About Real Cedar
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If you’re a seasoned “Do-It-For-Me” kinda homeowner, then you probably already know that projects run a whole lot smoother when contractors and architects are on the same page. After all, nothing takes the shine off a reno experience than having to play middleman between creativity and craftsmanship. So what better way to synchronize your vision and the act of making than collaborating with a company that is both builder and designer?
That’s where Studio North comes in. This Calgary-based team of architectural/carpentry experts puts a lot of emphasis on quality, well thought out spaces. So when it comes to specifying building products, they know what works and what doesn’t.
“Since we work directly with materials, we are able to respond to the unique characteristics that we encounter,” explains Mark Erickson, Studio North creative director and co-owner. “This ability enhances our projects and our clients’ experiences. By acting as both the designers and the builders, we are able to creatively and meaningfully engage with the client, the site, and the community.”
The benefits of this cohesiveness can be seen in their portfolio. The “Homeaway” solarium addition in particular really illustrates Studio North’s knack for creating better living environments. This holistic indoor/outdoor space includes a breakfast area, tiered planter box garden and a fireplace. The entire project is made with Western Red Cedar, a material that speaks to the builder side of Studio North.
“It’s forgiving, it cuts easily, and you can finish cedar in many different ways such as burning, pickling, and staining,” says Matthew Kennedy, also creative director and co-owner at Studio North. “And because it’s so soft, you can also bring out and emphasize the grain by rubbing it with a steel brush.”
Meanwhile, the designer side of Studio North appreciates the multi-sensory experience of nature’s most versatile building material.
“We used it in the solarium because it’s a nice way to make a space feel warm and cozy,” says Erickson. “It was ideal to create the stepped stair/planter/seats because it’s tactile, comfortable to sit on, and wears nicely with age.
“In the Solarium,” adds Kennedy, “it is especially ideal because it gets humid and wet, and cedar adds a lovely aromatic element to the space.”
With so many benefits, it’s no wonder that Studio North opts for WRC for so many of its projects.
“Yeah, we tend to use cedar more than other types of wood because it tends to last longer than other woods,” says Erickson, adding, “It naturally repels insects, and it looks good when it’s kept raw and unfinished – basically, it looks good no matter what!”