Friday, 30 September 2011

Condo Project - Complete - Client very happy

This is it, the final week of an 860 sq ft condominium unit, finished and on schedule. Yes, there were the normal 'hiccups' along the way, always are, but it was wonderful working with everyone who was involved! To show the real transformation of the 'space', there will be 3 'before' and 3 'after' pictures included for this post.

In order to do a renovation, what do you need to know about the Client..........EVERYTHING!! As a designer I am meant to listen and interpret a Clients thoughts and dreams to make this 'vision' a reality in which they can live their life, all on a pre-discussed budget.  This isn't about 'me' it's about the 'Client', and my Mission Statement is 'To Express Individualism'.

The most revealing message from conversations with this particular Client, was frequent trips to 'Brazil' as the influence to a 'life-style' change, and helped to develop the final 'look'. Clean, modern unobstructed interiors with 'shots' of colour excited the imagination, and also induce a feeling of calm; a private space for relaxed inclusive entertaining.
So..... out came the walls, raise the ceilings, and add proper lighting, storage, increase the counters and allow more 'natural' light into the rear of the Unit. To fully integrate the entire space, new maple flooring was installed for consistancy and visual warmth, whereas white surfaces keep the space 'fresh and bright' in all of our Canadian Seasons.

Look back to Week 8 and see a back-painted 'Lime' glass wall was installed in the shower area for the Bathroom. Now, the open Kitchen area has a back-painted glass wall in 'Citrus- orange' as the theme for all entering the Unit, working in the space or just lounging in the seating area to enjoy. Visually the space is expansive, and the floor to ceiling windows allow natural light and an unobstructed view for every area within the Unit........... priceless.

I hope this weekly post has helped to inspire and realize the potential of thought-out renovations as well as giving you a sense of 'what to expect' during such an undertaking. 'The grass is greener' attitude is not always the best solution to a poorly thought out space. Always step back and look at 'the space you have' to see the potential for change, and if you are willing to 'invest' in your current Home, remember to make sure 'professionals' are involved in the undertaking of any renovation. Be comfortable with the people who are involved in the changes and that they are respecting the outcome of your renovation. As a Designer, I work with Clients to achieve their vision, but I was also the Project Manager (in this instance) to make sure the budget and schedule was kept intact. Remember, it's your money, spend it wisely but most importantly, be excited and have fun.

If you have any questions regarding this project or inquiries about your own, don't hestitate to drop me a line or two and I will be happy to assist however I can. Thank you, Paul.      




Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Paul K Stewart @ Originals 'by Design'

I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce one of my Furniture pieces called the 'ID EST' Lounge. There are 2 pieces (this is one) in the collection that involved my fellow collaborator in 'Sculpted' Furniture, Architect David Jesson. The 'ID EST' Lounge was entered into the International Osaka Design Exhibition and also the Toronto Design Competition and received Honourable Mention.

ID EST (latin) 'That Is', usually abbreviated I.E.
The ID EST Lounge is a metaphor for a present state of Modernism, representing both confrontation and contradiction solely through material 'form'. The dimensionless line is used in its two primary positions of the vertical and the horizontal, establishing the boundaries of the side elevation; 'ID EST: the Horizon'.
Neutral and solid materiality of the steel and glass give the body of simple massed planes; 'ID EST: the physical mass of the human body'.
The confrontation of the mass and line results in a weighted mass, arched to provide a neutral plane for the flexible human form, floating in its immediate space; 'ID EST: a self made horizon for the individual'.

For custom designed furniture contact

Friday, 16 September 2011

Week 10 Condo Project - Almost Done - happy client

WEEK 10 Condo Project. Tuesday was the installation of the 'Silestone' counter for the kitchen. The installers from Latitude are so professional and the installation process was seamless.....literally! These man-made Quartz surfaces are one of my top choices for work surfaces in a kitchen because of its beauty and practicality, plus it has a range of more than 65 colours so it will suit any and all situations and styles.

Silestone is a dense, non-porous stone which is highly scratch and stain resistant that does not require sealing. (only diamond,sapphire and topaz are harder, and it has built-in bacteriostatic protection.) It is also condusive to any and all activities performed in the kitchen, such as the preparation of meats and chicken when bacteria cannot penetrate the surface being non-porpous, and because it is a 'cool' surface (like granite and marble) it is better for rolling dough for breads and pie crust for those bakers out there. (But for the professional Baker, marble is still the best cool surface for consistancy, although the worst for staining, it's very porous). To top all this, it has a 15 year warrenty, so all in all an excellent 'bang for your buck'!
NOTE: Silestone is manufactured in Portugal; it's competitor Ceasar stone is manufactured in Isreal and is best known as being a 'Kosher' surface and is 'blessed' by a Rabbi.

Topping this week was the hook-up of the plumbing (Wednesday) and the installation of the sink (Elkay) and faucet (Blanco) AND the measurement of the backsplash (Thursday) which will be a 'delight' once this is installed. Yes, the schedule is still intact, and I'm very excited about the 'final' reveal.


Saturday, 3 September 2011

Condo Project - Week 8 - Turning it over to the Client

Details, details, details! This is the week to turn over the space back to the Client. The next 'moves'- waiting for the counter top to be made, (install booked for September 13th) and additional appliances to show up on September 9th. Like all projects, there are changes like the 'fan hood' (we changed our minds and went with another model) the Dishwasher came in damaged, and the washer / dryer unit was on backorder, expect 'things' to happen, nothings perfect. Once the counter is installed 'WAIT' for another 'surprise'.......backsplash anyone! (The space may be white but I 'have' mentioned 'shots' of colour really IS good for the 'soul'.)

BUT in order for the Client to take possession, all paint 'touch-ups' had to be done, the bathroom had to be in working order, tools and excess materials taken off site, and final cleaning of premises finished. This week saw the baseboards installed to perfection and the fridge hooked up with water 'flowing' to its dispenser. The stove is ready for use, and the blinds are cleaned and working.
The 'icing' to the bathroom was the 'lime green' glass wall which was installed for the shower area, truly a conversation piece. The installer said 'he hated the colour' and after the install, corrected himself and said 'he would not have believed it would look so good'.

Design of any space is about originality, and personalization for each and every Client. You have predicability everywhere in your daily life, choose to 'think out of the box' within your own living quarters, in order to have your own stamp on it. This is why I as a designer, am hired to take you through to a finished home that has 'your' name all over it. Take the chance, you may surprise yourself.