For this upscale home, ATF followed this Rallying Cry:“Heavy Timbers with an Elegant, Unique, Industrial Feel.”

Einstein once said: “If I had only one hour to save the world, I would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem, and only five minutes finding the solution.”

How true.

Once a problem is correctly defined, solutions and answers just kind of fall into our lap! In life, and in particular with creative building projects, we to have a clear NEED, target or Rallying Cry.

If not, decisions will be tough and communication will be difficult. This could lead to extra time, cost, and effort. Ideally, a Rallying Cry boils down to seven or eight words.

This makes it easy to clearly say no to what is not 100% your style. It helps you find focus.

You will also find this very useful as a communication tool. Your ideas and theme may come together with a sudden flash of big picture inspiration or be built up more slowly, perhaps starting with a personal item or picture which makes you happy and feel good inside.

modern craftsman industrial

How To Identify Your Style Rallying Cry. Use the following tips as a thorough, comprehensive package or individually.

1) Your Rustic Factor. On a spectrum of 1 through 10, with 1 being a modern, airy hospital, and 10 being a heavy, rustic log cabin, where does your taste lie?

2) Special Event or Homecoming Scenario. Picture yourself coming home after a six-week vacation. What are some descriptive words you would want to pop into your continued on

Picture a family event, or a time when you have guests over for the first time. What are some descriptive words you would like to hear them say? Which words would tell you that you “nailed” the look and feel you intended?

3) Solicit Third Party Perspectives. Ask friends or family to provide adjectives which describe you. Compile, review and choose the words that fit and communicate best. You can also interview and then consult with an interior designer.

4) Take the ATF Mini Style Quiz. Your word choices will be spread out over four categories. We then use that information to help us make decisions while we design your Timber package.

5) Do the ATF 10 Step design Guide. This Timber Design Guide was created with the help of an Interior Designer to help you get the post and beam atmosphere which fits your style perfectly. You don’t want something that is too heavy or overpowering, nor do you want something that is too light or insignificant. It will also help you with decisions you need to make during your building process.

6) Work with Pre-defined Styles. Search the web, books, or magazines for pictures with identified styles you like. You can save these pictures and simply choose standard description such as mid-century modern. Or you can combine style descriptions such as: “A combination of classic farmhouse and Western Ranch.”

modern rustic lakehouse timber frame

A Rallying Cry Under Attack

Especially during a construction project, your rallying cry can come under attack. Things can feel so complicated.

We sometime call this Bright Shiny Object Syndrome. When you are researching to make informed decisions, you uncover so many bright shiny objects which are incredibly fascinating. But what a brain drain and distraction! That’s when you can use your Rallying Cry as a reset button.

Often, clients take a clarity break to make sure that they are on the same page. Things become complicated and stressful if your project goes much more than three weeks without regrouping.

One project we worked on at ATF was a vacation home for a couple we’ll call Bill and Mary. Bill was great – for the most part he was happy if Mary was happy. What that meant, though, was that Mary was doing the heavy lifting associated with their project. Beyond sharing a few opinions, Bill wasn’t really into the details.

Their pre-start planning session had taken some time, involving a lot of introspective questions. They simplified their picture and scrapbook collection.

They did a style quiz. They scoured the web. And in the end, they came up with an easily understood description: A warm mix of old and new with an efficient, well-thought-out feel. With that, their vacation home plan had simply fallen into place. Throughout the building process, though, the ATF building team needed more answers.

We understood their intent and were pulling in the same direction, but in the end, they had to make the decisions. It was almost as if the Rallying Cry was under attack by the numbers of choices, decisions, and distractions!

Once Bill and Mary took a clarity break, they were back on track. Because they had built a well-defined, articulated description of the overall look and feel they wanted for their friends and family, it was easy to get back to a place where they could prioritize as a team.

They could see past all the bright, shiny objects to choose only the things that were 100% their style. And the finished product reflects that! Are You a Skeptic? At this point, some clients have questions.

Some clients are skeptical.

Here’s some comments we often hear: “What happens if we get a rallying cry wrong?”It is no big deal if you start and later discover a better description for your Rallying Cry.

craftsman timber frame house home

It is way easier to adjust direction than to start from a dead stop, even in an imperfect form, your Rallying Cry will be close, and serves as communication for intent.

“Shouldn’t this be established well before our project starts?”In a perfect world, you would identify your Rallying Cry before talking to your designer or architect. But it is never too late!

And if you decide to remodel or build again in the future you can simply reevaluate and even go through the exercises again to have crystal-clear focus. “This touchy-feely stuff is for the birds – can’t we just communicate with pictures?”

Pictures will be part of your toolbox. However, in every picture you’ll have things you like – and things you dislike. Your team needs to understand this. You want us to know your intent.

Pictures, home tours, and communication all aimed at a unifying description will make your life easy and produce better results. If you’re enthusiastic about your post and beam project, but don’t have a clearly defined Rallying Cry, don’t let it stop you!

Schedule a 30-90 min brainstorm with our design team at ATF. We can help to define your Rallying Cry quickly. Having a clear target is the single most important thing you can do to get what you want.

Your Rallying Cry will ensure that your project is a win-win for everyone!

To Your Goals, Momentum, and HappinessOn behalf of the Team,

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