September Construction

Cane Island

Framing is best phase of construction for dramatic progress photos! See the design of this house here 

Fripp Island

This beach house is getting really close to completion. How great do those sleek sunpower pv panels look?! These owners are so excited about their new house, which is our favorite thing ever!

Port Royal, Union Church

The renovation of historic Union Church is moving right along. The drywall is hung and the windows have been uncovered, it is a beautiful space!

Butterfly Dogtrot

I am loving this dogtrot cottage with butterfly roofs! The first design for these clients was this “Lowcountry Cottage” but I think what the design morphed into will be even cooler than the preliminary drawings.


OTB- September

We’ve presented preliminary designs to a few clients recently. The first two are new houses, and the third is a renovation.

This house is in Summerville, South Carolina. The client requested a modest sized house that is exceptionally strong. We are designing it to withstand 200 mph winds. The windows are protected by sliding shutters made of corten steel.

Next is this cottage, on Harbor Island. This is an upside down house- the main living areas are on the top floor and the  bedrooms are on the first floor. This enables the owner to enjoy the best views from the areas where they will be spending the most time. The lot has the beach on one side and the marsh one the other, so the views from this top floor are going to be incredible.

This small house is on a beautiful piece of property on Wadmalaw Island, in Charleston County. Our proposed design increases the area on the first floor by moving the exterior walls to the edge of an existing wrap-around deck. A dormer is added to increase space and light available in the loft. A swimming pool is added, along with a carport and a plan for a future guest house. A perfectly relaxing retreat!

New Layer Proposed First Floor Plan Proposed Second Floor Plan New Layer Existing First Floor Existing Second Floor


On the Boards in August 2020

We’ve got some great projects on the boards. Here are three projects in preliminary design. We have a couple bigger projects in the works too, but they are not quite ready to show you. The gate above is a detail for a project that is under construction.

The Camellia

First, here’s our popular Camellia plan book house, with some revisions for a young family. Our “Close to Custom” plans are always modified to better fit the lot and the clients. This version of the Camellia is raised up out of the flood plain, which gives the owner space to park beneath the first floor.

Cat Island Landscape and Hardscape Additions

This is a house we did a big renovation on probably 20 years ago. The new owners are adding a pool, exercise room and cabana so that they can take full advantage of the views from Cat Island.

cabana section

St. Helena deck improvements

This house on St. Helena Island has an awesome view over the Harbor River. The clients came to us with the request to add to the outdoor space. We designed a butterfly roof to cover the outdoor dining area.


June Construction Progress

Union Church

Renovation and Addition to Historic (1870's) Union Church in Port Royal, South Carolina.

brickbeam

 

Cane Island House

The majority of the masonry block wall construction for the house portion of the project is complete. It is always exciting to see vertical construction. With the foundation formed, the house is really being to take shape! Want to see the design? Revisit Cane Island House when it was still on the boards.

foundationcane island south carolinacmu wallPalmetto Bluff Guest House

This is a guest house that is going on a Palmetto Bluff house that we designed. See the Kessler Residence in our portfolio here.

The exterior walls and doors are installed and the contractor is installing air tight sealant at small gaps in the building envelope to ensure the house is tight.

palmetto bluff guest housepalmetto bluff constructionpalmetto bluff

Fripp Island Beach House

 


On the Boards

 

Vernacular Traditions

This house is based on the vernacular Beaufort T House. The floor plan is shaped like a T with a wrap around porch, this allows the rooms to have great cross ventilation.

Designed for Resiliency

The first floor is raised out of the flood plain  and is finished with materials that can get wet. The large overhangs protect the walls from the rain. The impact glass in the windows and doors protect them in high winds. The house is design to be net zero, meaning that the energy produced on-site from photovoltaic panels is equal to or greater than the energy required to run the highly efficient house.

 

Designed for Outdoor Living

The large screened porches overlook a lagoon. One of the screened porches is dedicated to cooking and dining while the other is for relaxing.

Close to Custom

This house will be included in our C2C Collection and is available for purchase. Our Close to Custom plans are based on vernacular forms,  and the T-house plan builds on the theme of providing plans that inherently preform well in our hot, humid climate. See the other plans here.


Earth Day

As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day it is hard to remember what our plans for today were before we became house bound. This isn’t an ordinary year. COVID-19 has dramatically altered the rhythm of our days and will continue to reshape our lives in ways we can’t foresee. That can seem overwhelming, disheartening, and frightening unless we remember that we are not defined by the challenges we face, but how we meet them personally, professionally, and as citizens of the global community.

The fact is that despite the ongoing COVID-19 global health emergency and the grim news that it brings, it is still spring. It is still a time of rejuvenation and growth, and a physical reminder of the indomitable power of the human spirit to renew itself and to grow from adversity.

Some of the lessons learned could even have positive impacts over the long term – particularly when it comes to climate progress. Scientists have catalogued the sudden plunge in greenhouse gas emissions caused by the large-scale substitution of telework and staying home for commuting and travel. Of course no one would have chosen to reduce pollution under such tragic circumstances – and, thankfully, stay-home orders aren’t permanent – but the change does help demonstrate that dramatic environmental progress is possible.

Scientists also point out an instructive parallel between the pandemic crisis and the climate crisis: If you wait until you can see the impact, it is too late to stop it. Climate experts like Elizabeth Sawin, co-director of the think tank Climate Interactive, explain that “the public is coming to understand that in that kind of situation you have to act in a way that looks disproportionate to what the current reality is, because you have to react to where that exponential growth will take you.”

Jane wrote an Earth Day article for the April issue of Architect Magazine back in February BC (Before Covid 19). It now seems like it was last year.  Robert Ivy CEO/EVP of the American Institute of Architects and Jane co-wrote an article for Earth Day this week. She was also quoted in this Forbes article on why green building are more important than ever. Finally, another BC article from Architectural Digest on how the architectural industry is responding to the climate crisis.


Improve your home

Improve Your Home During Coronavirus

I was asked by Carolina Thorpe of the London Financial Times on how to improve your home during a lockdown for an article she was writing. My quote was the lede in the story found here. My complete response to her is below.

To deal with the anxiety caused by COVID-19 and the isolation we feel from social distancing, it’s more important than ever to make sure our living quarters are healthy both physically and mentally. Protecting health starts at the front door. The recommendation I received from an infectious disease specialist is to create a transition zone at the entrance to your abode where you can remove your outer clothing and shoes and disinfect anything you are bringing inside, including yourself. This transition zone should be easily cleaned.

For our mental health we can follow the advice of Ray Davies of The Kinks, A change is as good as a rest. It is almost impossible to start home improvement projects without any supplies, but you can assess how you use the spaces. While you’re stuck inside, document your daily routine and consider how the activity can be enhanced. Does your reading chair need to be moved by the window for great natural light? Can you set up an eating space outdoors to enjoy the beautiful spring weather? Do you need to carve out a small space for some time alone for exercising, yoga or meditating? This may be more of a challenge in small spaces, but don’t underestimate the impact of minor adjustments to improve your home.

Another way to freshen your space is to move your furniture and decorative items around. Redo your tabletops, bookcases, and – if you have one, mantel. Moving art brings a whole new appreciation of the work.

Finally, this is the perfect time to plan your home renovation. Spend some time on Houzz.com to create idea books to share with us. Our team is working from home and are available for a virtual consultation. If nothing else, visualizing a positive future can be a comfort in these tough days. Check out this recently completed renovation on Long Cove, Hilton Head Island for inspiration.

 


March 2020 Under Construction

St. Simons Island

We designed this St. Simons Island house around this fabulous Live Oak. The clients wanted the house to gently fit into the neighborhood unlike some of the recent new homes that over power the street.

The swimming pool is raised to be level with the first floor. This creates privacy from the road and maximizes the great view over the marsh.

The bookmatched stone fireplace is stunning.

Fripp Island

What a great view!


2030

2030 commitment

Jane is one of a number of architects interviewed for this article in Architectural Digest. She talks about AIA's role in combating climate change and reducing carbon emissions, such as the AIA 2030.

"Some firms have been grappling with these larger questions for years, while others have yet to take them into consideration at all. In 2006, the nonprofit group Architecture 2030 issued the 2030 Challenge, which seeks to make all new buildings, developments, and renovations carbon-neutral by 2030. The American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) 2030 Commitment brings together firms to work toward this challenge, evaluating each reporting signatory firm’s entire portfolio and collecting data on the progress being made. According to AIA President Jane Frederick, 252 out of 600 signatory firms reported data in 2018, and the reported projects had an overall predicted energy-use reduction equivalent to avoiding 17.7 million metric tons of CO2 emissions."

In our office, we are working on getting all of our energy data reported to the design data exchange for the 2030 commitment, we will blog about those results in the near future.

If you are an architect, is your firm a signatory? Are you reporting? If not, why not? Sign up here!

Read the article in Architectural Digest here:

https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/climate-change-design-architecture

Jane is currently at Carbon Positive '20 Conference and Expo. I am sure she will come back with inspiration and knowledge that will help us continue to improve in our goal to reduce the carbon footprint across our portfolio.


Inauguration Festivities

Jane was welcomed by 2019 AIA President Bill Bates at her inauguration as the 96th president of The American Institute of Architects. The entire family and office traveled to Washington, DC to celebrate. Jane gave a speech that Benjie recorded here. Afterwards everyone enjoyed dancing the night away. David Lauderdale with the Island Packet wrote a great article about Jane.