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Do You Speak Design?

By Jennifer Luce Hinesman

As anyone who has been privy to an Architectural Review will tell you, design is it’s own language. Architects and designers use creative, (and sometimes downright confusing), language to convey ideas, emotions, and their vision for the design. Throw in a bit of industry jargon and a person using “Archi-speak” and now a translator will be required!  Now take that conversation to a real-world client meeting and you will be met with misunderstanding and blank stares.

In our design studio at Meadowlark we have found that the old saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” is true. The power of images to communicate a feeling or a design aesthetic can be a thousand times clearer than words alone – especially to clients who are new to the design process.

Often, a client knows what they like when they see it, but they are not able to express it verbally. And that’s okay! Knowing what you like is a huge first step. Not knowing how to communicate your design style is a small hurdle.

We encourage our homeowners at the beginning of the design process to use the internet and create idea books or “pin” ideas to collect a set of their likes. By sharing these idea books or boards with our team, we can start to efficiently distill a homeowners likes and dislikes. These images become the “seeds” of the project — a common language and a place to begin the design process and create a custom solution for our clients. Below are a few suggestions:


WARNING: you will be completely addicted by the beautiful images you are about to see!

Houzz: a fantastic source for images of all kinds – especially remodeling ideas. Search on a topic or browse articles provided by the site. We like to ask our homeowners to make idea books, where one can add comments as well as share the idea book with our design team.

Pinterest: pin design ideas to your hearts content and don’t get sidetracked by the “making a notebook from a paper bag” board like I did!  These ideas will become a shorthand for our design conversations.

Remodelista: funky and fresh ideas on renovations as well as travel and shopping. Beware of putting this app on your phone…totally addictive!

Meadowlark’s Photo Gallery: we have a ton of photos of the many projects we have done over the years. Take a gander and let us know what are your favorites.

Want to talk about your dreams and ideas?  We’d love to hear from you.

Do you have a home building or remodeling project you're thinking about?

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