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  Glacier Blue® Architectural Topics & News     
          Monthly Newsletter
February 2015
In This Issue


Topic of the Month: A Stone Library Becomes a Residence

Architectural Firm of the Month: Bluetime Collaborative

Helpful Links for Architects     

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Devonian Stone - dakota  Welcome to the February issue of our newsletter! In each issue we present you with interesting and informative articles about the various projects architects and designers are working on around the country. If there is a project you would like to share with us, please feel free to contact us and tell us about it! Your project could be featured in one of our upcoming issues of this newsletter. To learn more about our "high-end" cut-to-size Glacier Blue® Devonian Sandstone products, please click here to visit our website.

Bluetime Collaborative represents the evolution of the firm which is currently run under the name Robert Swinburne Architect LLC. "Bluetime" is the winter twilight time when the world in Vermont turns a quiet and luminescent blue before it gets dark. The business model for Bluetime reflects the architectural industry's shift toward a more flexible work model where individual architects, designers, and related professionals can combine and share resources and staffing needs to become more flexible in response to project opportunities.


Robert Swinburne is an architect with over 17 years of experience, including six years as a carpenter and builder. He is licensed in Vermont and Massachusetts. Since 2000 Robert has completed over 100 projects in New England and New York. Robert also holds the LEED AP credential demonstrating a practical understanding of the inherent values of sustainable design. Increasingly, the firm has become sought after for its sustainable design knowledge and ethic. 

For more information visit:

When architect Robert Swinburne of Bluetime Collaborative was asked to remodel a 3,040 square foot stone library in the mountains of Vermont and turn it into a light-filled home, he rose to the challenge and brought builder Kent Webster on board, along with stone mason Jim McBean. The project was a gut remodel that took twenty months to complete.


Swinburne explains, "This was a gut remodel of a stone veneered concrete block building that was built around1960. It was dark and musty and had been used for storage and as a library for a college professor. The current owner wanted to turn it into a bright airy home. We opened the ceiling up to the rafters and made few changes to the stone veneered shell of the original."


"The biggest moves were a bank of windows on the south side that bring light deep into the Great Room, and a very small pair of skylights near the ridge over the fireplace which bring in huge amounts of relatively indirect light due to their small size and the depth of the rafters. The double skylight may just have to become my signature move. It has an amazing effect and acts as a sundial as well, as the light in the room changes considerably depending on the time of day and the season."


 "We took the opportunity to rebuild with a considerable amount of insulation and high quality windows. We used Loewen windows with Richlite window sills."


Builder Kent Webster adds, "All new or rearranged window and door openings had to be cut and then the stone veneer had to be tied back into the original by my stone mason, Jim McBean. We were able to peel off a lot of the stone to recycle, but not enough to do the whole job.  We visited three different quarries to find the best match to the existing stone. Jim did an amazing job matching new stone to the old."


"Bob gave us some beautiful details to challenge. He designed a long slow curving interior wall and the conning tower office that we popped up through the roof. There are Terne metal clad chimneys.  All the cabinets and case work are custom cherry frame and panel shaker style. The hard wood floors are random 3-4-5-6" yellow birch."


The once dark, damp stone building is now a completely remodeled home that is filled with light, warmth and open, comfortable living spaces. On the main level there is one bedroom, 1.5 baths, a large open Great Room, a mudroom/laundry room and large closet. The loft is a single bedroom accessed with a steep stair beside the fireplace. The basement level has a utility room, a sauna, closets and another large fireplace with a seating area. A 670 square foot garage was added with a sun porch directly above it that leads to a deck with incredible views to the east.


Swinburne explains, "From an architectural design standpoint, it was relatively straightforward. I had great confidence in Kent Webster who is capable of a high level of aesthetic and technical decision making, so the building process was easy for me as an architect.


Swinburne describes the design of the remodeled home as "eclectic and unusual" and not at all typical of New England architecture, but it is a unique and beautiful home that the new owners enjoy.



Helpful Links for Architects

AIA Custom Residential Architects Network (CRAN) 

The Custom Residential Architects Network (CRAN), a Knowledge Community of The American Institute of Architects, is committed to the promotion of all residential architecture based on architectural content irrespective of style. For more information visit:  

AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community

The AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community provides leadership and expertise to practitioners of interior architecture and design, working cooperatively with its members and other interiors organizations to address relevant, timely practice issues, markets, and trends, such as licensing, liability, environmental, and technological considerations. Through the Interior Architecture Knowledge Community, important links are maintained with allied professionals, service providers, and manufacturers. If you wish to become a member of the AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community, call AIA Member Services at 800-242-3837, or visit: 


Architect Online's Continuing Education Center

Architect Online's Online Continuing Education Center gives professionals a convenient way to earn necessary continuing education credits without having to set foot in a classroom. The courses listed, sponsored by the companies noted, are accessible from anywhere you can establish an online connection. Just register, read the required material, and then take the test, either through a downloadable mail-in form, or free via a secure online connection, depending on the course. You'll be able to maintain your professional credentials, at your pace, and at a location that works for you. Visit: 


Architectural Record Continuing Education Center

Architectural Record magazine has a free Continuing Education Center where architects can earn AIA Continuing Education Credits online. Visit:

Architectural Record Discussion Forums

The McGraw Hill Construction Community, publisher of Architectural Record, has provided architects with a forum to express ideas, opinions, suggestions, and gripes. The discussion forums are open to all, and include topics such as Green Building Projects, Virtual Design, Practice Matters and a forum for younger architects. Visit:

CORA - Congress of Residential Architecture 

CORA is a grass root organization that encourages our members to participate in the dialog of improving residential architecture in a way that suits them best. The purpose of the CORA is to provide a continuing forum for advocating and enhancing residential architecture by all individuals, both professionals and non-professionals, that share a common interest in improving the quality of the homes and communities we live in. Visit: 

The Green Meeting Industry Council

The Green Meeting Industry Council (GMIC) is a non profit 501(c)(6) membership-based organization. Their goal is to encourage collaboration within the meetings industry toward the development of green standards that will improve the environmental performance of meetings and events on a global basis. The GMIC is the only professional green meetings organization that is a member of the Convention Industry Council. For more information visit: 


The World Architecture Community
The World Architecture Community invites all architects to create a free profile on their website. The World Architecture Portal is a unique comprehensive international directory and catalog of contemporary architecture where all architects, scholars and institutions may submit their work and links to share with colleagues from around the world.
For more information visit:

We hope you enjoyed our informative monthly e-newsletter. For questions, comments or more information, please e-mail or call us today.





Liz Benton, Editor 
Glacier Blue® Architectural Topics & News
Devonian Stone of New York, Inc.

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