Lake Wylie House – Design Details + Construction
Even for a project in which we thought we had all the answers, questions will always come up during construction. Whether it’s because our clients decide to make a few changes (like adding bunk beds and climbing walls) during the construction process or our contractor asks for more information on how we expect a detail to look, questions are just part of the construction process. We welcome them actually. We love to be involved in all discussions regarding the design of your home – especially when it comes to design details + construction!
Site Visit with Client and Contractor
Last week I traveled to South Carolina to visit our Lake Wylie project. Things were going smoothly with construction but I hadn’t been down for a visit in over a month and the contractor was getting into building details and finishes… definitely a good time for a site visit! Details are the most important part of the project!
“The details are not the details. They make the design.” – Charles Eames
The house looks fantastic! It’s beautiful. It is always so much fun to see a design come to life, and this was no exception. The walk-through with the contractor and our clients took about 2 hours – we talked through finishes, a few questions, and timelines for completion. There were a lot of details I wanted to discuss with the contractor to make sure we were both on the same page – I prefer to have those conversations in person and in the house if possible. As I’ve said before, I am open to suggestions for a better or especially more cost effective way to build our design, as long as the end result is a happy client.
We have a lot of modern details in the Lake Wylie home and it is very important to me that they are constructed just right. Our design calls for the exterior masonry cladding continuing into and through the interior in the entry foyer. The detail where the masony, drywall, and (minimal) trim around the window is a tricky one, and its one of the first things one will see when entering the home. Yep, very important that it looks perfect!
Photos from our job-site walk through are courtesy of our contractor. (I told you we had an excellent contractor!)
Another detail I focused on in our walk-through was the way materials come together around the large windows in the living room. These windows are essentially floor to ceiling windows with wood columns on either side and a wood beam running horizontally through at 8′. (In case you didn’t guess, that 8′ line is an important one that continues throughout the living room. The height of the soffit over the kitchen cabinets is 8′, the door into the pantry and hallway on either side of the kitchen are 8′ and the exterior sliding doors to the back patio are 8′.) There is not much “wall” in the living room (lots of windows and open floor plan) and the floor is polished concrete, so how drywall, wood, concrete and window come together are very important details as well.
As I said before, the house looks great! I often feel bad pointing little things out that I’d like modified or done a different way, especially when the majority of the work looks amazing. But it is my job as an architect to be “picky” about those details. Those are the little things that “make the design.” But, as I’ve also said many times before, our contractor is excellent and most of those “little things” were already on his list before we started the meeting. Its so nice to be working with people who care as much as we do – the quality of the team makes all the difference!