A DIY Ally client hired me to help with a layout of a master bedroom/bathroom suite. She listed the “must haves,” sent photos of the current conditions, and shared that it’s their second home soon to be their only home in a rural area of Texas. Based on the information provided, it appeared that they would enter the new space through their existing laundry room! A big mistake, in my opinion. The addition’s outside dimensions were set in stone, a 20’x20’ square.
When you live close to the beach in Santa Monica, California, your home must celebrate indoor/outdoor lifestyle. Another prerequisite is that its kitchen architecture should feel inviting. With a sense of calm and order. Airy. Sounds formulaic? Of course! That’s because combining comfort with spaciousness and good light is a fail-safe recipe for success. I am advocating “room as a whole” approach where kitchen and living areas are combined instead of being juxtaposed.
Last week I attended my daughter’s new brand launch party. While chatting with her friend Eric, we got on the subject of alladiyally. He was curious to learn about the way it started, and I enjoyed reminiscing. Offering virtual architectural services was an innovative concept; thankfully, it has evolved into a thriving online business. Besides, it’s really a lot of fun — I get all kinds of design/construction-related questions. Mostly, the clients are satisfied with initial consultation because the people who reach out to me are true DIYers!.
The other day, I heard Jessica Murray, an astrologer, state that image-generating capacity of the human mind determines what happens. At this point in my career, it’s an undisputed truth. As an architect, I envision something, draw it up, and it materializes. Seeing my personal life as a work of art, on the other hand, is a skill I had to work hard to develop.I went through image-generating training in Architecture School. Still remember that freshman year,
My life is full of routines. Meditation every morning. Same breakfast. A walk on the beach once a week. Gardening is a constant: weeding, re-arranging, cleaning. In July-August, when the figs are ripe and are falling on the ground like crazy, we need to pick them up at least twice a day. There’s nothing mundane or boring about these routines; in fact, they fill my life with inspiration. They are relaxing and anchoring. It makes sense. Babies and little kids thrive on routines —
A DIY Ally client wrote: “Hello Alla, I’ve much enjoyed your website, particularly your 11-step eBook and blog entries. I have a space planning question. My husband and I are downsizing from a 2300 sf home to a 1948 ranch 3BR/1BA 1100 sf home. Every sf needs to count. Over the 5+ years we’ve owned the home, I believe we’ve pretty much figured out how to maximize the layout; however, a recent decision to completely re-plumb the house allows us the
Sorry, I haven’t been posting. Was teaching my DIY Like an Architect workshop at Art Center last two weekends. Besides, this project in NY is keeping me very busy. Performing construction supervision remotely — discussing every little detail with the contractor over the phone in addition to emailing a lot of drawings and instructions. Most of the design details I am generating right now were not required for the submission to the Building Department. Plan Examiners are concerned with public safety, not aesthetics.
I’ve been getting a lot of traffic on AllaDIYAlly lately. For instance, just last week I heard from a client in Washington’s Wenatchee Valley who is enlarging a small bedroom and adding a bath suite. He inquired: “If I send current dimensions and include a sketch and additional square feet, can you work from that?” Of course, I can!
If you read this blog, you've already heard about my project in the Hamptons. The first stage of it is under construction, which consists of the garage remodel/pool house conversion. With respect to the existing structure, the intent is to preserve as much of it as possible, especially the operable barn door — keeping this endearing element is critical, even if it morphs into a window covering and its hardware is replaced.
This blog is my diary. I write about what interests me. Recently, I’ve been grappling with astrology. It started as an attempt to be of service — daughter Mia is launching a fashion brand inspired by the zodiac. Well… My first birthchart took longer than a month to analyze. I thought it would be impossible to penetrate another one, but couldn't just give up. So, I figured out how to gain proficiency and streamline the process. By breaking up a ton of information into
Many years ago, I attended a presentation by a motivational speaker whose description of her secret garden made a lasting impression on me. I still remember that inspired delineation arousing a sense of urgency in me. I left longing. Imagining her cherished mornings, I was galvanized. I’ve fantasized about having my own secret garden ever since. And now I can pop in anytime! Just like today. In case you are wondering, the weather in Los Angeles can be quite pleasant in December.
A client wants to build a deck at the top of her steep hillside property. The view from there is breathtaking! Unfortunately, structural requirements make it prohibitively expensive. In addition, the obligatory 25-foot-wide side yard deems the project impossible to implement at the location we're considering. Well, I am not giving up just yet. There must be a feasible solution right at our fingertips. Actually, what if we create a free-standing rooftop structure over the existing roof?
You've heard a great deal about my project in Bridgehampton; it's been a year in development. Finally, the first stage of construction has started — we are repurposing a free-standing rustic garage into a guest house. I am busy making sure that all of the elements come together seamlessly. Still refining the design for a closet that doubles as a staircase leading up to a new loft.
In my previous post I wrote about a master bath renovation as work in progress. Since then, we have settled on a layout and are in the process of selecting bathroom fixtures and tile. It’s a good opportunity to test the plan while focusing on nitty-gritty. The agreed-upon layout features a brand new shower and a tub in their existing locations. It seems most practical given the issue of the drastically sloping ceiling. There just isn’t enough headroom at the bay window for a shower.
Recently, potential Alla DIY Ally clients reached out to me, wondering if I would be able to give them a hand with a master bath and dressing area remodel project. They are considering a complete makeover of an outdated space and are open to new possibilities. Having emailed pictures of a sunken tub and narrow shower stall, they complained that the layout of the room is quite inefficient, not to mention leaking glass roof and windows.