Architectural design refers to the art and design of buildings, including both interior and exterior structural elements. By extension, this refers to the construction and design of the kitchen, bathroom, lighting, spatial changes, AV equipment and joinery. The main goal of architectural design is to combine various components in an effort to create a functional structure, paving the way for comfort, convenience and beautiful aesthetics, in spite of limitations.
Typically, architectural design services are typically administered via the following process:
- Receiving and understanding the client brief, agreeing how to proceed and gathering data
- Feasibility and assessment
- Concept design and outline design
- Design development
- Construction data
- Construction procurement
- Post-occupancy evaluation
The architectural design process begins with a consultation, including a client brief. At April Hamilton, we work with clients to discuss and finalise a plan. We take a collaborative approach to bring our client’s vision to life. To this end, and depending on each project, we tap into the expertise of an interdisciplinary team composed of structural engineers, project management professionals, party wall surveyors, architects and quantity surveyors. Together, we oversee the feasibility, design development, construction procurement, and inspection/post-occupancy of each project.
Early stages of the process involve preparing technical drawings in line with various specifications as well as documentation, scope of works and budget figures for various designs, materials, colors and equipment. Throughout the project, construction work is monitored to ensure compliance and adherence to both standards and project plans.
Within the scope of the design process, there are several factors to consider. First, in order for a building or structure to function well, its individual elements must function well. In designing the elements described earlier, there are no straightforward solutions. This is further complicated by the fact that function and quality are interrelated. This includes the quality of structures, surfaces, materials and space in a building.
Additional design factors to consider include aesthetics, stability, and sustainability. Aesthetics play a pivotal role in design and this is impacted by materials used, quality, form and overall style. A client’s aesthetic goals often serve as catalysts for exploration of a design’s technical possibilities. As architectural designers, our challenge is to mold aesthetic composition and technical possibilities to find the best solution for our client. For instance, in this behind-the-scenes look of a past project, we transformed a sub-basement, north-facing structure into an aesthetically appealing kitchen while incorporating the clever use of daylight LEDs.
As previously mentioned, we have at our disposal a team of qualified architectural professionals. This is important as manifesting a functional, comfortable and aesthetically pleasing structure is a complex process. Additionally, in the images below, many of the principles discussed in this article were applied, including AV installation in a cinema room, bespoke joinery in a personal dressing room, design and construction of a bespoke bathroom. Also, note the bespoke cascading chandelier, which encompasses the curvature and transparency of the staircase in line with our client brief.
While this post provides a foundation of architectural design, stay tuned for next week’s article; where we’ll walk you through the day-to-day life of being an architectural interior designer.