collaborative efforts: page duke landscape architects

April 9th 2015 Comments: 4

On our design paths, we sometimes meet similar souls; recognition sparks and at once, our efforts are made better. Such was the case 20 years ago (wow, time flies) when we met Ben Page and Gavin Duke of Page Duke Landscape Architects. Ours was such a natural marriage, we immediately … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Exterior

manhattan project

April 2nd 2015 Comments: 5

We’ve been playing a design ping pong game where he will send me a real estate floor plan (these are common in New York apartment listings) and I quickly do a renovation scheme. This allows him to evaluate the potential of the apartment before he makes an offer.  It’s a … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Floor Plan

burden of roof

March 26th 2015 Comments: 1

No, like most historic architectural elements, these devices have their roots in good old-fashioned practicality. Heat rises, which tends to build up in attic spaces creating a hot, damp and mildewy environment. Back before houses were hermetically sealed and insulated within an inch of their life, monitors and dormer vents … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Clock

a conservatory of hope

March 19th 2015 Comments: 10

When I arrived at the meeting, I was surprised to see a fellow not normally associated with the zoo. Dickie Blondheim and his exuberant wife, Joy, are the founders and heads of The Joy to Life Foundation, a dynamic organization promoting hope and awareness in the field of breast cancer. … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Watercolor

ice box tops

March 12th 2015 Comments: 15

Over the years, we’ve come up with a number of ways to beautifully and gracefully accommodate this unwieldy frigid casket. Following are a few of our adroit solutions. Here, the unit is paneled in a stained pecky cypress.  It’s mass is balanced with a matching pantry cabinet which mirrors the … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Kitchen

the catbird’s out of the bag

March 5th 2015 Comments: 2

The Catbird Collection (you gotta love that name) is debuting tonight in Houston, Texas at a soiree hosted by Ruth Gay of the famed Chateau Dominigue and the stunning new Milieu magazine. Cindy graciously invited a few of her designer friends to contribute to this new collection; Bobby McAlpine and Susan Ferrier jumped … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Upholstery

Open House: Chicago Tribute

February 26th 2015 Comments: 8

Occasionally we’re offered a grand invitation – to design a house for another designer. This type of commission is one we always take with great gratitude and honor. Having another designer ask us to help create their own home always makes us step up our game; this is a unique … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Exterior

a lady’s home journal

February 19th 2015 Comments: 0

If, by some reason, you’re unfamiliar with this lovely lady, you’re bound to know her printed handiwork – Veranda magazine, the veritable Southern lexicon of taste, style and design.  Conceived at Lisa’s breakfast table almost thirty years ago, this iconic magazine blossomed under her leadership and is a now a … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Partners

welcome home

February 12th 2015 Comments: 6

Often, knowing the inhabitants as cordial and convivial folk will make you at once feel welcome; their inner warmth transcends any surroundings. But suppose you don’t know who lives behind the facade you’ve just approached. Can architecture be as welcoming as a warm-hearted host? I assert it can be – … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Entry

third time’s a charm

February 5th 2015 Comments: 160

Every year, to mark the anniversary of this journal, we like to offer the chance to give back to you lovely folks who take the time out of your busy lives to peruse my ramblings. In 2014, over 120,000 people from 134 countries stumbled across this blog and for that … [read more]

McAlpine Journal: Art of the House