Architecture + Design

To Build a House | Vol. II

3/10/2016 | Cody Derrick
Matt McDowell

If you'll recall (will you?), I'm building a house, guys. It's super exciting, and I'm beyond thrilled to put my stamp on every last step of the process. To that end, I've decided to share said process with all of you…and this portion of my story on choosing appliances was going to take the same as my initial story on building a home. That is to say, I'm gonna do whatever the hell I want. In design, you do for yourself, think of what it is that you love. To hell with the status quo, and forget resale value. Yeah, I said it.

 Just I and me and the sexy Sub Z.

But instead, this story is about an affair with a 'fridge. So here's the thing: this is the first time I've had the opportunity to dream up a house from absolute start to finish. In the past I've chosen appliances based on the limited options of a single builder, or what fit into a previous space during renovation, what might have been available at the ding and dent shop, or based entirely on a specified budget. The list of limitations can be quite long, but this time, I'm not going to pay attention to any of that. (It's my appliance party, and I'll cry if I want to.) When I was a kid--we're talking, like, junior high--I had an obsession with architecture and design (things haven't changed much. I was gay then, too, and daydreaming about Mr. Fantastic, so…), and I was in sweet, savory love with the glass-front Sub Zero refrigerator. Obsessed. Full disclosure: one time, as a high schooler on vacation with my parents, I snuck away to a Sub Zero showroom while they took a walk on the beach. In my early 20s, I went to a pal's house to hang and saw another in person in all its crystal clear glory, eggs and O.J. and frosty beverages all lined up just so. I knew I'd have one in my house someday. Just I and me and the sexy Sub Z.

Either way, here I am...designing a kitchen around a refrigerator. Thank god.

When I visited our friends at Mountain Land Design (story coming soon) last week, I was hoping for the very best. As I wandered the show room searching for the greener grass, I turned a corner and saw my longtime love. When you know what you really want, you're more than willing to wait for it. Settling just isn't an option. You work hard, dream and scheme, save all your doll hairs, and you get your god damn Sub Zero PRO 48. Sometimes, there's just the one thing that will make you happy. Sometimes it's free, or cheap, or found. And sometimes not. But is it what you want? Does it make your heart sing and your heads of lettuce cold? Then you ought to get it...even if it takes 22 years from the time you first lock eyes. It's kind of a good reminder for us all. When we're wondering where that magical piece we found at the antique shop will fit into our house, and we're thinking something along the lines of, "I love it, but it doesn't match," or, "I wish it had a place," maybe we should rethink. If you love it and you can budget for it, it's likely to make you happy wherever it goes. Even better, it may inform the design of the rest of the place, or spark the idea for a new direction. Either way, here I am...designing a kitchen around a refrigerator. Thank god.

 
 

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