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Photography by: Seth Parker, Parker Studios Commercial Photography

Featured Article

Diligent Design

Jamie Taylor shares the background behind making dream houses a reality

Tell us about your background and the genesis of J Taylor Designs. I have always loved residential design, interior design, and architecture. I remember around age 12, I started laying out floor plans on graph paper. 

After graduating college in 2002, I started my career working for a house plan design firm. In 2008, I started working for Huskey Truss and Lumber, which helped to expand my knowledge of home construction. As relationships grew, I was able to design for new builders and homeowners on the side and eventually left Huskey in 2009 due to a new and increasing demand for my architectural services. In July 2009, I officially opened J Taylor Designs.

How do you work with clients to make their dream home come to life? After a client schedules their design consultation, we email them detailed questions about specific needs in the house – for example, the use or placement of household appliances. During the design consultation, we dig deeper into our clients’ needs and the flow of their homes. My goal, when the meeting is complete, is to have a mental drawing of their home and to be ready to lay out their design.

I like to break our design process into three phases: floor plan phase, exterior elevation phase, and construction drawings. During the floor plan phase, our client will receive the initial floor plan concept for review. We collaborate with our clients to get a feel for what works and what needs changing. Working closely with clients is important for us; after all, this is not my dream home, but theirs. I want them to feel like they had a hand in the process.

The exterior elevation phase is like the floor plan phase. An exterior concept is created based on our original design consultation and again, we collaborate with our client to get a feel for what works and what needs changing.

Once our client is happy with the design, it is time for the construction drawings. Once the plans are complete, our clients are ready to build. We love making job site visits to see how the build is progressing and to answer any questions.

Potential clients may assume that designing a home is cost-prohibitive. What would you say are the advantages of utilizing a design service? For some people, a stock plan works. They might find that a pre-made plan meets all their needs, which is why we are working to build a small store on our website. 

Still, some are looking for more than just “enough.” They want the perfect house, and that is where a custom design from scratch is the only option. In today’s market, with the cost of building, investing money on the front-end is smart.

Clients have told me that what makes us special is that we are an all-female firm and that we listen and give insight into spaces that they would have never thought about. Creating a home for today and for the years to come, designing an adaptable home for a life full of changes – these just aren’t things an online plan store can discuss with you. 

What motivates you? Personally and professionally? Having over two decades of work behind me as a designer, the two biggest motivators are happy clients and beautifying the community. There is nothing more rewarding than when you see a client’s eyes fill with excitement for their home. We have received lots of hugs over the years and every one has been special. It makes me feel like I’m doing what I was meant to do.

Living in such a rapidly growing area means high demand for new homes and new development. Being able to work with local developers and builders to create one-of-a-kind subdivisions and community experiences is exciting. 

Personal motivations are my family, especially my daughter. Teaching her to dream and to be passionate about the things she loves. Teaching her the value of hard work and perseverance, and of learning to enjoy the journey as you pursue your dreams. 

Working closely with clients is important for us; after all, this is not my dream home, but theirs. I want them to feel like they had a hand in the process.

Having over two decades of work behind me as a designer, the two biggest motivators are happy clients and beautifying the community. There is nothing more rewarding than when you see a client’s eyes fill with excitement for their home.

  • Photography by: Seth Parker, Parker Studios Commercial Photography
  • Photography by: Seth Parker, Parker Studios Commercial Photography
  • Photography by: Seth Parker, Parker Studios Commercial Photography
  • Photography by: Seth Parker, Parker Studios Commercial Photography
  • Photography by: Russell Johnston
  • Jamie Taylor, Photography by: Angel Pardue Photography
  • Photography provided by J Taylor Designs