News about Stillwater

Stillwater Newsletter – March 2014

The Journey From Midcentury Modern to Twenty-first Century Contemporary

All art forms are influenced by current social and political forces and what came before. Perhaps nowhere is this more obvious than in the evolution of residential architecture from the post-World War II Midcentury Modern trend, to today’s contemporary home designs.
After the war there was pent-up demand for housing and a cadre of talented young architects—particularly in Southern California—waiting for the opportunity. What became known as Midcentury Modern architecture was heavily influenced by the Bauhaus movement of the 1920’s and the designs of Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies Van Der Rohe and Le Cobusier. Defined by open floor plans, clean lines, generous use of glass, a blending of inside and outside living spaces, and the use of new materials, the Midcentury Modern aesthetic set the tone for today’s contemporary homes.
Stillwater Dwellings embraces this heritage and brings contemporary prefab residential design to a new level of sophistication and practical livability.
To learn more about Stillwater Dwellings prefab homes, call 800-691-7302 or contact kaveh@stillwaterdwellings.com
Click here or here to learn more about Midcentury Modern design.

Online Design Seminar, April 23, 4 pm & 7 pm (PDT)

Stillwater Dwellings Online Design Seminar takes the mystery out of building a custom home. Matthew Stannard, Stillwater’s founder, will introduce his design philosophy and the process used to assure plans meet each each clients personal preferences.  Kaveh Khatabloo, Chief Sales Officer, will detail Stillwater’s three phase planning and production process.
The formal presentations will be followed by time for questions and answers.
RSVP via email to 4PM (PDT) Webinar
RSVP via email to 7PM (PDT) Webinar

Stillwater Newsletter – February 2014

 

At Stillwater—We Encourage Customization.


To Stillwater Dwellings clients, smart contemporary design, intelligent use of materials, and the ability to customize are more than important—they are requirements.   Having a home that meets your family’s unique needs and sensibilities is why you decided to build a custom home.   We understand this and have developed a process to help make the home your own.
We encourage you to review the library of more than 20 custom Stillwater prefab designs and floor plans.  Select one or two that have the design and flow you like best and we’ll work with you to fine tune a plan to fit your lifestyle and preferences.
The recently introduced panelized prefab building system allows for greater customization options than Stillwater’s traditional modular building system.  The panelized option is more flexible and often more cost effective, particularly when building on a difficult lot, or when site accessibility may be an issue.
In the coming months Stillwater will be introducing a series of new designs and new floor plans.   Check our website regularly to see the latest.
We look forward to beginning the discussion.  Give us a call and let’s get started.
800-691-7302  |  
kaveh@stillwaterdwellings.com
See all 20+ floor plans

Online Design Seminar March 5, 7-8pm

Stillwater Dwellings Online Design Seminar takes the mystery out of building a custom home. Matthew Stannard, Stillwater’s founder, will introduce his design philosophy and the process used to assure plans meet each each clients personal preferences.  Kaveh Khatabloo, Chief Sales Officer, will detail Stillwater’s three phase planning and production process.
The formal presentations will be followed by time for questions and answers.
More information and RSVP
(Webinar hosted by GoToMeeting)

Introducing “Monthly Home Planning” Feature

October and November were busy months at Stillwater. More than 75 people attended Design Seminars in Seattle and San Francisco and over 100 visited Stillwater open houses in Napa and Portland. Thanks to all!
More Seminars and Open Houses are being planned for the first quarter of 2014. Dates and locations are being finalized, and will be posted when set.

Stillwater Newsletter – January 2014

 

Stillwater Introduces Choice of Two Building Systems  


Clients tell us they’re attracted to Stillwater because of fresh contemporary design, the abundance of natural light, the spacious feel of our floor plans, and the ability to customize.  Of course, many are also attracted by the numerous benefits of prefabricated construction.
Stillwater homes are now available in your choice of two “prefab” building systems—modular and panelized.  The look of the finished home is identical, only the method of construction differs.
Our traditional modular home is fabricated and finished in a climate controlled factory and shipped to your building site in “modules” ready for quick assembly.  In the panelized system all major framing components are fabricated and assembled in a factory and shipped to the building site.  Finishing work is done onsite by a local contractor.
The modular choice provides a nearly completed home shipped to your accessible site.  The panelized system offers more flexibility in shipping, design modifications, and finishing options, plus,  generally, lower total cost.
All Stillwater designs are available in either system.

We look forward to continuing the discussion. Please give us a call or email today.
800-691-7302  |  
kaveh@stillwaterdwellings.com

Attend a Design Seminar

October and November were busy months at Stillwater. More than 75 people attended Design Seminars in Seattle and San Francisco and over 100 visited Stillwater open houses in Napa and Portland. Thanks to all!
More Seminars and Open Houses are being planned for the first quarter of 2014. Dates and locations are being finalized, and will be posted when set.

Stillwater Newsletter – Fall 2013

How Large a Home Do You Really Need?

Everyone contemplating a custom home asks “how big a house do I need?” There are multiple considerations that go into answering this question, besides the most obvious—the budget.
Important elements to consider:
  • The physical limitations of the building site
  • Family members living in the home (small children, teenagers, extended family, etc.)
  • Long term use of the home—now and in the future (family events, aging in place & accessibility)
  • Alternative uses for the space (home office, craft room)
  • The cost of energy in your area
  • Your personal philosophy
At Stillwater we believe your home should compliment your lifestyle–now and in the future. Too large a space wastes materials, resources and money. Too small and reduced scale increases costs. According to architect Matthew Stannard, Stillwater’s CEO “All of our 20+ plans are designed to maximize livability and efficiency without adding expensive extra square footage. Many homes feature 12 foot high ceilings and floor to ceiling glass. Innovative and efficient design can make even smaller spaces feel spacious.”
We love to talk about home planning. Call or email us today.
800-691-7302 kaveh@stillwaterdwellings.com
Want to read more about how big is big enough? Below are some helpful links.
How Much Home Do You Really Need?
10 Tips for Smart Home Design

Attend a Design Seminar

Stillwater Design Seminars take the mystery out of building a custom home. Matthew Stannard, Stillwater’s founder, will introduce you to his design philosophy and the process to assure plans meet each client’s individual preferences. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers and Stillwater staff will be on hand to meet with you personally.
Western Washington
Bellevue
Saturday, October 19, 2013
12:00 – 2:00PM
San Francisco Area
Burlingame
Saturday, November 2, 2013
10:00AM – 12:00 PM
Locations details and registration
Please call 800-691-7302 with any questions.

Stillwater Newsletter – April-May 2013

It’s All About Design and Function

Matthew StannardArchitect Matthew Stannard, the CEO and a founder of Stillwater, has spent much of his professional life developing contemporary custom homes for upscale clients– in his birthplace of Wellington, New Zealand, and in Seattle where he spent fourteen years as a senior associate with Olson Sundbert Kundig & Allen. In that time he came to realize that thoughtful design, careful selection of finish materials and fanatical attention to efficiency can make owning a premium contemporary home a reality for many more people.
On Types of Architects
I tend to think of myself as a product designer rather than as architect “sculpting” one-of-a-kind  custom homes.  A  home that works for its owners  requires the right mix of  aesthetics and function.  A product designer pays equal attention to both.  A home should be livable and beautiful—there is no need to compromise.”  
On Founding Stillwater Dwellings
“Today’s custom building industry is extremely fragmented and terribly inefficient.   Custom homes are more complex  with higher end finishes and challenging budgets.  However the process of sourcing materials and construction methods have changed very little in the last fifty years.   I saw firsthand the inefficiencies that come from constructing a complex structure, piece by piece at a challenging site, with weather related delays and numerous on-site changes.  There is a better way. 
 At Stillwater we’re able to oversee the design and construction process from first conversation to move-in day.  Our clients pick from more than 20  floor plans,  choose a finish package and then modify it to fit their needs.  They select the accessories and we build the home in a tightly controlled environment to meet their specifications.  Construction timelines are not affected by weather delays, subcontractors schedules, or last minute changes.  It’s all highly efficient—and very rewarding.” 
Lets talk about your home plans.  Call 800-691-7302  or email adam@stillwaterdwellings.com.

Online Resources

Below is a list of helpful planning sites.
Pintrist.com –  Game changing site that makes gathering ideas from  web sources easy.  Its a great tool for saving examples of design elements, furnishing, window coverings and everything else that goes into a new home.
Houzz.com – Similar to Pintrist but focused only on house design and decorating.  An excellent place to gather ideas and review supplier catalogs
home-designing.com –  For those interested in home design from an international perspective.

Stillwater Newsletter – December-January | 2012-2013

Stillwater Newsletter - winter home

Happy New Year

All of us at Stillwater Dwellings wish you the very best in the new year. We’re bullish on 2013, and believe it will be one of the best years to build in nearly a decade There are many reasons for our optimism.
  • The election is finally over and the economy is continuing to show slow but steady growth. (We don’t think congress will let us fall off the fiscal cliff—at least not for long)
  • The housing market is recovering, with prices up in nearly all of our marketing areas.
  • Land prices are relatively low when compared with pre-recession levels.
  • Mortgage interest rates are at or near historic lows.
  • Inflation is virtually non-existent.
If you’re like most Stillwater clients, you’ve been thinking about building a custom home for years. You want a home tailored to your interests, esthetics, values and geography. You’re tired of the many compromises you’ve made with your existing home. It’s time for a home that fits—perfectly.
We believe that designing and building a new prefab home should be exciting and rewarding, not stressful and open ended. For most people building a custom home is a once-in-a-lifetime event. Stillwater’s highly experienced consultants personally guide you through every step of the process—from feasibility study to final assembly on your lot.
All journeys start with a single step, and now’s an ideal time. We urge you to contact us and start the conversation.

 

 

Stillwater Dwellings Signature Butterfly Roof

The Stillwater’s Signature “Butterfly Roof”

There is no feature more distinctive than Stillwater Dwelling’s soaring butterfly roof design. The modern soaring roof line is more than an attractive design element, it allows for ceilings heights up to 12′, adding volume—and the ability to add dramatic window-walls blending inside and outside living areas.
In addition, Stillwater’s unique modular building method allows rooms as large as 20′ x 40′ free of any interior support posts ideal for the great room concept.

 

Stillwater Shopping Tips for a Building Site

Tips on Shopping for a Building Site

Shopping for a building site is a bit different than shopping for an home. Like home shopping there are lots of variables to consider, but some very different.
We found several sites that provide useful tips. Please let us know if you have found others and we’ll add them to the list.
About.com – Home Buying and Selling
Mother Earth News – Country Lore: Shopping for Land
Landthink – Finding and Buying the Right Property

 

The Forerunner of Prefabricated Semi-Custom Homes

I have always loved Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonion homes, but I hadn’t thought about them for quite some time. Recently, I noticed the influence on our Stillwater designs; see the first elevation below. Maybe the Usonion home would have been more successful if it had been prefabricated?
“He called his modest house “Usonian,” after the United States. It was a single story built on a monolithic concrete slab and joined to a carport and not a garage. Wright believed that it could be replicated all across the country.
His main desire, which no contemporary architects pay any attention to whatever, is shelter for ordinary people…he got it down at one point in 1940 to $5000 per house for a family with children and a kitchen and gardens…and openness and a real milieu in which it was a highly civilized way to live. He thought about it all the time; he took commissions from the poor as well as from the rich, something unheard of in 1995, 1996… We’re not like that anymore and this was very important in any appraisal of what his work represents because he hasn’t had the following that he should have had in respect to shelter.”
—Brendan Gill, Writer
“What would be really sensible in this matter of the modest dwelling for our time and place? Let’s see how far the Herbert Jacobs house at Madison, Wisconsin, is a sensible house. This house for a young journalist, his wife, and small daughter, is now under roof. Cost: Fifty-five hundred dollars, including architect’s fee of four hundred and fifty. Contract let to P. B. Grove.
To give the small Jacobs family the benefit of the advantages of the era in which they live, many simplifications must take place. Mr. and Mrs. Jacobs must themselves see life in somewhat simplified terms. What are essentials in their case, a typical case? It is not only necessary to get rid of all unnecessary complications in construction, necessary to use work in the mill to good advantage, necessary to eliminate so far as possible, field labor which is always expensive: it is necessary to consolidate and simplify the three appurtenance systems—heating, lighting, and sanitation. At least this must be our economy if we are to achieve the sense of spaciousness and vista we desire in order to liberate the people living in the house. And it would be ideal to complete the building in one operation as it goes along. Inside and outside should be complete in one operation. The house finished inside as it is completed outside. There should be no complicated roofs.”
From An Autobiography, by Frank Lloyd Wright

Why Stillwater?

I often get asked how we came up with the name “Stillwater”.
First, we new we wanted a name that dissociated itself with architectural service since for our clients, most of the design has already been completed. People come to us for a home, not a long, drawn out process, so naming the company after ourselves, as is the typical architectural convention, was a non-starter.
On the surface, we build affordable prefab housing; just beneath lies a wealth of detailed knowledge and a full-spectrum, sophisticated housing system that might not be apparent at first.
Channeling this thought in a brainstorming session with Bart and Brad, I mentioned a favorite proverb of mine, “The still water runs deep”. Bart, an avid trout fisherman, agreed that he’d always loved the term “still water” because it’s the best place to cast a fly and it sounds sweet.
That was it, done.
Photo credit:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/joshcon/4450007889/in/photostream/
Joshua Conley