Need Help with our Front Elevation
Here's the current front elevation of our house (the 2nd image below is our inspiration house that combines many of the different materials found in our plan):
1 - I would like your opinion on the materials that we have on there now. It definitely looks a little busy without the blending and contrasting of various colors, but does this work with you (or does it definitely not work)? An option we're considering is to use vertical board & batten and limiting the shakes to the gables... something like this (quick photoshop):
We're also looking at possibly limiting the stone to a few feet of height (about 1/3rd of the height of the first floor) then covering the rest of the house with a yet to be determined combination of horizontal siding / vertical board and batten / shakes.
2 - We had a discussion with our builder and he thinks the best option for the large front porch is a cement slab. We had planned on using some type of composite decking and possibly closing the gap under the porch with the same material placed vertically. We're still unsure of the final grade of the house (therefore how many steps up we'll have to take to get to the front door), but we don't want to lose the country feel of the porch by using a big slab of cement. Our builder doesn't thinks our idea will look good. Does anybody have pictures of big porches that use vertical blocking to close the opening?
Thanks for the help!