Architect as Chef — Home Cooking

I take every chance I get to visit Grandma’s house. She always tells a great story and prepares a delicious home-cooked meal. I hear about my childhood antics and roll my eyes when she embellishes the story. I learn how differently the world was during her formative years compared to mine. She shares life events that positively shaped her generation, my parents and me. I’m mesmerized by her tales and the heavenly aroma of her famous stew. Oh and did I mention I get a great meal? The preparation and love she pours into a family meal is magical and inspiring. As I basked in great company and culinary bliss, I realized design is like making stew! read more →

15 May 2010
0 Comment

Remodel Your Home – Remodel Your Life

One thing is for sure the only certainty in life is change. If you don’t like the weather, wait and it will change. You just dyed your hair a trendy new color, but it will change. You’re late for work and sitting in traffic at a red light, but it will change. You have a tight youthful body, but it will change. You have your life the way you want it, but it will change too. When you remodel your home it’s because you want to change something about it, but home remodeling is a better opportunity to change something about your life! read more →

30 Apr 2010
0 Comment

Architect or Aspirin? — Common Design Headaches

I love what I do — designing personalized homes. It’s a daunting but fulfilling challenge to help families design unique living spaces. You love what I do too and that’s why I see an increasing number of your plans during owner-architect interviews. You share hand sketches, grid paper layouts, magazine overlays, photographs and computer renditions. Admit it, being your own designer is sexy and you want to say, “I did it!”, but despite how inspiring and creative your plans are, they often lack design coherence and include expensive mistakes. Your sketches, layouts, overlays and programs are good ways to start, but they are a poor way to finish a design unless you have the insight and skills to make a design work. To all you design cavaliers who want to try their hand at home design, I appreciate your effort and ingenuity, but please avoid these common design headaches. read more →

31 Mar 2010
0 Comment

Owner as Architect – Should You Design It?

Are you a do-it-yourself person? Do you love the satisfaction of doing something yourself and spurn the notion of hiring someone to do a simple task or service? Have you ever hired a cook, maid, lawn maintenance, plumber, auto repair or realtor? If you haven’t, you’re a VERY busy person. But, you probably don’t do everything yourself, I’m sure you eat out occassionally, take the car to a quick service or hire a realtor to sell/buy your home. When you hire someone else, it’s because you don’t have the time or expertise to do the job you deserve. Well designing your home may fall into that category so don’t do it alone if you don’t have to. read more →

17 Oct 2009
0 Comment

Design-Build: The Super Star or Super Team

Do you like sports? Do full-contact team sports like football, basketball and soccer motivate you or do you prefer the indivdual sports like tennis, golf and gymnastics? I’m a team sport fan and enjoyed playing football, basketball and soccer because I like the interdepence of players working together, exploiting their strengths, to win championships. Of course, the satisfaction of cultivating an individual talent to earn the #1 ranking in the world is remarkably fulfilling too. Did you know designing and building your home can be like a team or individual sport? It’s true! You can develop your design-build project in countless ways, but regardless what the industry calls it, you are “working together” or “working in parts” and both methods have advantages, but how do you know whether to be a super star or super team? read more →

14 Sep 2009
0 Comment

WishingRock — The Name

Do you ever wonder how people name companies? Sometimes, names are the founder’s initials like HEB (Henry E. Butts) grocery. It could be part of the founder’s name like Wal-Mart (Sam Walton). A name may tell location or function like 3M (MN Mining and Manufacturing) or Ebay. And sometimes it sounds catchy like Nike, but in the case of WishingRock, it was destiny and this is the inspiration behind the name. read more →

28 Aug 2009
0 Comment

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle — The Responsible Remodel

In the movie First Knight, King Arthur (Sean Connery) said, “There’s another kind of peace on the other side of war”. That is my perception of home remodeling projects. You have to endure some pain to reap the reward. Remodeling is rarely fun because it is disruptive, challenging and costly but “after the war” you have a rejuvenated space and in my experience, the best way to rejuvenate a space is to follow the “Four R’s” reduce, reuse, recycle and responsibility. read more →

31 Jul 2009
0 Comment

Media is the architect’s nemesis

Mainstream media can be the architect’s nemesis! Television shows such as Extreme Home Makeover, and Design on a Dime (HGTV) mean well, but they undermine our credibility. Many clients think we can build or remodel entire homes in a weekend and can construct everything for <$2,000 and will design it all for free. That’s a.. read more →