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Alla Kazovsky
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Alla Kazovsky is an award-winning architect and creativity coach behind www.allaDIYally.com, an online architectural office providing advice without strings to DIY home improvement enthusiasts.

Whether organizing a home, remodeling a kitchen, or converting a garage, DIYers rely on Kazovsky as their “architect on demand.” With more than 20 years of experience as a registered architect, Kazovsky offers expertise on resolving how-to questions, conceptual thinking, layout design, and material/resource selections. Her how-to book, DIY Like An Architect: 11-Step Method is a hands-on guide to prepare DIYers with practical tools before embarking on a project.

Fees are minimal and response time is immediate.
Alla can be found anytime on Facebook and Google+

Entries by Alla Kazovsky

Designing an Outdoor Kitchen: 5 Steps to Thinking Outside the Box

(0) Comments | Posted August 26, 2015 | 1:20 PM

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Opening your mind to undefined possibilities is what they call thinking outside the box. My friends reached out to me last-minute; they were starting a project in the backyard -- installing an outdoor kitchen and a new hardscape. When we met, I knew...

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Born Out of Necessity: Space-Saving Desk Does 5 (Actually 10) Things at Once

(4) Comments | Posted August 20, 2015 | 11:56 AM

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Space-saving design is born out of necessity. It solves, simplifies, and gives an alternative. Sometimes, it even anticipates a problem before it occurs. It does not need to be complicated or fussy, just functional. Case in point: engineered to turn on a dime,...

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Turning a House Into a Home: 5 Ways to Mix Old and New

(2) Comments | Posted August 13, 2015 | 2:59 PM

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Imagine turning a house into a home, an apparatus programmed to cooperate, even anticipate and inspire, a sophisticated contraption attending to all of your whims -- a place where your emotional and physical wellbeing are taken care of -- designed with efficiency...
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Above-Ground Pool in the Front Yard: 5 Ways I Used Constraints to My Advantage

(2) Comments | Posted August 6, 2015 | 4:30 PM

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My kids, my students, and my fellow DIYers (those home improvement enthusiasts I consult online as Alla DIY Ally have all heard me exclaim time and time again: "That's a blessing in disguise!" I love when perceived design problems are turned...
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How Difficult Is Simple?

(1) Comments | Posted July 31, 2015 | 4:42 PM

Mary Little sat right next to me at a panel discussion. Once the Q&A part was over, she asked me to reflect on it. I welcomed a conversation -- always too shy about approaching someone myself. Once we got to introductions, I found out that Mary Little is an artist...

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Re-Inventing the Wheel

(0) Comments | Posted September 26, 2012 | 9:50 PM

I just came back from Spain after attending Habitat Valencia Fair -- a showcase of the Spanish furniture industry. Everyone involved said that this year the attendance, as well as the number of exhibitors, have dramatically diminished and that whoever was there truly showed courage. I also heard a few...

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New Design Center Centers on Kids!

(0) Comments | Posted June 7, 2012 | 3:22 PM

According to Einstein, "not everything that counts can be counted." Teaching children how to look at the world with a designer's eye definitely counts at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum's new educational space located in Park Heights / Harlem neighborhood of New York City.

Recently, I had first-hand experience with the...

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Architecture Classes for Children? Why Is It a Good Idea?

(4) Comments | Posted May 15, 2012 | 3:01 PM

You may wonder: "Architecture classes for children ... hmm ... Why would I subject my child to any kind of professional training at this stage of her development? I could be steering him in a direction of a career path that is totally wrong!"

The authors of...

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Product as Sculpture

(2) Comments | Posted December 21, 2011 | 3:17 PM

I am invited by Jo Lauria, the exhibition curator of Golden State of Craft: California 1960-1985 to tag along on a formal tour of the show -- a 45min. talk about the genesis, development, and overall conceptualization of the exhibition, along with "chats" about specific objects on...

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Seeing It in a Different Light

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2011 | 11:00 AM

Week nine & ten of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design: we are finishing up and presenting, summarizing what we have learned together. One of the insightful "rules" I came across recently, postulates: "Every now and then take something that you see everyday...

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Thinking Small. Thinking Big.

(2) Comments | Posted September 8, 2011 | 4:51 PM

Week eight of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design: we leap into master planning. Enticing each one of the students to think of their project from a new point of view, as an integral component of a larger system/a neighborhood/a community is what...

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Establishing Hierarchy

(0) Comments | Posted August 18, 2011 | 3:10 PM

Week seven of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design. I am starting the lesson with a pop quiz. My students quickly begin responding.
• What is parti?
• What is human scale?
• What is circulation?

I ask them...

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Organizing Circulation

(0) Comments | Posted August 10, 2011 | 6:42 PM

Week six of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design. Last time I ended the class with a quote from Virginia Woolf: "The success of the masterpieces seems to lie not so much in their freedom from faults... but in the immense persuasiveness of...

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Preparing for Success

(3) Comments | Posted August 3, 2011 | 7:29 PM

Week five of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design. The theme is "orchestrating experience on a different scale: 10 ways to prepare for success." Peter Lawrence said: "Design is the term we use to describe both the process and the result of giving...

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Orchestrating Experience

(6) Comments | Posted July 26, 2011 | 5:47 PM

Week four of the Saturday High Architecture class at Art Center College of Design. Today we are starting to tackle one of the key concepts: Orchestrating Experience. My goal is to add yet another layer, to broaden understanding of the design process for each teen in the room....

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What Is Bravos?

(2) Comments | Posted July 18, 2011 | 5:25 PM

Serendipitous sequence of events that always accompanies seeing my friend Mikel Orbe, head of the interior furnishings department within the Trade Commission of Spain in New York, brought me to LA's Dwell on Design. As Mikel's job is to promote Spanish talent, he immediately took me to the main attraction...

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Thoughtful Making of Space

(3) Comments | Posted June 22, 2011 | 12:55 PM

Week three of the Saturday High architecture class at Art Center College of Design. Today I want to concentrate on the concept of shaping, defining space. The quote by Louis Kahn: "Architecture is the thoughtful making of space" is very appropriate. In addition, I need to introduce the...

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Asking Questions

(4) Comments | Posted June 14, 2011 | 4:13 PM

I gather materials to make available for my high-schoolers learning about architecture at Art Center's Saturday High. Along with paper towel cardboard carcasses and egg containers, wood blocks are ideal, and a trip to House of Hardwood is in order. It turns out that there are people rummaging...

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Room to Grow

(4) Comments | Posted June 7, 2011 | 6:10 PM

"Fresh off the boat," an émigré from the Soviet Union, I decided to study architecture at sixteen ... Who could have known that I had it in me! First year of Architecture School at USC was pivotal. It's easy to connect the dots many years later. Well, I doubted my...

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Thinking Beyond Boundaries: Art Center's Designmatters Program

(6) Comments | Posted May 16, 2011 | 2:21 PM

Art Center College of Design prepares students for "an ongoing exploration of design as a positive force for change in society." That's the premise of Mariana Amatullo's talk. Mariana opens her remarks by stating: "It is an interesting moment in time, a moment of change, when creative community...

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