Peekaboos between spaces make for interesting homes, creating an alluring tease which gradually reveals what lies beyond. Trust me, it’s much more fun than showing it all at once. Yes, this applies to architecture, too. In this example, a curved wall separates the foyer from the living room, and another separates the living from the dining. Combine this idea with the concept of layering spaces (a topic for another post), and you really have something.

Peekaboo Living Room

Modern House Living Room by Tim Bjella Arteriors Architects

It’s the Little Things

Cross-country flight today, seated next to a young girl, 6 1/2 years old (not 6 or 6 1/4, but 6 1/2. Very important) and her mom. She didn’t have anything to do, so I gave her my sketchbook to color in and we chatted for much of the flight. Kids like Disney World. Who knew? She left me this note.

Sketchbook Note

Sketchbook Coloring

Yet another reason to always carry a sketchbook (and multi-pencil)!

A Change in Perspective – A Modern, Glass Home on a Mountain, or in a Valley?

Glass House

What a difference perspective makes! These two images show the same modern, glass house in Sonoma, California photographed from vantage points only fifty feet from one another (same day, same camera, same lens). Naturally, you would think they were two similar homes on dramatically different sites – one perched on a mountaintop and the other nestled in a serene valley.

It just goes to show what a slight change of perspective can do. Interestingly, it works the same way in life.

Rugged Luxury – Mountain Timber House at the Yellowstone Club, Montana – Arteriors Architects

Modern Mountain House Yellowstone Club Montana Arteriors Architects

What was the driving factor in the design of this mountain home? Context.

I designed this modern, rustic mountain home at the Yellowstone Club in Montana with an aesthetic of rugged luxury specifically to integrate with the other mountain homes in the area. In many ways it is unique, but it has underlying characteristics that allow it to blend, to fit in, yet retain its own identity.

  • Heavy wood timbers
  • Rough textured, natural materials
  • Hand crafted details
  • Solid, heavy metal connections
  • Large windows comprised of many smaller windows
  • Strong connection to the earth via stone base and walls
Cotswolds, England
Cotswolds, England

Why was context the driving force behind this design? Because all communities, towns, and neighborhoods have a sense of place, sometimes distinctly good, sometimes awful, but most often unremarkable. Some, however, are extraordinary, like the Cotswolds, England. We cherish these places, and for good reason. They have a fabric that ties them together which is based in large part on architecture. Most are not the children of forethought and planning, but came into being spontaneously and were nurtured over many years.

While many are resilient, some are fragile. Sometimes one thoughtless building can rip the fabric. Imagine a modern, white building in the middle of the Cotswolds. I bet it wouldn’t last a week before an angry mob with pitchforks and torches descended upon it. I’d be the one carrying the gasoline.

See more of my work at Arteriors Architecture.

From Concept to Final – The Evolution of a Modern House in Paradise – Kauai, Hawaii Home by Arteriors Architects

How long is the journey to paradise? All I know, young grasshopper, is it begins with a single step. Or, in this case, a single drawing. Then more drawings. Ultimately, lots of drawings. And then a few more for good measure. Here is a sampling to give you a glimpse into my house design process.

Modern Hawaii House by Arteriors Architects Concept Sketch
Concept Sketch

Here is the result:

Contemporary Hawaii Glass House by Arteriors Architects

Contemporary Hawaii Glass House by Arteriors Architects

Contemporary Hawaii Glass House by Arteriors Architects


People Who Live in Glass Houses… Live in Our Houses. A Hilltop Home in Los Angeles, California by Arteriors Architects

Los Angeles Hilltop Modern Glass House

In my neverending quest to create “art you can live in”, I present this home in Calabasas, California. But, not as art for art’s sake. Anyone can design a home as a piece of sculpture, or as a shocking statement, but the true art lies in creating an artful home that also embraces the occupants. A thoughtful home that cuddles them and makes them feel comfortable. A romantic home that enriches their lives with textures, light and pleasing spaces throughout their day; all the while breaking away from the standard memes that we think of as a traditional home.

Los Angeles Hilltop Modern Glass House View from Above

This provocative hilltop, floor-to-ceiling glass house just outside of Los Angeles, California provides stunning views of the city below across an infinity edge pool. Its flat roofs are green-planted and hold an extensive solar panel array along with water reclamation systems.

See more of my work at Arteriors Architecture.