We moved into a new home about a year ago. It's a wonderful place. New construction, a sustainable building, LEED certified Gold. In many ways it's very innovative, minimizing carbon footprint and decreasing dependency on oil are fundamental to sustainable architecture. Water and energy conserving features like rainwater harvesting, energy-efficient appliances, eco-roofs and more. It's smart, modern and comfortable.
Except for a funky looking gas-fireplace, with fake logs, fake glowing cinders, and a fake brick backwall with fake soot. Yes fake soot!
Our previous home had a wood-burning fireplace, and it was lovely. Crackling fire, the smell of the wood, all that. So I was leery of the new gas fireplace. Skeptical of flicking a switch, instant "gemuetlichkeit" (cozy, comfortable, warm). I'm ok with it now. Looking at the flames, and feeling the warmth radiating, it's authentic gemuetlichkeit. Not having to tend a fire, and being able to use it more often and easily, sounds pretty lazy, it is. But I'm happy to have it.
I still find my designer self staring at the fake logs and fake glowing cinders and ask myself why does it have it be this way? New technologies, new innovations, and modern approaches to everyday living, also need modern interpretations not mimicry. There's a business opportunity here.