September 25, 2011 § Leave a Comment
Recently I’ve worked with new clients who are looking for the same end result. Some have existing generous rooms while others are in the midst of remodeling smaller areas. All have reasonably serviceable, comfortable, clean spaces (save for the usual kid and pet flotsam and jetsam) but pretty much devoid of style.
The common denominator is a want to have a sophisticated living space. Refinement and elegance in a family home is more myth than reality, as any soccer parent knows. A family home is a busy beehive. No one is spared from piles of paperwork, recycling and laundry.
The solution beyond the obvious (storage) is to design with a very practical approach. While white marble counters are lovely, one spilt glass of Cabernet could mar the elegance and require professional maintenance, so why not opt for Corian?
When specifying materials, I always ask myself, “Who is going to clean this? How will it weather? How delicate is the surface?” More specifically, I once had a client whose architect planned halogen ceiling lights tucked into a soffit 14 feet high. My gut reaction was, “Who is going to change those light bulbs?” They went ahead with the architect’s plan. Now their electrician comes to the house a few times a year simply to change burnt out light bulbs…
So I advise my clients early and along the way to keep it simple, chose beautiful décor and materials but ones that the care of which won’t keep them up at night. The ability to turn their home into a warm, inviting, functional place ultimately gives them a feeling of an elegant home.