Posts Tagged ‘Castro Design Studio’

You know I love architecture.  I live for it.  I suppose that most people get that about me.  (Hopefully, not to the point of bordering on excessive / just to be seen as a genuine passion).  That’s certainly why I do what I do.  Whether restoring an older home back to it’s original beauty or bringing a new one up out of the ground to stand on its own, I love witnessing the nature of the home as it is revealed.  To me, exceptional architecture and design transcends the visual.  It reaches deep down into one’s soul and attaches to the very essence of our being.  It is something that we can connect to and relate to.  It calms us and generates a true heartfelt joy.  When done well, it is something that you feel at the very core of who you are.

That is why when I saw these photos of a project by Castro Design Studio float across Facebook, I knew that I would have to share them.  This Home simply exudes perfection which translates into pure comfort.  I hope you enjoy. (more…)


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I’ve been wanting to write a post about covered back porches for some time now.  Ever since the weather has turned, I enjoy every moment that I get out on ours.  We are very fortunate in that, even though we live in a subdivision, we have a very secluded lot.  Our home is flanked on the left by a fairway with a beautiful stretch of (more…)

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I’m not really sure why, we in Atlanta, pay so little attention to the critical details of a Home. These are the elements that bring the home to life and allow it to truly become inspiring. A builder friend of mine, who happened to be very successful at his profession, once told me that in order to succeed in our market, you have to build what the people are asking for. I believe that here in lies the dilemma. Most consumers are not aware of the finer treatments that go into a Well Composed Home and thus do not know what to ask for. You guys may remember that I have a passion for beautiful windows and entry doors. Well – I also hold interior doors in the same high regard. This is an area where we can have an incredible impact on the character of the Home for a relatively low material cost upgrade. Keep in mind, the labor end of things will be exactly the same as installing the cheap units. And, do you know what I am referring to when I speak of the “Cheap Units”. Basically, it is a what is commonly known as the masonite door. Or what I like to refer to as the paper door. A masonite door is a composition of layers of paper applied over a cardboard shell creating a formed profile that is supposed to resemble a raised panel door. Not very substantial at all. Amazingly however, these units are installed in at least 98% (my number based off of pure perception – absolutely not a hard fact) of the homes in this great city.

So how do we overcome this trend?

I will often speak to clients about the more subtle qualities of a true interior door like the solidness of the way in which the door closes, the heaviness of its feel or the depth of its details and yet unless someone can put their hands on the unit and see it in action, they have a hard time grasping the significance of these intricacies. Plus, without a personal, previous experience of living with such doors, my claims seldom seem to resonate. With all that being said, I believe the only way to capture the attention of the client is to show how such units will not only enhance the composition of the entire space but will also express both the personality of the homeowner and the home alike.

Jones Pierce Architects Project Currently Under Construction

This room is amazing. Especially with the way the interior doors connect with the window and with the way the headband ties everything together. All of the pieces are integrated.

From the Portfolio of Harrison Design Associates

Here, we have a 4 panel door. By itself, it is not too dramatic, but, notice how it picks up on the proportion of the custom windows and unifies the space.

From the Portfolio of Castro Design Studio

Castro gets it. Notice how the linen closet door is framed to emulate the inset panels of the cabinetry. Pretty crafty.

From the Portfolio of Spitzmiller and Norris

Talk about adding style to a room. These doors definitely embody the class that this Home deserves. Anything less would have been disrespectful.

From the Portfolio of McAlpine Tankersley

And here, Bobby McAlpine knocks it out of the park. these panels are very similar to those in the previous photo, yet, by simply changing the door color itself, they are now both extremely dramatic and amazingly comfortable. I feel that this is the unifying element that brings this whole space together. Absolutely Well Done.
If you have a project coming up and would consider having some top quality interior doors entered into the mix, our friends at Insidesign can certainly help. They have a beautiful showroom in the heart of Dunwoody that offers up a wonderful shopping experience.
To see more work from the featured architects, you can click here and go straight to their sites.

Thanks for checking in and as Always ~

Feel Free to Leave a Comment, E-mail, Friend Or Follow

I’d Love to hear from you.

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I guess a lot of people know that I have a personal pet peeve with the level of character and detail that typically go into the creation of a roof dormer.  Having grown up in Atlanta; mostly in some form of suburbia, I’ve seen my share of poorly constructed renditions.  I’ve probably built a few bad ones as well considering my entire career (from age 13 to now 42) has been in this homebuilding endeavor.  As builders though, our approach has historically been concerned with the interior perspective.  Whether we were trying to maximize daylight, satisfy egress or simply increase floor space, we’ve left the exterior to fend for itself.  And what we are left with is a mass of poor examples.












This is such a shame too, because, the roof dormer is an area of the Home that truly emphasizes the overall quality of the structure.  It is an area that reinforces its personality.  And, it is an area that brings the whole composition together.

Now, that's style.

Here Bradley E. Heppner Architecture creates a work of art out of an otherwise small dormer addition.  The proportion and scale, not to mention, the choice of materials speak volumes to the level of attention that is paid to this project.  I absolutely love the multiple panes in the steel window.


Castro Design Studio takes a different approach here as the  dormers are brought front and center allowing the facade to pierce the cornice line.  By maintaining a consistent pitch among the various roof lines, a cohesiveness is achieved unifying the entire project.

Utterly Stunning

What more can I say.   Hats off to  Peter Block Architects
An absolute picture of perfection.
Please forgive the format (screen shot style) of the photo above, but, this is just so good that I had to include it here.  Without the arched front entry, symmetrical chimneys or flared dormers, this house could be considered fairly ordinary.  However, now it is a masterpiece.  And, the first thing that jumped out to me were those beautiful dormers.  They not only compliment the arch of the front door and  porch roof, but, they also add a level of uniqueness and charm; bringing forth the individual strength of the Home.  Isn’t it cool how they just kind of lay up there on the main roof.
I recognize that these examples represent a home of a certain stature, but, we can replicate these techniques in homes of all price ranges.  All it takes is time and attention.  Plus, who wouldn’t want to live in a Home with true custom detailing after taking into consideration the contribution and impact that well thought out architecture brings to the table.
I would love to hear your thoughts, so feel free to leave a comment below.
And, as always – Subscribe , Friend or Follow to stay in touch.

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“When we think about the views offered by a home, we are normally referring to exterior views, but carefully designed interior views can also add enormously to the quality and character of a home.”

Sarah Susanka

The quote above is from Sarah Susanka’s book Home by Design.  I’ve often fallen back on this book when designing a new space because it is just plain chock full of excellent strategies.  It is definitely a must have reference book to have on hand for anyone considering themselves a Home enthusiast.  We can think of an interior view as basically an architectural design approach that focuses the visual composition of the space.


Photo via Things That Inspire

If you are not aware of the Things that Inspire Blog Site then you certainly need to check it out.  It has become revered as one of the most popular Interior / Home Design blogs published in the Atlanta market.  In the photo above, notice how the artwork is framed perfectly by the arched opening.  More surprisingly, even though you are not aware of it, your eye is unconsciously being drawn through the room taking in each element, layer by layer.

Photo via Things That Inspire


Here, a window is utilized at the back of the Master Closet to pull you through the room.  Some will claim that a window is the most difficult feature to incorporate into an interior view because it also impacts the exterior elevation, but, that is what makes the practice of architecture such a grand endeavor.  It is truly one of the greatest puzzle building exercises known to mankind. 



From the Portfolio of Castro Design Studio, LLC


In this scenario, the doorway that is centered at the far end of the hallway, leads the entire composition marching up to its entry.



From the Portfolio of Peter Block Architects


This is one of my all time favorite images.  The good folks at Peter Block Architects are certainly leading the way.



From the Portfolio of Castro Design Studio, LLC



Talk about being drawn through a room.  I am dying to see what awaits for us on the other side.



From the Portfolio of Castro Design Studio, LLC

Even though this room is not symmetrical, it is still perfectly balanced and your eye begins to explore all of the different elements slowly making your way to the far windows.  All I can say is…Absolutely Well Done.

From the Portfolio of Castro Design Studio, LLC

In this image, the hood is utilized as the central focal point and then your eye is allowed to wander out to either side as you study further.
 And now for one of our own

Distinctive Remodeling Solutions

We started with this small galley kitchen.

Distinctive Remodeling Solutions

Which was separated from the family room by this wall.

Distinctive Remodeling Solutions

So we opened it up a bit, thus creating an incredible interior view.
Distinctive Remodeling Solutions
I suppose you can say that I am a very visually oriented person, but, it is simply how I relate to the world.  When things are orderly, aligned into a nice composition or basically just fit together well, I am at ease.  When they are out of whack or dis-jointed, I am typically uncomfortable.  Here we have a range alcove taking center stage as the focal point of the room regardless of the vantage point from which you are viewing it.  From there, your eye ventures out to the rich, “teaberry” colored cabinetry; onto the handsome, handcrafted islands and finally landing on the awesome custom 11′ wide bowed bay window.  Huge thank you to Drew Hall with Pella Windows and Doors for helping me with the details on this one.  Also, Kudos to Michael Bell and Michelle Taylor at Inspirations Kitchen and Bath who helped us pull the whole ensemble together.  And I couldn’t sign off without giving a proper acknowledgement to our project manager Kane Hawkins for not only executing the details of the project flawlessly, but also, for taking care of our client all the way through.  It is amazing how much you can do when you surround yourself with good people.
We do plan on spotlighting this project as a feature post on its own in the near future, so stay tuned.
To see more of what we are up to, please visit the Distinctive Remodeling Website.
If you Like, please “Like”, e-mail, friend or follow.
Also, I love to hear your views on the importance and impact of carefully crafted interior views, so please leave a comment.


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