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.)
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.
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.