Small Floorplan, thoughts?

che1seaJune 1, 2008

I am curious what you all think of this floorplan. We plan on building a house in the next few years and want it to be small but not too cramped. We will have 2 kids (current ages 2.5 and due in July). We do a lot of our own cooking and plan on canning and other forms of preserving.

It is going to be a strawbale passive solar house (hence the large sunspace on the south side).

First floor is about 975 sq ft, second is around 600 sq ft (with 8ft or greater ceiling) You should be able to click on the pictures to get a larger version.

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Are you planning laundry space in the pantry?

Also, I noticed that the service door hallway is using a lot of floorspace. If you shift that door to the right +/- 18'' , you would gain that 8' wall that could be used for floor to ceiling wall pantry. Then the hallspace would be serving 2 functions--pass thru as well as clear space in front of storage. The gain would way more than offset the loss of storage wall in the pantry.

Since this is a passive solar home, I agree with with your decision to keep the fireplace in the central location, assuming that it will be/ could be used for an auxiliary heat source.

I'm looking forward to seeing how your plans progress. It's neat to see people considering alternative building ideas that are more in tune with nature than so many of the more conventional approaches.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 9:18AM
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Where is a dining area?

Where are the rooms for the children? Most parents would rather have the little children's rooms on the same floor until they get older.

I enjoy reading/learning about alternative building ideas!
(Nice quilt!)

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 1:38PM
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Thanks for your thoughts.
The laundry area is in the bathroom. Between the bath and pantry there should be a door to the outside which I apparently forgot to put in.
The kids rooms are upstairs though the plan for the upstairs is very open to suggestions. Likely we would leave the space more open to begin with and all sleep up there initially.
I actually have come up with some changes already, mostly to the kitchen area. I narrowed the hall between the pantry and bath and added an entryway/airlock outside the main walls. I also changed the shape of the pantry a bit to give the dining area/kitchen a bit more space. The dining table is on the wall by the pantry.

On a thread I posted in the kitchen forum someone suggested basically putting the kitchen where the dining table is and the dining where the living is and the living where the kitchen is. I am having trouble deciding if I like it or not.
The fireplace will actually be a wood stove which will be our non solar heat source. Possibly with a brick baking oven built into the surround. Which is of course why it is more in the center of the house.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kitchen thread

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 5:48PM
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Also here is a link to my blog which is occasionally updated right now with design thoughts and idea "green building" information. I also have an updated version of the floor plan there an a more detailed list of what I am trying to get out of it.

Here is a link that might be useful: My Blog

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 6:58PM
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What happened to the bedroom on the first floor and the stairs? Or am I looking at "half" of the plan?

The suggestion for flipping the kitchen is a good one to give you more living space. Actually just moving the kitchen layout to the dining wall. The sink could be located in an added extension to maintain a view. And the window seat a perfect location for dining. The only problem with doing this is the bathroom so near the kitchen. I'm not a fan of bathrooms and kitchens close together.

I'd consider changing the staircase to an L shape and getting rid of the wall between the two rooms. This would open up the living area into one large room.

Was living in NM and had land to build a straw bale. Life got in the way and couldn't finish the plan. I love the textures of straw bale walls and deep windows.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 8:06AM
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Here is the most up to date 1st floor. (you should be able to click and make it larger.

emagineer - Thanks for your suggestions. The only issue I have with flipping the kitchen and dining room is that I would rather have more natural light in the kitchen where I am working than in the dining room. Also I actually like having the living space split up a bit and hate getting furniture up and down stairs with turns in them. I love straw bale too, hopefully life won't get in the way for us, it still has plenty of opportunity and there are lots of snags to overcome. (permitting, loan, septic, water, power, where to live while building...)

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 2:42PM
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