• Featured,  Form,  Print Edition

    En masse

    Set amid a row of iconic Greystone buildings along California Ave. in Chicago, Illinois, the grid-like façade of concrete and glass on the En Masse Architecture and Design Ltd. studio presents a bold juxtaposition with its environment at first glance. Its poured-in place, brise-soleil creates a patterned effect where vertical fins of concrete lend an added layer of complexity to the grey-hued limestone of the historic residential building style inherent to Chicago, and bring an energy and dynamic tension to the creative conversation within its architectural landscape. Minimalist in design, the studio is more than a composition of its brise-soleil—an architectural solution popularized and initially designed for climatic challenges by…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Solutions in storage

    California Closets Inc. offers quality custom storage solutions to clients throughout Michigan from its three Michigan-franchise-based locations within the Metro Detroit area: its showroom in Birmingham; its manufacturing, administrative, and showroom in Wixom; and its showroom within the Michigan Design Center in Troy. Samantha Jones, trade development manager and marketing coordinator at California Closets Inc. in Detroit, Michigan, indicated that the company designs and installs a wide range of custom projects tailored to a multitude of spaces and budgets. Often, California Closets, Michigan will collaborate with interior designers and builders who represent their client, working on projects such as new construction, production homes, and apartment buildings—as well as taking on…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Print Edition

    The Caterpillar

    In Core City, Detroit, urbanism is defined in unconventional terms. For the creative and technical minds behind the neighborhood development at the intersection of Grand River Ave. and Warren Ave., it is about investing in intentional and thoughtful ideas grounded in reality to create a place rather than a market or projects motivated by demand. It is about renovating and activating land that has been vacant for decades in a manner that not only honors the history, people, and space characteristic of the surrounding city, but also enhances and preserves the environment through developing as little real estate as possible. Core City envisions a depopulated urbanism, where public spaces like…

  • Featured

    Gina A. Paul, AIA

    Principal, Senior Architect, Commercial Studio Leader AMDG Architects | Grand Rapids, Michigan   Inspired by the iconic architectural landscape of southern California, Gina A. Paul, AIA, senior architect and one of the principals at AMDG Architects in Grand Rapids, Michigan, knew she wanted to be in architecture from a young age. From the bustling epicenter of Los Angeles, where she went to college, and the nearby historical districts of Pasadena with its distinctive landmarks like Pasadena Hall, to diverse styles found in the region such as Mission Revival, Beaux Arts, Art Deco, and Midcentury Modern, the rich tapestry of the built landscape left an influential mark early in life. Paul…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Design at home

    In Troy, Michigan, the Michigan Design Center boasts distinctive access to top design manufacturers and their showrooms under one roof. From September 17th through the 27th, the design center will also provide rare access to the personal homes—and styles—of six Metro Detroit interior designers as part of its bi-annual Home Tour, in coordination with Detroit Public Television, or DPTV. This year, the tour will be presented as an hour-long video program for the first time, and it will be available to ticket holders to watch any time within the duration of the program. The video presentation tour, hosted by DPTV’s Fred Nahhat, will provide an intimate glimpse into the designers’…

  • Featured,  Form

    X House

    Perched on rock outcroppings along the shore of Lake Superior, a Marquette, Michigan residence is a display of harmonies between residential life and a profound natural topography of forest, lichenous bedrock, and freshwater horizon. The single-story home lays about the landscape in an X shape: an architectural strategy to minimize the home’s footprint, while preserving those stony landforms that inspired the homeowners and architectural team. The shape also embodies more conceptual contradictions, such as the interactions of short and long views across the lake and the robust, protective design of the home that is still bordered in glass and fit for the gentle rituals of everyday life. The choiceness of…

  • Featured,  Form

    Made to measure

    Theodore Alexander Furniture has become synonymous with widely available, luxury home furnishings for the modern residence, with stockists and showrooms around the world. One of these showrooms is housed in the Michigan Design Center in Troy, Michigan, and together with its series of Ralph Lauren Furniture offerings provides visitors from around the Midwest with the best of the global design brand, including its Made-to-Measure furniture capabilities. “Theodore Alexander is a company with one of the largest in-stock stocking programs. They have a lot of furniture that will ship immediately and then a lot of custom furniture that allows us to make something, especially upholstery, exactly what you want it. We’re…

  • Featured,  Form,  Print Edition

    The urban home

    In downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan, the renovation of the third floor of a historic building transforms a vacant, open space into two individual residences for its owners. Featuring a collaborative design-and-build team, which includes two businesses local to Kalamazoo, Intersect Studio and Buday’s Home Electronics Simplified, the project comprises the restoration of the building while maintaining its charm, as well as tailoring each unit to meet the needs of its resident with the installation of innovative and modern technology. Intersect Studio is a design firm specializing in strategy, architecture, planning, interior design, and experiential branding in Kalamazoo. On this project, the company paired its services and worked alongside Buday’s Home Electronics…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Print Edition

    Re-framing the view

    In 1823, a Baltimore-based businessman ran an advertisement for the sale of a Wire and Wheat Fan Establishment in the “The American Farmer: containing Original Essays and Selections on Rural Economy and Internal Improvement with Illustrative Engravings and the Prices Current of Country Produce, Vol. IV.” In it, J. Grafflin listed the sale of wheat fans, rolling screens, and “assorted wove wire for windows and other purposes,” and R. Sinclair, who purchased the establishment, indicated he intended to keep the “ready-made, all kinds of wove wire, suitable for rolling screens, safes, riddles, sieves, and wheat fans.” While other entrepreneurs and inventors would quickly sell, advertise, and file patents—such as Bayley…