The name started out as a joke about oxymorons and the dread of having to actually go out and get a job. But over nearly three decades it’s grown to have special meaning for us. We truly love our work. We love helping find the perfect solutions to our customers’ home space challenges, then turning them into reality with our hands. We love working as a team. We’re proud of each other and what we’ve accomplished together. We love the feeling of a bond that forms with each and every client. It’s our craft and our creative outlet. Although it doesn’t really feel like work at all, the name just stuck.
Here are the men & women behind Men At Work Design Build!
Education: B. Architectural Studies with honours, University of Waterloo; LEED Accredited Professional; BCIN.
Work Philosophy: Do it once, do it right!
Why I Love What I Do: I love the final stage of walking into a space that was created by a great collaborative effort.
Influence: Le Corbusier – a beautiful life is a creative life.
Favourite Design Style: Modern, minimal, bright, warm and natural.
Favourite Tool: Pen and a blank sheet of paper.
Education: B. Music, McGill University; M. Architecture, University of Toronto.
Work Philosophy: I try to be thorough in everything to anticipate every eventuality, leaving less to be solved on site.
Why I Love What I Do: It’s a constant challenge transforming an abstract list of requirements into a physical form that is both unique and pleasing, but it’s very rewarding.
Influence: Frank Lloyd Wright.
Favourite Design Style: Modern.
Favourite Tool: It all starts with a pencil, but the processing power of the computer allows me to bring those ideas to life through drawings and renderings.
Education: BA Architecture and Urban Planning – UFRJ – Brazil, Design for Performance – Central Saint Martins, UK.
Work Philosophy: I believe that architecture needs to represent its own time, but must also be enduring. It needs to be thoughtful and able to age with dignity so that it holds value in the future.
Why I Love What I Do: Propose solutions that will influence the life of the client during the time they experience the designed space.
Influence: Paulo Mendes da Rocha
Favourite Design Style: From gothic to modern, I’m most interested in using modern technology and best practices to bring light, warmth and functionality to spaces.
Favourite Tool: 2B Lead Pencil
Education: Advanced Diploma in Architectural Technology, Sheridan College.
Work Philosophy: To design something which will withstand the test of time.
Why I Love What I Do: Being able to transform an idea into reality is not only rewarding, but it’s extremely fulfilling as well!
Influence: Elon Musk.
Favourite Design Style: Modern architecture mixed with traditional.
Favourite Tool: Sketch book and pencil.
Education: Advanced Diploma in Architectural Technology, George Brown College.
Work Philosophy: Turn ideas into reality through thoughtful design.
Why I Love What I Do: There is something intrinsically satisfying about seeing ideas come to life.
Influence: Nature, the greatest designer of all time.
Favourite Design Style: There are aspects of numerous design languages that I love. From ultra-modern Scandinavian minimalism to the warmth of more traditional Craftsman homes, the retro vibes of mid-century modern and even the boldness of brutalist architecture.
Favourite Tool: An active imagination.
Education & Experience: Bachelor of Arts, Architecture from Universidad Anahuac Mayab. Merida, Mexico. 10+ years experience in residential design and construction.
Design Philosophy: “Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working” – Picasso
Why I Love What I Do: There is no greater reward than to experience the space which was created as a solution for the client.
Favourite Design Style: Brutalism, Modern.
Favourite Tool: 6b pencil.
Education: AdvDip in Architectural Technology with Honors (Humber College), B. International Business (SPbPU).
Work Philosophy: The more you give with pure intent, the more you receive. Learning from people and sharing personal experiences is precious.
Why I Love What I Do: Knowing how much it changes people’s lives for the better and imagining that it will serve future generations is unbelievably gratifying.
Influence: Nature, art, and people.
Favourite Design Style: Scandinavian: it is balanced, highly functional, natural-looking, and sure helps to sustain the inner equilibrium.
Favourite Tool: My imagination – this is where everything begins!
Education: Advanced Diploma in Architectural Technology, George Brown College.
Work Philosophy: There are many ways to reach the same conclusion.
Why I Love What I Do: Knowing what you create will outlive you and bring joy to generations to come.
Influence: Kidosaki Hirotaka, Rudolf Schindler.
Favourite Design Style: Modern Minimalist without fear of experimentation.
Favourite Tool: The French Press.
Education: Architectural Construction Engineering Technology Diploma, Conestoga College.
Work Philosophy: Take pride in anything and everything you do.
Why I Love What I Do: Watching my work come to life!
Influence: Frank Lloyd Wright.
Favourite Design Style: Traditional.
Favourite Tool: Corey’s french press.
Education: B. of Arts degree with honours that specializes in comprehensive architectural studies from U of T and a diploma in construction technologies and management from George Brown College.
Work Philosophy: “A jack of all trades is a master of none, but often better than a master of one.”
Why I Love What I Do: Nothing beats the satisfaction of building something or designing something with your own hands and standing there looking at it when it’s finished.
Influence: My Grandfather. He got me into things early on, and that has never left.
Favourite Design Style: Minimalist, functional bright, or rustic, industrial, and comfortable.
Favourite Tool: The Speed Square.
Education: Advanced Diploma, Architectural Technology, Sheridan College.
Work Philosophy: I strive to inform action and convey purpose in my work.
Why I Love What I Do: I love the part where we get to see the work we do become reality.
Influence: Peter Zumthor / Zaha Hadid. A master of minimalism, versus a contemporary visionary.
Favourite Design Style: Industrial. Beautiful if done correctly, it shows its users exactly what to expect in any space through its honesty & transparency.
Favourite Tool: A quality ballpoint pen and some nice tracing paper.
Education: Bachelor of Design, OCAD University
Work Philosophy: Always give 100% and never stop learning.
Why I Love What I Do: I get to be creative on a daily basis and no two days are alike.
Influence: My parents are my greatest influence because of the sacrifices they have made for me.
Favourite Design Style: Contemporary with a pinch of tradition.
Favourite Tool: Creative imagination.
Design Philosophy: God is in the detail.
Why I Love What I Do: I love building personal relationships. Residential design is the most intimate form of design. Only by touching client’s heart, finding out their dreams, a house becomes the home.
Influence: My mom, who gave me my first furniture lookbook at the age of 10, it’s been my VOGUE ever since.
Favourite Design Style: Mid-century modern, transitional.
Favourite Tool: My laptop and a cup of tea.
Education & Experience: Interior Decorating, Sheridan College; 7 years experience in the industry as a designer and project manager.
Design Philosophy: Creativity is meant to be shared, run with it.
Why I Love What I Do: I love the way a well-designed space makes you feel, inside and out. There’s nothing like it.
Favourite Design Style: Mid-century modern.
Favourite Tool: Powerpoint. It allows my clients to visualize design concepts. It’s amazing to share their excitement when their eyes light up seeing all of the design elements come together.
Education & Experience: BASc Major in Architecture UofT & Master Interior Design SPD Milan.
Design Philosophy: Always be curious and respectful.
Why I Love What I Do: I am able to make a tangible impact on people’s lives while challenging my own creative potential.
Influence: Cinema and travel. The experience of being immersed in a time and place shapes the way I understand and relate to the world.
Favourite Design Style: Scandinavian Design.
Favourite Tool: 3D design software.
Education: BCom Digital Business Management, Humber College; Revit Certification, Redcage; Fundamentals of AutoCAD, Sheridan College; Design Basics for Interior Decorating, Sheridan College.
Design Philosophy: Approach every day with the same positivity and determination.
Why I Love What I Do: I love the idea of being part of a team that can give someone their dream space.
Favourite Design Style: Mid-century modern/Contemporary.
Favourite Tool: My cell phone because it keeps me organized and connected.
Experience: 33 years in the home construction industry. Master Carpenter. Licensed home builder. Certified home inspector. 20 years renovating Toronto’s older homes.
Work Philosophy: I’m a workaholic…..
Contract Sale Ritual: Many fist pumps!
Why I Love What I Do: I can talk about renovations 24/7, so the best part of my day is visiting clients in their homes and talking about, you guessed it, renovations.
Influence: My father. I did my carpentry apprenticeship under him and learned a great deal about the industry that way.
Favourite Tool: My DeWalt 12″ Double Compound sliding miter saw is my baby.
Experience: 25 years in the renovation, remodel and homebuilding industry as a licensed contractor with experience in almost every aspect of construction.
Work Philosophy: I enjoy the challenge of how to make things better.
Why I Love What I Do: Every day I get to do what I enjoy the most. Talking to people about their projects and working together to give them the house they have always wanted.
Influence: My wife for pushing me into a career change years ago when she saw how happy construction made me.
Favourite Tool: Right now it would have to be my Festool Track Saw. Love it!
Experience: Residential Design, Construction and Project Management experience in older Toronto homes since 1989. Knowledge of the Ontario Building Code. Chartered Accountant.
Work Philosophy: Convert a crystal clear understanding of the home owner’s requirements and vision into an effective scope of work which, when completed, delivers all it promises and more.
Why I Love What I Do: From my earliest days I’ve been drawn to practical challenges, understanding “how things work” and home construction.
Influence: My earliest memories are helping my father with projects around our home.
Favourite Tool: A computer.
Education: B.A. Law and Society, York University; Part 9 Building Course, George Brown College; Police Foundations Diploma, Sheridan College.
Work Philosophy: Always give it 110% and 98% of the time things will workout.
Why I Love What I Do: Client satisfaction is always a great feeling. Knowing that I’ve given it my all, day-in and day-out, is why I love my job.
Influence: Paul Gallop is someone that motivates me more than anyone I know.
Favourite Tool: My phone. It keeps me organized, connected, and is extremely useful for everything.
Education: Design Foundations Certification, Humber College; Graphic Design, Seneca College; Construction Craft Worker, Ontario College of Trades.
Work Philosophy: Have a “work hard and do what ever it takes” attitude, and you will achieve results.
Why I Love What I Do: Being a perfectionist, I take pride in tackling projects from start to finish and exceeding expectations.
Influence: My father. He instilled a hard work ethic in me at a young age. Our family motto: “Life is a renovation”.
Favourite Design Style: Urban/Rustic Living.
Favourite Tool: My Hands!
Experience: Three decades of experience in consulting, inspections, business ownership and contracting. Member of OACETT since 1999.
Work Philosophy: Communication, respect of others, teamwork.
Why I Love What I Do: My work gives me the chance to produce something in my life that I can make perfect for someone.
Influence: Frederick Matthew Speed.
Favourite Tool: Laser pointer, it always tells the truth.
Education: No formal training but have been doing carpentry work for 15 years. Experience is what I have!
Work Philosophy: Be true to your craft and don’t cut corners.
Why I Love What I Do: There’s a sense of accomplishment that comes at different project stages. I enjoy being part of everything from demo to showing the homeowners the final product.
Work Challenge: Using those darn porty-potty’s in the winter.
Favourite Tool: My Milwaukee drill and 23 g pin nailer.
Experience: I’ve been building all my life – I helped my dad build the first house we lived in.
Why I Love What I Do: It makes me, and others around me, happy. I love to create and see it all come together.
Influence: Everything and everyone. Take the good in life and learn from the rest.
Favourite Tool: Really, any tool that does exactly what you need to do when you need to do it.
Experience: I designed kitchens at Ikea, which lead me to work in the renovation business as a solo installer.
Work Philosophy: I am big on teamwork.
Why I Love What I Do: I love that every day is different. Also, nothing beats the smell of cedar in the morning.
Influence: I really admire creators, especially people who make items that can be touched. It is quite somethings to see someone who has honed their craft so well and are able to maintain a humble attitude.
Favourite Tool: This one is a tough one, I use my impact drill constantly but my Bosch little hammer drill is such a workhorse.
Education: Honours Bachelor of Commerce Specializing in Accounting, McMaster University. Successful CFE 2019 writer and CPA Candidate.
Work Philosophy: You don’t get what you wish for, you get what you work for.
Why I Love What I Do: Every job is unlike the previous, and it’s inspiring to watch the transformation of someone’s home into their dream home.
Influence: Family, friends, and peers.
Favourite Tool: Cloud-based accounting allows me to stay integrated with the team and my work wherever I am.
Education: 30 year student of design, architecture and the insane world of home renovating – I have yet to graduate!
Work Philosophy: Enjoy the work or don’t do it.
Why I Love What I Do: I genuinely believe that we’re making a positive impact for our customers and our team.
Contract Sale Ritual: I call Sherry and we celebrate!
Best Awards: 2-time BILD Renovator of the Year, Canadian Contractor Magazine Renovator of the Year, Remodelers Advantage Impact Award 2017, Remodeling Magazine Big50.
Favourite Tool: Email. I love writing emails.