The design guy

Legacy Homes. Estates. Manors.

(and other really cool buildings to live in)

services.

Planning and Design

The general public often overlooks good design but almost always appreciates it – knowingly or not. We don't often think about the elements of a building that make it good, or excellent. To us, sometimes, it's comparing it to another building.

Interior Architecture

So, what is interior architecture? There’s some debate around the distinction between the terms architecture, interior architecture, interior design, and interior decoration. This is because of the blurred lines between the responsibilities of each profession – where does the interior design of a space end and architecture begin, and vice versa?

The Drawing Process

Some people visualize things better than others. I am one of the lucky ones, not to boast, who looks upon a blank sheet of paper and sees both planning and design solutions for each design task. At that point, I begin to draw in a clear and concise way.

My Story

this is

I am a designer who specializes in the creation of beautiful residential projects that vary in complexity, size, budget, and style. I am not an architect, nor would I ever profess to be one. It’s important to note that, just as I am not an architect, that not all architects are designers; in fact, few of them are. Architecture, like engineering, is a learned profession, design, let's say 'excellent design' is an inherent gift – indeed, one that is nurtured and improved over time through extensive observation and reflection. Still, only the underlying fundamentals of design can be learned in school, not design itself.

Design is a field of concern, response, and inquiry as often as decision and consequence. It’s convenient to group design into three simple categories. However, the distinctions are in no way absolute, nor are they always so conveniently described: product design (things), environment design (places), and communication design (messages).

​Good design is the result of creatively molding ideas spawned through one’s intellect and imagination. It’s fueled through the process of conscious and subconscious insight, and therefore defining “what is good design” and “what is not good design” is a subjective matter between many parties, including those involved with the project itself.

​Just who is, and who is not, a good designer is often little more than a self-proclamation determination or the direct result of often inaccurate and boastful marketing materials. However, now and then, one will come across someone with a real gift for design.

The truth is that a “good designer” is not randomly good at design; they are “consistently good” at it. This is how one ultimately defines a person as a one-hit-wonder or someone genuinely gifted. Their out there, find them, surround yourself with them, and you will be driven mad by their eccentricities, but you will learn to appreciate everything they touch as designers – these are the very people who make the world a better place for all of us to live within. 

critical thinking

Concept & Details.

With function, flow, and form as basis, design can be evaluated as a process culminating in an entity which intensifies comprehension and exceeds anticipation. I believe that. But there is a great difference between the modernist and the classicist. I do not wish to pit one against the other, that is, for now, because in truth they are two distinct industries which in effect occupy the same space in time. They share a profession, but they do not share the same philosophies about it.

In Classical architecture there exists a system by which the geometry of each part is related to that of the whole, giving a harmonious balance and repose to the entire façade and structure. Units, as well as subdivisions or multiples of units, play an essential role in the system of Classical proportion for the purpose of helping establish a harmonious, agreeable aesthetic throughout the entire building. In Modernism, no such harmonizing system exists.

just who the heck are these self-proclaimed

Designers

Design is a field of concern, response, and inquiry as often as decision and consequence. It’s convenient to group design into three simple categories. However, the distinctions are in no way absolute, nor are they always so conveniently described: product design (things), environment design (places), and communication design (messages).

 

Good design is the result of creatively molding ideas spawned through one’s intellect and imagination. It’s fueled through the process of conscious and subconscious insight, and therefore defining “what is good design” and “what is not good design” is a subjective matter between many parties, including those involved with the project itself.

Just who is, and who is not, a good designer is often little more than a self-proclamation determination or the direct result of often inaccurate and boastful marketing materials. However, now and then one will come across someone with a real gift for design, and if that “gift” is recognized then it should be cherished, allowed to blossom, and exploited because that gift, or talent as some prefer to call it, will make all the difference in the outcome of any given project and trust me on this, very few architects with their fancy-schmancy degrees and State licenses to practice, are also good designers, in fact very few even are. 

The truth is that a “good designer” is not randomly good at design; they are “consistently good” at it. This is how one ultimately defines a person as a one-hit-wonder or someone genuinely gifted. Their out there, find them, surround yourself with them, and you will be driven mad by their eccentricities, but you will learn to appreciate everything they touch as designers – these are the very people who make the world a better place for all of us to live in. 

My Work.

Testimonial

“It is our pleasure to recommend Don Whittaker, a.k.a. The Design Guy, to anyone in need of architectural services. We have occupied the home he designed for us now for two years, and we can honestly describe it as a dream come true. It is everything we expected and more. Don designed our previous home, and if we were to ever undertake a third, he would be the one we would hope to commission to design it. His homes are functional and stunning! His design skills, attention to detail, and the pride he takes in his work are obvious. Behind the scenes, his business practices are efficient, and ethics are at his very core.”

 

Joe and Michelle Razore

Carefully Planned

Each project The Design Guy undertakes is carefully programmed  and planned. Everything begins with a programming report that outlines as many of the clients wishes as possible. Schematic planning then begins and is driven by the site conditions, survey, municipality zoning requirements, and the details as set-forth by the program itself. 

Perfectly Designed

The design process is a difficult skill to describe. It is a combination of education, experience, acute awareness of ones surroundings, mental notes of structures, interiors, details often observed, in my case, while traveling abroad and soaking in all that the great cities and countrysides have to offer. However, perfection is achieved when the client is happy, and declares it is so. 

Smartly Executed

The most brilliant design, combined with the most detailed set of construction documents is only as good as the people who will build the project - the execution.

Fortunately, within the Pacific Northwest there is an abundance of well-qualified General Contractors (GC). But a GC is only as good as his sub-contractors. 

team

The Design Guy

Barking and coffee keep us going strong.

Donald Whittaker

Chief Creative Officer / Pooper Scooper

Don is a seasoned architectural designer with over forty years of experience designing buildings. He has owned and managed a 15 person architectural firm, and, as a result of the headaches that doing so gave him, he is now a sole practitioner, works out of his home, with his two dogs, and loves it. 

Alexander (Alex)

Managing Partner

Alex is a seven-year-old Fawn Great Dane. He is, without question, the greatest dog to ever walk the planet. O sure, you may feel the same about your dog, but in this case the boasting is backed by The Design Guy himself. 

Axel 

Junior Intern 

Axel is a one-year-old Great Dane Mantel. He is a puppy through and through, and like all puppies, he is the destroyer of all things accessible, and his range is quite remarkable. He is also precious and lovable, that is, when he wants to. 

get in touch

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don@thedesignguy.com

425-455-3289

836 100th Ave, SE

Bellevue, Washington

 “The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor, and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him, he's always doing both.”  

James A. Mithener