Please critique my floor plan! Summerfield can you help? :)

auroraborelisMarch 8, 2012

After many iteractions we have a sketch of a floor plan for our single story 3000ish square foot house, and I would really like some feedback from all of you!

A few things about our lot

- 2.6 acres relatively flat, in Northern California

- The front of the house faces West

- It is a corner lot with a road in the front of the house, and to the left (north). The driveway will likely "L" having an entry on both streets.

- There is a view to the East, and our lot is about 200 ft wide and and about 500 ft long (with the length being East to West)

A few things we are looking for in a house

- Open concept, with the "TV" area and the kitchen not being next to each other

- Take advantage of the Eastern view

- Large kitchen with windows and a single eating area (no nook and separate dining)

- Play room for our kids, that is near their rooms and open so it will be a computer area when they are older.

- Media room and an extra bedroom in the garage space to be built out at a later date

- Lots of closet space throughout, maybe space for an exercise room next the the master

- Lots of light, and windows

- Private garden next to master bath with wall of windows next to bathtub and shower

Here is what we have thus far, sorry it is on paper and quite wide so it difficult to share!

Floor Plan

Front Elevation Inspiration

(Sorry I can't seem to share the image!)

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Oh, and on the floor plan each square is 2 square feet.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 11:35PM
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Hi Laura--In case you haven't checked, I sent you the information you requested on email. You also may want to look at some of the other designs on that website I sent the link to. The architect is on the west coast. He's got some really awesome deisgns.

On this thread--I tried to copy your photos to get them to post in the thread, but they are protected and I couldn't copy. Here are some easy to follow instructions on how to do it yourself, though...

1) Go to and open a free account.
2) Follow their instructions for uploading your pics to their site.

Now your pics are ready for posting on sites like GW!

Posting pics in a GW message:
1) Begin the written portion of your posting on GW.
2) When you are ready to add your pics, simply open a new browser window and log into your photobucket account.
3) Go to 'My Album' & copy the 'HTML Code' underneath the photo you wish to add to your GW post.
4) Toggle back to the browser window with your GW posting, place the cursor where you want to pic to appear, right click and select 'paste'.

Your pics will appear in the preview so you can ensure they appear properly before the final submission.

Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 12:57AM
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Thanks for the explanation!

Here is my front elevation inspiration (though with a less complicated roof and I don't need the porte cochere)

And here is the floor plan we have been working on

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 10:43AM
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I found two somewhat similar plans on Alan Mascord's site, but these don't quite meet our needs either as we are looking for three rooms on one side of the house, with a play room as well.

However, I thought they may be helpful as it shows the layout of similar space in the great room/kitchen.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 6:06PM
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How many children do you have? Are you sure you want that big a dining table for all occasions? Sometimes a smaller dining area is nice, if there's less than 8 people. Just a thought :)

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 7:07PM
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Lavender lass - thanks for the feedback! At the moment I am pregnant with my first, and we plan to have one more. I also have a large family nearby at least once a month I will have dinner for 20, and more regularly around 8, though in the summer much of that will be accomadated outside.

I suppose it is just one of those things regarding preferences, because at the moment we have a similar kitchen, dining and family room set up, though much more compact with a small breakfast nook near the front door, however we never use it as we like the openess of where the dining table is and we have been searching for ways to eliminate two eating areas from floor plans. Though, there will be island seating!

I am considering pulling the wall next to the dining area (similar to the above stock plans) to make the space a bit more manageable. Do you think that would help?

Any other thoughts or feedback?

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 7:21PM
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Oh, I like the dining area...just wondering if maybe the seating could be for six everyday...and a couple of comfy chairs, by the windows. Maybe something more upholstered...maybe arms or a wing back style, wicker, plenty of ideas...just something to make that little area a bit different. Maybe a small table between them and an ottoman. Then, you can pull them up to the dining table, when needed, but it gives you a little cozy area, when you don't.

That's what I'm doing in my kitchen area, with two upholstered chairs, by a wood stove. My mom did the same thing, but with two white wicker chairs. It just breaks up the space and gives you a little more flexibility.

I like the fireplace between the living/dining rooms, in the first plan. Very nice way to separate the rooms, but still have good flow. If you put a flat screen TV on the living room side (above the fireplace) you could have the sofa, against the wall and not be dividing the space, with the furniture. Just a few more ideas :)

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 8:14PM
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Oh, that is interesting, at the moment I normal keep six chairs around my table (though it is meant for 8) and only add the extras for guests. I was almost thinking about making the dining area smaller in depth than the living area as it is in both the stock plans, but maybe there is other use for the space....

What do you think of the bedroom layout? I know there is a lot of closet space, I'm a mess with my clothes and I can't wait to hide them! Also, the odd shaped one is going to be a powder room in front, and an exercise room in back.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 9:23PM
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Which one is the exercise room?

I think the kids' playroom should be a little bit bigger, so you can have plenty of floor space, as well as shelf/storage space. Kids love stuffed animals, games, books, toys, DVDs, etc. and when they get older, it's all the video games and more books...and still toys and a few stuffed animals :)

Even when it gets switched over to computers, you'll need a little more room for floor pillows. Maybe incoporate the bedroom closet into the playroom and put the closet, in the space marked 'B' on the other side of the bedroom?

What is the little area, to the right of the master bath? Also, don't forget interior walls are approx. 6" so you need to allow more space there. That's something Summerfield pointed out to me and it does make a difference in dimensions!

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 10:16PM
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The space marked B is the bathroom (I didn't mark the fixtures). Though, we can take space from the main master closet as that is quite oversized, and figure out the rest. What size do you think it should be as it is 10x12 now?

Oh, the exercise room is the odd L shaped room, and I need to add a powder room to the front part of it near the hallway.

The area to the right of the master bath is a private garden, the wall along the rest of the house extends and there will be an entry door at the back and in-between it is open garden. There will be windows next to the tub and shower so it feels like you are bathing in a tropical paradise!

Here is an inspiration pic of the windows, though the style of tub and the room in general in this photo isn't right for me.

tropical bathroom design by san diego interior designer James Patrick Walters

As for the walls, I need to start taking that width into consideration, but that may be the point at which I seek professional help! :) I'm hoping SummerfieldDesigns chimes in with some ideas as well!

I liked the plan Summerfield did for you, I don't know why more people in cold climates don't use vestibules! If I was still living in someplace with snow I would have one at each door!

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 10:46PM
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Laura- That is a beautiful inspiration picture! If I lived in a warmer climate, that's what I would want to do, with my bathroom :)

I thought the playroom was about 9' x 12', but would be even smaller, with the wall adjustment. It's a little difficult to read, but I don't think you'd have enough room for shelves facing the playroom, against the master that's why I thought about built-ins. Lots of storage, without blocking the walkway.

Oh, B is for bathroom...I thought it was accessed from the pantry, but I guess each bedroom has its own bath. Makes sense, especially now that I see that's a garden space behind the other bathroom.

I think Summerfield could give you some wonderful ideas and really help you polish your plan. Little things (that I didn't even consider in my plan) make such a big difference! :)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 11:19AM
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Sorry, I didn't mean your plan isn't beautiful...just that it is so much fun to see the details Summerfield adds to all the plans. Time for much needed caffeine! :)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 11:21AM
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Okay, as complex as these plans are, notice that there is an organizational axis in the form of a lateral hallway that lines up through the whole plan; that the kitchen/laundry/mudroom/powder room/baths, form a core area where they are in close proximity to each other to limit plumbing (with the exception of the master and a bath backing up to the mechanicals). This is good.

Both these plans though are guilty of having a twisty passage near the garage, and one has the kitchen pantry across the entire house from where things will likely be brought in. The Master Bath in the top of the two plans here is enormously oversized as big as the dining room, and I would imagine this to not be a very comfortable place to be naked and wet....

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 12:15PM
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Thanks! I appreciate the feedback, I emailed Summerfield as well, I'm so anxious to hear what he/she? has to say!!

I'm going to work on it some more today. I posted on the kitchen forum to get feedback on how to set up the kitchen (I've never had one so large and don't know where to begin - in a good way)

One thing that was pointed out is how far the garage is from kitchen, so I think I'm going to flip the entire main room so the kitchen and dining area are on the same side of the house as the garage. That means I'll have to fit the pantry over near the media room and so major rearranging as the media room needs to stay rectangular, and then I'll have the pantry space as the close for BD 3 and remove the closet that goes into the play room.

I'm hoping to turn this into a final plan within a month, do you think that is too fast?

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 12:17PM
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Palimpsest, as I mentioned above before I saw your message, I have taken your advice about the kitchen placement to heart, and I'm going to switch the layout so that the entire main room is flipped. I'm not sure how to rearrange the space around the media room though...

As for the master bath, it is difficult to tell on the drawing, however it is about 12 x 16. I plan to have a 5 1/2 ft bath, and full sized shower, as well as a sit down makeup vanity.

At the backside of the master bath you see a 6x12 garden, that will have a wall around that matches the exterior of the house, see the above photo for a similar example.

Next to that garden, following the exterior wall of the house, is the bath for bedroom 2, which is 6x8.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 1:26PM
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Based on the feedback received I have made a few modifications.

Any thoughts or feedback?

    Bookmark   March 12, 2012 at 4:10PM
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a possibility ...

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 1:41PM
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All I can say is wow! You brought a lot of different elements together, and I'm throughly impressed!

I was completly set on the kitchen being in the front of the house, though now that I see this I'm reconsidering... Let me think about it for a bit!

Can I ask, does the program you use calcuate square footage? Could you tell me what it comes out at without the media room and extra bedroom?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 2:28PM
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WOW!! Summerfield, you are a genius!!! You never cease to amaze me.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 9:39PM
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Isn't it amazing! I have been staring at it all day! :)

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 9:44PM
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2882 square feet without media and extra bed areas ... 3489.50 with them included ...

    Bookmark   March 16, 2012 at 5:53AM
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Thanks Summerfield!

I have a few questions, and it may be easier to communicate by email, I'll follow up the last one I sent you.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2012 at 12:34PM
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I'd love to work with you more on this plan offline. I have sent you a couple emails however I'm uncertain if you have received them. Could you email me please? Thank-you!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 12:19PM
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