We all click on and watch an occasional TED talk now and then. They are like popcorn when you are hungry for little inspiration. I’m most often captured by the talks given by scientists and by teachers, people who are revealing the world as it is and also as they dream it could be. On...Read More

What You May Not Know About Building or Remodeling on Water

How zoning can impact property owners planning to build. A blog series by Wayne Branum, AIA Over many years of practicing architecture in Minnesota and Wisconsin I have been surprised by how many property owners are not fully informed about the issues involved with building new or...Read More

Good Neighbors: Respecting Existing Neighborhoods When Designing Homes

Within the city, opportunities to build a new home face challenges that are often different than building in a suburban area.  The primary challenge is that vacant land is not readily available.  More often than not, a property already has a house on it that requires demolition in...Read More

Name that Style! A Contest on the Homes By Architects Tour!

In a few days I will be struggling to find the right words to explain the style of a home that I designed for an artful couple who have generously allowed us to participate in the Homes by Architects Tour this coming Saturday and Sunday. This tour is an excellent way to share what we have...Read More

Home Convenience and Livability Without Altering Scale or Charm

Sometimes just a little space can make all the difference in the way a home functions and its livability.  That was the case with a home I recently worked on that will be included in the 2013 Remodelers Showcase organized by the Builder's Association of the Twin Cities.  The home...Read More

Discovering architectural opportunities through small gestures

Architects who specialize in residential architecture have a way of seeing and discovering opportunities in our projects that often elude others.  We see space differently, we react to our clients needs in ways that are often unexpected, and we present solutions that exceed...Read More

Evolution of the pencil: An introduction to BIM Software

Surely we have all been captivated at various times by the wonders of technology. Whether asking Siri for directions or video conferencing friends and family in the palm of your hand, technology is subtly, but rapidly, raising our expectations. It is also changing the way we design and document...Read More

Adapt Your Old Home to Contemporary Life

City living is different from suburban living.  This is at least partially because the homes are different.  New homes, usually found where there is plenty of open land, often do a better job of accommodating our contemporary lives.  Those of us who live in old city homes often...Read More

How the Westin Cabin was inspired by Edwin Lundie

Recently the Ninth Annual Edwin Lundie Tour took place along the North Shore of Lake Superior. One of the seven sites on this tour was a design of mine that was influenced by Lundie called The Westin Cabin. As an architect who has researched the designs of Edwin Lundie, one doesn’t have to...Read More

Zumbro Zen: A Stairway as a “frontage road”

The flat-roofed galvalume metal sheeting and glass bump out shown in the photograph of this sustainably sleek hillside home is encasing a straight run stair and its landings (glass). This idea of stair as “frontage road” can remove a circulation obstacle, and free up the otherwise open plan of a typically narrow solar oriented home and let the light, views, &  breezes have there way.Read More

Dog Days on a Screen Porch

The Retreat is the name our friends have given their get-away home in Western Wisconsin. It is aptly named because it is as suitable to a quiet weekend escape as it is accommodating an active group. In any condition, it always involves good food and great friends! Visitors enter the retreat on...Read More

The Love Story

This love story began 2 years ago when Joyce Mattson and Dennis Wille met Dale Mulfinger at the Lake Home and Cabin Show in Minneapolis. They were looking for the right Architect to design their family cabin on Bean Lake, just south of Hayward WI. Morning sunrise over Bean Lake. Dale...Read More