Architectural Design Tips to Show Off Your Home

architectural design tips to show off your home

Architectural Design Tips to Show Off Your Home

What is architectural design and does it matter to me?

Design is a huge part of our lives. From our smartphones and cars to the toasters and coffee makers that fill our homes, proper design impacts the way we see the world and the way people see us.

As a homeowner, we take immense pride in our home and proper architectural design is essential to reveal our style and character to our friends, family and guests.

In residential architecture, we rely on architectural design to focus on the components or elements of a structure to unify them into a coherent and functional flow that achieves the objective(s) under the given constraints or limitations.

In essence, architectural design creates a flow to our homes that captures our vision.

How does an architect achieve the homeowner’s objective?

Simple, listen to the homeowner!

Create an Architectural Design Brief

In order to ensure a homeowner is happy with the design and flow of their home, architects work to develop a custom brief. To help, here are a list of topics and questions that you should review with your architect to achieve your vision. It all starts with describing your current home.

  • Why do you want to build, extend or renovate your home?
  • What you like about your home?
  • How much time do you spend in each of your rooms?
  • What don’t you like about your home?
  • How do you envision your updated home?
  • What is your lifestyle?
  • What kind of spaces do you need?
  • How much time and energy are you willing to invest to maintain your home?

Tell a Story with Your Home

Good design tells a story. In particular, our homes provide the background to family stories and a home that tells a story in a specific place, at a specific time enriches the experience and gives it a reason for being. To achieve the right design, find a guiding idea and create a story around that idea that imbues every design decision with meaning.

Take Risks

For those homeowners that seek something new, then take some risks. It is ok to rethink, reimagine, retool and invent new ways of doing the same old thing. Not everything requires invention, but thinking about different ways to present doors or window frames can create creative outcomes.

Think About the Details

Sweat the details because design impacts everything we touch in the home. Create a “family of details” that unifies any project and is the means by which all of the components come together in a home. These are the details that make a difference.


“Keep it simple” is a popular and noteworthy saying because we frequently let complexity take over. Although many architects aim to reduce essential components, keep an eye on some areas that tend to get complex, quickly:

  1. use simple shapes, they usually cost less, are easier to build and look beautiful unadorned.
  2. a simple material palette: two or three materials at most.
  3. leave connections between materials exposed and expressive.

Maintain Order

Designers prefer order at every level, which requires hierarchy and the need to prioritize. Typically, there is one guiding idea that stands out in the structure. This is where the order begins.

Put it on Repeat

Repetition is a good thing in architecture and common themes are used throughout the home to reinforce our order and hierarchy. Windows, doors, columns, beams, materials are all part of the natural order of buildings. The cardinal rule of repetition is that it takes a minimum of three of anything to see the benefits. If two is good, three is better.

Break Some Rules

Once order is established and repeated, then many designers will take some risks and break some rules. With a repetitive order as the background, calculated rule breaking is assured to have special meaning. It also balances the repetition to keep it from being staid and monotonous. Imagine a series of windows aligned on an orderly grid. Then, one window that breaks this set of rules must do so for a very important and specific reason, like a view to a tree canopy or a distant view.

Engage Your Guests

Good architectural design engages all of the senses. Think about light and shadow, where the sun moves throughout the day, where the wind comes from or the sounds of an urban neighborhood, and how everything interacts and works together to engage the senses of you and your visitors.

How does your home flow? Are your friends and family engaged in your home?

If you want to see how to improve the design of your home, then the Cardello Architects team can help you design the home of your dreams.

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