Identifications: Designer-builder

December 5, 2002: Issue 45

SIM STYLE: How do I credit a professional who was both the designer and the builder of a project?
SIM style for an individual is “designer-builder.” For a firm, it’s “design-build firm.”
correct: The couple called designer-builder Chris Nguyen to turn their vision into reality.
correct: The homeowners lowered costs by working with a design-build firm.

For more information, see Issue 56.

BONUS! MORE SIM STYLE: Could we please just wrap the box and stash it for a while?
Lately, not only have we repeatedly thought “outside the box,” we’ve also decorated, painted, remodeled, and gardened there. Sure, sometimes we get punchy with “inside the box” or some other variation on the phrase, but all this attention has made “thinking outside the box” a top contender for cliché of the year. That’s not to say we should never use it, but think twice before you do. Is it an easy pun, or does it truly speak to the point of the story? In most cases, there will be a better option.

GRAMMAR: What’s the difference between “proved” and “proven”?
“Proved” is the participle; use “proven” only as an adjective.
 correct: Designer Bobby Trendy has proved himself to be an eccentric personality.
correct: His proven design skills caught Anna Nicole’s eye.

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