How exactly do you go about hiring someone to renovate your home so that it neither looks too wild nor like it came out of a box?
This Springfield homeowner simplified a first-floor remodel and reconfiguration by hiring one design-build firm for the entire project.
Design-build firms help homeowners with everything from the space design to the selection of materials to construction. Working with a single company helps make the most of your budget, streamlines the process, and helps you worry less about coordinating several different designers, contractors, and builders to work toward the same end goal.
The goal of this redesign was to open up the existing space and update the rooms to give the living area a more modern look and feel.
“During the initial consultation, the client made it clear that she wanted to transform her traditional, compartmentalized home into an open, bright midcentury-modern space,” says Greg Marks, principal of Marks-Woods Construction Services in Alexandria, who led the construction. “The design intent of this project was clear from the beginning: We needed to incorporate contrast into the selection of materials, and we made the space more functional by incorporating certain midcentury-modern style elements.”
Marks-Woods upped the creative direction of the project to increase visual interest in the finished space and to keep the eye moving. The firm focused on the contrast of the finishings and hardware, and it opened the existing floor plan to make the most of the home’s square footage in the renovated downstairs living areas.
“You can create contrast in style, materials, texture, or color,” says Marks. “In this project, we used dark cabinets in a light and bright space with other bright materials, like the hood, countertop, and backsplash. We contrasted metals, using brass hardware against the stainless steel appliances, and the wood cabinets against a natural marble countertop. The island cabinet color contrasted [to] set off the other hardwoods in the space. In kitchen design, it is important for certain elements to not completely match.”
The firm juxtaposed the lighter woods of the island and floors against the rest of the kitchen’s dark blue cabinetry in order to set off the appliances and draw attention to those critical material choices. The contrast — an important part of any interior schematic — worked effectively to make sure the finished product didn’t look or feel bland.
When the build side of the equation came into play, the team focused on how the revamped space flowed throughout the open floor plan to give the client the modern style she wanted.
“Contrast provides drama and sets the tone for the rest of the house,” Marks says. “It makes for more visually striking and interesting projects. It is a fundamental element.”
How’s that for thinking out of the box?
Feature photo courtesy Nova Soul Imagery
This story originally ran in our May issue. For more stories like this, subscribe to Northern Virginia Magazine.