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"design" by collage

A very common pitfall that people make when designing a space is the following.: they will do research on existing spaces they like, compile a list of elements they like from these spaces, and put them all together in one disharmonious project.  This is a huge mistake.  Cutting and pasting from other people's projects will never result in something that looks together.  It's also uncreative and visually unsettling.. Additionally, something that works on one project won't necessarily be appropriate for another.

The key to designing a cohesive space is selecting a strong concept that drives the project along.  A concept is a phrase that explains the design intention of the project.  It can be reached by studying the requirements for the space ("program requirements") and understanding what situations will be occurring in the space.  The concept should be non-architectural, and is a critical first step to design.  The more specific, the better.

In other words, let the specific needs of the space and the people who will use it inform a concept, and the concept guide the design.

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