Wednesday, January 16, 2013

New Year, New Stuff Coming from ideabox

New Year, New "Stuff"

It's been awhile since my last blog post. It's not for the lack of wanting to write something,  more to do with just being really busy. When last we wrote, we were sharing the ideabox "AKTIV" model which was on display at the Portland IKEA store at Cascade Station. Thousands of people visited the house over the six weeks we were there. Lots of old friends, made lots of new friends, it was a lot of fun.

Since then we've been been working with clients on their custom designs, designing houses to work on their incredible sites, organizing construction projects, and placing homes in production. 

We've also been putting together the new 2013 lineup of ideabox models. We've been soft introducing them on our Facebook site, (ideabox modern living), and are excited by the response. So we'll bring them here too where we can spend a little more time talking about what contributed to the designs.

So we'll be back! We have a new confluence, a new confluence "plus", and a larger confluence 3! Also new is the Northwest 560... a larger version of our iconic Northwest model, (we're already building them and we haven't released them yet)!

Thanks for reading!

See you soon!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Going for the Gold!

The Week magazine names the ideabox AKTIV the best property under 1,000 SF! 

We were thrilled to be noticed by such a prominent periodical. Love their line "All you need to know about everything that matters." Not only was the AKTIV the #1 pick, the ideabox Northwest Modern was also mentioned, which given it's the original ideabox design and the first series we built, we're obviously very pleased. 

For the next week, you can see the ideabox AKTIV house on display at IKEA Portland at Cascade Station. It has been such a positive experience having the opportunity to introduce modern design and how we can turn a small footprint into big living. Thousands have walked through the house, most not believing how much space and volume could be realized. Seeing is believing! 

Check it out! ideabox AKTIV..... 
the right amount of everything!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Summer in the City

It's an ideabox event! We're calling it "Summer in the City!"  

After all, it is summer. And for the first time, we have a home on display in Portland. You gotta come see! We're live with the ideabox AKTIV model on display at Cascade Station right next door to IKEA Portland. The display is simply amazing! Fully furnished, power from the sun, and swedish meatballs right next door. What more could you ask for?

We're excited. We rarely have a house available like this for display (everything we do are design/build custom houses). So it is very cool to be able to have the house in Portland, and at such a great location like Cascade Station. Even cooler is being next door to our collaborative partner with the AKTIV design, IKEA Portland. Really terrific to for people to see a real house with IKEA products, installed. For our customers, they can go right next door and spec out the kitchen of their dreams. Even more terrific for us is the opportunity to introduce just how functional carefully thought out modern design can be. 

Our "Summer in the City" display takes a lot of work to make happen. For starters, we needed power, so we went solar. Panels were provided by Solar World (made nearby in Hillsboro) and designed by Cliff Schrock. Once powered, the space needs to be conditioned, so installed is an incredibly efficient Fujitsu ductless heat pump from The Heat Pump Store from nearby Independence. All the furniture, as you might expect, came from IKEA Portland, and it's really comfortable.... (I'm writing from the couch now!)

The exterior features a clever deck built from timbers, pavers, and rusting metal planter boxes from Oregon Outdoor Landscape. It's small, (given our temporary location), but you get a real sense of what can be done with clever landscaping. All of our houses are designed to extend the indoor living space to the outdoor space. We've been fortunate to work with talented landscape designers and contractors who pick up the architecture of the house.

We couldn't be here without an access ramp. We turned to AMRAMP of Portland, who not only provided a ramp for easy access, the ramp they brought is a work of industrial art. We love it.... Clever engineering, infinitely adjustable, we kind of want to ask them if they could make us a deck product, it's that cool. So many people have commented about how intriguing the ramp is constructed it's got us thinking.... what if we had a deck like this?!? 

We're calling it our "Summer in the City" event. We're here through August 6th at Cascade Station. It's been amazing so far. Come see just how amazing modern prefab houses can be.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Been Awhile!

So much has happened since our last blog post, I'm not really sure where to begin. There is so much to tell, so much we've learned, and very fun new things to come. Guess I'll start where we left off.

It was February. It was raining. And I think cold. We were talking about the new "drift" series of floating homes - cool little houses incorporated on log or concrete floats in sizes ranging from 400 SF up to 1400 SF in size - a combination of the speed and precision of systems building with the craftsmanship and skill of Portland's leading floating home builder, Marc Even. 

A few days before that we introduced the new "minibox by ideabox" - a series of micro houses, tiny houses, little guys that offer all the modern design, fit, and finish of ideabox in a tiny, easily moveable footprint. We are building them to the RV code, and starting at 8' wide, one can transport them with a pick up truck. We will be writing more about these, as the applications for the "minibox" are clever, diverse, and a lot of fun. 

Perhaps the most newsworthy event since our last blog post was the introduction of the new AKTIV design, our collaboration with IKEA Portland. What we learned was the true power of brand, the incredible distribution mechanism of information through social media, and just how popular what we are doing here at ideabox is with people all around the world. 

a SCREEN GRAB of a perfect example of just how far social media can go!

For those who follow us, I won't go into the absolutely sensational case of misinformation disguised as news that occurred after we introduced the new AKTIV house at the Spring Portland Home & Garden Show. I will say we were so genuinely pleased with how well the AKTIV concept house was received at the show. The design is very clean, the IKEA stuff is very cool, and the layout incredibly functional. The subsequent misreporting that ran rampant is well documented now, but must admit it's kind of fun to have something we worked on appear on the Today Show, the Tonight Show, the cable news shows, and perhaps the capper, on the Ellen Show! (Thanks to KGW 8, Sustainable Business Oregon, Chicago Tribune, the Statesman Journal, Yahoo, and many others who helped us get the right story out!)

There is so much more to talk about - and we will - as there is a brand new version "northwest modern" house we're about to release, new clever versions of the "minibox series", and a whole lineup of "accessory dwelling units" we want to talk about. The AKTIV house is going on display in June & July and we definitely want talk about that. We're introducing new window options featuring colored frames and the latest in glazing technology. And there's a fun event that is in the works for August. 

Thanks for reading. And thanks for following ideabox. What a great summer we're all going to have!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Introducing new "drift" line of floating homes... ideabox on the water!

One of the coolest living experiences ever has to be on a floating home. I gotta admit, I'm new to the whole floating home thing, but in doing my research as we put together the new "drift" design package, I learned very quickly it is truly a unique and exciting way to live. There is something special to being literally right on the water. From the soothing relationship of the water and nature to the active lifestyle of boating and water sports, the whole thing is captivating. Floating home living is clever and active making every day unique and special.

"drift" is a unique partnership of proven skill sets. We teamed up with Marc Even Construction, the pre-eminate floating home builder in Portland, and Mike Foote, an experienced residential project developer to offer the best of all worlds - the clean modern lines and speed of production of ideabox prefab homes with the impeccable craftsmanship of building the float, decks, and all the cool floating home stuff. Each project will be professionally managed, from design thru production. It's an incredible team offering an incredible product.

We're excited! "drift" truly offers cost effective floating home modern dwellings. Our clients can design a house today, and enjoy living on the water in a matter of months! 

"drift tenders" is the first offering from this dynamic team. The new "tender" series are small, accessory style dwellings, that offer complete modern living in a tidy package. The new mini-floating homes feature everything ideabox, cleverly wrapped up and ready for cost effective quick delivery.

We'll be releasing new models shortly, and they all follow the ideabox design premise of indoor / outdoor modern lifestyle solutions, bringing modern prefab design to floating homes. 

For more information on "drift" - contact Mike Foote at 503.290.1199 or email

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

introducing minibox... by ideabox!

Totally fun! Totally easy! Totally ideabox! Introducing the new "minibox" by ideabox. Coming in at a robust 200 SF in size, this is a micro-house that is all about mini living in style! Easy to move, the 8' wide tiny house can be moved with a large truck! Easy to place, all you need is a flat (preferably stable) spot, an RV plug and service connection, and you're all about the living! And at 200 SF, it's truly personal property (rarely requiring a permit).

minibox is only small in footprint. Everything else is big on personality. The ceiling soars above your head, and with all the glass and natural light it will be like your head is literally in the clouds.... (well, on a cloudy day, if we're being literal). Seriously, there is a lot of glass letting in as much of the outside in as possible and extending the inside out! 

Like everything ideabox, the minibox is all about living. And if your lifestyle has anything to do with eating, you're set with the mini-designer kitchen that simply rocks... complete with a 9 CF refrigerator/freezer, gas or induction cooktop, convection oven and even a dishwasher. Even the bathroom is, well, a full sized... (not one of those sort-of sized ones found in dwellings this size). A real shower (or tub/shower), a real dual flush toilet, and a very real vanity with sink and storage. 

Through a new product relationship with IKEA, (see the new aktiv line from ideabox to be featured here soon...), minibox features IKEA kitchen & bath cabinets, cooking, and a Tundra floor, in short, a totally modern lifestyle wrapped up in a compact package.

Outside, the mini wonder features stained cedar and galvalume siding, standing seam metal roofs, and ENERGY STAR windows. Radiant zonal provides the heating, with an optional ductless heat pump for year round comfort. Water heating is tankless. 

minibox is available now! 

For more information on the new minibox, visit - or - contact Taylor Russell, Studio Proprietor via email...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Your Home as an Art Piece

Have you purchased a piece of art and found it is a topic of conversation? We think of ideaboxes as large art pieces. 

Each element of the home is thoughtful and personalized to meet the character of the owner.  Each ideabox is a symbol of the owner’s design style, as well as, life style.  Their ideabox tells a bigger story than just the home they live in. It shows what they stand for. Maybe it is to “live off of the grid”, to live with less (space and clutter), or to simply be an “out of the box” thinker and doer. Whatever the style, our clients have found that the story is best told from an ideabox.

People are becoming aware of the varying applications available in prefab modern living.  They are going beyond the interest of living out of the box, and defining their own market for modern prefab homes. Each owner’s reason for choosing an ideabox will be different, but the pride will remain the same. Their story is a part of the home.