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After spending the past few years on the streets, Flirty Cupcakes has a new dessert garage to call home. Flirty was preparing their delectable delights in a shared kitchen in Chicago’s West Loop, and selling to the public out of two food trucks. Now in addition to their rounds in Chicagoland, Flirty will sell their in-house baked treats from their new shop on Taylor Street. After identifying the 1,200 square foot space on Taylor near UIC, moss helped transform the formerly hapless space into a modern dessert garage. Product list and photos inside.

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photo courtesy of CS Interiors

Curbed Chicago has named our Erie Street Loft project the best home renovation of the year!  Thanks, Curbed!  Relive the magic here and and in video form here.  This project was also featured in CS Interiors Magazine, Apartment Therapy, and Curbed Chicago.

After years of ignoring its original warehouse aesthetic, due to a developer’s ‘apartmentizing’ of the building, this 2,400 square foot, two-story loft has been rehabilitated to show off its industrial roots.  Layers of paint and drywall have been removed revealing the original timber beams and masonry walls while accommodating two bedrooms, master suite, and a lofty, open living space at the ground floor.  We wanted to avoid the lifeless feeling usually associated with industrial lofts by giving the space a warm but rustic aesthetic that we think best represented the original loft building.  The finish materials also echo an industrial aesthetic, featuring upcycled reclaimed timbers as a fireplace surround and wall material, reclaimed stainless steel awning window, sourced from the ReBuilding Exchange, doors from a Chicago Montessori school, and salvaged metal pendant light fixtures.  Description, before and after photos, and floor plans inside.

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Permits are days away from being issued for our cafe project in Traverse City, Michigan.  After finding our work at Filter in Wicker Park, the brewers asked us to design their similarly infrastructured space in cherry country.  We have uncovered the original structure through about seventy years of dirt, grime, and hideous remodels to find beautiful maple floors, yellow masonry, and a tin ceiling!  We’ve also rediscovered the existing window openings in the rear of the space which will give new light and air to the seating area.  The space will operate as a cafe during the day, with locally roasted coffee brewed over a custom designed pour-over stand, and a tavern into the night.  After a building material shopping spree in Chicago we have designed reclaimed pendant light fixtures and barnwood, recycled leather, and salvaged wood windows into the space.  The rest of the design features a refined industrial aesthetic echoing the former sawmills of Traverse City while giving a subtle nod to the City Opera House which still operates upstairs. Photos inside. Read the rest of this entry »

The de-apartmentizing sequence is almost complete.  The space will fully revert back to loft status in a couple of weeks.  Construction photos inside. Read the rest of this entry »

Our new Downtown restaurant has just entered the permitting process at City Hall.  The existing structure has been incorporated into the interior design with exposed masonry wall, sloped concreted ceiling, and sealed concrete floor.  That will be contrasted with reclaimed wood, exposed ductwork, and lighting placement.  Construction is expected to begin in early February. More drawings inside. Read the rest of this entry »

Our plans to remodel a two-story loft in River North are shaping up and construction is slated to start in a couple of weeks.  The design scheme reintroduces a loft design aesthetic to the existing ‘apartmentized’ layout.  The project is designed to utilize reclaimed materials and finishes, LED light fixtures, and an edible roof terrace (the plants being edible, that is, not the roof).  More images inside. Read the rest of this entry »


An otherwise underutilized attic space is being transformed into a light-filled work space for the artist residents of a residential building in Logan Square.  We are retaining and exposing the existing masonry and heavy timber structure at the interior space.  The existing turret will be restored to its original condition after an unfortunate run in with vinyl siding.  Most of the finish materials will be reclaimed, including the interior doors, from other project sites in Logan Square, plumbing fixtures, and flooring. Read the rest of this entry »

filterFilter coffee update:  We will be wrapping up construction drawings in the next two weeks,  after which we will submit to the Department of Buildings and Health Department for permits.  Sandblasting just wrapped up and has taken off about fifty years of grime, check out the photos after the jump.

Also, Filter is on pace for LEED-CI, certified level!

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brickAfter passing the third new construction, four-story, brick condo building on just one block this afternoon, I commented to my friend that we have to stop using brick as a veneer material in Chicago.  It partially made sense when we used it for structure to hold up the floor and roof above (or to an extreme example seventeen floors – see monadnock building), but no longer seems functional since brick is not used to support loads in new construction, typically.  Read the rest of this entry »

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