Working with an Architect

See our blog for new projects, announcements, and all things TMS Architects.
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We spend a significant amount of time working on the finer details of our projects.  The end results are rewarding not just for ourselves, but also the end-users and owners of the buildings.  However, these details are not always just for looks.  Homes and commercial buildings today are implementing more and more building systems to help with life safety, building comfort, and overall sustainability.  All of these systems live behind the beautiful finishes and details that we create in our buildings.  Some of these details can require an immense amount of coordination to pull off well and each building will require different approaches to achieve the desired result.

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Renderings of a kitchen and living room design in progress.

Modern technology has made it easier than ever to design a custom home or building. We’ve previously shared how we use 3D renderings to help clients picture what a project will look like upon completion, and today we’re diving into the world of virtual reality. With VR technology, our team and clients can “step inside” of a space before it’s designed, allowing everyone to get a sense of what the design feels like, and make any necessary adjustments prior to construction.

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All great homes begin with a vision. When we begin working with a new client, one of our first and most important steps in the process is to translate their ideas and wishes into a visual rendering. This allows everyone involved to really get a sense of what the proposed design will look like, make any necessary adjustments, and decide on a design that’s just right before moving forward.

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The following amazing photo-realistic images were commissioned by TMS Architects to provide a client with a full understanding of the rather unconventional concept and design of cottages for their extended family and guests.  These renderings will be used as a visual reference for the homeowners, the contractor and the architect to develop construction documents for future construction and were provided to TMS by Jonn Kutyla of PiXate Creative

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September and October seem to be months in which the focus of many shelter magazines turns to kitchens.  Perhaps this is because we are coming inside from a summer of grills and outdoor living and realize that our kitchens might need some work!  As Bill Soupcoff, AIA, one of TMS’s principals always says…”It doesn’t matter whether a home is historic or modern; the kitchen is still the heart of the American home.” 

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As the saying goes, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. But when it comes to designing your dream home, we know that the inside and outside are equally important. When you think about it, architecture and interior design go hand-in-hand if you’re looking to create a cohesive, functional, and beautiful spaces.

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As a New Hampshire based architecture firm, we have the pleasure of taking on projects in some of New England’s most beautiful and historic settings. This area is chock full of lush lakefronts, breathtaking coastal views, and idyllic downtown areas with centuries-old charm. When constructing a new building in a naturally beautiful setting, it just makes sense to take a cue from Mother Nature when it comes to design. Today, we’ll share some of our favorite designs that stand out by working with their natural surroundings.

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What kind of image do you conjure up when you think of a courtyard? Many people think only of the grandiose types that are found at mansions or public venues, resplendent with large fountains and lush gardens. In fact, courtyards are an under-utilized architectural detail that can change the whole look and feel of your home. Indoor & outdoor courtyards offer natural light and a sense of outdoor space regardless of where your home is situated.

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Many thanks to Selectwood, a wonderful building supply resource center in Portsmouth, NH, for featuring a TMS designed home in the Spring 2015 Builder’s Price Guide.  The project, A Seaside Renovation, was a collaborative project between TMS Architects, CM Ragusa Builders and, of course, the homeowners!

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Nothing quite compares to the rich tones and textures that reclaimed wood can bring to kitchen designs. Naturally beautiful and warm, reclaimed wood countertops can enhance the aesthetics of your kitchen while reducing your impact on the environment. Since no two pieces of wood are alike, you know you are getting a one-of-a-kind countertop with its own unique story. Not to mention, reclaimed and repurposed wood countertops can be just as beautiful as they are durable, functional, and environmentally-friendly.

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With the right design, a bathroom can be just as eco-friendly as it is beautiful. It starts with the thoughtful selection of reclaimed, recycled, and green materials and finishes with water-saving features that ensure environmental responsibility. A well-designed, eco-friendly bathroom can evoke peace of mind, not only with its spa-like atmosphere but with its clear environmentally conscious layout.

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Morey Stettner, a business reporter for The Portsmouth Herald recently interviewed William Soupcoff, a founder and principal architect of TMS Architects.  It was a very informative piece as we all learned some things about Bill that we didn’t know before….such as his first “real” job:

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We recently photographed a beautifully renovated space that was the result of a collaboration between TMS Architcts, Cebula Design and Ragusa Builders.  The homeowners had operated a small business out of their home for many years and after their retirement, they decided to convert the shipping/warehouse space into a cozy family room and mudroom with an elegantly detailed connection to the main house.  They confess that with the convenient gas fireplace, large screen TV and comfortable seating, most of their leisure time is spent relaxing in this new space!  As they say, “pictures speak a thousand words” and Rob Karosis’s photographs of this elegant space certainly capture the beauty of this renovation.

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Restoring a Victorian home can be a seemingly endless undertaking, both physically and financially. However, once your project is complete, you’ll not only have a beautiful home, but you’ll also have contributed to a historic preservation project in New England. While it’s best to hire a licensed architect to help plan your restoration, there are some tips you can follow if you prefer to do the work yourself.

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Historic preservation in New England is tantamount to most owners of the gems of yesteryear. While older construction is generally far superior to the fast-paced construction of today, modern living makes it necessary to increase your living space while maintaining the integrity of your home’s history. Enter the practice of utilizing sensitive additions.

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When you have old leather bound tomes from grandparents, stacks of stories from those years when toddlers still scurried around the home, and dusty hardcovers that you just can’t let go of, there are few household features to store books like a library. If it seems like you have too many books and nowhere to put them, constructing a library might be your best option; however, some advance planning is required before diving into this endeavor.

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The concept of sustainability dates back to the 1970s when the energy crisis, uncontrolled pollution and environmentally damaging materials made the world realize we couldn’t depend on fossil fuels forever. Fortunately, new studies have unveiled the benefits of renewable resources, recycling existing materials and adopting sustainable practices to help turn things around, and in industries such as organic architecture, professionals of all stripes are trying to do their part to better the world.

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An outdoor fireplace can enhance a variety of spaces outdoors and heat up any gathering. From ornate to simplistic in design, the choices are virtually endless. Working with an architect to develop your design is very helpful as there are many considerations to make when adding a fireplace to your landscape.

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We just finished photographing this beautiful TMS-designed home and wanted to share some of the photos with you. This was a dream house for the homeowners, idyllically sited in a beautiful New England meadow.  The exterior massing of the house respects the style of the surrounding neighborhood as well as grounding the home to the site more naturally.  Large overhangs, material choices and low slung rooms help create horizontal datum bans that connect the massing of the home attractively to the site, overlooking the meadow as it rolls towards the rear of the house.

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If you’re upgrading an historic home or searching for new home design ideas for a future project, there are plenty of themes and styles to help guide your way during the process, especially when it comes to the bathroom. Whether you’re upgrading to increase your home’s value or to create a spa-like retreat for your own enjoyment, a successful project is all in the details. Many people overlook easy-to-miss details that can make a big impression on guests and homeowners alike.

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