Kitchen design is never formulaic. Every single time there’s a different answer to a question, “How do I put together appliances and cabinets in such a way that they form a whole, which is a pleasure to look at and work with?” It’s a challenge of meticulously planning something to feel effortless.
As Alla DIY Ally, I get emails from potential clients requesting help with all sorts of dilemmas. My favorite kind of questions relate to space planning. That’s the area where "architect on demand" can be of real service in the context of working strictly online. Here’s a good example.
I’ve frivolously associated Jasper Johns — his flags — with 9/11 up until last Sunday. That’s when I encountered the artist’s extensive retrospective Jasper Johns: Something Resembling Truth at the Broad. The exactness and graphic quality of the work, its planned proportions, meticulous fabrication, and methodical repetition engaged, captivated, and inspired to seek explanations. Thus, I set out to educate myself about the artist and his subject matter.
I just attended an exhibit at the Getty Museum titled “Pathways to Paradise: Medieval India and Europe” documenting people’s travels to destinations across Asia, Africa, and Europe in pursuit of heaven on earth. People have longed to find it for centuries, but have not been able to. Somehow, it made me think of DIYers I work with, those who are instead of expecting it to be somewhere waiting for them, are willing to build/create their own. Right where they are — in their own backyard.
I have a design-conscious client who calls me up periodically with a new assignment to tackle. I love working with him — designing something that fits its function and is innovative can be extremely enjoyable. This time we are working on his study brimming with books. In addition to bookshelves, he requires a desk and a bar height reading console in the space.
Recently, a friend asked for my help with a design of an apartment she is looking to set up as a vacation spot for her family in Batumi, Georgia. Excited with a challenge at hand — maximizing function within a minimal footprint — I set out to create a compact unit that offers its guests all the comforts of a luxurious hotel room.
I attended LA Build Expo a couple of weeks ago. Overall, it was disappointing, but I did come across a very interesting product; it's called wedi. A 100% internally waterproof modular shower system, a lightweight and dimensionally stable (flat) panel assembly that acts as a substrate to virtually any stone or tile adhesive. I was happy to learn about it and look forward to specifying it.
As architect on demand, I frequently get emails from DIYers concerned with their home’s curb appeal. When adding a few potted plants or planting climbing vines is enough to spruce up the entryway, Martha Stewart has great advice. However, it could be a question of subtracting, instead of adding. There are times when a façade can benefit from authentic architectural details and intervention.
Wasn’t I writing a guest post about turning my LES (Manhattan Lower East Side) studio apartment into a home just last week? It feels like that! Well, now I have crossed the bridge and moved to Brooklyn, and this time it’s not just me in a studio… I have a new roommate, my boyfriend. I am returning to DIY Ally’s blog to chronicle our experiences of transforming a one-bedroom apartment into a home!
I just devoured Making House: Designers at Home — a very inspiring book. So much so, that quite a few times I caught myself losing concentration, wandering off in a daydream. I was imagining my future country home or a beach house. The more I read, the more I wanted to expand my own environment.