designs that stood the test of time
the murray's modern farmhouse
Trendy versus timeless is a debate that seems to bring everyone to their own, unique conclusion. We think that there is no better person to ask than the clients who have actually gotten to live it. The Murray's home was completed seven years ago. Read more about their home, and if it's still as timeless as they originally hoped.
had. There is no doubt that this topic can elicit strong feelings, and it makes sense. Even if you go into a newly bought home with every intention to make it your forever home, it is still smart to consider how your home will grow alongside your family or how well it could sell in the future. While the architects at our firm would be very happy to offer their wisdom on what reads as timeless and what does not, we thought of something even better: Let’s ask the people whom our architects have designed for, and get their take on what makes a design truly stand the test of time. Because who better to explain than the ones who live within the design every day?
Let’s introduce the players: two of our previous clients who partnered with Studio21 Architects to design the modern farmhouse of their dreams. It has been almost seven years since the completion of Mike and Judi Murray’s Design+Build home in an historic neighborhood within the Chicagoland suburbs. We would say that near-seven years is a perfect point of reference to see how the Murrays have been enjoying their home and what they’ve learned during, and since, this build.
One of the first steps in Studio21 Architect’s design process is to have the clients compose a “wish list”, in which they note the elements most-desired in their home, on a scale of one to ten. In addition to the wish list, Studio21 Architects has since developed a more extensive tool for outlining the needs and style of a client: the Design Discovery Review. Our Design Discovery Review not only investigates the feasibility of a proposed project but additionally reviews the client themselves, to examine what their lifestyle necessitates in a home. A useful tool that works in tandem with the Design Discovery Review is the Lifestyle Questionnaire and the Design DNA exercise.
STUDIO21 ARCHITECTS: TO START AT THE VERY BEGINNING, WHAT WAS YOUR MAIN MOTIVATION TO START A CUSTOM HOME?
Judi & Michael Murray: We were looking for a forever home that was suitable for us in our retirement. Ultimately, we did a complete tear down to get the exact house that we needed/hoped for.
Test of Time Advice: Ask yourself the question: How will my home continue to work for my lifestyle as I grow older, and as my kids grow older. Design choices that seem perfect for a thirty year-old couple with no children can easily stop being conducive to your lifestyle in thirty years, ten years, or even one year.
Test of Time Advice: Always consider what kind of floorplan will maximize your home's functionality. Designing with "zones" in mind is great way to keep an open flow to your home, while still maintaining privacy from potential guests, in-laws, etc.
S21: IN YOUR OPINIONS, WHAT ARE THE ELEMENTS OF YOUR HOME’S DESIGN KEEPS THE PLACE FEELING TIMELESS, RATHER THAN TRENDY?
The Murrays: We think our home is as close to perfect as we could probably get, but hindsight is 20/20, right? So we suppose that if we were to do anything differently, we might’ve eliminated the dining room to create a larger shared office/library.
a very big thank you to the murrays for always being such great supporters of studio21 architects!
written by: Emma halliday
Emma works as the Marketing Coordinator at Studio21 Architects. For each of our newsletters, Emma conducts interviews, writes articles, and formats the pages to make sure they reflect the great design we value so strongly at this firm. She may not be an architect, but she certainly makes sure that the marketing materials have architect-worthy design as well!