When Basak and I start a new design, the possibilities seem endless. Before us lies that sheet of blank paper, presented free of constraint, another chance to achieve that perfect design. But unless one was born yesterday, freedom from preconditions is impossible. We bring our past with us. Our passions are rooted within our own experiences. We often hear this type of thing: “On our vacation to France we saw Monet’s kitchen at Giverny. If our new kitchen is yellow and blue, we’ll think of that great vacation every day. I want our kitchen to be yellow and blue…” Or: “My grandmother’s farmhouse had a fantastic mudroom. So bright and clean, and actually functional. I want a mud room like that.” Basak and I pay close attention to client’s preconditions. Then, perhaps slipping in a few funky ideas here and there, we find a solution that satisfies preconditions while offering something new, unexpected and better.

Speaking of funky, it can be intimidating for an architect to present certain design ideas. And speaking also of preconceptions, every idea Basak and I offer carries with it something of ourselves. We expose ourselves to critique, judged by other’s standards. ‘Here’s an idea for you” we might say, “…and we can paint it blue and yellow…”. You never know how these things will go over.

That’s how new things come about, via a mix of thoughts from all sides. The goal is to meet all preconceptions in terms of “It’s just as I’d hoped, couldn’t be better”, but add to that: “Yes, it was better…”