Monday, July 9, 2012

New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk University

I thought it would be fun to share one of my interior design projects with you. A few years ago I decided to take a drafting class at the New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk University. This is where I confronted my fear of math, and challenged my love of interior design. The class was taught by the talented Sheryll Strohl-Hammett of SS-H Interior Design Services in Boston.

The final class project was to render drawings for a "client," of their new home. The project began with a client interview during which I would gather key pieces of information to assist me in selecting the best space for my clients needs. Clients would be matched with either a fifth floor loft in the South End, or pied-a-terre located in a Back Bay Brownstone. My client (empty-nesters moving from the burbs to the city), were looking for an open floor plan with a focus on social space. They would be downsizing, and therefore needing space for entertaining extended family. After meeting with my client, it became clear that the loft would be the best match to suit their overall needs. The loft would provide me the ability to create a large social area with kitchen and family room combination. The challenge in using the loft would be in working with the wall of floor to ceiling windows. No problem.

As I began the design process I had several key points and objectives in mind. One of which was that there would only be space for one bathroom (the location was pre-determined and could not be moved), and working around this restriction would be critical to my design. Objective 1: Design the social space away from the bathroom. Objective 2: Design the master suite in close proximity to the bathroom. Objective 3: Design the master suite away from the social space for privacy sake.

A freehand drawing of the master suite with shirred headboard and beautiful custom built-in. This design would make the best possible use of space providing side tables, and shelving above the bed. Did I mention, I don't draw. Well if you count stick figures then yes, I guess I can draw.

Another detailed drawing of the kitchen sink cabinetry. An apron-style sink flanked with fluted panels, and furniture-style feet.

In keeping with an upscale-country theme that my client envisioned, I created several design boards to showcase my fixture selections. I mixed antique bronze hardware, with stainless appliances to create the farmhouse feeling that they were looking to achieve. Pottery Barn chandeliers hang above the island, and add a little sparkle to play on the theme.

A design board showing color and style selections for the cabinetry.  I chose a faux marble countertop by Corianwhich complemented the dark stained end grain block flooring, and antique white cabinets to finish the look. Again, picking up on the bronzy tones with an antique-rubbed sage-green hutch to dress up the kitchen as there would not be a formal dinning room in my client's new home.

In the past, I have approached these kinds of design projects in a hands-on, experimental way, but I found the drafting process to be an interesting new challenge. Glad to have another tool to add to my belt.

Until next time...L.

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