A screenshot of our Houzz profile.

We’re on Houzz

We’ve recently set up a profile on a social media platform called Houzz, this is all about design, mainly interior design and lifestyle images. We like to think of it as a more specialised version of Pinterest, but specifically for design. Imagine the stack of magazines from which you’ve been trying to get ideas for your home, when you try to find the specific images again it can be quite time-consuming.

That is where Houzz can help you and your designer(s). Houzz has a large directory of beautiful photos which you can browse through, one of its main features allows you to put groups of images into groups called ‘ideabooks’. These ideabooks could be thought of as your online scrapbooks, other people can also add to your ideabooks if you send them an invite. So your interior designer, or architect could share ideas with you just by adding photos to this online scrapbook of yours!

You could be looking for a certain type of style for your room or home. You can search Houzz for images with a certain style in mind, it will search its repertoire of images and you can see if there’s anything you like. When you click on an image, it will show you other images in that ideabook as well as other images people who have liked that image have also liked. So you can view images that people who have a similar taste to you have found, making it easier to find ideas your dream room(s).

What’s more, you can find professionals to hire for certain aspects of the designs and perhaps even building your vision. There is also a review system based upon what people think of that particular professional so that you can check their reputation and view their projects and ideabooks. There is also an advice section where you can post any design related queries you might have for other design enthusiasts, or professionals to answer. You can ask about certain products in photos, post your own photos and ask for advice and a lot more!

To view ourHouzz profile, click here.

How to read architectural plans.

We are currently coming up with different ideas as to how we can present our drawings to lay-people, in an easy to read manner, which would be good enough to show at an exhibition.

We have found that 3D plans have usually been less easily read by clients.

Reading plans is one of those skills which is easy, when you know how. If, when you look at your architects plans you find yourself bewildered and not sure how to start, then try this trick which we will share with you:

Find the front door. Once you find the front door, or main entrance, you can then navigate your way along corridors and into each room. This, for most people, will make the plan come alive. Once you have done this for the ground floor, you will have found the foot of the stairs on your virtual journey. So then you can go to the first floor; look for the top of the staircase as this will be your starting point on any floor other than the ground floor.

 

We are on a bit of a mission at the moment, trying to find better ways of presenting information to clients, and we would be very pleased if you could help us. One of our frustrations is that some clients ask us to present plans in a 3D format, and occasionally we are asked to produce computer generated models. The reason given is that it will help with the understanding of the space which we are designing, but it is clear that in some cases, clients are seduced by the clever graphics, but still do not really understand, or “feel” the space, so to speak.

Please look at the two simple static architectural plans we have provided below, and do the following with your newly learnt skill.

We ask you to have a look at the 2D plan below and use the trick which we have explained above – locate the front door, and then work your way through the plan. Is it east to get to grips with the layout?

A4 proposed ground floor with furniture but no words

Now identify the location of the kitchen, is this easy to find?

Now repeat the process for the 3D type presentation. Is it any easier?

3D model

Please let us know your opinions in the comments.

This subject is important to us because we are very tempted to produce more sophisticated images like some of our competitors but we are not always sure whether this actually helps with the process of understanding architects plans, and this is very important is the client is to make a valued judgement on various schemes which we usually produce.

Kitchen design companies usually produce these 3D perspective drawings included as part of their service, and I know quite a few people who have felt the final installed kitchen does not engender the same sense of space which the graphics seemed to.

Your thoughts and comments would be most appreciated.

Written by Jade Turney – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Enjoy your garden.

This particular project was completed without any drama (which is the best way in our opinion), and so we have another satisfied client.

VID rear before VID

Our client wanted a garden room that could be enjoyed all year round without it costing a fortune in bills when winter shows up (which in the UK could happen at any given time, regardless of the time of the year). The challenge, as always, was to produce a light and airy room that connect with the garden and the rest of the house, without disturbing the aesthetics of the overall look of the property.

VID side best enhanced VID best inside

 

We also advised reshaping the garden a little to accommodate this room, and rebuilding of a garden wall to create an adjacent outdoor sun space, creating something with the feel of another room.

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.