Would like your input, before final version of home plan :)

lavender_lassFebruary 16, 2011

I really appreciate you all taking the time to look at my farmhouse plan...and giving me such valuable feedback.

While we like our other plan, there have been some concerns about adding on to the back of the addition (where the living room and bedroom are located). The roof lines are not working out too well, especially given all of our snow in the winter...so we made some changes.

Here's the new plan, with the hall bath, now also being used as the master bath. Thanks to some of your suggestions, we've added french doors at the end of the stair hall, giving some privacy to the back hallway.

Since we aren't adding on to the back of the addition, I'm hoping we can afford a small greenhouse area, off the mudroom. I think it would pay for itself, eventually, given our short growing season...and keep me sane during long winters! LOL It would be wonderful to have someplace with to sit and have tea, with star jasmine and maybe a climbing rose to enjoy, in the middle of January :)

We plan to screen the deck, mainly to keep the barn kitties out of the hot tub and the yellow jackets out of our drinks. Not to mention the occasional porcupine, racoon, skunk and even deer...that like to come up and 'visit'...that's part of the joy of living in the country!

Summerfield is still working on the final version, but I did a 'cut and paste' of two different plans, to come up with this version. The screened deck is the only thing changed in the second plan...what do you think of the hot tub location? We like it tucked into the corner, with a few chaises...but again, would like your input. Thanks again! :)

With changes to the screened deck/porch....

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It looks fabulous to me. Are you going to live there while it is being done? How much of the house is original and how much addition?

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 4:33PM
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Marti- Thank you! :)

We will not be living in the house, during the remodel, since we live next door, in a double wide manufactured home...set up by my father-in-law in the mid 1980s. It's a cute home and will be much better than living in the farmhouse, with all the construction mess.

The original part of the farmhouse (built in 1904) is the kitchen, seating around the wood stove (former dining room) and entry/stair hall. The living room and bedroom were added in the 1950s. The porch (new dining area with banquette) and main bathroom were added in the 1920s.

The pantry, laundry area, powder room, mud room and front vestibule (as well as the greenhouse and screened deck) are what we're planning to add, during the remodel. The spaces are pretty similar to how they look now, except for opening up the kitchen, dining room and porch...to make the new kitchen/dining/stove area.

My husband spent his summers out here (as it was his grandparents' farmhouse) so we wanted to keep it as true to the original layout as possible...but add the storage and upgrade the kitchen and bathrooms.

Downstairs, there is a basement, under the 1950s addition, which has a family room and bedroom...under the kitchen is a cellar area (unfinished). Upstairs is one bedroom and some attic space, which we hope to turn into one bedroom, a bath and craft area, with extra bunk space.

The upstairs will mainly be for visiting family/friends...especially older nieces and nephews, who like to spend time in the summer, out at the farm. My husband loved doing that, so we want to offer that to the kids, too :)

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 8:43PM
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Well, not a big deal, since furniture placement is WAY off in the future (LOL) but after measuring, I realized there's no way our TV is going to fit in the corner. Also, the window seat idea (while cute) is going to be a bit of a hazard for the nieces and nephews, since the fireplace sticks out so far. So, slightly changed living room plan.

Also, I scanned my very old magazine clippings, of a living room and kitchen I've always liked. The fireplace is similar to ours, but ours goes all the way to the ceiling (and no white trim) but I love the chair and ottoman in the corner.

Also, I've always really liked that window with the long drapes. Drapes are so nice in a living room...and even with insulated windows, they do keep out some of the cold, at night!

This kitchen gave me a lot of ideas, when drawing up my kitchen plan. I think the perimeter countertops are formica trimmed with wood. That's what I plan to use, even though I've been told it's quite 'dated'...it still gives the look of wood, when you're sitting across the room, but much easier to maintain...and lighter, too :)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2011 at 10:22AM
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LL, I'm thinking the hot tub in the corner is the right move. It will give a better sense of enclosure, and use well the space that will otherwise be underutilized. Having the edge of the deck available for a seating arrangement or small table will be nice, because your view will be much greater from that spot.

And if you have a lot of rocks on your property, putting rocks beneath the floor can help use that space as a heat sink. I'd recommend you look into setting that up, to give some extra heat to your house in the evening after the sun goes down and it radiates heat absorbed by those rocks during the day. Summer probably has knowledge of how to design the greenhouse to give some payback to you.

I think the greenhouse idea will be a great addition. I'm always for a plant space. I'm going to point out something to you about the star jasmine though. It will provide you an evergreen plant inside like that, BUT IT ONLY BLOOMS IN MAY AND JUNE. I would suggest that you get a couple of nice blooming begonias in pots, or geraniums in RED, to brighten up the space. And I also have a potted (not hanging basket) bougainvillea which will end up climbing by its long thorny limbs, and IT WILL BLOOM ALL YEAR ROUND. They come in yellow and hot pink, and mine is a white and pink combo. I cannot wait to get it into my Teahouse. It likes heat, it likes moisture, it likes lots of light. Keep it watered. And if you want a spectacular large tropical plant, look into a MUSA species of banana. They can be hardy at your latitude indoors all year.

Incidentally, I just love your house, and the more you tinker with the plan the better it gets. Sarah Susanka says that most people just design the rooms with no selection of furniture spots, but you are doing the whole deal. I think you are about ready to CHOOSE THE SPOT FOR LIGHTS AND SWITCHES AND PLUGS. AND DIMMERS. Dimmers are part of it too.
Go for it, lady, you have the right ideas to choose from.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2011 at 11:41AM
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ML- I love star jasmine (probably because I can't grow it here) so I really want to have it in the greenhouse, kind of growing up and around the top of the windows. The bougainvillea would be a show stopper, but a little too bright for me. I would love to have a pink climbing rose, but I don't know if they do well in a greenhouse.

I can just picture your lovely tea house with your pink and white bougainvillea! It's going to be beautiful!!! When do you think you'll be able to move in? The construction is coming along so quickly...it's amazing.

For some reason, I've always drawn furniture in my house plans. We did the same thing for my mom's new manufactured home. Everyone thought we were crazy...and told us just buy new furniture after you choose your home. Why buy new furniture, if she likes what she already has...so we found a home to fit her furniture...and her lifestyle :)

Oh, I saw some beautiful faux beams online. I'm the queen of faux, I think, but they're only 4 pounds...so they're much easier to install. I'm thinking about adding a few to run long ways in the kitchen/seating area...with maybe these little outlookers on the upper corners of the entrance into the dining area.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 3:18PM
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You are right, "most people" do not plan the placement of specific pieces of furniture. And if you have some old heirlooms on hand, it is always a good idea to design their spots to show them off properly....without crowding your house. So what you are doing is the BEST way to approach placement of your furniture. Once you know where your THINGS are going, then tackle the chore of putting the light switches where they won't end up behind chests and armoires, or on the wrong side of the door, and also plan your lighting and your plugs. If your dining table will not be centered in the middle of the room, make sure the chandelier or dining fixture is located correctly over the table. This job of designing an entire remodel is a really BIG JOB.

Think about a gardenia in a pot for your greenhouse. When it blooms, the aroma is heavenly. And I have no idea about roses being good in a greenhouse. I'll ask my nurseryman next week when I go after a couple of Satsuma trees. BTW, a couple of cumquats or oranges or lemons will do very well in pots in your greenhouse. That's why they called the first conservatories and/or greenhouses "orangeries," or places to keep oranges in cold weather. Another good plant for a pot, is rosemary. Shape it like a ball on a stick, or trim it to be a Christmas tree shape. It can give you cooking herbs, and also give a very pleasant odor all year. Mine grow outdoors all year, but they are not trimmed.

If I can find it, I'll upload a picture of my star jasmine growing up a 4x4 post in the front yard. It is about 4 years old now, and blooms in May/June. This is just ONE PLANT...held up by a single 4x4 post.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 11:11PM
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