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Top Tips for Working With An Architect Like Leonard Brandes

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Leonard Brandes outside one of his residential projects.
Photo by Ken Gabrielsen

Meet an architect who has built a name for himself in Westchester and beyond.

Who

Leonard Brandes, Architect and Principal, Leonard Brandes Architecture & Design, Scarsdale

Design Philosophy

No matter what their budget, everybody deserves quality architecture and design work that strives to maintain a low-carbon footprint using green materials and energy-efficient design.

Inspiration

My inspiration derives from sitting down with my clients, each of whom has a wonderfully unique personality and varying needs. After getting to really know clients and understanding their wish lists, I enjoy using that info to create a design that they hadn’t previously known they needed — but now realize they cannot live without.

Hottest Trends

1. Creating more intimate family spaces and personalized work-from-home spaces.
2. Leaving the grays behind and moving toward warmer colors that are soft and soothing.
3. Bold-print wall coverings, including abstract and literal florals, as well as bold geometrics add character and can make a space feel more elegant and put together.
4. Home automation and smart homes.

Top Tips for Working With An Architect

1. Develop a wish list. Ask for everything and then narrow it down together.
2. Inform your architect of your budget. Getting on the same page at the beginning of the design phase will save a lot of time and help your project get off the ground sooner.
3. Choose an architect with whom you feel comfortable sharing ideas. Don’t feel intimidated. Realize that this is a long-term relationship to transform your dreams into reality.


Go-To Home Design

Design Book

Prescriptions for a Healthy House, by Erica Elliott, John Banta and Paula Baker-Laporte

Magazines

Architectural Digest
Architectural Record
Dwell
Metropol

Blog

Life of an Architect 

Website

Houzz.com 

Westchester Shops/Showrooms

Artistic Tile (White Plains)
Walker Zanger (Port Chester)
Marble America (New Rochelle)
 Best Plumbing Tile & Stone (Scarsdale)
Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery  (Mount Kisco)
Albano Appliance & Service (Pound Ridge)
Village Appliances (Port Chester)
Berger True Value Hardware (Hawthorne)
Bilotta Kitchens (Mamaroneck)
Leicht Westchester (Mount Kisco)
Majestic Kitchens & Bath (Mamaroneck)

Greenwich Shops/Showrooms

Waterworks

New York City Shops/Showrooms

Ann Sacks Tile & Stone


Fave Products:

Photo by Peter Krupenye

Historic Colors Paints by Benjamin Moore

Wallauer Paint & Design (North White Plains, NY)

“I love the warmth of this color palette in modern settings. And it’s durable, spreadable, and cleanable.”

Photo courtesy of Walker Zanger

Granite Kitchen Countertops

Walker Zanger (Port Chester) and Marble America (New Rochelle) 

Photo courtesy of Walker Zanger

“Granite has a richness that few other materials can match, and it’s easy to find colors and unique stones and patterns that blend beautifully with your cabinets, walls, and flooring.”

Ohoto by Colin Jewall Photo Studios, Inc., courtesy of Kolbe Windows & Doors

VistaLuxe Collection by Kolbe

Ridgefield Supply (Ridgefield, CT)

“These energy-efficient products are offered in a variety of options and finishes.”

Ortal Gas Linear Fireplace 

Westchester Fireplaces (Elmsford) 

“Looks amazing in family rooms under a wall-mounted TV and adds warmth with clean, modern lines.”

Photo courtesy of GROHE US

Grohtherm SmartControl Thermostatic Module Systems Bathroom Faucets by Grohe

Best Plumbing (Scarsdale)

“This smart, sleek technology can control your desired water temperature and water pressure and be set for multiple users.”

Photo by Peter Krupenye

Custom Millwork

by Leonard Brandes Architect