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Home Design Coffee Break
April 03, 2016
Hi Everyone,

What would you have done differently?

I love the conversations I get into with those of you who get in touch. I find the exchanages fascinating.

This month let's talk about the home design journey. If you've built or remodeled your home before, is there anything about your home design that surprised you or didn't turn out the way you thought? Is there anything that you would design differently if you had the chance again?

Tell me about it.

I have some great home design stuff for you so let's get going.

Tile Patterns

I've started a section on the website all about tile patterns. It's straying a little into interior design, but tiles generally go down as part of a remodel or build and it's one of the more permanent decisions so I thought it deserved attention.

Continue reading "Tile Patterns"

No design solution is or should be perfect. It is a well-intentioned but false belief that a good design solution is perfectly systematic and encompasses all aspects of a design problem without exception. And yet non-conforming oddities can be enriching and humanizing aspects of a home. Indeed, exceptions to the rule are often more interesting than the rules themselves.

The floor plans analysis section of the website is useful if you want to evaluate whether or not any particular floor plan is right for you.

Living Garden House

I think this house by Robert Konieczny, KWK Promes has some wonderful ideas for how to bring the outside in. I'm going to let the pictures speak for themselves. Here are a few of the things that I particularly like.

I like the way that the overhanging first floor creates a sheltered spot underneath. Notice that that area is covered in astroturf - a great idea seeing as the overhang might prevent the grass growing to it's full lustrous green potential.

I am a fan of using mirrors on the outside of buildings to effectively make the surface disappear and create a view of nature rather than wall.

The T-shaped parti (fancy way of referring to an architectural idea) sets up most of the design elements. There's more detail about the inspiration and ideas behind the design on the architect's website.

Here are the floor plans. See how the stairs go through the central part of the house which has glass on both sides looking out onto the garden? And the way that the living room is at the end of what we might call the 'green dining room'? That means that everyone in the house will get to appreciate looking out onto the garden whilst on their journey up and down the stairs or on the way to the living room.

How can your home design help to take the burden out of housework? How about designing your home so that it's easier for everyone living with you to help clean the house. One way to make this easier is to design so that cleaning is carrried out 'on the go'. Plan to store a few cleaning supplies around the house right next to where you need them. eg bleach in the bathroom, or how abour wiring in a hand held vacuum cleaner in the kitchen?

The use of glass here makes this small attic space feel really spacious and allows the shape of the roof trusses to remain visible. Imagine how different this space would look if drywall had been used in place of the glass.

"In any architecture, there is an equity between the pragmatic function and the symbolic function." Michael Graves

I interpret this quote as saying that a good home design depends on designing both for function and meaning.

I hope you enjoyed those few minutes of home design.

I'll have to get to work on next month's mixing pot!

Until then...

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