Take the Long Road – Design for timelessness, not just the here and now

Living Coral may be the colour of 2019 but when you’re planning on living in your home beyond Christmas, the love and goodwill may be hard to muster in amongst a pink headache. It’s true, our tastes change and our needs change – what we sort five years ago in a lounge suite isn’t going to cut it with the two-year-old. When it comes to art there are no rules that say we have to stick with one particular style – some of the most inspirational artistic people out there make the biggest shifts – Frank Gehry for example.

However, when it comes to architectural design, there are a few timeless choices we can implement first and foremost, that will provide the necessary platform to shift with our lifestyles, mould with our latest furniture purchases and accommodate our on-trend must-haves.

So, if you’re in the business of a new build or renovating a home, apartment or office space, here’s where we think timeless decisions will serve you better than trendy . . .

Height – A featured ceiling with a high stud will never date.

Clean lines – In terms of architecture, a ‘clean line’ in a building emphasises strength and provides a sharper contrast between other elements in the space.

Flooring – Black and white kitchen tiles, solid wooden floors – both will look good in five, 10 and 20 year’s time.

Nature – High-quality materials never go out of style. Wood, stone, leather exude a comfortable classic look and develop a natural patina over time.

A favourite timeless architectural design example of ours . . . The Conversation Pit – think Mad Men – popularised in the 1960s and 70s. In a world where everyone’s starring at screens, a designated spot that brings everyone together for a good ole yak has got to have ageless appeal.

Ready to start your architectural conversation? Let’s coalesce!




Want ‘Real’ New Year Architecture Inspiration for 2019? Look to the way we’re living . . .

Like bikes with bells, scrunchies and chatter rings, trends have defined, moved and reinvented us. Architecture is much the same, it’s ever-changing – there are emerging trends every week, month, year. With so many decades of inspiration tucked under our belt, its no easy feat finding your fit in a melting pot of design. But, as Ludwig Miles van der Rohe says: “Not yesterday, not tomorrow, only today can be given form. Only this architecture creates.”What is today’s architecture reacting to? Well according to architect Veronica Schreibeis Smith, “Spaces that were just for cooking and eating, for example, are now being re-thought to “promote life-enhancing daily habits and rituals.”

Unlike the minor refinement of the 1950s kitchen, today’s kitchen and dining spaces are about well-being and creating meaningful lifestyle choices – think stone engineered counters, induction cooktops.

Outside the kitchen, our rooms continue to open up to new ways of living. Many of us want an aural and visual connection between two spaces – dining and lounge, lounge and office, dining and patio – but simultaneously want to have the ability to close off that space if required – with concealed cavities that are tucked away out of sight, of course!

Just like the all too referenced indoor-outdoor trend, the call for a ‘flexible ‘spaces will continue to sound for some time – think sliding doors, pocket doors, dividers, all transitioning between rooms in the home and outdoor areas. Why so flexible? Because our living style dictates it. Home office, Airbnb, man cave, guest suite, playroom our homes wear many hats and so should its design.

Want design that fits your speak, let’s coalesce . . .




Strike a balance between your architectural design ‘must-haves’ and your budget ‘full-stops’

So, you’re designing a new place. Whatever your fit – house, apartment, barn, cottage – striking a balance between your ‘true’ wants, your budget end point and investment in ‘other rooms and spaces’ is essential for long-term satisfaction and enjoyment.

So, how do you actually achieve the architectural space you visualise without losing your mind and budget figure in the process? Firstly, set the budget numbers aside and hone in specifically on the design process.

Why? Because all too often we hear stories of clients who ‘had’ these exciting dreams and visions at the beginning of a project, only to arrive at the end and have a home that is ‘nice and lovely’ but lacks the ‘true’ soul and spirit they’d envisaged.

From a designer’s perspective, many homeowners inevitably fall into this spiral of trying to do ‘too’ much with ‘not enough’, which arguably results in a project that fails to impress where it should.

Ultimately, clever design relies on smart use of space and creative application of materials, both linked to a thorough understanding of how you live and how you want to live. For example, a designer can capture that ‘soul and vision’, by increasing the height of ceilings in living areas, or featuring specialist finishing materials on walls or ceilings i.e. timber sarked ceiling as opposed to gib, or creating a larger door/opening that connects your indoor and outdoor spaces.

Articulate design isn’t about digging deeper into your pocket, it’s about honing the real reasons behind the architectural project.

Seeking architectural expertise across Tauranga, Mount Maunganui, Te Puke, Kati Kati and beyond? Seek us, Coalesce Architecture, we have over 40 years combined experience in all areas of design.