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Monday, February 20, 2012

What Style Would YOU Choose?


If you could build your very own home from scratch what style of architecture would it be?

I have a friend that is getting the opportunity to build her own home from scratch. In the building process there are so many decisions to be made that it can be somewhat over whelming.

She has asked a group of friends for our opinions from time to time. In giving her our opinions I have realized that when a person actually gets to build a home from scratch reality sets in quickly.

We have to base our decisions on affordability, practicality, and availability. Basically a person really has to get down to brass tacks.

In the process of thinking along with her, I thought this would make some great material for blog post!

So that is what I am going to do! I am going to write a series of blog post with my idea of a realistic dream home for my own personal taste.

In writing these post I will have some dreams, but mostly realistic expectations for my life. To be perfectly honest at my age reality is HERE so why not live in it and enjoy it!!?

Since we are pretending to build a home I think we need to start with the architecture.

Whenever we go on day trips we always drive up, and down the streets looking at homes. By doing this for years I have found that I am always drawn to a particular style home. 

That style is a California Craftsman Bungalow. These homes were built in the 1917-1925 era.

I personally love a bungalow, cottage, Craftsmen looking home. Nothing too big, or grand. A cozy family home suits me fine. These homes can be found in many older neighborhoods.

The definition of a Craftsmen bungalow is:
American Craftsman Bungalow
The American Craftsman bungalow typified the common styles of the American Arts and Crafts movement, with common features usually including: low-pitch roof lines on a gabled or hipped roof; deeply overhanging eaves; exposed rafters or decorative brackets under the eaves; and a front porch beneath an extension of the main roof.

Let me show you some bungalows so you will see what I am referring too…….

First an artist's rendition:

Charming and cozy, that is just my cup of tea.

This is what most of us think of as a Craftsman styled bungalow.

This is another rendition I found on line when looking up bungalows. This type was built more in the Northeastern states such as in the Cape Cod area.

 Boy! would that be perfect, a bungalow in Cape Cod with an ocean view. Okay now that is in dream land! Back to reality!!

Now let’s look at some real live California Craftsman bungalows. I am going to critique them as we go along. This will allow me, and you to better understand what details are in a Craftsman bungalow, and which details we will prefer.

What I like about this home is the  double low slung gables, I find those so appealing.

Notice the wide wrap around porch that is another real plus in my book.  I  like the way the porch is wide and  open.

This home appears to have a second story. I am not sure I would want a second story, not a big fan of stairs. An attic space would be nice, but I would not want my bedrooms upstairs. I do like the architecture of this one also.

This home has enclosed the front porch. I do like the siding, but I find an open porch more appealing. I am really drawn to the color of this house. No surprise there, my existing home is a light yellow with white trim.

This home has the look I really love. The porch is nice and open even though it has a railing, I think it suits this home. I am noticing the porch on this house has a nice overhang detail, and bracket supports.

All and all this home is pretty perfect all it needs is a coat of soft yellow paint, and we are good to go.  I also like the way this home sits on the lot having a nice side yard entrance.

Another nice big open porch. This has the double gabled roof line that I like. It looks as if they added a cute arched window with a little bit of ornamentation.

However, Craftsman homes are known for not having a lot of ornamentation. They were designed right after the Victorian era. During the Victorian era all the ornamentation you could put on a home was used in many of the homes.Due to all of the ornamentation the architects of the Craftsmen chose a simpler look.

The Craftsman home was more about form and function than ornamentation.

This sweet home is more of a New England styled Craftsman. You will notice the windows have a pretty curved mullion instead of the straight lines that are usually used.

I like the support brackets for the overhang on the upper gable and the overhang on the porch.

Most if not all of the Craftsman  homes have a detached garage. I have always had an attached garage so I am not sure how I feel about that one. I will have to think about that for a bit.

By critiquing these homes I am finding elements I like and don’t like in each home.

Here is the list I have made from my observations:

  • Two gables
  • Open porch
  • Overhang support brackets.
  • Slimmer profile columns on porch.
  • Column supports brick or stone.
  • Open porch with no railing
  • Double hung windows with mullions in upper window.
  • Center front door with full glass paned door.
  • Large side yard for the driveway to garage.
  • Combination of shingle and plank siding 
  • Garage door will be carriage style with exposed wrought iron hinges, and handles. Rectangle windows will run across the top of the door with divided panes.

I have actually learned a lot while writing this post. I have always been attracted to this style of home, but I have never really looked at all the details before.

Walking along side my friend is opening my own eyes to what I really like, and don’t like. I can have complete empathy for her. She is making some really important decisions, and they don’t always come to us easily.

It is one thing to say what you would like when there is no possibility of it happening at that moment, but when faced with the real decision making we really do have to be more honest with ourselves, and that is when we become a little more practical.

Oh I do have one more thing I would like!! An ocean view please!! Okay I just went into dreamland!! Fun to dream!!!

“Enjoy the Process,” Of:

Discovering what you would like in a home if you were to be building one from scratch!

Next we will be going inside to make some decisions on the floor plans!!