Schematic Design: River Cottage Remodel
On The Boards & Design Ideas | We have a tried and true design process that ensures our work is not only accurate, maintains a project schedule, and provides value in our services (i.e. efficiency), but is also crafted specifically to our clients' needs.
After we've spent time getting to know our clients — listen, ask questions and seek understanding about their story — developed a building program, and fully understand site constraints, we dive into design. First, we collect imagery that is inspirational to our clients, then prepare initial concept sketches that reflect their vision. These pre-design sketches are the starting point for schematic design (SD).
During SD, we explore multiple options in both plan and exterior massing at the same time.
This helps us as well as the clients understand the visual and programmatic implications of different plan schemes. It also allows us to try out a handful of ideas to see what works best for our clients. Sometimes we love what's happening in plan until we see how it effects the massing of the home. Or, we love the exterior of a particular option but the interior program just doesn't meet space needs. During SD, we learn what works and what doesn't, and we understand where we need to perform further explorations.
Clients will often pick and choose from two or more of the options presented to them. These ideas are then refined into one comprehensive direction to move forward with. Our River Cottage Remodel is a great example of this.
The existing home is a cute 1950's single story ranch. The clients want to add charm and function while also giving the mid-century gem a cottage vibe.
The first option is minimal. No additions, just plan changes and exterior updates.
The second option expands the entry, relocates numerous openings, and allows for the addition of a dormer on the rear of the house to let in natural light.
This next option maintains the existing footprint but does allow for a modest main level addition for a pantry as well as a second story addition.
The fourth option expands the entry and provides a gracious second story addition.
The clients were ultimately drawn to aspects from multiple schemes — the entry presence of Option D but also the ability to maintain much of the existing structure as illustrated in the first couple, more minimal, options. This final scheme balanced those desires while also providing the cottage vibe developed through the design process. This option became the comprehensive direction we moved forward with.
Visit the "On The Boards" section (link above) to view progress on the River Cottage Remodel as well other current work.
We wholeheartedly believe great clients make great projects. Client experiences and input are crucial to crafting the highly functional and inspirational places we call home.
Thanks for reading!