custom Home: Selecting the Perfect Lot

NOTE: This is the first in a series of articles dedicated to building your custom home.

Building your custom home can be an exciting time! You’ve saved money, looked through dozens of magazines and online publications, and perhaps even created your own Ideabook on Houzz – all in preparation for the day when you can officially begin planning your one-of-a-kind home.

But before drawings are finalized, you’ll need to make a lot of choices – as these will affect how your home is designed and the final cost of building your dream home. First up: selecting the perfect lot.

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Project Story: Regent Square Multi-Room Addition

Our client had a dilemma that many growing families face—running out of space in their current home, and they had no desire to move. They loved the neighborhood and location, as it was right across the street from Frick Park, one of the larger parks in the city.

Since the home was in an urban location with tightly spaced homes on small lots, it only allowed us to build on a small footprint. The plan called for adding more first floor living space that included a kitchen/dining room and family room, and a second-floor master bedroom suite. An additional requirement was, the owners wanted to leave enough room in the small backyard for a one-car garage to be built in the future.

We designed and built the addition to blend seamlessly with the existing house by matching the exterior features and finishes. The client desired an open floor plan to connect the expanded kitchen with the existing living room and the new family room.

At the rear entry is a small mudroom complete with a bench and coat hooks. The ¾ height wall between this area and the new family room allows the natural light from the full-glass rear door to pour into the family room but still partitions off this area as well as the entry to the new powder room.

The kitchen features a large island with stools for casual dining, a work-sink and a microwave tucked at a lower level for easy access.

The kitchen offers a lot of light, including natural light from the side, recessed lighting, beautiful pendant lights over the island and under-cabinet lighting to give working areas plenty of light.

Behind the range, the beautiful marble tile in a herringbone pattern complements the white subway tile.

Upstairs, we added a full master suite with a bathroom and walk-in closet. Both the master bath and closet entries are accessed using sliding barn doors.

The master bath has his-and-hers sinks with a marble countertop, a soaking tub and a roomy walk-in tiled shower with a built-in cubby.

Would you like to build a new home or log/timber-framed home? Let us help. As your design-build team, we can walk you through every step of the process. Contact us to talk further.