- Blackbird Designs
- 1818 Harmon Street
- Berkeley, California
- Voice: (510) 601-1150
“They were recommended to me by a friend, and we were very happy with them. We did a large remodel, and they helped us with the design and ideas. They are a small company, which I really like because they get to know you and they treat you really well.”
“Andus is a brilliant architecht, he’s great to work with, and he understands the meaning of the word budget. He added a 19th century style cottage on top of our garage, and you can’t even tell it’s new, it blends in with the house so well.”
“They did a major kitchen remodel in our 1930s house. We were planning on just updating it a bit, but they gave us so many creative ideas we ended up closing off some walls and working with the lighting. They are so imaginative. They were very clear on the costs, and very generous with their time. We found them in the Good Service Guide.”
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Imagine a small architectural firm which specializes in listening to the client - a firm that focuses on residential remodeling projects, and which consistently delivers excellent results.
Berkeley’s Blackbird Designs has been quietly improving people’s lives for over 20 years with their thoughtful, careful approach to architectural design.
“We always keep in mind that the project is about our clients’ homes,” says owner Andus Brandt, “Not about our portfolio. It’s their house, and we need to solve their day-to-day problems. We’re here to listen and to help our clients achieve their dreams, their tastes and their design preferences. Everybody is an architect to some degree.”
After obtaining his Architecture Degree from UC Berkeley, Andus started his career as Blackbird Carpentry, after the Beatles song. This hands-on beginning grew into Blackbird Designs. Karin Linssen, an architecture graduate from California College of Arts and Crafts, joined the firm in 2000.
It can be a real challenge to design additions for older East Bay homes, often located on small lots. Blackbird Designs specializes in raising homes to create new space underneath, or adding a second story on top.
“We’re not into designing huge custom homes,” Andus explains. “We actually enjoy modest projects, such as redesigning an older kitchen, transforming a space by taking out walls, converting attics, and bringing in more light, or changing a floor plan to give better flow and harmony.”
Blackbird Designs is also interested in working with clients who are considering a “green“ approach to building and architecture. They also offer a consulting service whereby you can consult with them about the costs and practicality of a large remodel before you get in too deep.
“People believe that architects are very self-centered, and have no respect for their clients’ ideas,” says Andus. “That’s exactly what we’re trying not to be.
“We’re down-to-earth, regular folks. People like our capable and professional service. They know that we’re there for them.”