Friday, February 5, 2010

Great Beginnings, Part 4 – Architectural Details

Most people think about the “big picture”, when structuring a list for beginning a new construction or interior remodeling project.  There may be obvious architectural space issues, such as handling walls, ceilings and flooring – or the “big box”, a I refer to it – and it may seem simple to create a wish or needs’ list.  Most of the time, it’s the little things which can transport a space from everyday to fabulous.  For my female readers, it’s very similar to the difference between putting on the basic, black dress, with no accessories, or adding just the right accents to really make it dazzle!  All the while, keeping in mind, we do want that “cocktail dress” to be made as nicely as possible, as it allows for several different ensembles to be created.

VictorianMoldingDiagramDo you speak the same “language” with members of the trade?  If not, a picture is truly worth volumes in preventing errors in communication. 

Yesterday, while I was out and about, doing some sourcing for antiques, I ran into a dealer friend of mine, who is in the process of building a home in the NC mountains.  As we chatted about the possibility of working together on her project, I reviewed a few helpful hints to get her thinking about how important these little details can be, in all of the decisions she will make, and in how to tie it all together.  Not only does this impact the final aesthetic, it’s also good to explore these items, so as to be able to allow for them in the budget.  It saves for a lot of frustration and surprises.  At the end of the conversation, she expressed excitement about working together, as it will bring her a sense of calm in knowing a trained professional would be keeping her design aesthetic at heart, as well as to help her carefully plan and manage the project.

Vendee style door      Quercy style door         Anjou style door 

Something as simple as a door style can make a big impact.  Door height needs to be relevant to the room height.  10’ ceilings?  Don’t choose a standard 6’8” door.

myknobs_2036_91996080  myknobs_2034_33294019    myknobs_2036_538451650

What about the hardware?  Certain types of locks require onsite customization.  (An added expense if not pre-drilled by the manufacturer.)  There is also the consideration of the design element tying into the other room objects and finishes. 

01 Air returns?  Codes and other structural requirements may dictate placements we just don’t love.  There are some great manufacturers, of covers, which allow for softer and less obtrusive appearances.  (Also notice the great little detail of wrapping molding around the switch plate, on the opposite wall.)

While some might say, “The devil is in the details”, I really enjoy this part of design!  In fact, I might even say I wear the crown of a “Details Diva”, because I appreciate the difference between the mundane and magnificent.  I’m not as interested in glossing over a project, just for a passing grade.  As in anything worth achieving, it takes time and the accumulation of knowledge.  HGTV-style, twenty four-hour makeovers, only really appear on camera, because of the hours spent behind the scenes, making it all come together for film.  (And I do really like some of the HGTV shows – A favorite having been Joe Ruggerio’s, “Homes Across America”.)

Copy of ICBW - Tuscan Sunroom

I worked with this client, from the original blueprints, through the whole interior’s process. Investment?  Some focused consulting hours.  Long-term satisfaction?  Priceless!

If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed, there is nothing like calling in a trusted interior design expert, to help you sort through and create a priority list.  In the long run, your investment in time and services will be so worth it, as it saves stress, keeps you focused, and will allow you to maintain control over the outcome. 

Inhale . . . exhale!  Don’t you feel better already?

Cheerful planning to you!  Wanda

1 comment:

Norbridge Antiques said...

It's always best to rely on the helping hand of a competent, talented professional. I've learned that it can even save money in the long run.