Our office will be closed on Friday, April 3, 2015 so that we can move to our new location at: 150 North Wacker Drive, Suite 2360, Chicago, Illinois 60606. Our new office is just across the river from the Merchandise Mart allowing us to keep our convenient access to many showrooms in the River North neighborhood. The new office has inspiring city views and the convenience of valet parking for our clients and visitors. Stop in to see for yourself next time you are in the area!
We recently hosted an architecture student from the University of Michigan for a week long externship. Our student, Tim, was assigned to complete many marketing, drafting and office tasks consisting of renderings and putting together competition boards. Our office has strong ties to the University with most of our staff calling it their alma mater and we believe in the strong and continuous pipeline to give students educational and professional experience that they can use as a springboard moving forward.
Neolith is a sintered compact surface material that can be used on many different applications. This product can be used on exterior facades, flooring, wall cladding, kitchens, baths and sinks. Its wide range of uses makes it a very appealing architectural resource. The products compact nature affords it with great strength but also a stylish look. The fireplace is a strong focal point in our single family home project in Georgia, so we specified Neolith as wall cladding to make a contemporary statement that is both dynamic and sophisticated.
Our team has become even more talented, with Ms. LaVigne receiving her Interior Design license from the State of Illinois. Ms. LaVigne’s pursuit and achievement of this accreditation reinforces CA/ds’ holistic, detail-oriented approach to all phases of the design process on every project.
These spaces are sure to be bustling with activity making the best Valentine’s Day card yet! We designed these spaces for the kids to do homework and give them a space to be inspired in creating artistic masterpieces! “You can never start an artist too early.” We would like to wish you all a very Happy Valentine’s Day!
Have you seen us in recent issues of Luxe magazine? We believe in thorough, personalized, creative and forward thinking design and felt being part of Luxe was a great way to bring attention to our work. While most of our work is in the Chicago, North Shore area, we have also completed projects around the country. Luxe magazine is a national design resource publication available at your local bookstore. Be sure to look for us the next time you browse an issue!
Chuck and his lovely wife attended the Red Carpet for Hope event on January 11, 2015 at the Trump International Hotel and Tower. Chicago was 1 of 3 cities to host this spectacular event to raise awareness and money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Guests enjoyed a red carpet reception, live auction, cocktails, dinner and presentation of the 72nd Annual Golden Globes. Photo by: Kas Photography
Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Our latest retail project is mentioned in Chicago Architect magazine. The segment can be found in the November/December issue for the completion of the Lalique boutique located in The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas! As mentioned in our previous post here , the art-deco inspired showroom with its warm leather panel and black lacquered running trim throughout provides architectural depth, but also showcases our clients’ products. To view the publication, click here .
CA/ds celebrated its 5th annual holiday party in style or should we say Mystery?? We attended the Billionaires’ Club Annual Masquerade Ball presented by the Murder Mystery Company. One guest from each table is cast as a possible suspect; our very own Patrick Murphy was cast as Owen Cash. We worked as a team to try to solve the murder. The evening was very entertaining and fortunately Patrick was not the culprit. But unfortunately our team “Bo Derek” did not solve the mystery; we are better suited for solving a design dilemma then a murder.
CA/ds is closed for the holidays, we will return on Monday, January 5, 2015.
We hope your holidays are filled with JOY and wonderful memories, and may that thoughtful gift find its way under your “Charlie Brown” tree too. MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR!
We are making great progress on this new home we previously introduced on the North Shore steeped in Spanish style architectural features. We’ve been modeling, detailing and meeting with the project team to refine the design to make it the perfect home for our clients. This has been a very exciting project to work on with a continuous, flowing floor plan all the while being blended with traditional style elements like elegant fallen arches, paneled walls and coffered ceilings. This synthesis of styles is very much a compliment to the varied interests of our clients and has been equally fun as it’s been challenging. Stay tuned for more updates as this project continues to navigate through design and construction!
The dining room on the left was designed to comfortably seat 10-12 people with room to expand into the adjacent foyer. Built-in corner cabinets provide beautiful display space for crystal and china while conveniently having it close at hand. A niche for the furniture buffet makes it a focal point without taking floor space away from the room. The dining room in the center photo shows a more contemporary dining room highlighted by built-in LED light-coves at the ceiling that are dimmable to create the perfect mood lighting. A built-in buffet is flanked by full height cabinets that also glow with LED lighting. The cabinet fronts have sustainable resin panels embedded with copper wire mesh to help conceal the contents of the cabinet (no pressure to display your ‘fine china’). A stone top on the buffet ensures that dishes and warming trays are no worry. The dining room on the right seats 10-12 people in a traditional setting. The hand scraped hardwood floors add charm while the upholstered walls provide both beauty and sound absorbing acoustics which can help when boisterous Aunt Maude comes over for Thanksgiving dinner. All of these ideas show that the right design can help to make sure you have a Happy Thanksgiving!
The finish line is near for our renovated condominium project located right here in downtown Chicago! This project was particularly interesting because our clients each have their own design aesthetic requiring great thought and sensitivity to their requests. An affinity for millwork was a shared bond that we capitalized on and individualized through rich, earthy tones and soft, white tones. We believe that the resultant design melds our clients’ individualistic and common design styles all the while creating engaging spaces that are their own, yet flow seamlessly from one to the next.
These architectural resin panel inserts are a versatile alternative to traditional glass inserts. Our clients are seeking LEED Silver Certification for their home, so we specified resin panels by Lumicor for the inserts at their cabinetry in their dining room and bar alcove. The panels are made from 40% recycled resin content and are 100% recyclable which satisfied our clients desire for a different look while be mindful of the environment. In this application our client chose the “Searchlight” pattern for their home, but they are available in a variety of sizes and patterns as well as custom colors if needed. Make sure to follow our projects for other sustainable inspirations for your home. If you are interested in this sustainable product, you can learn more about Lumicor’s products here .
We want to share another Revit visualization for our newly completed project on the shores of Lake Michigan. We think you would agree the chimney for this project came out exactly as we envisioned. We utilize Revit to help us convey design intent to our client as well as the contractors. We believe our modeling capabilities make the design process more engaging for our clients. We welcome the opportunity to design your dream home with you.
Our client recently shared this photo of their dream home decorated for the holiday. The ‘holiday outlets’ that we provided in the ceiling of the porch and along the driveway allow holiday lights to be controlled by a wall switch inside the house and provide a convenience that they greatly appreciate. It is evident from the photo they still think their home is spooktacular! Happy Halloween from all of us!
We were recently selected to design a new 10,000 sq. ft. single family home on the North Shore. Our client strongly resonates with Spanish style architecture and our past experience with the style, both locally and in California, helped assure them that the goals for their dream house would be achieved. Follow along as the project continues to proceed through the design process. What style of architecture should we use to design your dream home?
Last week we were on site to check on the progress of the rough framing of one of our on-going renovation projects. Our client wanted to open up (shown in the pictures above) the original layout of this early 20th century home to create stronger sight lines increasing the connectivity between the family room and kitchen. Walls, openings and ceilings were being framed in with good progress. Construction is continuously moving, so be sure to check back so you don’t miss out on seeing this project come together!
Our office location in the Merchandise Mart, on the Chicago River offers many amenities to the architectural profession, including the excitement and inspiration of new construction. Neighboring sites at Wolf Point, River Point and 150 N. Riverside have been a boon of activity with high-rise towers going up that will bring new office space, and around 500 apartments to the river corridor. The Wolf Point site itself (pictured above) has been progressing at a rapid pace over the past few months constructing the parking garage and residential tower. The other two sites mentioned, will be composed of office towers and large urban park space.
We are excited about a new product that Marvin Window is offering: integrated shades for their doors and windows. As architects we try to use French doors to help connect living spaces to outdoor terraces and porches, but they generally posed a problem for window treatments. With Marvin’s new product, problem solved, they are integrated into the face of the door, with top down and bottom up functionality. They also offer an option for their sliding patio doors. Marvin offers 15 color options making them easy to coordinate with any interior. You can learn more by watching the videos below from Marvin showing the seamless operation.
Architecture is our passion and the use of Revit modeling software sure helps to bring that passion alive. For example in these models the client can see the impact of different finish materials which allows them to make more confident decisions. Creating models is a beneficial and rewarding process for our clients, and is an important step to making their dream home come to fruition. Now that selections have been made, come back to see pictures of the home as it is built.
Carpenter Bees love to burrow into wood and are a very big concern for a house we are designing in Georgia so we recently requested presentations from Hardie Board, CertainTeed and LP Smart Corp to see what they offered to combat this problem. We learned about the various products attributes and gained insight into the benefits of cement based and resin based products and were able to see firsthand if the products will achieve the aesthetic we desire. These composite siding products have a long lifespan, are recyclable, have a realistic appearance and will send carpenters bee off on the way to find somewhere else to nest.
We previously shared a Revit visualization of this oculus on our project. Well as you can see, rough carpentry looked challenging, and the clients could not be happier to have seen it in model and that the millworker delivered on the design intent. This is now just one of the many architectural focal points in our clients dream home.
CA/ds celebrated the summer with an electric boat cruise along the Chicago River. If you are in the City and have the opportunity we highly recommend this, it’s a great way to see some of the City’s fantastic architecture from a unique perspective. Although, cruising at 5 mph will not win any speed records, it is perfect for enjoying an afternoon or evening of sightseeing.
Our talented team just got a little greener, with Mr. Venia earning his LEED Green Associate certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Mr. Venia’s accreditation underscores our teams’ commitment to a sustainable approach to all our projects. His initiative in obtaining this LEED credential is evidence of his dedication to creating a smarter built environment.
Last time we checked in on our Michigan Avenue condominium project, demolition was complete and framing was started. Since then rough carpentry has been completed, the floors are laid and finish trim is being installed. Construction is moving at a steady pace, so make sure you come back to see finished photos of this renovation/combining of two units into one residence with spectacular skyline views in all 4 directions.
We met with KONE to learn more about the MRL elevators that require less space and use less energy than a typical elevator. With their new Ecospace and Monospace lines, the controller can be conveniently located in the jamb of the elevator opening eliminating the need for control rooms or closets. This is great for building owners and building designers! If you want to learn more about KONE and their products, you can visit their website here .
Our project on the shores of Lake Michigan is nearly complete. If you have been following our blog with regularity you can now see the Benjamin Moore “Williamsburg Wythe Blue” color on the front door. The owner is currently working to select a complementary blue for the porch ceiling, bringing some southern tradition to their Chicagoland home. Did you know in the South that it is believed that a blue porch ceiling brings good luck and acts as an insect repellent? Urban legends aside, the blue color will be a beautiful accent to this entryway. Click here for more interesting reasons to paint your porch ceiling blue.
Versa Lift manufactures attic storage lift systems for residential applications. We are currently installing this lift system to ease the burden of moving things to and from storage in the attic space. To learn more about Versa lift and their lift system options checkout their website here .
Mr. Cook has received his license to practice architecture in the state of Georgia for our latest project; a new vacation home on Lake Lanier, outside Atlanta. Come back to watch the progress on this project!
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