September 12, 2019

Three years ago, my wife and I bought a down-at-the-heels 1909 farmhouse in a quaint little Maryland neighborhood that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Long ignored by many homebuyers, the area remained affordable for years.


Workshop APD principals Matt Berman and Andrew Kotchen like to use authentic materials. Their design for the About Last Knife restaurant in Chicago kept the circa-1912 brickwork, using it as a canvas for a mural (Photo: Dan Kelleghan).

July 02, 2019
By Stacey Freed, Contributing Editor

In 2006, Matt Berman and Andrew Kotchen, founding principals of Workshop APD, won the international design competition sponsored by Global Green USA and Brad Pitt to rethink New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Ed Binkley, AIA
June 27, 2019
By Ed Binkley, AIA

As an architect, my biggest inspiration comes from my ears, eyes, and experiences. I have listened, read, visited, explored, and collaborated with many creatives throughout the years.

June 27, 2019

The average American home has grown over the years, and the kitchen has followed in lockstep. New homes have ballooned from around 1,500 square feet in 1970 to about 2,775 square feet in 2017. Similarly, the kitchen has gone from about 70 square feet in size to just a hair more than 150.

March 20, 2019
By Nigel F. Maynard, Editor-in-Chief

The staircase in this Venice Beach, Calif., custom home may seem simple and straightforward, but in reality it’s a feat of engineering that involved structural ingenuity to execute, says architect


Mark Turner

Founder and Owner


March 19, 2019
By Amanda Hermans, Associate Editor

Mark Turner was drawn to the building industry by a childhood of playing and creating outdoors near his home in Jackson Hole, Wyo.


The dune in front of this new home on Florida's Gulf Coast had to be rebuilt as one of the first steps to getting the project approved (Photo: Emerald Coast Real Estate Photography)

March 26, 2019
By Susan Bady, Senior Editor

The challenges of coastal construction have intensified, in correspondence with the number and ferocity of storms in recent years.

March 20, 2019
Over the years, I’ve talked with many architects who yearn to design a home in a picturesque location, whether that’s on the beach in the Hamptons, in the Los Angeles hills, up in the mountains of Jackson Hole, or on the water in Galveston, Texas.
January 31, 2019

In the fall of 2018, I had the privilege of taking a day to tour two very special companies while I was visiting Copenhagen, and the level of craft and attention to detail evident in their products blew me away.

Michael Lehrer

Michael Lehrer, FAIA


Lehrer Architects

January 29, 2019
By Amy Albert

Michael Lehrer designed his first home 40 years ago and has been at it ever since.

BALA_Best in American Living Awards_Texas_Hill_Country_Ranch_Retreat

BALA winner Piebald Ranch, in Texas Hill Country, designed by Craig McMahon Architects. (Photo: Craig McMahon, AIA)

January 29, 2019
By Susan Bady, Senior Editor / Nigel F. Maynard, Editor-in-Chief / Amanda Hermans, Associate Editor

To be honored in the Best in American Living Awards (BALA), a custom home must exceed the client’s expectations and make a powerful design statement. In 2018, a panel of eight judges gave awards to 24 custom and spec homes.

September 11, 2018
I inked my first real estate transaction in 1999. It was a half-acre of raw land in the U.S. Virgin Islands where I was born and raised. 


Cary Bernstein photo
July 09, 2018
By Amy Albert, Editor-in-Chief
Cary Bernstein has had her own architectural practice for 25 years, creating modern homes that are light-filled and space-savvy with rigorous attention to detail.
June 30, 2018

Last year Zillow reported that more than 15 percent of American households are empty nests. As the silver tsunami continues to swell—and as many of us attempt to ride it—that number will grow.

Gnar House in Squaw Valley, Calif., with charred wood exterior

PROJECT: Gnar House, Squaw Valley, Calif. BUILDER/DESIGNER: Rob Wells/, La Jolla, Calif.; CNC FABRICATOR: Byecraft Cabinet, Sparks, Nev. Photo: Jon Rouse/Rouse Photography

April 15, 2018
By Amy Albert

Designer and builder Rob Wells is based in San Diego but spent his teen years in Squaw Valley, Calif., and wanted his kids to experience life in the Sierra Nevada. Building Gnar House there was also a chance to experiment.

Paul Masi headshot
April 09, 2018
By Amy Albert, Editor-in-Chief
Bates Masi + Architects, in East Hampton, N.Y., is known for award-winning modernist homes that range in size but consistently pay homage to the coastal structures of their environs.
 Exterior, dusk, of modern home by Build LLC in Seattle

Build LLC’s homes combine Scandinavian influences and contemporary materials. Photo: Courtesy Build LLC

April 09, 2018
By Stacey Freed

Some design firms are driven by a particular style. Some by their competition. Others, such as Build LLC, are driven by a philosophy. “Our architecture is highly inspired by the Scandinavians,” says Andrew van Leeuwen, lead architect and partner at the Seattle-based firm.

Craig McMahon Headshot
April 03, 2018
Craig McMahon, AIA

The scene is familiar: A couple sits down in my conference room to discuss a new home. This meeting has been preceded by at least one or two phone calls, or maybe even a site visit to the land recently purchased.

March 22, 2018

Moving across the country to Los Angeles nearly 15 years ago meant boning up on many aspects of life in the West. This included earthquakes, of course. Until you actually feel one, you have no idea.

Semi-circular front entrance

Architect Luis Jauregui’s design/build firm offers a full complement of services. His homes, such as Bentwater Lakehouse, in Houston, are often influenced by the modernists of his native Mexico (Photos Courtesy of Jauregui Architecture, Construction, & Interiors)

January 12, 2018
By Stacey Freed

Since his first design/build project in 1982—a spec house funded by all of his savings and a bank loan with 18 percent interest—architect Luis Jauregui has added to his arsenal of architectural and building services, which include real estate, development, and interior design. 



This Month in Custom Builder


Union is an industrial-inspired bath fittings collection from the UK-based brand Crosswater London


Collaboration holds the key to a smoother selections process that satisfies both client and builder

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