Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Thanks to Dave (I think that's what his name was) the Excavator, as seen here, we no longer have our AWFUL steep driveway and have a couple of large holes in our backyard:

Saturday, December 19, 2009

...and then there was none

Our plan was to reuse the existing lower walls and main floor framing but during demo we found that the existing framing did not meet code. 

So, now we are left with a foundation and not much else.

At least all the framing will be new the floor will be level

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Farewell "Soft Industrial"...Hello "Elegant & Edgy"

On Thankgiving, I introduced visual images of the interior of our home. It must've been about 9 months ago, when I was reading an article on modern design and honed in on the most fantastic description -- "soft industrial." For some reason, that phrase spoke volumes to me. I loved it! I adopted that phase as a theme for our home and shared it with our architects, who I think, at the time, appreciated it as well. To me, "soft industrial" described raw concrete floors and commercial steel beams blended with touches of wood and warming paint hues. I could vividly imagine walking through our front door and seeing every little detail of our home -- and I LOVED it! And then...that visual experience took a 180.

About 4 weeks ago, our architects shared some new ideas. At first glance, the ideas seemed OK. A minor modification here, a little change there....nothing too significant. WAIT JUST A MINUTE!!! Our previous visions of "soft industrial" seemed to take a more rustic form. More wood. Cozier spaces. Mike started putting our thoughts into an email to our architects, suggesting that we were really quite happy with our "soft industrial." I couldn't stop but thinking that this new interior direction was quite edgy and completely unexpected. Mike completely agreed and immediately erased the email.

So, here we are --  I give you "elegant and edgy" (the new "soft industrial"):


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Post-Second Use...Pre Demolition

The result of yesterday's destruction produced the following:

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Things are moving along. Second Use is coming today to take all of our windows, kitchen cabinets, appliances, doors, etc. They help in turning one family's junk into another family's treasure. If you're not familiar with their services or retail location, it's well worth a website visit, or better yet, take a drive to their store.

Hopefully demolition will begin on Monday, Dec. 7th!!!!

Some photos during destruction of interior by Second Use:

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving (giving thanks to modern interiors)

Architecturally, I define our home as "soft industrial." Exposed douglas fir softens the open living space, while concrete floors, stainless steel and dark hues of grey give our home a little "edge." The following renderings depict the outside of the home:

Our approach to the interior design of the home (the furniture, fixtures, art...every detail that completes the experience of the space) is defined just the same.

I have spent the better part of the past 6 months (with the fantastic support of my mom), reading modern blogs and magazines and gathering design ideas. "Modern" can be minimalist, but still prohibitvely expensive. The key is to be creative and resourceful. Good design can be luxurious and not so costly.

Without giving too much away, here are a number of images that have inspired the interior experience of our home:

Monday, November 23, 2009

Permit Received!

Last permit approved and received. Let the games begin!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

In the Beginning....

...there was a family of 4, living in a home in a great location, near fantastic schools, with excellent neighbors, but whose space (or lack there of) was simply cramping. The idea of "renovation" seemed surreal, but one of few viable options. That's all it took -- an idea. 1430 102nd Avenue NE will never be the same because of it.

We probably tossed around the idea of renovation for about 3-4 months before something clicked. I happened to be flipping through Seattle Magazine and was inspired by an unassuming marketing ad for a local designer/builder. I picked up the phone and contacted the company. That's all it took -- a phone call. That phone call inspired more phone calls which bred more meetings that brings us to where we are now -- renting a 2 bedroom condo, in a predominantly senior citizen (I think we bring the average tenant age down to 75) building with 2 small children who refuse to walk from room to room (running and jumping are their motion of choices), awaiting our last permit from the City. It's only been about 3 weeks, and we've already been threatened by the condo president about "our problem" (i.e. the little "disturbances" who refuse to walk and wake up before the sun has opened her eyes). I could go on about this, and I probably will as this blog progresses, but I can't sign off without introducing our dream team -- our architects and builder.

Steve and Eric from  MWWorks oddly enough, know our design perspective better than we do. Their vision is fantastic and we are so excited to be working with them. Robert Irish from Robert Irish Dwellings completes our dream team and this blog will illustrate his incredible craftsmanship.

Welcome to our world for the next 10 months. We hope you enjoy the ride as much as we do.


Michael, Brett, Eli & Olivia

Monday, November 16, 2009