from the editor

home front

  • solar flair

    As if we needed any more evidence that solar houses can be both high-performing and beautiful, comfortable places to live, the 2009 Solar Decathlon has once again proved the point.


green piece

  • family affair

    When Charles R. Stinson, AIA, and his sons, Jason and Joshua, purchased a 100-year-old house in Chanhassen, Minn., their initial intent was to tear it down and build new. But as they began demolition, they realized the structure—a former nunnery—had solid bones. So the Minneapolis-area trio decided...


green pieces

  • strand and deliver

    Strands of bamboo are bonded with earth-friendly adhesive to give Teragren's Synergy floating floor a completely different look.

  • xceptional lighting

    Lightolier claims its Xceed compact fluorescent recessed lighting series showcases the latest advances in energy-efficient technology.

  • the low-down

    Gerber's Ultra Flush high-efficiency toilet uses only 1.1 gallons of water per flush.

  • superior blends

    Sonoma Cast Stone has developed a new family of kinder, gentler concrete mixes.

  • low lights

    Kichler Lighting's Design Pro LED discs.

  • graze the roof

    Carlisle SynTec's Vegetated Sedum Tiles.

  • trickle down

    Hanson Hardscapes' Aquaflow permeable paving system.


k+b studio

  • bath: pair of aces

    The master bath of 543 House (in the first two slides above) bears a strong family resemblance to the kitchen that occupies the space just below it. Its long sink counter and splash surfaces are white Corian, its flush-front cabinetry is teak, and its geometry favors strong, monolithic elements.

  • kitchen: dining out

    To get both an open interior and a full garage on a 30-foot-by-80-foot lot, architects Barbara Callas and Steven Shortridge, AIA, gave 543 House, as it's called, a section that rises in a staggered series of split levels.



  • off the beaten path

    Think of architectural hot spots, and you think of big cities: Boston, Chicago, New York. Major metropolitan areas thrive on diversity and innovation, but they're also known for pollution, traffic, and expensive real estate, and not every architect wants to live in one. Small towns have trade-offs...



  • robert luntz, aia, and joseph tanney, aia

    Joseph Tanney, AIA, recalls the early 1990s’ recession with a hint of nostalgia. “We had just started; we were too dumb to know what was going on,” says the co-architect, with partner Robert Luntz, AIA, of the first Dwell Home.


architects' choice

  • carolina blues

    Frank Harmon Architect: Jacob's Creek Stone Co.'s Nor Carla Bluestone.

  • zip it

    Kaplan Thompson Architects: Huber Engineered Woods' ZIP System building envelopes.

  • greenprints

    Specht Harpman: Weston Solutions' GreenGrid modular system.

  • ground cover

    Obie G. Bowman, Architect: Grace Construction Products' Hydroduct 660 drainage composite sheet and Bituthene 4000 pre-formed waterproof membrane.

  • rough and ready

    Obie G. Bowman Architect: Redwood Lumber and Supply Co.'s rough-sawn lumber products.

  • playing the angles

    Obie G. Bowman Architect: Solarium & Skylight Systems' window products.

  • hardie boy

    Shipley Architects: James Hardie Building Products' fiber cement siding.

  • vintage appeal

    Shipley Architects: DuroDesign's 100 percent postindustrial cork flooring.

  • in the groove

    Shipley Architects: MBCI's corrugated metal roofing and wall materials.

  • good sense

    Holst Architecture: Kohler Co.'s Cimarron 1.28-gallons-per-flush toliet tank.

  • a coat above

    Holst Architecture: Miller Paint Co.'s zero-VOC Acro Pure paint.

  • tough outlook

    Holst Architecture: Cascadia Windows' fiberglass windows.

  • can do

    Alchemy Architects: Lightolier's energy-saving Calculite LED.

  • tera firma

    Alchemy Architects: Teragren's Synergy strand bamboo flooring.

  • rain coat

    Alchemy Architects: VaproShield's WallShield breathable membrane.

  • green screen

    Hays + Ewing Design Studio: CENTRIA Architectural Systems' EcoScreen perforated screen walls.

  • hot item

    Hays + Ewing Design Studio: Cambia Building Products' thermally modified lumber.

  • sun times

    Kaplan Thompson Architects: Apricus Solar Co.'s solar heating system.

  • state of vegetation

    Kaplan Thompson Architects: LiveRoof's modular roof system.

  • paper weight

    Kaplan Thompson Architects: Cellulose Insulation Manufacturers Association's cellulose insulation.

  • show your metal

    Frank Harmon Architect: American Iron and Steel Institute's pre- and post-consumer recycled steel.

  • have a heart

    Frank Harmon Architect: Heartwood Pine Floors' reclaimed 100 percent heartwood pine flooring.

  • greens fees

    Frank Harmon Architect: Living Roofs' green roof consultation, design, construction and maintenance.

  • the bruck stops here

    Carter + Burton Architecture: Ledra II track lights from Bruck.

  • in sod they trust

    Carter + Burton Architecture: Building Logics' EnviroTech sod roof systems.

  • faux real

    Carter + Burton Architecture: Fossil Faux Studios' custom resin panels.

  • blue ribbon panels

    Carter + Burton Architecture: AFM's R-Control SIPs

  • seal of approval

    Specht Harpman: osmo North America's One Coat Only transparent sealer.

  • cell it

    Specht Harpman: BioBased Technologies' spray foam insulation.

  • bucket brigade

    Specht Harpman: Tank Town's rainwater collection system

  • rubber made

    Minarc: Rubber-Cal's recycled rubber sheet and tile products.

  • daily mass

    Minarc: Portland Cement Association's concrete flooring materials.

  • clad wrap

    Minarc: U.S. Architectural Products' Cem-Clad panels.

  • solar sandwich

    David Vandervort Architects: Silicon Energy's Cascade Series PV modules.

  • triple play

    David Vandervort Architects: 3form USA's Varia ecoresin line of translucent architectural panels.

  • lovely leftovers

    David Vandervort Architects: Tiger Mountain Innovations' Squak Mountain Stone.

  • seamless install

    David Vandervort Architects: AEP Span's Design Span hp standing seam.

  • cotton pick

    TANNERHECHT Architecture: Bonded Logic's UltraTouch insulation.

  • aluminum remix

    TANNERHECHT Architecture: Renewed Materials' Alkemi recycled aluminum solid surfacing.

  • artists' palette

    TANNERHECHT Architecture: YOLO Colorhouse's 100 percent acrylic, no-VOC paint.

  • repeat performances

    TANNERHECHT Architecture: Building Materials Reuse Association's reclaimed wood

  • architects' choice

    For our annual architects' choice issue, we decided to focus the field of selections on the proliferating category of sustainable building products. we consulted the experts-architects on the front lines of green specifications-to find out what really works in both design and practice. read about...


shelter lab

  • basics training

    For such a tiny house, this 320-square-foot dwelling in Marfa, Texas, serves many purposes. San Antonio architect Candid Rogers, AIA, designed it for himself as a weekend retreat. But the project also serves as a teaching tool for his University of Texas at San Antonio students, who make the...



new material

  • que bellissima

    Handblown glass luminaire can be wall-mounted or suspended from adjustable steel tension wires and creates soft light.

  • oh, what a light

    Designed specifically for low-voltage systems, the Lumière Cambria 203 LED allows halogen and LED fixtures to be integrated on the same 12-volt circuit.

  • teak performance

    These teak deck tiles from Dallas-based East Teak Fine Hardwoods can be used to retrofit an old stone patio or to create a completely new deck area.

  • burn notice

    Spark, the manufacturer of unconventional modern gas fireplaces, now offers a burner system–dubbed the Linear Burner System Outdoor–that allows architects to bring the same styling outdoors.

  • bench warmer–web-extra!

    The Palisade bench brings a warm, angular look to exterior projects. Kalamazoo, Mich.-based Landscape Forms crafts the bench from blocks of solid jarrah or redwood fastened with internal steel rods.

  • wabi-sabi–web-extra!

    Stone Forest says stone basins date back to Shinto shrines, where they held water for ritual cleansing.

  • out of this world–web-extra!

    The SS510 Series is a line of stainless steel lights designed for underwater applications.

  • alter ego

    Inspired by traditional Murano glass chandeliers, the Tropico from Foscarini is a modular suspension lamp that can be configured in different shapes and sizes.

  • art nouveau riche

    The Tracciato Collection of luxury tiles features decorative etchings hand-laid with genuine gold and silver leaf, then hand-waxed and buffed to a natural patina.

  • control yourself

    Danze's new Thermostatic Shower System includes a high-flow ¾-inch thermostatic valve and separate ¾-inch ceramic disc controls.

  • sea fare

    Swiss manufacturer LAUFEN's new Palomba Collection by Italian designers Ludovica and Roberto Palomba draws inspiration from the sea, blending the organic with the contemporary.

  • cheap chic

    Looking for an affordable countertop? Teragren says bamboo is the answer.

  • déjà flue

    EcoSmart's Retro fireplace was inspired by 1960s pop culture motifs, with rounded corners and a tube design that suits various architectural styles.

  • studio time

    The Studio Collection is a line of home technology devices affordably priced from around $7.50 (for wall plates) to $1,380 (for a whole-house audio system).

  • cirque du soleil

    Foscarini SRL's Le Soleil suspension lamp.

  • steel rose

    Omnia Industries' stainless steel square rose latch.

  • letter set

    WETSTYLE's M collection of modern modular bath products.

  • a shade better

    Luxo Corp.'s L-1 architect lamp.

  • full exposure

    Meld USA's Xposed eco-composite solid surfacing.


off the shelf

  • carry a torch

    Acantha Lifestyle's line of contemporary, portable gel burners deliver a clean and attractive flame.



  • ARCHITECTS hanna gabriel wells

    Last fall, the principals of ARCHITECTS hanna gabriel wells made good on their long-held plan to buy their own place. The circa 1955 building they chose—once home to an auto repair shop in the heart of San Diego's Ocean Beach community—was “a diamond in the rough, at its roughest,” recalls...


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