Posts Tagged ‘Chicago Interior Design’

Located in Chicago’s vibrant Lakeview neighborhood, the four year project recently completed by Harrington College of Design’s own faculty member Constantine Vasilios is truly an Architecture and Interior Design innovation in experience, quality of detail and refinement. Drawing from his extensive thirty plus years of industry experience, Constantine and his team from CVADesign created a house that breathed life into the clients’ dreams and excitement in the stage set of everyday life that a house provides. Constantine takes us on an exclusive tour of the exterior and interior of the house below!

Exterior:  The entry sequence provides materials of wrought iron, copper, and exterior lighting to showcase the house in the evening.

Living Area:  The first level fireplace and surroundings are a testimony of precise design requirements executed in fine craftsmanship.  The interior celebrates a flow of space with various leaks to light.

Water Wall:  Upon entering the house, the verticality is expressed in a glass window, flanked by the lazy rolling water falling from the top of the house to the lower level.

First Level:  The interior is planned about an axis that penetrates the house.  Cross axes provide focus to fireplaces, stairways, and the kitchen.  Through arches interpreted with thousands of spheres pinned to trim the sides.  On top of the columns are blown glass capitals.

Portion of the Kitchen:  The kitchen is compact, efficient, and celebrates client requested warmth.

Guest Suite:  This second level fireplace is surrounded by art and cabinetry, housing the owner’s glass.  The double door French balcony opens to the quiet murmur of water.

Master Bathroom:  The Master Bathroom concept is furniture placed among reclaimed alabaster for a tranquil environment.  The skylight is positioned on top of the Jacuzzi for gazing at the sky and passing of clouds.

Master Bedroom

About Constantine D. Vasilios, AIA, NCARB, IIDA, NCIDQ:

Constantine D. Vasilios received his Bachelor of Architecture in Design degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he studied with Peter Pran and Richard Whitaker. He attended a year abroad in the overseas program at Versailles, France combining studio with travel to several countries. He received his Master of Architecture degree with honors from the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied, traveled, and completed his thesis with the late Charles W. Moore. He also participated in the overseas program at Oxford, England. Prior to leaving Austin, he served as a teaching assistant for Charles Moore and lectured to graduate students in History of Architecture and Art.

He has worked in the Chicago offices of Tigerman McCurry, Pappageorge Haymes, and assisted in the office of Charles Moore and Associates. He is a principal in the firm Constantine D. Vasilios & Associates Ltd, and has over thirty years of experience in the fields of Architecture and Interior Design. His resume includes buildings such as museums, recreational, residential and not-for-profit. He has participated in several exhibitions, has been published, and has received awards over the years. He has been a guest lecturer and/or visiting studio critic at several schools of Architecture and Interior Design. He served as Studio Master, and has been a faculty member at the Harrington College of Design since 1996. He is the recipient of the 2008 AIA Illinois Nathan Clifford award for teaching excellence and practice.

Photography by Peter Bosy

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We were excited to discover a project by Constantine D. Vasilios, AIA, NCARB, IIDA, NCIDQ, an instructor at the Harrington College of Design: his recently completed house in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood has already caught attention and is soon to be published in several magazines! The design team that worked on the project included Allyson Ann Wilkovich Holbrook, ASID, LEED AP, an adjunct Instructor at Harrington, and Elizabeth Pasquinelli, LEED AP, Assoc.AIA, a Harrington graduate.

Taking over four years to complete, the architecture and interior design of the house is representative of Constantine’s thirty plus years of industry experience and twenty years of leading his own practice.Constantineshared, “I owe my persistence to designing houses to the late Charles W. Moore at the University of Texas at Austin, Stanley Tigerman at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Pappageorge Haymes in Chicago. While working for these offices, the principals’ contagious delight, energy, and professional focus influenced my work at the office as well as in the classroom. Other influences for the design include my travels across continents, investigating buildings and their felt experiences. I weave my experiences in projects tailored to people and their dreams.”

After having interviews with four other firms in Chicago, the project began when the clients chose the CVA Design team. Constantine and Allyson met with the clients in Los Angeles to document their lifestyle in order to design their new house in Chicago. The clients had a background in graphic design via the movie industry and were excited to incorporate theoretical, as well as practical, design components into their new residence.

Located near Wrigley Field, in Chicago’s trendy Lakeview neighborhood, the house is a 6,000 square foot oasis from the fast pace of Chicago and for baseball fans on their way to the ball park. The house is designed within vertical and horizontal axes that celebrate space ad emphasize light, texture, sound, and color. Each detail is solved and incorporated in a symphony of experiences memorable for the clients.

The header image is just a taste of what’s to come: it’s actually the recreational lower level of the house! Keep reading tomorrow for a full tour of the house!

Photography by Peter Bosy

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Article written by Karen Carpino, a Harrington College of Design Interior Design Alumna, as featured in Chicago Now’s TCW


Here’s a tip to try that can make your next interior decorating project easier: Buy your area rug first.

In my experience with clients, most interior design projects begin with the selection of furniture, lighting, paint and even window treatments before choosing an area rug. Then the search begins to try to find an area rug that perfectly coordinates with all the furnishing and color scheme selections. At times this can be challenging, even for professional interior designers. I have even heard of decorating projects when the homeowner became so frustrated looking for the right rug that the decision was made to do without an area rug.

The inspiration for this blog is a recent design project with a client. She had been struggling for years unable to make selections of furnishings to redecorate her living room. She went to a rug sale, saw a rug she just had to have and purchased it. The colors and pattern of the area rug have become the inspiration for the room’s decorating scheme. If this approach can be easier, why don’t more people start a decorating project with a rug? Well, when you think about it, it’s daring to purchase one decorative item, like an area rug, and decorate an entire room around that item. One tip: you need to love the rug.

With a rug to begin your decorating project, you are ready to go. How do you begin? Use the colors of the rug to set your color scheme. Choose fabrics and paint to coordinate with this scheme. Is the rug’s motif traditional, oriental or modern? Select fabric patterns and textures to compliment the rug’s design. Follow this plan and you’ll be making selections in a cohesive theme.

If you like area rugs and definitely want to include one in your room’s decor, then this technique may be ideal for you. It’s another creative option to try. Interior decorating is designed to make your home beautiful to look at, and there is more than one path to take to get the results.

Always have fun decorating either DIY or when working with a professional designer. Enjoy the process. Love your décor!

About Karen Carpino:
Karen Carpino is an interior designer and founder of Chicago-based Karen Carpino Design. A professionally registered interior designer with over 25 years experience, Karen’s clientele includes both residential and commercial projects specializing in interior design, space planning and construction management. Karen is an alumna of the Harrington College of Design. Visit her site at http://www.carpinodesign.com/.

Photos courtesy Modern Rugs

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Information for this article was provided by Tom Marquardt, principal and founder of marquardt+ in Chicago, IL and an Interior Design instructor at the Harrington College of Design, as featured within The Journal of Light Construction May 2011 issue.

This feature is continued from yesterday.

After the living areas were taken care of, Tom next looked to transform the bathroom and kitchen. He enlarged the bath by borrowing a foot from the hallway and three feet towards the front of the apartment. Replacing the front wall of the bathroom with textured translucent glass allowed it to receive natural light during the day, while at night its internal lights can provide accent lighting to the living areas outside. You can see the before and after picture above!

For the kitchen, Tom and his marquardt+ team truly started to get creative. “People always seem to end up in the kitchen, so even though this one was very small, it needed to be a comfortable place for guests to hang out and convenient for the cook. Since expanding it wasn’t an option, we decided to design it for multiple uses. The washer and dryer are beneath the wall counter, the island provides a place to fold clothes, and (as detailed yesterday) the guest bedroom can double as a seating area.”

From a stainless steel prep table island, to inexpensive brackets and standard wire shelving for dish storage, Tom controlled costs by creating functional and custom areas that often doubled in their use. “The drawers beneath the long counter are actually Herman Miller Meridian commercial file cabinets. We placed a plant box in the window sill to block the view of the roof next door while still letting in the daylight. Nothing is built in. The island is freestanding, and the shelves and cabinets are clipped in place. This makes it easy to pull things out and replace them, whether to reconfigure the kitchen for a rental or to stage it for a sale,” Tom said.

With the shotgun flat project complete, Tom Marquardt shares his insight: “What are the lessons from this project? One is that while people want big bedrooms, you can compensate with a bigger bath, a more inviting public area, and built-in storage — and by thinking more broadly about product options.

The larger lesson is that you can live well in a small space. Why build 3,000 square feet when you can build half that and live or work just as comfortably? Designing within a limited footprint takes imagination, but if you’re flexible in your approach it’s amazing what becomes possible.”

About Tom Marquardt and marquardt+
Tom Marquardt, principal and founder of marquardt+, initially established his practice in 1988 as Marquardt Design Collaboratives with three studios located in Chicago, Milwaukee, and London. Skilled designers and architects led each studio utilizing interdisciplinary design methods to create innovative solutions. Tom Marquardt and Vince Gammino led the Chicago studio, Greg Martin headed the Milwaukee studio, and Andrea Brown maintained the London studio. MDC successfully completed projects in the US, Europe, Egypt and Dubai, and now continues its interdisplinary design tradition as marquardt+ through experience and confidence which translates into comprehensive, yet decisive creativity.

Tom is the definition of interdisciplinary design with a triple major in Graphic, Industrial and Interior Design. He not only brings his vision of cross discipline design to a project, but the objectivity of a seasoned business owner.

In addition to running a business, Tom also teaches at the Harrington College of Design. He was recently asked to create the first Branded Environments course in the nation. He also presents at conferences, educational institutions and professional organizations.

Photos by Michelle Litvin Photography  and Jaysen Goranson Photography

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Information for this article was provided by Tom Marquardt, principal and founder of marquardt+ in Chicago, IL and an Interior Design instructor at the Harrington College of Design, as featured within The Journal of Light Construction May 2011 issue.

Built around the start of the 20th century, a shotgun flat combines European urban architecture with commercial space at ground level and living accommodations above. Chicago has thousands of shotgun flats, all with the trademark long and narrow layout: when Tom Marquardt bought one, he and his marquardt+ team looked beyond the architectural limitations to create a truly unique and personalized space.

“When I bought an early 20th century commercial three-flat in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, the goal was to put our architectural design studio, marquardt+,  on the ground floor, rent out the second-floor apartment and live on the third floor. Such live/work arrangements have been attracting quite a bit of interest in urban areas like ours, so I was excited to have the chance to adapt this building to modern standards,” said Tom.

The main challenge of the space was the narrow construct: the 900 square foot third floor is 51 feet long and just 19.5 feet wide. To open up the space and increase light in the front of the building, Tom removed door archways, knocked down walls, added mirrors, installed larger windows and kept to a light paint color scheme that ranged from light grey and silver to beige.

Living room before and after:

“The back of the apartment posed more of a challenge. Much of our business is for commercial clients — showrooms, retail spaces, offices, and restaurants — and some of the lessons learned on those projects came in handy here. For instance, there was no practical way to enlarge either of the small bedrooms, which were bounded by two exterior walls, the stair- well, and the narrow hallway. We compensated by opening these two rooms up to the adjacent spaces. We also added two sliding MDF doors on a 30-foot length of galvanized barn-door hardware, so that each space can be closed off for privacy or opened up for elbow room,” Tom shared.

An example of this can be seen below: a small rear bedroom close to the kitchen was opened up to become a spacious space for guests to sit in, complete with built-in storage units underneath the beds. And to keep things interesting for the cook, the bedroom/guest area also has a flatscreen TV that is viewable from the kitchen!

See more of Tom’s Shotgun flat tomorrow!

Photos by Michelle Litvin Photography  and Jaysen Goranson Photography

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This feature is continued from yesterday.

Featured at this year’s Lake Forest Showhouse and Garden event were stunning designs by lead Designer Susan Sissman and her team from Eclectic Design Collaborative which included Harrington Masters in Interior Design student (and soon to be alumna :)), Leslie Bowman , HCD ID graduate Gwen Williams and HCD Adjunct faculty members Cynthia Gissele and Denise Rush.

The dynamic group was awarded the design of the second floor main hallway with many closets that were originally purposed as areas for linen storage. The design team transformed the space – working around the concept of the manor’s past and peacocks – into a delightful assemblage of jeweled spaces.

The “Night Cap” room was designed to avert a visit to the lower level of the manor. The bar cabinet conceals an unsightly “slop sink”, while the bold red hue initiates a striking dance of the senses just before bedtime.

The “Solace” room is traditionally styled with a touch of whimsy. This petit hideaway offers a space to jot down a quick note,  complete with a sensually styled boutique stool by Christopher Guy.

“The Strut” room exudes the vain attitude of the peacock during his mating call. The drapery, designed with the ball gown header (exclusive to The Curtain Exchange), steps back into a lost era of design hues, but represents the most significant hues within the fowl’s plumage.

“Cedar Closet” is designed to recall the past with its warm and woodsy space. As expected, this closet stores beautifully designed wool and cashmere clothing and luxury winter linens – but also displays a glimpse of fashion, with jewel-like drawer pulls, and a hat box styled light fixture.

Awesome work from a very talanted group of designers. I hope to follow up with the Eclectic Design Collaborative group soon to learn about their other projects!

Photos and design courtesy Susan Sissman, Leslie Bowman and Eclectic Design Collaborative

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In May, a dynamic group affiliated with Harrington worked together to create striking designs at the 2011 Lake Forest Showhouse and Garden event!

For 26 years the Lake Forest Auxillary chapter of the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago, founded in 1926, selects a grand historic property in the Lake Forest Illinois area to be the site of their Showhouse & Gardens event. The homes are designed by distinguished architects and a competition is held for interior designers and landscape architects to submit concepts of redesign for the various spaces within each home. As a premier showcase that highlights creative talent, furnishings and products, this very publicized annual event attracts prestigious national and local publications, newspapers and television coverage as well as many local and national Interior Designers and potential clients.

This year’s 2011 event featured architect Howard Van Doren Shaw’s Thorndale Manor, a 25 room home on nineteen acres that was landscaped by Jens Jensen. Awarded the “Hall of Closets”, Harrington Interior Design graduate, Susan Sissman, served as the lead designer on a team from Eclectic Design Collaborative which included Harrington Masters in Interior Design student, Leslie Bowman, HCD ID gradudate Gwen Williams and HCD Adjunct faculty members Cynthia Gissele and Denise Rush. The spaces that the dynamic Harrington group was awarded was an exciting new interior design for second floor main hallway, now infamously named “The Hall of Closets.”

The “Hall of Closets” offers the ultimate expression of creativity and function, in this otherwise obscure locale. Drawing inspiration from Thorndale Manor’s past, imagine free roaming peacocks on the pastoral grounds. Their jewel tone plumage influences a warm, yet sensual and exciting palette throughout the space. As the peacock struts, his presence is apparent throughout the adjacent rooms, with abundant color. The hall path winks towards a feathered motif with the selection of environmentally responsible wallpaper and paint. The black and white drapery dressing signifies the beak of the peacock. The beak is also represented in white carpeting, bringing a reflective light element to the space. The mirrors-installed vertically located to the right of the hall entrance, and the chair featured at the far end of the path; represent home furnishings, designed as structural “art”- by Christopher Guy.

Keep reading tomorrow to see the finished concepts!

Photos and design courtesy Susan Sissman, Leslie Bowman and Eclectic Design Collaborative

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