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Design For Your Life

Part 3: Search Your Soul
Guest Feature by Richard Taylor, AIA

More of this Feature

1 .Secrets of Home Design
2. Imagine the Possibilities

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Designing for the way
we really live:
Richard Taylor Architects

Your Turn

Be a Guest Writer for this site. Send us your essay about architecture and design.

...Good home design brings people together in pleasant ways. It provides for the family as a whole, and for each individual's privacy. Good design does all of these things, and it starts by taking the time to ask clients about the details of their daily lives.

  • What is the first thing you do when you get up in the morning-head straight for the shower or down to the coffee maker?
  • Do the kids eat breakfast at the table or do they grab a pop-tart on the way out of the door?

A recent client of mine described her family's eating style as "hit-and-run". That little pun tells me a great deal about the design requirements of her kitchen - much more than I'd discover poring over cabinet catalogs with her. We spend hours talking with our clients before a single line is drawn. To commit any less an effort to an examination of the personality of their family is to rob them of the benefits of custom home design.

Lifestyles change from generation to generation, and houses should change too. And yet, the majority of homes built today are little more than updated versions of 300-year old Colonial designs.

Incredibly, we are still building parlors and formal dining rooms for families that never use them. A better house and a better living experience are the results when client and Architect work closely together to examine the uniqueness of the client's lifestyle and how it informs and molds the design of the home.

My grandparents moved south to retire many years ago, leaving that old house behind for the next family.

I wonder if it fits the new owners as well as it did my grandparents, or if they've had to make changes to accommodate their unique lifestyle?

I hope they haven't paved the driveway.

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Secrets of Home Design > Page 1, 2, 3

Text copyright © Richard Taylor
Suburban News Publications June, 2000
Reprinted with Permission

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