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Custom Homes

Cabin in the Country
Fredericktown, Missouri, USA

   This modest 3 bed, 2 bath custom cabin/art studio was designed for a teacher/artist couple on several acres of farm/horse property in Fredericktown, Missouri. The home is based on the principles of "New Integral" Architecture (see post "Design Principles of New Integral Architecture" dated 1-14-28 below), a new design "style" I have recently been formulating and refining. There is definitely an influence from Frank Lloyd Wright's Usonian homes, as well as Fay jones, Alden Dow, Richard Neutra, Eichler homes, and mid-century modern.

   Much of the interior furniture would be designed by me to appear "built-in" but still be movable. There are lots of shelves, counters, and wall space to display numerous art pieces created by the Clients themselves. Terraces invite outdoor communing with a fire pit, fountain, and ledges for the Client's sculpture. 
   The 4-foot module design consists of exposed wood post & beam construction w/ a stone base and Hardie Panel and batten siding, glass, concrete and standing seam metal roof (all of which are both inside & out!) to metaphorically give a sense of living in and among the tress pervading the site. 

The exposed, stained concrete floor is 2 feet above grade w/ no basement to address frequent flooding. A curved outdoor seating wall also diverts water runoff from a hill away from the home. 
   Sustainable design features include passive solar design/orientation, solar panel garden, and a rainwater collection cistern. The home also features Universal design as the Clients age, with 3 foot wide doors, single-level, and ramps to help traverse the 2-foot elevation rise.
Client Letter Regarding the Design:

   "We were so excited to open our gift plans for the house of a lifetime! Every last detail -- cats, dogs, birds, sculpture, was included, and the design is devine. I love the windows in large quantity facing south, the rock wall/stone fireplace, and the solar garden. There is so much that you considered, making it all logically perfect!"

Design Principles of "New Integral" Architecture
1-14-28 (Principles created by Colin Edward Slais, Architect)

  • Simplicity throughout – Form, structure, systems – use of structural grid.
  • Clarity/Honesty – Clear, honest expression of function, systems, materials and structure (use of cantilever as appropriate).
  • Functionality, Stability and Beauty – a belief in “Commodity, Firmness, Delight” – Vitruvius.
  • Integral Design Inside & Out – Systems, materials, details, motifs, patterns, metaphor, furniture, colors all integrated.
  • Indoor/Outdoor Relationship – Seamless transition between inside & outside - direct connection between the two.
  • Universality – Flexibility, adaptability, changeability, expandability. “Universal Design” for advanced age as requested.
  • Color – From natural materials themselves, from the site/nature as well as Client’s favorite color – informed, natural, not arbitrary.
  • Relation to Nature – Inspired by/expressive of an understanding & love of nature, stars/sun/moon – adapts to it like a living organism for the comfort of life in and out.
  • Site Specific – Harmonious w/ site in location, layout, orientation, materials, colors, climate, views, Client needs. Site-informative.
  • Life Priority – Human and pet scale, proportions, needs – supports life inside and out.
  • Sustainability – Passive solar, conservation of resources/utilities.
  • Screen Walls – Walls “slide” through space as acoustic, visual & structural screens defining space, not confining. No boxes!
  • Balance of Contrasts – Soft/hard, straight/curved, light/shade, horizontal/vertical, yin/yang.
  • Work of Art – Expressive as a complete work of art lifting the spirit.
  • Timeless – Though of its time, still ageless & respected by its universality, purity, logic, connection to nature.
  • Freedom – Free from “handcuffs” of past styles/historical references, but rather more representative of true Democracy.
  • Creativity – Creative & unique design solutions and use of materials.
  • Sense of Shelter – Broad overhangs provide protection from elements.
  • Intelligence – Rational, thoughtful, useful, reasoned, intelligent design answering What, Why and How.
  • Joyful – Design brings positive, warm, cheerful feelings with a sense of joy and belief that imagination becomes reality.
  • Heart of Home – The Kitchen is the center of the home.
  • Respectful – Respectful of context, history and privacy, but in a current, fresh way.
  • Friendly – Welcoming/inviting to owners/guests
  • Technology – Use of current infrastructure technology for “smart” systems, wireless, security, etc.
  • Metaphor – Elements/details express and link the design idea metaphorically or symbolically to the site/nature/Client.
  • Furnishings – Custom-designed to appear built-in but movable for flexibility; or purchased to harmonize w/ the home’s design.
  • Low Maintenance – Easy to maintain and clean for better hygiene and health.
  • Time Capsule – Newspaper, artifacts, etc. in every project linking the past, present and future.
  • Informal Order -- Orderliness/organization of space and structure but with a casual feel.
New Custom Home
Phoenix, Arizona, USA

So excited to see the completion of this new custom home I designed in Phoenix, AZ. Enjoy the photos! 

Residential Remodel/Addition
Paradise Valley, Arizona, USA

Also just completed this residential remodel/addition to an existing home in Paradise Valley, AZ. Enjoy the photos!

1 comment:

  1. This is a beautiful home that looks very well built. I am vaguely familiar with programs like this, but am excited to hear about what they're actually up to in my town.
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