Residential Design

Vol. 3, 2017

A business-to-business magazine focused on the collaborative process and talented work of residential architects and custom homebuilders.

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PRO-FILE BUILD Stop for a moment and think about the massive amount of faith and trust a custom home client has to muster to go forward with a high-end project. For architects and custom builders, creating and executing one-off designs is an every- day job. There is financial risk, of course, for the pro, but it's nothing remotely like the risk the client must bear. In a way, a custom home client is a developer, with all the inherent pressures and potential pleasures that entails. Every custom home built from a new design is a prototype. It's never been built exactly this way before, and it's everyone's educated guess that it will function properly and delight as antici- pated. With traditional designs, there is more precedent to rely upon—more tried and true materials, details, and building technology to bolster the project. That's part of their appeal, in addition to the emotional responses, memories, and other associations they tap into. David Prutting, of Prutting & Company Custom Builders in Stamford, Conn., knows how Unflappable PRUTTING & COMPANY CUSTOM BUILDERS STAMFORD, CONN. to construct both traditional and modern houses, and has done both for more than 40 years, but it's largely the modern work that's lifted his company into the topmost echelon of builders in his region. Custom clients just trust him. And so do the most demanding architects. For the guy who started in business as a roofing con- tractor, that's a pretty big accomplishment. He got his start in 1975 reroofing shingle houses in Cape Cod. When work dried up on the Cape, he followed a friend's advice and lit out for Houston, where oil-fueled boom times were going full tilt. "You tripped over work down there; there were job sites everywhere. I was an entrepre- neur," explains David. And his full-service contracting firm was born. "Forty-two years later, here I am," he says—back in New England for decades and the best in the business at high-end remodels and new custom homes. Yes, David has long-term experience in the building business. But there are other reasons clients and architects—and skilled trades—put their faith in him. Some of that has to do with the entrepreneurial side he mentioned. He doesn't just build beautiful houses for other people, he knows what it's like personally to be signing the checks on an ambitious custom project. Bring in Da Noyes Sixteen years ago, David and his wife and business partner, Deborah, bought a dilapidated midcentury modern house in New Canaan, Conn. The house, designed by Eliot Noyes in the 1950s, was highly experimental and theoretical. Built lightly with the inferior materials of the day, it Photo: ©Paul Warchol Photo: David X Prutting, BFA Left: David Prutting. Above: Toshiko Mori's addition to Marcel Breuer's 1951 house in New Canaan, Conn. VOL. 3, 2017 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGAZINE.COM 27

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