What does your dream home look like?
Does it have a spacious floorplan? Or do you prefer a smaller footprint? Do you have a passion for a particular architectural style? Modern? Classical? Mid-century? Or perhaps a combination of styles? Do you want lots of windows for natural lighting? What about a grand staircase?
Architectural designer Don Hildebrand isn’t locked into any specific style. His philosophy on designing homes is simple: it should reflect the homebuyer’s style and lifestyle.
“Your home is where you rest, grow, entertain, live,” he likes to tell his clients. “When you design a house, it’s so much more than arranging rooms on paper. Its molding a unique place for you to experience life the way you live it.”
Don began designing houses in 1974; he holds an associate degree in drafting and design from Oklahoma State University-OKC. He founded his company, Don Hildebrand Home Designs (DonHildebrandHomeDesigns.com), in 1995.
Over the years, he has designed plans ranging from 400-square-foot apartments to a 16,000-square-home, and homes from 16 feet wide to over 200 feet in length.
When a prospective client comes to him to discuss their ideas for their dream home, Don starts by listening carefully to what they envision as well as learning about their lifestyles and space needs. Some come with strong ideas on what they are looking for; others need more guidance and inspiration.
“Browse our plans, look at our photos, find ideas that you like or inspirations of your own,” he said. “Then, come visit us. We'll talk about what your ideas are and add some of our own. Together, we'll design a home that's uniquely you.”
He added, “Our main service is designing the floor plan and exterior look for our clients. I have an initial meeting where I gather their wants in a new home. I just listen and take notes of their wants and needs. I will then do a preliminary sketch of the floor plan and front look of the house. We meet again to go over the sketch to make sure I have interpreted their ideals into a workable, livable plan.
"After this meeting, I will then do a draft with any revisions they have requested. After this is when they will usually meet with their builder, decorator, etc., to do any last changes before we produce the actual construction drawings.”
Hildebrand Home Design houses can be found throughout the metro area, including Galleridia, OakTree, Nichols Hills, the SoSA District (the informal name of a small, inner-city neighborhood near downtown OKC) and Plaza District, in Norman, and many areas in Edmond. He has also designed homes in Texas, Georgia, Florida and Maryland.
Don brings the same skills he uses to design beautiful custom homes to office buildings and home remodels.
A Certified Green Professional, Don said he’s also happy to work with clients interested in building a home with a lower carbon footprint, though he says the demand for this is less in Oklahoma than in other parts of the country.
“I have worked with clients in the past doing partial underground homes and passive solar, he said. “Our focus now is making traditional buildings as energy efficient as possible.”
He added, “I take great pride in designing homes that the owners and I both can be proud of. I like the challenge of figuring out a design that is functional on less-than-ideal lots.
"I believe you should design a home for your own lifestyle and needs and not the next owner. A good design will work for many buyers.”
Don Hildebrand Home Designs
1701 W. 33rd St.