Seattle Living

Seattle’s Home Design Experts Help You See Your Space in a New Light

This month's Editor's Note from Rachel Hart

By Rachel Hart December 29, 2018

Paint cans on blue background

This article originally appeared in the January 2019 issue of Seattle Magazine.

This article appears in print in the January 2019 issue. Click here to subscribe.

When I was a kid, my parents always told me that I could be anything I wanted to be when I grew up, but that simply wasn’t true. They were (and still are) awesome, encouraging parents, but I completely lack the skills to cut hair or to knit and sew, for example, and most definitely cannot envision how a room or home could look different through remodeling or redecorating. I used to rearrange my childhood bedroom every year or so, but I never really strayed much from the same two bed/dresser/desk configurations (though I thought I was pretty cool for painting my walls lavender).

This month’s issue connects people like me with people who possess home design talents in spades. Why a cover story on remodeling in Seattle mag when there are plenty of home design magazines out there? For one, our housing market—with its continuing high prices and low inventory—has led to a surge of interest in remodeling. Also, here in the Pacific Northwest, we deal with challenges that are different from those in other parts of the country. Local home design experts can skillfully advise on the exact type of paint color in your home that will make the most of our “diffused” light, or create a layout that incorporates the “bringing the outdoors in” principle of Pacific Northwest design that so many of us want in our homes. And finally, because we know you love brilliant design solutions as much as we do, check out the stylish, multifunctional piece of furniture for which every dog-obsessed Seattleite will be clamoring.

This month our city will embark on the next leg of a years-long remodel of its own: On January 11, the process that will ultimately move traffic on State Route 99 from the Alaskan Way Viaduct to the new tunnel begins. This is a transition that reportedly will take three weeks of round-the-clock construction, plus another few weeks of uncovering on-and-off ramps at the south end of the tunnel (completed in 2014) that were buried during construction.

And that is only the beginning. Once that work is done, the Viaduct demolition will begin, a process that will take several months, since engineers and demolition crews must plot how to crunch up all that concrete without hitting historic buildings just feet away. Of course, anxiety is mounting regarding how to deal with the “period of maximum constraint” (a phrase that conjures an image of a Victorian corset wrapped around that part of the city), so we have a few suggestions on how to alleviate the pressure.

Community celebrations around the tunnel opening commence the weekend of February 2. Activities including a walk through the tunnel and on top of the Viaduct (be sure to register for free tickets) as well as an 8K run and a bike ride (registration fees vary). I still think it would have been cool to turn the Viaduct into our own version of New York City’s Highline elevated park and I will miss the view from the Viaduct (both water and skyline) while driving by downtown Seattle. But I’m looking forward to our waterfront remodel—the city’s brand new “living room” that will be the result of these epic changes. For a sneak peek, visit and look for our story in the March issue for more on what’s to come.

Follow Us

Retail Crime in Washington the Worst in U.S.

Retail Crime in Washington the Worst in U.S.

Forbes Advisor report finds that retailers here are ‘most impacted’

A few years ago, a thief brazenly used a pair of bolt cutters to snip the wires securing several high-end purses at the former Macy’s department store in downtown Seattle. He then calmly left the store. Retail theft remains a driver of numerous store closures throughout the city — Target and Bartell Drugs are two…

The Tinsel is No Longer in a Tangle

The Tinsel is No Longer in a Tangle

Seattle shoppers are ready to spend this holiday season

One iPad pro: $799. One 24” MacBook: $1,599. If those are on your holiday shopping list, chances are you’ve already busted your budget. The 2023 Deloitte Seattle Holiday Retail Survey finds that the “average” holiday spend in Seattle is $2,073, up a whopping 59% from two years ago.  That’s not all. That $2,073 is 25%…

UW Launches Final Phase of Campaign to Restore Historic ASUW Shell House

UW Launches Final Phase of Campaign to Restore Historic ASUW Shell House

Effort coincides with release of The Boys in the Boat on Christmas day

The race is on. The University of Washington has launched the final phase of an ambitious campaign to restore the historic shell house where the 1936 Gold-medal winning Olympic rowing team once trained. The “Pull Together” campaign is designed to encourage final gifts toward the renovation of the century-old ASUW Shell House on the Montlake…

Is Bartell Drugs in Trouble?

Is Bartell Drugs in Trouble?

Rite Aid’s bankruptcy raises questions

Rite Aid’s bankruptcy was, seemingly, a foregone conclusion. To no one’s surprise, Rite Aid filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection over the weekend. Company stock had been trading well below a dollar for months, and rumors had circulated that it was heading toward insolvency. In 2020, Rite Aid acquired Seattle institution Bartell Drugs and its…