Inspiration to Transformation: Issaquah Showcase
PROJECT: Chown Showcase No. 2
BUILDER: Roberts Group
Every product from Chown Hardware tells a story, some originating from thousands of miles away. Chown travels the world to bring the most premium products of global design to your home, but the origin of that product is only the beginning of the story. Join Chown Hardware with a behind-the-scenes look at the process of working with designers, architects and Chown experts to create the perfect home experience, from inspiration to transformation.
Imagine waking up every morning to the Seattle skyline in the distance; the hustle and bustle of downtown far away while you peacefully sip your morning coffee. This view is perfectly captured from the bedroom window of a custom Issaquah dream home, which took nearly two years to build from the ground up. The immaculate detail that went into this home demonstrates the talent of Roberts Group, who tailored to the specific needs of the homeowners to create the custom home they dreamed about. Like Chown Hardware, Roberts Group is a family-owned business that has built trust with homeowners over decades of experience.
For nearly 40 years, Roberts Group has built luxurious custom homes in the Seattle metropolitan area. Chown Hardware is chosen to provide premium fixtures in many of the homes built by Roberts Group. Both Roberts Group and Chown Hardware are experiencing similar generational shifts in their companies. Owen Roberts, President of Roberts Group, is passing on the family business to the capable hands of his son, Zach. Zach’s first unofficial job at Roberts Group began when he just six years old, picking up scraps on job sites. Officially, his career started as a laborer digging ditches after college. “I love building and really have have a passion for that,” he said. “I grew up with that. It’s something I’ve always loved doing, from building tree houses as kids to building houses like this.”
Kyle Chown recently took over the helm of Chown Hardware as President, and had an almost identical start at Chown picking up scraps in the warehouse as a child. He enjoys the opportunity to work with another family-owned business with a passion for quality products and design. “We trust the art direction and design elements [Roberts Group] puts into every home,” he said. “That inspires us to bring them the best curated door hardware and plumbing products the world has to offer.”
Builders, designers, and manufacturers understand that quality is crucial for both the design and functionality of hardware. “Quality plays a huge role in the ultimate build out of the house,” said Kara Macias, Project Manager at Roberts Group. “These are things that you touch and feel and that you physically have hands on every single day…You want something that you’re happy with that functions well, that looks beautiful, that requires less maintenance. You want the hardware and fixtures in your house that look timeless.” Chown’s showrooms in Bellevue and Portland provide the opportunity for designers and homeowners to touch and experience each product to see how it will feel to use each day. This ensures a product is not only aesthetically pleasing, but functions with their lifestyle.
One incredible piece in the Issaquah home that’s touched every day is the stunning front door hardware artfully crafted by Sun Valley Bronze. “Robert Commons, our founder, created many of our most imitated levers by how it felt in his hand,” said Aimee Commons, daughter of Robert Commons and Creative Director at Sun Valley Bronze. “He carved them until he liked the experience of holding each piece… and then he fine-tuned the design.”
Another family-owned business with decades of experience, Sun Valley Bronze utilizes high-quality, art grade silicon and white bronze that’s heated to 2200 degrees fahrenheit and poured into a sand mould. Once removed from the sand mould, the piece is then precision machined to exact specifications and finally is sent to a patina artist for any finishing touches. “Our products are sand cast, which creates a beautiful, authentic and subtle texture on the surface of the material,” said Commons. “The company was founded with the goal to create something better, more durable, and with greater integrity than what was already on the market.” This meticulous manufacturing process helps define Sun Valley Bronze as a luxury hardware brand with a strong attention to detail and emphasis on high quality craftsmanship. “The details make the difference,” said Commons.
Chown curates the highest quality products from around the world. “It’s our job to learn more, be better, bring the newest, the latest, the greatest, not just from the Seattle area, not even just from Made in America, but from around the world,” said Jeff Rose, Regional Sales Director at Chown Hardware. “And we do a great, great job with that.” Chown works with vendors who love what they do and who have the homeowners in mind when they design a product. They work with designers, architects, and builders who trust them to provide products that merge design with functionality and stand the test of time. Chown’s products will become a part of a new chapter for homeowners–a transformation of their home.
“Every product we bring in has a story to tell,” said Chown. “And it tells us a story. And that’s why we fall in love with that product. When it’s installed in the home, there’s a new story to tell. That’s what’s so exciting about seeing the product come through our receiving department and get boxed up and inspected and go back out to a job site, because we know that there’s a new story. And we don’t know what that is yet.”