Five Key Elements to Include in Your Ideabook

We always ask our clients, as first steps homework for their project, to create an ideabook. This helps them to clearly communicate their desires for the home to us, as there is nothing more straightforward than visual representation. While there are endless photos that could be saved, and we hope that enthusiasm takes hold as the ideabook is built, the following five key elements we want to be sure are included…

1 – Style – images that reflect the aesthetic preference that you are hoping to achieve. Sometimes we find that clients have a hard time naming their defined style, this could be for many reasons, amongst which include not being sure of what the style they like is called, or because there are so many nuances in the design world, that what they are drawn to is a melding of a few different styles. Whatever it is, photographs that illustrate the styling you are after, are the easiest way to communicate that general direction piece to your designer.

2 – Interior/Exterior – images that show what you want inside and outside your home. Both need definition, and while it is not necessarily mandatory for interior and exterior to share the exact style of design, we tend to find that cohesive design between the two bodes as well for the feeling of the house, as it does between rooms on the interior. If you are having the entire house designed, it should also be noted that the exterior images are the place to start – as we will need those in order to design the house concept, and then the interior inspirations can be added while construction documents are being prepared.

3 – Colours/Textures – images that show your preferences to tones and textures in surface and décor. These may emerge organically, as we can’t help but save the images that are loaded with the stuff we love, but the style you want in the colours that you want are not always going to be found in images of other people’s homes. You may have an image that shows an element like a fireplace surround that you note you really like the style of, but then you find another image that you note is the colour you want for your fireplace surround. Our designers take all the little ideas and details that you have outlined and make something that is all you based on these details – and presto – custom design is born!

4 – Layout – images that illustrate the type of connectedness that you wish to achieve within your home are very helpful. Each adjoining space that is visible through to another needs to be cohesively designed. So for instance, if you intend to have a greatroom – kitchen, dining, and living spaces all connected – it will make sense that there would be a common colour scheme throughout those spaces. These images are also included to illustrate desired functionality. The placement of an office or homework space next to the kitchen for ease of family management, or a contained recreational basement that won’t disturb the upper levels of the house, these considerations are made to improve your quality of life within the home.

5 – Function – images of the moving parts that (almost) nobody sees. Last but not least, include elements like specialized storage, accessible power, and task lighting that you want. As well as flush transitions, extra spacious pathways, and specialty supportive hardware to make a universal home for any family and friends who have accessibility considerations. Or simply something special that particularly pertains to you, your hobbies and preferences can be designed into your home – special shelving dedicated to your cookbook collection or a wall bed to save space so that the majority of the time you can have that extra room set up for your crafts – whatever it is, these considerations are intended to make you love your life at home!

We will be custom designing your space, so this ideabook exercise is really an opportunity to express desired personalization.
Be sure that it touches on the many unique ways in which you live, so that you end up with a house that really works for you!

Tags: colour, design process, interior design, new home design, planning, renovation design, style, vision

What People Are Saying

Lawrence Green

"I was impressed not only by Sarah's design ability, but also with her level of construction knowledge. I have heard that a lot of designers are good at making things pretty, but are not that great at understanding how things are actually built- Sarah is fantastic at both. I recommend them to anyone and everyone I know without hesitation."

Diane and Vince Grdina

"We had the pleasure of working with Sarah on the construction of our new home. We had a lot of fun working with them and found them always thoughtful, mindful, and professional. We would highly recommend their firm and would use them again without hesitation."

Pete Rackow

"We were immediately impressed with Sarah's ability to assess our needs and understand the type of home my wife and I wanted for us and our 3 boys. Her attention to detail is flawless and every inch of our fully renovated home is thoroughly thought through. I felt like they cared about our home as much as we the homeowners did."