Monday, March 25, 2013

Red Wall Paint Specs

A number of people have inquired about the specific red paint that was used for the red walls at the front of the house and the stairwell. The color was a custom match to a terra cotta tile we had with the perfect color. It's hard to see how a color will look when it covers a much larger area so we spotted a building with something a bit similar and took a picture with them overlapping. Our sample was a bit warmer that the color on the building which was fine and we got a confidence boost in our choice.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Getting Close

The project has been coming along at a pretty frantic pace with most of the focus on finishes, cabinetry, the stairs, appliances, and fixtures. Basically all the stuff that gets installed once the envelope is ready. There is lots to show but we are going to put together much more complete postings once things are complete and cleaned up. For now, we wanted to get up some pictures of the almost completed exterior and the new stairs.

Cantilevered living room with deck on top

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Mission: Landscape Plan

A ton of time and effort has gone into the design of the home and now it was time for us to get something going for landscaping. I love well designed landscaping because it really helps connect the house to the land and enhances the home in so many ways:
  • Great presentation of the house as you approach.
  • Enhancing the views from inside or when you step outside.
  • Adds functionality to support how you like to live: cooking, entertaining and activities.
  • Bringing out the best in the exterior design features of the house.

To find the landscape architect that would be right for us, we turned to lots of great online resources like Houzz. As I mentioned in previous posts, I prefer to work with designers that have already done some modern-style work that we really like. I know that a good architect can roam across many styles but my confidence is just higher knowing they have actually done it. We compiled a list of promising local landscape architects and went through a process to figure out who would be the best fit for our project. In the end, we decided to go with Darwin Webb Landscape Architects. Their modern designs are really clean, fresh and I just clicked with Dar as soon as I met him.

Final Schematic Landscape Plan

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Paint and Floors

We are now at the stage where interior finishes like paint and floors are coming fast and furious plus the exterior siding keeps moving along. The cedar siding is finished with Sikkens natural cedar semi-transparent stain. Adding a bit of pigment to the stain helps the clear cedar with the inevitable weathering that occurs here in the Pacific Northwest.

Upper terrace

Lesson: Test Your Paint Colors

We recently made a classic mistake that cost us a bucket of money and if we can help you avoid the same awful blunder, it will take a little bit of the sting out of it. Now we realize this isn't about world peace or saving lives...it's far bigger than that: Choosing The Right White.

We met with team Build and on the agenda was picking a white for the walls, ceiling, and trim. We spent a bunch of time talking about flat vs eggshell sheen for the walls. Flat is much easier to touch-up but eggshell is easier to clean and can add more light to a room by bouncing it around a bit (we decided on flat). Next was the choice of white. We worked with the standard Benjamin Moore swatch book strips and they have 140 different shades of white. We wanted a white that wouldn't be super stark and just a bit on the warm side to complement the other materials being used in the house. We eyeballed the warm white (BM White Vanilla) used in Build's offices and went one shade less warm with BM Easter Lily.

Easter Lily

Danger Zone: Entire families have been destroyed over the question of WHICH WHITE but we felt like we could just quick draw from the hip and make the decision without any testing. Big mistake.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Siding and Sheetrock

Now that all the systems that run through the walls, ceilings, and floors are complete, the next phase is dominated by getting the sheetrock and exterior siding installed. We are very happy with the warm rich look of the tongue-and-groove cedar siding. It is just what we were hoping for!


The cedar siding will be applied to all the surfaces you see above covered in the Tyvek wrap. The lower garage and utility areas will have an exterior of painted cement panels mounted as a rainscreen. With a rainscreen system, the panels are attached to runners that create a space behind the panels that allows water to run behind them instead of just over them. This reduces maintenance because the panels will last longer and they will require less repainting.

Handmade Models

Build recently did an interesting post on their blog about the fading art of building real scale models to help visualize and understand an architectural design. Click to read more...