All in Architecture

From the First Kit House to the First Starchitect Kit House

Why were the initial kit houses developed in the world? Where were these kit houses delivered and built? One of the best books that I began to read this week called Prefab Houses by Arnt Cobbers and Oliver Jahn gives a great primer on the evolution of kit houses over time. Starting with the first one that we have documentation for, this research is beginning to reveal more ideas and purposes of the kit house idea. Here’s why the initial kit houses were developed in the world and some interesting facts about one of the first star architect developed kit houses.

The Evolution of Kit Houses

Why did the kit houses from the early 1900’s begin to fail in the 1970’s? What happened to the idea of the kit house after the main companies filed for bankruptcy or let go of the idea? These were questions that I developed while researching the timeline of kit house companies. A majority of these companies filed for bankruptcy in the mid to late 1900’s and others switched their business focus. Here’s how the kit houses evolved from that moment onward.

1900s Kit Homes as Architecture Products

What could architecture products look like for a majority of the population? Why do architects consider duplicating the same house designs at different sites to be bad? These are some of the questions that I’ve been debating as I’ve read through catalogs for kit houses from the early 1900’s to the mid 1900’s. During my initial research of my latest topic “Architecture as Product”, I’ve discovered a lot of very interesting marketing schemes and business models for kit houses of the 20th century. Here’s what I’ve learned.

Architecture as Product

After spending several months focusing on my newfound leatherworking hobby, I’m starting to find that my passion for designing architecture is growing. One of the big ideas that I had this week that is leading towards my next 30x30 projects is viewing architecture as products. This idea can go in many directions, so I’ll be dedicating the next few weeks to narrow the idea down. Here’s where I’m going with the architecture as product project.

Facing Early Career Decisions

Every year, I take a week in the summer time to relax with my friends by renting a house, home cooking meals, and spending time together. This year, our theme was “Lake House”, and last week we finally went on this much anticipated vacation. During my time there, I thought about where I started, how far I’ve come, and where I’d like to go with my career as an architect and creative professional. In short, I felt like I was reaching an “early life crisis”. Let me explain.

Patience

Recently, I realized that one of my biggest pitfalls in life has been the lack of patience in pursuing some of my ideas and understanding that the best outcomes usually take the most time. This idea spans from my passion and career in architecture to my newfound hobby in leatherworking. Every time I start a project, I immediately get to work and I come up with an action plan, a timeline, a deadline, and possible ideas to get started. Once I enter the design process, I enter the battle zone where my lack of patience is driven by the deadlines and results that I’m pursuing. This is why I’ve decided to practice patience in everything that I’m working on.

10 Lessons Learned from Construction Administration

Continuing from my post last week on construction experience, I wanted to stay on the topic of construction and offer 10 lessons that I’ve learned through the construction administration process. There’s so much to learn from every project during the construction phase and these lessons will often change with the circumstances that we face. Here are the 10 lessons that I’ve learned this year.

Construction Experience and Young Architects

This year has been the most eventful and educational one for my life as an architect. The biggest contributing factor to my experiences this year has been taking the managing role on a large 12 million dollar renovation project that’s currently in construction. This project is about half of the way to completion and is being fast tracked. After one year of being on this construction project, I’ve become more confident as an architect in all areas of the profession. Here’s why I believe construction experience is important for all young architects.

2018 Update On My 30x30 Projects

About two and a half years ago, I started on my 5 year journey to design 30 projects by the time I turned 30. Over that amount of time, I’m excited that in retrospect, I can see the lineage of all of my completed projects as well as the growth of my life as a designer. From being an architect who focused solely on designing the built environment to now pivoting and exploring the world of product design, I can’t wait to see what else I’ll learn about myself and the world of design. Now that I’m half way through my timeline, I’d like to reflect on the projects that I’ve done so far and take you down memory lane.

Completing the High End Residence Project

Over the past week, I’ve been working hard to finish up project 17x30 the High End Residence project in Buffalo, NY. By focusing at least two hours every day, I was able to take the project from the point of final design to final graphics and complete the project! It’s been a week full of long nights and many moments of wanting to stop and take a break, but I made it through to the end and I can start focusing on my next project! Here’s how the project came together.