Archive for April, 2018

Great Lakes By Design – “Waterfront Respite”

waterfront home beach

       Great Lakes By Design featured this waterfront home we designed in their Volume 2 Issue 2 “Celebrate the Ride” magazine. This project was a team collaboration with the Cottage Company of Harbor Springs as well as Cottage Company Interiors. The project began as a home renovation but ended up being an almost complete demolition and rebuild.
       The property was originally purchased with a mid-19th century cottage on site that needed major renovations. Issues with the existing structure forced the project to turn into a full rebuild. Because of site, setback, and local restrictions, the entire structure could not be demolished, so the foundation remained. The house was designed around the existing footprint of the old cottage.
       The existing footprint became the biggest challenge of this project as a well-designed home had to be built on top of the constraints of the previous footprint. Along the way, the foundation required some extra steel integration and revamping to accommodate the new, updated structure above it.  

       The clients purchased the property with a dream in mind of a retreat for their family and friends to visit. The resulting design includes two floors with a master suite, guest rooms, kitchen, dining space, great room, three-season porch, and lower level mud room and play room. The vision for the project was a classic, northern Michigan cottage that took advantage of the waterfront views and surrounding woodland.
       On the exterior, northern Michigan cottage vibes are incorporated through cedar shake shingles with a gentle curved roofline over the front entrance. Tuscan-inspired columns detail the large porch structures. The overall composition of the details works together to create a fresh and classic cottage look on the exterior as well as the interior. The overall design compliments both the waterfront views as well as the protected dunes and woodlands that the house is nestled in.

Click here to read the full article.

Well-Orchestrated Kitchens

Kitchens tour

       Sears Architects is proud to be a lead sponsor of Well-Orchestrated Kitchens: A “Heart of the Home” Tour by Grand Rapids Symphony Friends.

       This tour includes six fabulous homes with live music, demonstrations, and samples taking place throughout the tours. This unique tour is raising funds to support Grand Rapids Symphony music education programs. Tickets are available at select D&W locations, Forest Hills Foods, and the Symphony office. Visit for more information and photos!

Kitchens Tour

       We are excited to attend this tour as well see a home we designed as a part of the tour! If you want to see the kitchen of our Lake Drive Residence, then be sure to get tickets! This East Coast vernacular home is one of just six stops on the tour showing off a variety of kitchens and first floor home layouts. These houses showcase a variety of styles ranging from very traditional to contemporary modern homes.

Lake Drive Residence: 
Architect: Sears Architects
Builder: Zahn Builders, Inc.
Interior Designer: Donna Cohen Interiors

Inspiration: Winter’s Popular Projects

Home Inspiration

     Now that it’s officially Spring, it’s time for some warm weather and new projects! Whether you are ready to start some projects around the house or thinking of building a new home, you may need some inspiration. Today we’re looking back at what our popular photos were from this past winter season that drew inspiration to others for any style project.

Sears Architects: Top Inspirational Photos

traditional house inspiration
modern stairs staircase inspiration
modern house inspiration
beach house timberframe inspiration
modern beach house inspiration
traditional white house inspiration
traditional brick house inspiration
traditional house inspiration
beach house inspiration

       From traditional elements to modern facades, each of these projects brings unique statements. While lake views make for a bold window pattern on the backside of many of these homes, traditional brick and stately columns add symmetry to entrances making strong statements as well. 

Follow along with Sears Architects as we continue to post project updates!