Tag Archives: universal bathroom design

Improving on Good Design to Age in Place

A Kitchen and Bath Design Discussion during Aging in Place Week

In June, we at AFriendlyHouse asked the KBTribeChat community, Can safety be sexy? The response was a resounding yes… if you know how to sell it.  We then followed up with a conversation on the sexy, sleek, European-style wet room, which was again a spin to sell great design that was also safer. Now, with the start of Aging in Place week, we want to know what can we do to improve on good design to make it age-ready and what is our role as designers in getting our clients onboard?

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We use our expertise to advise our clients on products and design trends. Do we also have a role to play in steering them towards designs that will be friendly to their changing needs, like with the universally designed bathroom pictured above? In what ways can we contribute to the longevity of our designs (and maybe to our clients) by making them age-ready?

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At AFriendlyHouse.com we promote aging in place by showcasing projects that are both beautiful and age-ready.  We report on design success stories that have enabled people of all ages get around better in their homes and in their communities.  We hope to be a source for inspiration for your future projects by walking you through our own, like AFriendlyHouse founder Lynette Evans’ work on the interiors for her parents’ last home, where added details like a cleverly placed step within the toe-kick (below) provided stability while putting more storage in reach and a pull-out rolling cart could be loaded while hands were left free for balance (above).
Kitchen toe kick

We’d like to continue the conversation on Pinterest! Follow and pin to our Improving on good design to Age in Place board leading up to and after the chat. You can also find us on Google+ and Facebook.

We hope you’ll join us for this kbtribechat discussion!

#kbtribechat on Twitter ~ Wednesday, October 23 ~ 2 to 3pm eastern time

Here is the transcript for this Kbtribechat.

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Wet Rooms

What design could be more sexy for the bath?

In June, we at AFriendlyHouse asked the KBTribeChat community, Can safety be sexy? The response was a resounding yes… if you know how to sell it.  So what better follow-up than a conversation on the sexy, sleek, European-style wet room?

But is a wet room safe? Is it just a no-thresholds bathroom without the PR problem? Is it really all in the perception? If so, would you ever sell it another way?

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At AFriendlyHouse.com we are working to change the perception that Universal Design or design without barriers is somehow reserved for the aged or the disabled.  If UD is in fact suffering from a PR problem, we’d like to find other ways to further the discussion.  We do this on our site by reporting on design success stories that have enabled people of all ages get around better in their homes and in their communities.  We hope to be a source for inspiration for your future projects by walking you through our own, like AFriendlyHouse founder Lynette Evans’ work on her Northern California farmhouse, where the master bath, above, along with the guest bath, below, serve as inspiration for our KBTribeChat follow-up.

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We hope you’ll join us!

Wednesday, August 28th from 2 to 3pm eastern time at #kbtribechat on Twitter!

We’d also like to continue the conversation on Pinterest! Follow and pin to our Wet Rooms board. You can also find us on Google+ and Facebook.

Here is the transcript for this kbtribechat.

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Can Safety Be Sexy?

Our vision behind AFriendlyHouse.com has been to change the conversation of safe design from its traditional focus on homes built specifically for the disabled or the aged, or on ADA-compliant institutions, to include beautiful spaces that are safe and healthy for all of us. Spoiler alert: We are all aging and we all have our challenges, be it height, dexterity, vision, mobility. So, don’t we all deserve design that enables safety and ease of use? And who says good, safe design can’t be sexy? What isn’t sexy about moving seamlessly through your kitchen, your bath, your home and your community?  (As can be done in this open floor plan, pictured below.)

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Longtime journalist and sometime interior designer Lynette Evans founded AFriendlyHouse.com after retiring as the Home & Garden editor for The San Francisco Chronicle. Prior to that stint she had practiced interior design, specializing in kitchens and baths, and was responsible for the fully accessible interiors of her parents’ last home — a stunning 5,100 sf home overlooking Puget Sound, which is featured on the website.   You can also take a virtual tour here.   Rather than simply writing a book on the subject of universal design and aging in place, she decided that a website devoted to the subject of beautiful, universally designed homes would be of more value to both professionals and the public.

Her niece Monika Weiss (pictured below) joined in on the development of the site after experiencing what barrier-free design could mean from being a caregiver in a Universal Design home and from observing the challenges her nephew faced growing up in an environment not designed for universal access. Together they became the team.

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Most often, when universal design or safety are mentioned in design chats, the emphasis is on wheelchair access and grab bars. Rightly so, perhaps, but we think that in every breath, designers should also be emphasizing beauty as well. We adamantly dismiss the notion that safe can’t be beautiful, and, yes, sexy.
So, in our upcoming June 5th kbtribechat for Home Safety month, we challenge you to “bring your sexy back,” in safe kitchen and bath designs.  Check out our safety checklists for more information beyond K&B. Follow us on Pinterest and we’ll send you an invite to our community board, Bringing Sexy Back… to Safety.  Let’s prove safety can be a sexy essential in our community’s designing lifestyle.

 

Join our Twitter discussion on Wednesday, June 5th, 2013 from 2 to 3pm eastern time by adding #kbtribechat to your tweets.

 

Here’s the transcript for this chat.

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‘Still Climbing Out’: Bathroom Design After Cancer

“Still Climbing Out: Bathroom Design After Cancer,” the 2nd annual Bathroom Blogfest #kbtribechat, is inspired by a question Lisa M. Smith (Decor Girl) posed online seeking special shower ideas for a friend with advanced cancer. With October being Breast Cancer Awareness month, our chat will focus on the elements of bathroom design that can provide a safe, soothing and supportive environment to support people fighting this disease.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Still Climbing Out” is the theme of the 7th annual blogfest, which brings together bloggers from around the globe to write about the importance of bathrooms in the customer experience. Their posts come from a wide range of perspectives that include sociology, marketing, research, psychology, environmental, customer experience, and design.

Hosted by Christine B. [C.B.] Whittemore and Nora DePalma, we invite #KBTribeChat participants to lend their expertise to brainstorm ideas for reinventing the bathroom experience in homes and buildings to bring new meaning to life for cancer survivors ‘still climbing out.’ This twitter chat will take place on Wednesday, October 31, 2012, from 2 to 3pm eastern time.

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/BatrhoomBlogfest (typo is the correct address, BTW).

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/bathroomblogfes

Websitehttp://www.bathroomblogfest.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Host C.B. WhittemoreChristine B. [C.B.] Whittemore, chief organization & inspiration officer for the yearly Bathroom Blogfest, is also chief simplifier of Simple Marketing Now LLC, an inbound marketing consultancy which helps organizations get found online via social media and content marketing. She has been immersed socially and digitally since 2006 when she launched her first blog, Flooring The Consumer, about the customer retail experience, and got involved in the first Bathroom Blogfest. Christine obtained an MBA in Marketing from ColumbiaBusiness School and a BA in Art History from Smith College.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Host Nora DePalma

Nora DePalma is a marketing technologist and principal of O’Reilly-DePalma, a marketing consultancy that builds brands in the building and architecture industries. Nora led marketing communications at American Standard and the National Kitchen & Bath Association before entering the world of digital marketing at ImproveNet in 1999. O’Reilly-DePalma delivers bottom line impact to clients through strategic communications that fosters trust, enthusiasm and preference among customers, sales prospects and channel partners. A native Jersey Girl now living near Atlanta, Nora received her bachelor’s degree from Montclair State University. Follow insights from Nora and her team at the OR-DP POV blog.

 

Here is the transcript for this chat.

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