This week’s post is by McAlpine Booth & Ferrier’s Susan Ferrier
BohnBeach004Just over a week ago Greg Tankersley, Ray Booth and I returned from the Design Leadership Network Summit.  Many great minds shared with us the latest and greatest in augmented reality, social media, as well as new ways to think about our businesses and how we live our lives in our chosen fields.  All the possibilities were laid before us and I was sated with all the new information.  Inspired to do more and be better at everything, as is always the case when I return from this highly social event, I felt “improved”.

Once home, however, instead of further research into all of the new ideas and directions that I now had on my “to do” list, I could not shake the overwhelming compulsion to dwell on what made the world look and feel better.  With all of the new information that was shared with me I could not veer off my course to affect the world in a positive way visually.

Architects and Interior Designers are in the business of affecting the physical plane of our world by producing a scape that can be seen and touched – lived in and on. Integral to its success is the layering of texture, tones, and the reflection and refraction of shades of light and dark; depth and scale of shape in measured doses to elicit a calculated response.  I would like to touch on the value and importance of beauty.

Neuro-associative conditioning applied to our discipline would claim that to gaze on beauty can improve our health and well being by directly addressing our own internal natures.  Our sensual experiences have a physiological response by stilling our minds, calming our hearts and relieving stresses.

Great beauty has the power to relax and center our energy and emotions.  Lowering our internal pressures free us to see more clearly and calmly.  It is always a goal to create a meditative space that is restorative in nature, a space that you feel better in and are compelled to linger through.

All the images included are of second homes that McAlpine, Booth & Ferrier and McAlpine Tankersley have worked on.  These are houses that purposefully were designed and appointed with the idea that a place thoughtfully addressed adds to the quality of the lives being lived there.  Beauty can be a retreat for healing.  Luxury is a tonic for the soul and we strive to create this elixir in all of our work.  It is my heartfelt wish and goal to touch on our sensual natures.  I am devoted wholly to its pursuit.

I hope you all see this as I do,

Susan Ferrier




Residence by McAlpine Tankersley




  1. Margot von Muhlendahl says:

    Dear Miss Ferrier,

    What a very nice post. You have described so well what I believe should be the mission of all architects and designers—to make the world look and feel better. I follow your blog so I know that your work expresses this ethic, but I very much enjoyed your articulation of the importance of seeking and creating beauty.

    Thank you,

    Margot von Muhlendahl Trogerstrasse 54 81675 Munich +49 89 413 53 763 Tel +49 151 2333 5823 Mob +1 312 752-5784 U.S. Mob Sent from my iPad


  2. cwhitneyward says:

    As always, beautifully penned…

  3. Susan S says:

    “Beauty can be a retreat for healing. Luxury is a tonic for the soul and we strive to create this elixir in all of our work.” Who could argue with that? Not I.

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