Klement and Selby recommend building professionals get educated about high-performance-building technologies through associations, trade shows and others who are doing it. Then create a synergistic relationship between the project team so you can advise each other and find efficiencies in places you may not have thought of alone. Finally, suggest possibilities to clients about ways to improve their homes' energy efficiency. "We find that clients are open to ideas and are looking to us for guidance," Klement says. "Green building doesn't always mean having to spend more money. With things like advanced-framing techniques you're using 30 percent less lumber, and you can advocate smaller spaces that with proper design can feel large. There are things, like solar collectors and geothermal, that will cost more money but that's not what green is all about."
Selby says working with Stern taught him a lot. "Claudette is a very inspiring person and she happened to make us better at our professions, not through direct knowledge but by challenging us to think about things in different ways and ask why. Besides gaining a great friend and doing a very unique project, she was a very inspiring person to work for."
Stern's inspiring nature created the spirit of the project, which led to unique finds, like the attic floor joists and random assortment of windows. "It was uncanny how we would be looking for something and it would appear," Selby says. In fact, long after the team began calling Stern's project the Nautilus House, crew members excavating the backyard discovered a wrought-iron bench whose back support is shaped like a nautilus—a sign, perhaps, that the team was on the right path all along.
For more before and after images, as well as floor plans, of the Nautilus House, visit Gallery.