updates at GSD
One of my big projects on the go right now is
updating gutting a Vancouver Special. For those of you who don't know, a Vancouver Special is a term given to a particular style of architecture Known for its boxy shape, low-pitched roofs, raised basements, flat fronts and unsightly mix of stucco and brick exteriors. Vancouver Specials were designed in the 1960s, 70's and 80's to be built quickly and cheaply, and to maximize the space allowed on a 33-foot lot. In recent years, there has been a resurgence in these in these properties as owners have started renovating and modernizing these homes that offer more square footage than could now be built new.
Some clients of mine who also happen to be good friends recently bought one of these Van Specials in a beautiful neighbourhood and have enlisted me to do the design. We definitely have our work cut out for us, both on the interior and exterior. It hasn't been touched since the late 60's when it was built (we're talking green shag wall to wall carpet people) which is both horrifying and exciting (but mostly horrifying). But seriously, it provides us with an incredible clean slate with a large space that normally wouldn't be offered on a lot this size.
After weeks of planning, I think we have finally decided on a floor plan (which I'm very excited about), that will provide an amazing open concept living space for this couple who loves to cook and entertain. One of our challenges, has been coming up with a design direction that suites the house (which lends itself to more modern architecture) and my clients, Sophie and Peter's slightly more traditional aesthetic. I presented a mood board to them yesterday (see below) giving the "look and feel" I am suggesting: clean, modern and minimalist architecture that incorporates warm finishes to create a cozy atmosphere. Using a mix of modern and more traditional rustic furnishings will also give this space the comfort and style they are looking for that I think really expresses their personalities. Stay tuned for more updates, and follow along with some of Sophie's reno talk on her absolutely amazing blog, Sip Savour Share.