Love it or hate it, Pinterest has its uses.

Pinterest is essentially an online scrapbook, where images can be saved (or ‘pinned’) into groups called ‘Boards’. Images can come from a range of sources – scanned, uploaded photos, internet search photos, and perhaps the most popular – from within Pinterest itself. The beauty of these online scrapbooks is that all the images are essentially a pooled resource, and you can search and pin images from any other users’ boards. Searching for ‘modern black kitchen’ for example will bring up literally thousands of possible images, and they are ordered by their popularity.

We utilise Pinterest one way or another for every design project we work on; from first concepts right through to the detailed development design phase. Whether that’s internally amongst our team to collate and collaborate on a design direction, and/or using it with our clients, as a collection point for their tastes and thoughts. Often our clients will have a Pinterest board set up for their project and they can ‘invite’ us to look at or collaborate on it. The boards themselves can vary widely; from a generic board for interiors through to a board of kitchen cabinetry handles.

Some clients have a very obvious theme, whereas others have a much broader spectrum of design elements and materials they like. Either is fine – however there is room for misinterpretation if there isn’t clear communication from the outset. For example, a client may have pinned a dozen images of kitchens, all very different styles and tastes. At first look, it may be easy to think that they have broad taste, but actually it may be that the intent of those pins was to highlight one item in particular such as a barstool or light fitting. So it’s important to add your own caption to what you pin, to indicate why you are saving this image e.g overall style or tiles splashback.

Through our development design phase, we will collect images to continually refine the theme of the home, from big-picture decisions such as cladding choices to the refined details, such as a shadow gap along a staircase. It is an evolving process where alternatives can be evaluated against each other, quickly, without having numerous internet pages open. The ‘comments’ function on each Pin is a quick and easy way to give or receive feedback, plus its ‘on  the record’ and either party can easily refer back to it at any time. Pinterest is also handy for cataloguing final choices for specified fixtures and fittings. We can share these with the client to confirm they are happy with the choices, as well as using our drawings and renders as means of visual communication.

If you’re looking for some inspiration, you could start by checking out Mackit’s pinboards – we add to them every week!

At Mackit Architecture we design bespoke residential architecture for discerning clients. Based in Greytown in the Wairarapa, our team design beautiful, practical and enduring new homes or renovations both locally and New Zealand wide.