New House, Sort Of






As mentioned in the previous post, we have left Chicago and moved to Ann Arbor.  Here we’re close to both of our families and still an easy trip back to Chicago when we need an urban fix.  We purchased 3 acres on Ann Arbor’s northeast side.  The property boasts tons of gorgeous, huge trees and 1/3 of it if fully wooded.  Rumor is there are winter time views of the river, however, we’re just happy to have a big lot to play on.  It’s only a mile-ish to the grocery stores and not too far from town and yet feels extremely private.  We had hoped, when we looked at the photos, that we might be able to live in the house and renovate a bit at a time but then we went in person and what a disaster.  So, we’re opting for a near full tear down.

First we met with a couple of builders to see if it was even reasonable to think we could afford to build and the consensus was yes.  As we were putting together a creative brief to give people an idea of what we like and we were hoping for in a house we found we kept coming back to the work of architects Johnsen Schmaling.  And while we wanted to work with local people this more modern, minimal style of home is just not the norm around here.  At best we could maybe work with someone who does Arts & Crafts or Prairie style.  So, half on a whim, we called Johnsen Schmaling and LOVED them immediately.  Everything about their aesthetic and process made complete sense to us and most importantly we trust them implicitly to make the space work.  I feel like that’s such an intangible thing that a less than stellar architect could mess up and you’ll never know until the house is built and you spend some time in the space feeling like it’s not quite right.

So, on to the next step.

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