We’re visionaries, but we’re realistic. We know your project has unique parameters and challenges, and while we can start with blue-sky design, we like to start with the obstacles. By identifying the limitations and working with them, we come up with creative, strategic solutions that’ll work—saving you time, money, and heartbreak. Working from “back to front” is not only efficient, it also creates better results because when we use the things that constrain us to help focus our ideation, they become springboards for creativity and innovation.

We call it obstacle-based design. Here’s each step of the process.



Before we do anything else, we establish our client’s vision. What are you trying to achieve? What’s the end goal? This is where we question everything so we can learn everything and ensure everyone is moving in the same direction. Our approach is very collaborative, and it starts by workshopping your creative, social, and business vision, together.



Once we know where we’re headed, we can start to look at the things that may be in our way. The constraints could be anything, from physical considerations (say, a pole in the middle of your space) to budget and time concerns. Identifying these constraints up front, with the vision in mind, gives us a realistic starting place, helps us make better informed decisions, and aids the creative process.



Hotopp is equal parts right brain and left brain. Strategy is simple: it’s problem-solving. We use your obstacles to our advantage, turning them into opportunities for creative development so we can do the impossible and achieve your vision. During this phase, we put together the best possible team for your project—the people who know exactly how to help find the exact right solution for you.


Design and development

Once we have a strategy, we work in partnership with architects and contractors to move into design and development. This phase follows standard architectural practices, including: programming, schematic design, design development, preparation of construction documents, hiring the contractor, construction administration, and project close out.



Realization is when we actually make the thing—whatever the thing is. Ongoing communication is a crucial part of this step, from clarifying design intent to reviewing and approving samples and in-progress fabrication and construction to supervising the final installation to make sure the finished product achieves the creative vision.