A Lesson in History

Posted August 19th, 2015 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Dynamic Glass, Greenhouses, Stained Glass, Steel Structures
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When you were little, did you dream of having a bowling alley or movie theater in your home?

These clients DID! Housed under this beautiful 40,000 square foot home rests a racquetball court, bowling alley, media room and more! What could they POSSIBLY be missing?

During construction of their dream home the architect was tasked with designing several of the home’s unique rooms; then the idea of a greenhouse arose. The architect reached out to Tanglewood in need of help!

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The client had big ideas, dreaming of an old world industrial look with a twist – but how do you incorporate almost impossible elements designed over 100 years ago?

We laboriously researched books of old buildings and historic old world greenhouses that inspired our designs and as the great conservatories and greenhouses stood long ago, this greenhouse would reflect a decorative steel structure with curved rooflines bringing a “light” feel to the room.

Look closely…

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The use of circular motifs in the steel beams, stained glass and in the architectural details lighten the framework. The copper roof and dark stained mahogany on the interior and exterior and gutters disappear into the open glass room. As elements came together the greenhouse held a transparent feel, just as old world conservatories/greenhouses had displayed.

Now take a closer look…

Specially requested by the client, designed within the stained glass and steel beams, four leaf clovers showcase her native Ireland bring a piece of her into its structure.

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 No matter the lengths we are dedicated to turning every dream into a reality. Our skilled craftsman have a strong background in historic structures that allows us to relate, NOT replicate, each and every design, creating TRUE ONE OF A KIND works of art.

Are you Dreaming?

Let’s get your dream started!  Call us at 410.479.4700 and click here to get your project started!

Laser-cut Personality

Posted July 17th, 2015 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Conservatory Projects, Steel Structures
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With each project, we strive to push the limit artistically. Want to know how we do it? Through the inspiration of our clients! We encourage the dreamer with individuality and passion – but how do you take your passion to the next level?

A few years ago, a client asked:

        Could Tanglewood create a structure with the same magic as mahogany but from steel and bronze?

The Story

For this client, the magic developed from his passion. With a background in mathematics, he wanted to showcase his love for math throughout the conservatory – but how? Listening to each comment and hearing his excitement; we knew it had to be something beyond ordinary design.

The Fibonacci Sequence

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Developed by a 12th century Italian mathematician, Fibonacci, this unique sequence follows a strict pattern. Each number is the sum of the two numbers previous starting with 0 and 1 – 0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21 and so forth. Sound familiar? It’s in the movie “The Da Vinci Code”!

So what did we do with it? Make the core structure a Fibonacci sequence!

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After mapping out the design, we began to laser-cut into the ribs of the structure. You can see the circular pattern form starting at the apex and work its way out. Incorporating this centuries-old design truly makes it a magical work of art.

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So, what’s your passion? Contact us at 410.479.4700 to share your passion and let’s take it to the next level!

A Hidden Dream

Posted June 26th, 2015 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Greenhouses, Pool Enclosures, Steel Structures
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Do you have a hidden dream?

Hundreds of dreams are created at Tanglewood before they are installed on location and with each dream we have uncovered something we’ve never done before. How can we help you discover your hidden dream?

We invite you to take a closer look into our workshop at some exciting developments, starting with what we believed to be an everyday project from a home owner in Doylestown, PA.

Several months ago, a client came to us with their dream to construct a unique pool enclosure for her kids to enjoy year round. Immediately struck by Tanglewood’s exceptional design and passion, she looked no further and invited us out to see her home.

It was her dream for us to construct a 3,000 square foot pool enclosure with a design that required both steel and wood finishes.

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But before our meeting came to an end, the client was so impressed she proposed a second project that they have been dreaming about… a greenhouse! We eagerly accepted.

For this project, she envisioned a 350 square foot fully operating wood greenhouse to finish with an aluminum roof.


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Together, our teams immediately got started on design, working with not only the client, but landscape architect, builder and architect to make her dream a reality.

Current Status:

After discussion of the greenhouse began, it instantly became first priority. Currently, we are putting on the final touches in our shop and plan to have the project completely finished by this summer.

As for the pool enclosure, designs are now complete and installation is set to begin in the fall.

We work hard to make sure all of our client’s design visions come true, no matter how big or small, complicated or simple, modern or classic. Want to read more about Tanglewood’s uncovered dreams? Keep in touch, there’s more to come!

To get your project started, give us a call at 410.479.4700.

Now Offering: Italian-Crafted Windows & Doors

Posted June 19th, 2015 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Conservatory Projects, Stained Glass, Steel Structures, Windows & Doors
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Imagine, beautiful slim-line, steel or solid bronze windows and doors that are some of the most energy efficient in the world.

… Imagine that they are available in an amazing variety of colors, finishes, custom sizes and shapes; that they are the highest quality in the world.

Will you come dream with us?

Tanglewood has been named the exclusive Mid-Atlantic partner of Brombal products! In addition to our beautifully hand-crafted wood work, this new partnership adds breath to our product line and gives our clients access to a wide variety of hand crafted, high quality windows and doors made with Italian craftsmanship.

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An internationally respected brand, Brombal meets the highest quality standard requirement thanks to their cherished family tradition and strong spirit of innovation; a great fit for Tanglewood clients! Each of their products is specifically requested and handmade in Italy.

Brombal Italy was founded in 1970 by Pietro Brombal. In 2011, Brombal USA was created to provide excellent customer service and commitment to U.S. customers. The company’s windows and doors have been used for new and restoration projects around the globe! Areas such as Italy, the United States, Romania and Belgium are just a touch of Brombal’s reach.

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“Tanglewood is  thrilled to partner with Brombal in offering their products to the region and our clients,” says Alan “This is an exciting opportunity to explore new design possibilities for our customers and our company.”

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As part of a custom conservatory or home renovation, we will be able to fully tailor customers’ window and door needs using Brombal products. Both wood and steel materials, more than a dozen color finished from stainless steel to nickel to cor-ten steel and unlimited shapes and sizes will be available.

Are you ready to come dream with us? For more information about Tanglewood and you’re project ideas fill out our Contact Us form and give us a call at 410.479.4700!

Top 5 Considerations When Building with Steel

Posted April 30th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in Conservatory Projects, Steel Structures
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There are thousands of inspiring historic buildings we call upon when looking for elements to pull our dream conservatory together. Historically, nearly all conservatories were built using exposed steel. Nowadays, the most common structural component is wood. What made the use of wood more appealing to us now than steel? When constructing with steel, people usually refer to it as just the basic structural element holding the building up; we don’t see the actual steel component itself. Why hide the quality and look of steel within the structure when it can be exposed?

Beautiful steel structures have captured the eyes of many in their delicate design and exotic composition. There are very few conservatory manufacturers if any, who construct structures with exposed steel, but it has a lot of advantages. Steel gives the designer the ability to control its shape, creating endless opportunities for design. It is also easily transported, can have a long lasting life and easily allows for additions and alterations. Now the important question is what do you need to consider when building with steel?

 

Below, we have arranged a list of our top five considerations when working with steel:

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Franklin Park Conservatory

 

  1. Aesthetics – As we look back at great works of art we find inspiration. The strict attention to detail and structure captures our attention and shapes our ideas; we see characteristics of an entirely new world. Does your dream structure portray the look of exposed steel? Do you envision a classic or modern style? The great thing about building with exposed steel is its unique quality; it’s not done by others. Imagine constructing something that no one else has exactly like it in the world, your own unique dream come to life! Originally, conservatories were built entirely of steel, such as the Garfield Park Conservatory.  This unique conservatory, opened in 1908, took on a Victorian style using glass and steel. Its unique combination of culture, glass and structure has inspired many throughout history.
  2. Maintenance – Steel structures can have an extended life span if well taken care of. Even though steel is a low maintenance option, exposure to the environment may have its effects. An annual inspection of your structure would be a great way to catch a minor repair in the beginning saving time and money.
  3. Cost – We all know how important it is to stick to a budget, but does your budget include the use of steel? Steel is priced notably higher than regular structures due to its strong qualities and should be considered in your design process.
  4. Style & Design – There are multiple styles and designs that anyone could simply pick and choose from a book, but why not create your own! Bring your dreams to life. You could combine a rustic 19th century look with a modern twist or a design with a more classic look. Take your dream and make it happen; the possibilities are endless!
  5. Size of the Structure – What are your intentions for this structure? Are you thinking on a large or small scale? Large scale structures can be more suited for steel because they eliminate the use of columns holding the center of the structure. Smaller scales, on the other hand, work well with steel structures as well as let’s say a wood structure.

 

We encourage you to reach out to us here at Tanglewood with any questions you may have. Let us help you bring your dream conservatory to life.

 

 

Finding Inspiration in Historic Steel Conservatories

Posted April 10th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in Conservatory Projects, Greenhouses, Pool Enclosures, Steel Structures, Travels, Uncategorized
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How can looking back at historic structures help us build conservatories today?  The answer is actually relatively simple – because they help us dream!

The earliest glass houses date from the 17th century, but it wasn’t until the 19th century that steel and glass hit its heyday.   The abolishment of the glass tax in 1845 and advancements in cast iron production made during the industrial revolution fueled the passion for exotic glass houses.   The romanticism of the design – the sensuous curves, the play of light from the many angles and multitude of glass – the simple elegance and serenity – the list could go on and on as to the attributes of the historic conservatories.  Let’s take a look at how one historic structure fueled a dream!

Schönbrunn Palace Palm House
The Palm House conservatory is one of four greenhouses that occupy Schönbrunn Palace Park.  The present Palm House was built by metalworker Ignaz Gridl between 1880 and 1882 and was designed by Franz von Segenschmid.  The last of its type to be built in Europe, the great Palm House was designed using the most modern technology of the time.  With a length of 111 meters, a width of 28 meters and a height of 25 meters, the great Palm House is the largest glass house – with over 45,000 glass sheets on the European continent.

What is most interesting about Schönbrunn is that the steel ‘framework’ is actually on the exterior – forming a very unique exoskeleton! Most buildings begin with the structural ‘skeleton’ fitting inside of the exterior ‘skin’.  The ‘skeleton’ provides the framework, holding the building up and the ‘skin’ keeps the building weather tight.  Schönbrunn is just the opposite!  By reversing the arrangement, the steel exoskeleton celebrates the steelworks juxtaposition from utility to an elevation of art.

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Even the rivets in the girders lend such ornate detail to the entire structure.  Over 45,000 panes of glass cling to the curved iron girders like skin.

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Tanglewood Conservatories is currently constructing a pool enclosure inspired by Schönbrunn Palace Palm House.  The client had some very definite design ideas that we discussed during our design meeting – a pool enclosure that mimicked an Irish countryside greenhouse – rustic and pastoral.  However, upon viewing photos of historic structures from 19th century Europe, the client asked to return to the Schönbrunn photos and was completely mesmerized by the concept. Their design vision was quickly and completely changed and now boasted an exterior steel structure and a multitude of glass panes functioning as the skin.  Tanglewood was captivated by the challenge to recreate such an iconic piece of history.  The project should be complete by late fall – photos to follow!

A Dip in December?

Posted December 12th, 2014 by Bonnie Hall and filed in Conservatory Projects, Pool Enclosures, Steel Structures
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Wouldn’t you love to go swimming in December?  With short days and cold nights this might be a foreign concept unless you have a membership to the local YMCA.   A steel pool house conservatory is the perfect answer to extend your swimming season (indefinitely!).   The spacious swimming pool enclosure below contains the swimming pool, a spa and ample space for entertaining or just relaxing around the interior fireplace.

Exquisite pool enclosure by Tanglewood Conservatories

The tradition of building a structure to enclose both public and private swimming pools is actually centuries old – dating back to the Great Roman Empire.  Roman bath houses were also important drivers in the evolution of architecture offering the first dome structures in Classical architecture.  These bath houses were built using millions of fireproof terracotta bricks and the finished buildings were very lavish with fine mosaic floors, marble-covered walls and decorative statues.

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Roman Bath

Tanglewood works closely with your team to design and build a one-of-a-kind, unique to you structure, utilizing the highest quality materials backed by over twenty years of specialized experience.  Tanglewood’s unparalleled attention to detail, such as cast iron and steel parts with forged curls and intricate rosettes, is reminiscent of the great glass houses of the nineteenth century.

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Interior of lavish pool enclosure by Tanglewood Conservatories

Whether it is an expansive, elegant space with room for entertaining and exotic plants or just a more simple design for your lap pool, Tanglewood’s team of architects and engineers will expertly guide you through the design and development process and then our team of craftsmen bring the drawings to life with installation on your site.  Tanglewood works seamlessly with your team of architects and designers and are the time-proven experts in these potentially challenging structures.  Issues such as heating and cooling, wiring and structural loading can be difficult when you consider the fact that conservatories (and pool enclosures) are not constructed with typical or standard 2” x 4″.   Tanglewood recommends bringing an expert in early on to help navigate and guide the project.

Enjoy the benefits of summer year round with no more worries about rain, leaves or insects and eliminate the chore of opening and closing your pool as summer comes to a close.  Don’t just dream of swimming in December – let’s make it a reality for 2015!

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Rainbows Every Day!

Posted January 14th, 2014 by Alan Stein and filed in General, Greenhouses, Stained Glass, Steel Structures
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The Palacio de Cristal is a magnificent example of a classic conservatory; one that has inspired us at Tanglewood for design details in some of the one-of-a-kind conservatories we’ve built for our discriminating clients. But the post below portrays it in a whole new lightvery different from when Nancy and I visited it last summer.

Imagine being able to see rainbows every day and not have to necessarily deal with rain! I don’t know about you, but I get excited every time I see a rainbow; there’s something about them that takes my breath away. If I had lived in or near, or had traveled to Madrid, Spain between April 27 and July 24, 2006, I definitely would have gone to see the rainbows, without having to deal with rain, at the Palacio de Cristal.

“To Breathe – A Mirror Woman” by Korean artist Kimsooja, was commissioned by the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia. The artist covered the floor of the Palacio with mirrors and all the glass windows of the structure with translucent diffraction film. Before I go into how the rainbows were created by the mirrors and film, let’s quickly go back to school and refresh our memories about how rainbows in nature are made.

Beams of sunlight are actually made up of different colors but our eyes cannot differentiate between those colors. When it rains, and the sun comes back out, or when it’s raining and the sun is still visible, beams of sunlight enter the raindrops and leave the raindrops at different angles. The sunlight is refracted (the direction of the light is altered) and reflected (like a mirror) off the back of the raindrop into your eyes. Wavelengths of light are refracted at different angles, and each color is formed by a different angle. Meaning, each raindrop is in a different place in the sky when the sunlight enters it, therefore, when the sunlight exits each raindrop, it is exiting at a different angle, and the colors of the rainbow are created: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet.

  

These photographs from the show are on sale on her web site. Click the thumbnails to go to the site to view the larger versions.

 

The rainbows in the Palacio de Cristal were formed when the outside light filtered through the glass windows and refracted off the film. The rainbows were then reflected off the mirrored floors creating a rainbow spectrum that is seen in every part of the atrium.



We have been many places and seen many things in our decades of creating conservatories, but this is one of the most stunning conservatory environments we’ve encountered.

Living Wall

Posted February 15th, 2013 by Alan Stein and filed in General, Greenhouses, Steel Structures
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Two and a half years ago, Longwood Gardens near Kennett Square in southeastern Pennsylvania, built and opened a new entrance to their East Conservatory Plaza. This “green wall” was made from almost 3,600 modular panels that are mounted on a steel framework. Each panel holds a variety of plants. There are 17 restroom pods, threaded together, and housed behind these panels. The conservatory handles close to one million visitors each year and the need for more restrooms and a desire to add a new grand entrance to welcome those visitors was the driving force behind the new entrance.

These walls, containing over 47,000 ferns, foliage and other plants, start at the floor and go all the way to the ceiling, just below the skylights. The walls contain an irrigation channel running through each panel that makes the system completely self-watering. There are some sections that are up to thirteen feet tall, which made the selection of plants a challenge since the lighting conditions change during the year. The design team conducted light studies to determine what the lighting and shadow conditions would be and selected plants that would thrive in those changing conditions.

Longwood Garden’s conservatory houses 5, 500 plant varieties in its 20 indoor gardens. It was built in 1919 and has been expanded and renovated over the years. Currently, there are 195,668 square feet of greenhouses, that are used for display, production, and research. The East Conservatory was originally built in 1927-28 by Pierre du Pont and renovated during 2002 – 2005. The original greenhouse was used for non-hardy azaleas and rhododendrons that were late-winter bloomers. The current greenhouse is home to fragrant shrubs and flowering trees. This is notable because Pierre du Pont originally purchased the land in 1906 to save the trees. This purchase turned into a life-long project for du Pont, who created many different gardens, that eventually became Longwood Gardens.


Images from Longwood Gardens’ website

Unique Orchid Conservatory

Posted January 23rd, 2013 by Alan Stein and filed in Conservatory Projects, Steel Structures
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Orchids are one of the two largest flowering plant species. Orchids are found in every habitat except on glaciers but are most commonly found in the tropics. Planting them in conservatories and greenhouses is a popular hobby since they fare so well in this type of environment.

One of Tanglewood Conservatories’ most recent projects involved the design and building of an orchid conservatory for an orchid enthusiast. The project involved putting the conservatory on the second floor of the building and interconnecting two rooms. The steel structure used is similar in form and function to what was used 150 years ago to build palm houses. The design needed to allow as much light into the rooms as possible so the orchids could flourish.

Using the nineteenth century as their inspiration, our designers sought to create a place that not only looked whimsical but that would function as the perfect place within which the orchids could grow. We think we accomplished our goals and created the “work of art” that the clients wanted. Please take a look at the story and pictures we have posted, along with the slideshow. We think you will enjoy it almost as much as the new owners certainly are!