• Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Personal affects

    Before Dawn Marie Coe, founder and chief creative officer at DMC Design LLC, launched her own firm in 2011, she had a naturally-keen eye for interior details and how they paired with their architectural surroundings.  “I noticed I had an eye for not just looking at those little things, but also asking the right questions to see if [homeowners] needed their space transformed beyond paint colors and furnishings,” Coe said. “I typically ended up going toward more of an architectural and spatial planning [point-of-view]. It was a hobby, but then it became something that was full-time and bigger than just furniture and paint colors; that is when I knew I…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Mediterranean air

    Text: R. Collins  When designing the interior for a new Byron Center, Michigan home—which would be featured in the Home Builders Association of Greater West Michigan’s annual parade—Julie Wynalda, founder of True Vine Creations in Hudsonville, Michigan, looked no further than the Mediterranean aesthetics of the homeowner’s childhood living spaces in Israel and her design firm’s own principles.  “My style is literally rooted in my love for nature,” Wynalda said. “Somehow that environment opens my thoughts and ideas. I tend to really enjoy neutrals on neutrals and then adding layers of texture rather than color.” True Vine Creations is a West Michigan-based commercial and retail interior design solutions company also…

  • Design Spotlight

    Iron and ivory

    “There was something consistent no matter where I studied and that was the principles of Vitruvius, who was an architectural philosopher in the Roman Empire. He really stressed good design is focused around three main components, which is feasibility, beauty, and durability; so essentially function, beauty, and strength,” said Kayla Pongrac, principal, designer, and co-founding partner of Iron and Ivory in Ontario, Canada. “That is the philosophy behind our brand.” Iron and Ivory is an interior design firm with a collaborative environment led by Co-Founding Partners Pongrac and Rnea Garrah from its two locations in Ottawa and Toronto, Ontario. At its core, the small firm embraces a philosophy inspired by…

  • Travel

    Motion in choreograph

    “We are an idea-based firm. We can pivot off of any design problem and I think program is really just a vehicle to test ideas,” said Dwayne MacEwen, AIA, principal and creative director at DMAC Architecture P.C. in Evanston, Illinois. “Whether it is a hospital or a restaurant, I think you need to understand how it functions and it works, but it is still a vehicle to test some ideas and what is a food design for that particular problem or space.” When the Midtown Athletic Club and the Hotel at Midtown opened in 2017 at the intersection of Elston, Damen, and Fullerton Avenue in Chicago, Illinois, it reflected a…

  • Architecture,  Form

    Mountain inn

    Text: Kyle Gandy Crystal Mountain, a nationally recognized four-season resort located about 28 miles southwest of Traverse City in Thompsonville, Michigan, has recently undergone an $11 million, 31,200-square-foot expansion—The Inn at the Mountain—that comprises 25 suites, a specialty market, a rooftop terrace, and coffee and wine bar. “One of the demands, in terms of our guests, is that we needed more hotel space; particularly, we host plenty of meetings and conferences, so the 25 suites help with that,” said Brian Lawson, director of public relations at Crystal Mountain. “Another thing we needed was an additional bar space, and more specifically, a place where you could get a cup of coffee.…

  • Architecture,  Form

    Bright farmhouse

    With its intentional use of natural, light materials, this farmhouse shines with timeless style. Text: R. Collins Familiar with modern design trends and imbuing a sense of timeless style, Visbeen Architects and full-service interior design firm Vision Interiors by Visbeen reworked midcentury design concepts blended with the equally classic residential style often known for its use of raw wood and natural materials: the country farmhouse. Perched amid Kalamazoo, Michigan’s shaded woodlands, the Holloway House—finished in 2017—overlooks a ribbon-like stream and bountiful natural beauty that is complemented by the home’s refined, rustic-inspired appearance.  “While the exterior is more of that contemporary farmhouse, [the homeowners] had a midcentury theme that they wanted,…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Legacy in design

    Text: R.Collins  As a testament to easy-going summers and northern Michigan’s distinctive natural elements, Architect Ken Richmond, AIA, composed a modern-day wood cabin perched on one of Lake Michigan’s scenic bluffs for a family positioned in Chicago full-time. The three-story home was affectionately named Good Heart Lodge after its location in the Michigan town, Good Heart, and it connects the family to its roots as the third generation to make the area a vacation residence.   “It’s an extension of the old family compound,” Richmond said. “It’s on a really spectacular site, up [on the bluff] overlooking the world.”  Richmond’s full-service architectural and planning firm—Ken Richmond, Architect—also partnered with Scott…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Arbor reborn

    Text: R.Collins  In the early 2000s, when the invasive Emerald Ash Borer beetle sparked an epidemic in southeastern Michigan, many trees native to the region had to be cut down and replaced. Then, about five years ago, Jenny Barger, co-founder and director of sales and marketing at Live Edge Detroit, received a coffee table composed of ash wood and beautifully exposed Emerald Ash Borer etchings from her brother Joe Barger.  The table sparked a business idea that would bring a new supply of natural materials to Detroit’s do-it-yourself and sustainable design scenes, and shortly thereafter, Live Edge Detroit was born. With support from their father, Mike Barger, who is a…