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Television Debates – We answer the age old question, where to put the TV

Back in the day, designers would disguise a big boxy television set with a big boxy piece of furniture. Thankfully the inventors of flat screen television (talk amongst yourselves to identify the first) put an end to the madness.
Flat screen television units eliminate the proverbial elephant in the room. Television placement has never been more liberated. We can now bring our attention back to business of design, without the burden of bulk.
1 where to place the television Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Pay no attention to the television behind the picture

Often more traditional homes, or interiors that want to maintain a more formal appearance, will opt for complete concealment. Now this camouflage can be smoothly integrated into the design of any room. Just a slight recess in the wall or fireplace will provide an opportunity for doors or artwork to complete the disguise.

2 where to place the television built in shelving Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Tastefully absorbed by built-in paneling and shelving

Intimacy and comfort are heightened when the background wraps you in an undisturbed shell. The key to success is a light hand when accessorizing the nearby shelving in order to reduce distraction from your favorite program. Lighting should be adjustable to avoid glare that could cause eye strain.

3 where to place the television disguise blend to background Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Is it wrong to put the television above the fireplace?

Not anymore, especially when it’s hidden in plain sight. Dark tones on the wall prevent a large screen from visually intruding on your space. When placing your television at this height, be sure to use an adjustable arm that allows you to angle it downward for better viewing.

4 where to place the television frame and recess Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

The great frame up

Building a frame around the screen is a streamline solution, especially when it’s balanced by black accents. The stone fireplace surround keeps the television from making the room top heavy.

5 where to place the television kitchen niche shelf Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Rise above the hustle and bustle

In the kitchen or office a high recessed niche is the perfect way to get your daytime television fix while keeping workspace clear.

6 where to place the television kitchen backsplash Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

It’s just another appliance

Your favorite programs line up perfectly on the backsplash providing an ever-changing design element to eliminate kitchen boredom.

7 where to place the television bedroom simple wall mount Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

The no excuses approach

Sometimes a TV just needs to be a TV, but this is no afterthought. Mounting directly to the wall saves space while knotty cedar paneling provides an interesting and unexpected contrast. The symmetrical arrangement of architectural features, like these flanking and clearstory window, will create balance for a serene effect.

8 where to place the television family room background extra big screen Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Television as wall mural

An extra large screen acts as an ever-changing backdrop for your leisure activities. Conversation is encouraged when seating is versatile and viewers can face each other or the screen.

9 where to place the television bar game room multiple tv screens Lowell Custom Homes Lake Geneva WI

Indulge Yourself

Weather the urge is “all sports, all the time” or a battle of HGTV, BRAVO, and The Cooking Channel, a multiscreen arrangement will immerse you in entertainment.

One last tip

When choosing the placement of your television it really comes down to size. For comfort refer to his guide for viewing distance.
Screen and recommended viewing distance

Happy Viewing!

 

We have a dedicated staff of professionals including an AIA architect, Interior Designer & Construction Superintendents who are all pleased to help you with your home projects!

We are just a call away at 262-245-9030

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The Secrets to Timeless Design for Your Home

 
A well designed home has staying power. It transcends a specific architectural style to focus on an emotional connection, lifestyle and comfort. The secret to creating this type of timeless design starts with a collaboration of experts who truly understand the homeowner’s aesthetic.
This getaway home embodies the relaxed Lake Geneva lifestyle while integrating the homeowner’s appreciation for tradition and creativity. We worked with Architect John A. Hagenah and Interior Designer Elizabeth Drake as well as our talented craftsmen and quality resources to build a home that is both timeless and inviting.

1-exterior-lowell-custom-homes-pixGet In Sync with Your Setting

The Craftsman architecture utilizes wide gabled rooflines, tapered stone columns, and minimalist ornamentation for an intriguing relationship with the countryside. Cedar shingles and horizontal siding introduce subtle pattern with gable details that expose rafter beams. A screened in room and sleeping porch provide protected connections to the outdoors.  The back elevation of the home features a wall of windows and French doors where indoor-outdoor activities can flow effortlessly.
 

2-lowell-custom-homes-entry-and-music-room-pixRely on Classic Lines

The entry features a Mahogany Dutch Door inviting guests to the refined elegance of the Music Room. Classic lighting and traditional woodworking are relaxed with the warmth of grass cloth wall covering and medium wood tones.
 

3-lowell-custom-homes-living-room-fireplace-divider-dr-pixUse Neutrals or Classic Colors for Permanent Elements, Have Fun with Easy to Alter Elements.

The living room relies on Craftsman elements for its inviting character created with the low profile of a  beamed ceiling, custom stone mix on the fireplace wall, stone mantel and conversational seating area. All of the permanent architectural features in this home are timeless, neutral, and versatile.   The dramatic surprise of coral paint for the walls is actually an on trend element that can be easily changed should the homeowners ever feel the need for a different mood.
 
4-lowell-custom-homes-dining-room-bar-pix

Right-size the  Floor Plan for Effortless Traffic Flow

The dining room is adjacent to the entry hall and features another stone fireplace. Coffered ceiling and traditional moldings step up formality that is then relaxed with the rustic texture of stone. A built-in wine and refreshment bar is located at this mid-point of the home for easy entertaining with a convenient connection to the outdoor pool area.
 
 
5-lowell-custom-homes-kitchen-pix
The dining area of this open floor plan flows directly to the kitchen with its large island seating for casual dining and entertaining. Here Wood-Mode cabinetry from Geneva Cabinet Company, LLC is done in a custom color with Quartzite countertops. Appliances include a Wolf range, Miele Oven, Steam Oven, Warming Drawer, and Sub Zero refrigerator. An artistic tile backsplash from Bella Tile and Stone, grounds this area with handcrafted appeal.
 

6-lowell-custom-homes-master-bedroom-and-bath-pixProvide Accessibility and Privacy

The first floor Master Bedroom Suite is a key feature for a timeless home plan. This area is designed with such grace and style that you may not notice the accessibility features that allow for future aging-in-place. The compartmentalized Master Bath, with double vanity and spacious shower, is detailed with classic tile patterns using basket weave and hexagon mosaics. Interior windows provide shared light and privacy while a tiled wall performs as an easy to maintain backsplash for the vanity area.
 

7-guest-rooms-sleeping-porch-and-bathInclude Versatile Rooms

The Guest Suites include bathrooms for privacy and access to the second story Sleeping Porch.   Each suite features a seating area and a full wall of windows for natural lighting , ventilation and views of the countryside.
 
 

8-laundry-craft-room-cabanna-dressing-area-from-pool-pixRecognize the Value of Functional Spaces 

Even the highly functional spaces of this home are treated with timeless details and easy transitions to the outdoors. A clever open combination space blends the laundry, creative studio and mudroom. It includes a workstation with stainless steel countertop and sink that can serve as a Butler’s Pantry or potting area for gardening. Another space with direct access to the pool performs as a cabana like dressing room with stacked washer/dryer and locker storage.
 

You can see more of this beautiful home with larger detail pictures on Houzz.

 

2016 Color of the Year for Your Home

How excited are you about the 2016 Color of the Year?
Even if you have not been breathless with anticipation, there is a value to watching as the 2016 Colors of the Year develop into trends that help you  freshen up the look of your home.
There is not much controversy between the two leading paint companies, Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams. Both select a version of white consistent with the current cultural desire for calm and simplicity.
bm and sw color of the year 2016
Benjamin Moore Simply White Video      Sherwin Williams Alabaster Video
From the standpoint of architectural integrity and composition, we agree with the importance of the color white in all of its variations.
However, when Pantone pioneered two interacting Colors of the Year 2016, Rose Quartz & Serenity, a new understanding of color direction emerged.

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 9.32.39 AM

Pantone Colors of the Year 2016 Video


Interplay or the interaction of color becomes the theme running through the 2016 color predictions.
Interplay is a technique we often use when creating interior and exterior architectural statements.  Here are some of our favorite ideas that will help you update the color impression of your home.
1 subtle layering nuance depth add fitterer millwork

Layer subtle shades of white to create dimension and refined nuance.


defining texture contrast white

Define architecture with white as a brilliant contrast to exterior color and material schemes.


Create restful space by applying the meditative quality of white or a pastel.


contrast with white trim on molding

Energize by contrasting a bold wall color with crisp white trim.


culbertson round staircase copy

Emphasize texture and enhance natural rustic materials with the calming contrast of white.


The Pantone 2016 Colors of the Year were selected with the intention of pairing calm harmonious hues. The specific color is not as significant as the fluidity of the pairing.    Keep balance in mind when applying color to your home and you will be on track for 2016.
Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 9.27.18 AM

Screened In Porch – Improving Nature

Summer Porch
Does the idea of extending your summer sound appealing? A screened in porch will prolong your outdoor living season in the most civilized manner. No bugs, always a breeze from the ceiling fans, and overhead protection from the elements, what’s not to love! This cost effective feature lets you get a jump on summer and cling to every last day before winter arrives.
We build screened in porches and rooms where our homeowners can enjoy a close connection with nature.   These areas deliver additional living space with the bonus of versatility. A place to unwind, entertain friends or shake up a boring dinnertime routine; the appeal is in its ability to become exactly what you need. The temporary charm of outdoor living releases you from the formalities created by four walls and encourages relaxation.
These screened-in fundamentals will guide you when setting up your own outdoor space.
 
Screened in Exterior
Business in the front – party in the back.
Even the most stately homes can embrace the look of a screened in room. You’ll avoid the architectural mullet phenomenon by treating this feature with the same details as your home. Design your screened in space to reflect the overall character of your home.
 
View from screened in porch
Focus on the view
If you are fortunate enough to have a scenic view, take full advantage by positioning the location and elevation where you’ll have best perspective. When not emphasizing a long distance view, create an intimate view with the surrounding landscape.
 

screened in porch ceiling

Make a statement with the ceiling
Since transparent screening surrounds you with nature, the ceiling becomes a creative outlet for your style. Beadboard is one of our favorite treatments. Created from wood planking, this material can be rustic or polished in order to reflect your design aesthetic.
 
screened in porch lighting and ceiling fans
Ceiling Fans & Lighting for Mother Natures downtime
Well-placed ceiling fans will add a soft breeze to a motionless summer day. Use a fixture with contrasting finish to bring attention to a beautifully detailed ceiling. Match the ceiling color if you would like it to quietly disappear.
The same applies to lighting.   But be sure to think beyond the typical porch fixture.  Outdoor lighting technology offers stylish fixtures and even table lamps to satisfy all of your functional needs.
5d Blog inset fireplace

 

Take the chill off with a warm fire.
The fireplace is a natural gathering point and will transform your screened area into an extension of your home. The added warmth will allow you to truly extend your outdoor living season.
 
Furnishing for Comfort
Rugged or refined, your screened room should be finished off with the furniture pieces that will allow you to make the most of your outdoor season. Check our past post for tips on the most durable approach:
Low Maintenance Essentials for Easy Indoor-Outdoor Living