Can't Remember Who Said I Could E-mail Them With Plan

sandy808August 18, 2010

I just received a floor plan from someone we hired, and though I think the basic concept is there, it sure needs some optimizing. There are still some things to be worked out to get better flow.

I'm not very computer literate and need my husband's help with trying to post the layout here. Since he is tied up with work stuff, and I am anxious to get some feedback quickly, I am hoping to e-mail someone who is willing to look at this thing. One of you did tell me in an older post that it would be O.K. for me to do so, but I can't remember who it was, and I couldn't find the post.

I do know how to e-mail and attatch long as somone trusts me enough to do so. I can e-mail you through the garden web and then you will know how to reach me back. Like most people here, I don't want to put my e-mail address up for just anyone to see.

In this process I did get talked out of the loft again, after being presented with upkeep problems, as well as the large construction costs involved. He knows of people who have been very happy with little "cottages" for their hobbies and guests, and feels that is a much better way to go.

Anyway, I need help! We are planning on getting permits pulled for SOMETHING, even if it is only basic and becomes a work in progress as we build. Otherwise I will be sitting here two years from now and still no house.

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Can you post it here? If not, you're welcome to email it to me & I can post it here.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 12:07PM
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yeah, post it here. do you know how to put it in somewhere like photobucket?
if not, gwmail it to one of us and we'll post it here. that way more ideas will be given...

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 1:07PM
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marti8a, I just sent an e-mail to you. Please let me know if you don't receive it.

desertsteph, I didn't see any way to e-mail you on your member page.

marti8, please feel free to post all my comments with it, as it may help others with what I'm looking for in this house.

Thanks so much. I am a bit frustrated, but I think with everyone's help we can get things right. For some reason, no one that I've hired seems to fully understand what I need.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 1:41PM
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I think you might be able to post it up to the GW Gallery also. I discovered all those drawings that Jey_L did for my derelict garage thread. I have not figured out how to deal with uploading photos there, but maybe if I push enough buttons, something will happen!

Sandy, I sent you an email before I read all the thread.
Do what you find the easiest for YOU.

Sometimes guys just don't get it. So sorry for your continued dilemmas.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 3:52PM
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moccasinlanding, I just sent you an e-mail. Let me know if you don't get it. We're going out to grab something to eat. I just never got dinner started. Will check in later.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 6:47PM
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OH Yummy I am just winding down from all the city work and just in time to join in the fun. Some one hurry up and get these plans up here on GW I wanna see.

Sandy sorry you have to give up your loft a-g-a-i-n.........

Waaaahhhhhhh for you.

I have to fix dinner too so be back in a little bit.


    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 8:08PM
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Sandy, got the email. Saved the plan to my desktop, and printed out the email to look at side by side.

Hope you enjoy your dinner out.

Hmmm, should I try uploading it? I didn't think about that.
Let me know.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 8:22PM
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Sorry, my internet got knocked out and I just got back on.

Here is your plan (I cropped out the name but can add it back if you want)

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 8:34PM
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Sorry, I was in such a hurry to get it into jpg format & posted that I didn't notice your comments. Here they are:

There are several things I had wanted in the plan that didn't show up from my wish list, so I'm hoping you can all help get them worked in and then I can have this fella continue on. No one that I have hired has quite "gotten" it.
I'm not real wild about the master bath layout. I had also thought I may want a garden tub, but he never put it in. We want a walk in shower and am not sure if the room has been alotted for it.
I want all rooms to have at least one window in it, but the second bathroom showed up again without one.
I would like the laundry area to be centralized to the house and also have access to outdoors to clotheslines, which is on there, but he has it so you have to go through my sewing room (study) to get to it. The way the walking paths are I wouldn't be able to put anything on that wall at all in terms of furniture.
The kitchen isn't how I would lay it out as it stands, but there is enough room (I think) to address that when we get the flow right with the rest of the house.
The side that has the master bath, study, etc. is the "front" of the house, though our driveway will be swinging directly in and end up on the north side, which is the kitchen side. The great room, "dining" area, and master bedroom all face west (the "back" of the house) which is where our beautiful woods is.
I like to can and freeze food, and cook from scratch. No one seems to understand designing a home around that. there also needs to be a pleasant way for us to get into the house, as well as greet guests (one entry can suffice). The way this plan is, it is bottle-necked up. I'd also like to see a flow into the kitchen from more than one area, if possible.
Perhaps there isn't a good way to have the study/sewing room in this plan, and i should plan on it in an outbuilding from the start. My worry about that is running out of money initially to do the extra building, and having to wait.
The plan dimensions of the house structure is 32 feet by 56 feet. We can go as deep as 36 feet and still retain the proper roof pitch for a "Florida cracker" look to the home, but I would want to shave a couple of feet off the length then to keep square footage down. We may angle the home on our property.
Basically, I have lots of flexibility here, and this is the time to make it right.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 8:43PM
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Whew, that is wonderful, Marti!
I had a time getting it converted from PDF to JPG, and it does not look nearly as good as yours does.

I know we can all put our heads together on this one, and come up with a happy alternative that Sandy will enjoy for years and years to come. Well, gotta find my magnifying glass!

See ya tomorrow, folks.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 9:04PM
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Thanks SO MUCH Marti!!!! Thanks for cropping our name out as well. Yes, we need magnifying glasses. I can't read the stuff even with my reading glasses. Even so, I can still see the master bath isn't the greatest.

We had great burgers and beer this evening. I'm not as cranky now.

My husband did say if I want the loft, despite the downsides, that we can certainly go back to it. If we do, the stairs would most likely go in the great room sideways along the bedroom wall. This creates a bit of a privacy hall to the bedroom, solving one of my issues with the design. It also keeps the great room open to the loft above.

A loft makes it easier to design the house, (to me anyway), since instead of a study/sewing room, there could be a foyer/entry, solving the house being bungled up with the flow. The foyer could have my roll top desk, a nice chair, and some built in bookcases. That way it doubles as some useful space. The loft also helps with where to put family when they visit. And Christmas storage. And down jackets when we don't need them.

Actually, though my husband would prefer a simple single story construction, it wasn't my husband telling me not to have the was the house design person.

So....the skies the limit (within square foot "reason"). At this point I want WHATEVER WORKS!!!!

I really, really, appreciate all your help. You just might be saving my sanity.


    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 9:34PM
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what is the 'square' area 'north' of the pantry? it's left off of the laundry...

in the mstr bath - do you need a door into the study?
along top wall (front?) left to right - linen closet? shower? toilet? what's the big square on the right side - walk in closet?
is there a double vanity? if not what is along the left shared wall w/bedroom?

where do you want your main entrance - for guests to come in?

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 9:47PM
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I forgot to say that despite how cool lofts are, if we can come up with a nice single story home that fits my needs, I am really O.K. with that. It's less expensive to build, easier to maintain, and less cooling costs. It would also build MUCH faster.

See ya tomorrow...I'm going to bed.


    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 9:47PM
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Let me see if I can make it any bigger. Not sure I can though.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 10:18PM
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Ok, I could make it bigger if I cut off the porch, so look at the smaller one for porch too.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 10:24PM
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Is your study going to double as guest room I really like your plan, except for the bathrooms.

With an entrance into the master bath from the study, you could really eliminate the other bathroom and use that space for something else, and I hate to say this, but guests are not going to want to go into that bathroom with everyone sitting around in the living room. If you need two bathrooms, could you make the entrance into it from the utility room?

I don't see how you can get a walk in shower in that space either.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 10:33PM
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Sandy, this is a link to a log home blog. Click on the floorplan and it will expand. I know its larger than you want, but it has an interesting layout that may give you some ideas on how you can tweak your plan.

BTW this person is a GardenWebber. He is on the Building a Home forum. Since it is a blog I thought it would be ok to give a link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Log Home

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 1:04AM
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Marti, I was going to post the same as you. I really dislike powder rooms which are open to the living area. Especially when first seen walking in the front door. Thinking back I've had this arrangement twice in the past.

My main bath is in an alcove at the back of the house, but you can still see it from the front door. At least I can, maybe no one else thinks about it so far away. It really bugs me and the only way I can change it is use the closet from the 2nd bedroom for a concealed door. In our small houses losing a closet is a big loss.

And I'm of no help in where to put the guest bath.

As for a loft, I remember seeing many in new home construction. You had options for a solid wall/bedroom or just a low wall surround to keep it open. It can't be that difficult to build them or they wouldn't be around. I'd love a loft too, seems really creative and free.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 8:56AM
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The square area in the pantry is supposed to a freezer. I can't imagine sticking a freezer in a pantry!

I also hate the bathrooms. The whole scenario with the study/laundry room, etc. doesn't make sense.

What I would like is for the laundry and second bath to be convenient to the master area. The second bath was originally going to be just toilet and sink, but Gregg suggested we may want a shower in there for an over night guest, so I'm O.K. with that. That one doesn't have to be a walk in.

Since I garden, I wanted the master bath to have a french door going outside so that I can come in to use it when needed and then take a shower when I am done. That would be a whole different layout. The layout you see was nothing that I suggested to him. It's actually awful.

I also never suggested access into the study from the master bathroom, and am not sure why in the world he did that. The study could double as a guset room, but not sure if any sewing equipment is in there where someone would fit. I think this study is going to end up as a temporary sewing spot, with an outbuilding going up for it after the house is built.

I actually could picture the study gone and a foyer there that doubles as a "library".

The kitchen configuration needs work. Maybe it could have a nice entry in that area.... The only place I can picture that would be on the east side, or northeast corner. The side of the house that faces east is the one with the study on it.

I think basically this floor plan needs almost a total rework. The master bedroom, great room, and kitchen areas are in good spots as far as orientation within the house goes. That's vague though, and all the details need worked out. We can move bathrooms, pantries....we can move these boxes around anywhere at all.

I agree with the second bathroom being in a hideous spot. I wouldn't be comfortable using it if anyone else was in the house!

I don't think my husband and I really need two sinks in the master bathroom. Our last bathroom had a toilet, garden tub, shower, linen closet, and one long vanity with a sink in it on one end, and a makeup area on the other. It worked fine.

Some people put the toilet in it's own closet which can be claustrophobic. I had an idea of a toilet and pedestal sink in a "closet" with a window, acting as sort of a powder room within the master bathroom. However, sometimes it is a royal pain to have to go into a room to go to a room, so it's probably not the best idea.

Could a small hall of some sort to access the master area, with the second bathroom and laundry room somehow off that hall as well, work?

That said, sinse I hang clothes out much of the year, I need access to outdoors as well from the laundry room, and a clothesline that is off to the side of the house somewhere. Originally, I had thought of the laundry room in the northeat corner, but then I would have to cart sheets and blankets through the kitchen yto get to it.

The study side of the house is actually the "front" of my house, with the great room area in the back, looking out at the woods. The driveway will run from the road, past our barn, and end up on the kitchen side of the house. It is the most logical way to have the driveway and not cut up through land, wasting it. This is why a logical way to get into the house has been difficult, and why the study area in a "conventional" home would most likely be an entry area.

The dimensions aren't written in gold either. They can be changed, although I don't want my master bedroom any smaller than 15 by 15. Closets can be moved, expanded, whatever we need.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 9:55AM
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Forgot a couple of thoughts....

I'm really O.K. with the single story house. I have woken up with some anxiety over a lofted house being large, and hard to maintain.

I think the floor plan the designer gave to me needs a total rework. I just can't believe people, architects included, suggest some of the things they do. They defy common sense, and it has made me very frustrated!

Like I said, the quadrant the bedroom, the great room, and the the kitchen are in, are good. The kitchen is currently on the cooler side of the house, and the bedroom area is far enough away from any entry and has a view.

Other than that, we can twist and turn as desired. A "mudroom" could be added near the kitchen...or not. Rooms can be turned if they make more sense.

The outside house dimensions are currently 32 by 56 feet. This is a nice size construction materials wise. Keep in mind we will lose a foot inside all around for insulation and walls, so we end up with 30 by 54 inside when we dream up the rooms.

These dimensions can be changed somewhat if need be. I can go as deep as 36 feet and still have the roof pitch I want, but then should probably shorten the length some to keep square footage under control. However, I'm looking for whatever works! This is an old Florida design house with a full wrap around porch, so we have to be careful or it will look bad when built. It can't go any longer than 56 feet or I'm afraid it will look hideous because there is 8 feet added on all the way around with the porch.

It is difficult to cram a modern home layout in an old cracker Florida design, so this is a challange!

In the meantime, I am going to e-mail Gregg and tell hime (I hope tactfully) about the few issues I really dislike and that I have some friends helping brainstorm.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 10:14AM
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Sandy, I am in a real hurry right now. I can figure out many solutions to your concerns. One quickly to get window in guest bath is combine laundry with guest bath in same room. I wish they had done that here. I know I posted our floor plan here before. Will do so again Look at it close and you will see several of your concerns are addressed. We also have four doors to the outside on this house. One on each side so a porch all the way around would have been wonderful and worked. There is folw into the kitchen from two directions. If we had not had to have three bedrooms my studio room could have been much larger. We DO NOT have the garden tub. I hate them waste of room. We do have room for it in the master bath and we have a walk in shower there. With you building from scratch I would make your walk in shower larger then the 4 foot one we have. It works fine. So that is what matters.

Any way I have to scoot and might not be back until this evening. Look close at our plan it is very similar to yours but fits what you are looking for a little better. And we are much smaller than you plan at inside 53 by 26 for just the house.

There is an outside door in the master bath that does not show in this floor plan. There is a door coming into the kitchen from the porch centered between dinning room and kitchen. And the curved kitchen counter is not curved in our house. I love the kitchen works perfectly for all cooking and canning projects. I would love a larger pantry but what we have works fine.


Here is a link that might be useful: plan

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 10:57AM
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Sandy, did you tell the architect what you wanted, and he came up with this - which is not at all what you wanted, and you paid for it? If so, I think it's time to find a new architect.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 11:28AM
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I flipped my floor plan so you can see it is almost the same as where he drew out for you. Only some changes in the doors and such. Remove the den we have for your loving room and flip our kitchen which I can not do right now but could later if it would help you to see.

I REALLY have to scoot now. Again.


Here is a link that might be useful: Flipped plan

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 12:01PM
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Chris, I like the angled bar you have in the kitchen. I had something similar in my last house with the sink in it, and it worked out well. The only thing I would have liked was for my stove to be located on the straight run to the left, near the sink, rather than across the room. I'm not too awful concerned about the kitchen layout at this point, as I know we can get that figured out. It's fixing the rest of the house that concerns me.

I think the ideal walk in closet/pantry set up would be to have one near the cooking area for all my cast iron pots and pans, and my big stockpots. The other would be for food items. Not sure if the stocked up food has to be right smack dab in the kitchen,, but should be at least a small pantry/room with door access to the kitchen. I toyed with a couple storage closets on the north kitchen wall, with either window seat in the middle, or just amke it a spot to store a nice moveable Boos Block kitchen island). I actually have better luck rolling dough and kneading bread on maple wood surfaces.

My husband suggested not having the study as a room, but more as a foyer and entry that is open to the great room. I can still put my machine there. Most likely I will need a sewing cottage anyway. I know he (like myself) would like to keep the house as open and airy as possible.

Marti8a, yes, I told this man what I wanted. We hired a licensed architect prior to him, at a cost of a wasted $2,000 before we fired him. The person that we have now works with two log home builders. Fortunately, he was only $500, but I'm seeing now that is a waste of money as well. The most frustarting part is the waste of time this causes!!!

I just received a reply from the house designer regarding the concerns we have with the design. The first thing was that he didn't see what was wrong with the second bathroom orientation! Another reply was that there really wasn't a way to make the master bath door private! Since when?! Older farm homes had at least a short hall in order to turn the doorway out of view!

Then he said that the study entry was just for Craig and I. I said that I didn't want traffic flowing through my workspace, and then it also cannot double as a bedroom. I also said that access to another room should never have to be through another room, with the exception of a master bathroom from bedroom.

He said we had a common entryway. I said I saw no entry, at least tro greet people, and for general use, to the house at all, from either where the driveway will be or to the front area of the house. Just because there is access in and out of a home from french doors, doesn't mean that they are appropriate for general use.

He came to our home and saw the site, and had been told where we wanted rooms oriented. I don't want a driveway going to the back of the house for an entry there into the great room, because I KNOW our truck will always be left parked there. I don't want to look at a vehicle. I want to see trees!

Chris, thanks for posting you floor plan. It is similar, isn't it? Only much better. I would like to keep from having a long hall though.

I am going to try at least to rough sketch of a couple ideas today. I am going to skip any house work today in order to do this. I know, such a hardship, to skip housework:)) I can then scan them in so I can e-mail it to one of you. I appreciate the help getting things up here. I am almost brain dead from stress.

I will check in with all of you a little later.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 1:29PM
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"Could a small hall of some sort to access the master area, with the second bathroom and laundry room somehow off that hall as well, work? "

sandy this is exactly what I was thinking, the second bath is in a terrible spot, no privacy at all and access to the laundry room is awful. I was wondering if you had room for a small hall off the main area, with the utility and second bath coming off that and an external door at the other end to take the laundry outside.

I too was wondering why you needed access from the study to the master bath so glad you mentioned that, it seems redundant to me?

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 1:38PM
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trancegemini, I can make room for whatever is needed at this point. We are the owner/builder, and we have a clean slate.

The only restrictions on size are some of the outside dimensions I mentioned above, due to the style of home we want, but it still offers a great deal of flexibility since it is arectangle like many modular homes. This house is being modeled after some of the old homes that were built 100 years ago in Florida, and still in use today. The syle will fit perfectly into our property.

If we go deeper than 36 feet on the gable ends, or longer than about 56 feet on the long side, it wacks out the old style Florida cracker roof, and wrap around porch.

I just can't believe that someone designing homes would have even sent me this plan, let alone not see what's wrong with it when pointed out!

I think we're on our own at this point, and appreciate the fact that some of you can help inscramble my brains.

Please feel free to e-mail me if that's easier.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 2:18PM
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'The square area in the pantry is supposed to a freezer. I can't imagine sticking a freezer in a pantry! '

actually, i was asking about a huge square not in the pantry. between the pantry and the exterior's to the left of the laundry room.

I do think a entrance area where the study is would work better - with the laundry and 2nd bath off of it. that's very doable.

how would a longer not very wide area work for your sewing?

my place is about 24 x 56 or so... want me to post a layout of it? just for ideas. it has 4 bdrms,2 baths, landry, kit and dr/lr from one side of the 24" to the other side of it.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 2:28PM
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Sandy, First of all, you can get the space on your south end (bedroom wing) by moving the study so the doors are centered on the back steps.

For one thing, the designer thinks the living room is the main entry. You are saying the study is the main entry. That has to be corrected.

It will be a classic design, almost a center hallway, if the front and back doors are both six foot wide,, with side lights for even more light. Have the five foot wide doors as the interior doors. And the ones from the study to the living room MUST also be lined up with the two exterior sets of doors.

By moving the study over enough to center it on your steps, that will give you the space to insert both the 2nd bath and the utility room. Move that door from the study to the master bath so that it is not near the outside wall. It will be best to let the dryer vent to the outside with a short run of exhaust pipe though, so even if you must stack the unit, put that directly adjacent to the study in the new utility area. Having the "linen closet" space in your laundry area will be very economical of your efforts, because where they are used, washed, and stored, is all within throwing distance of one another.

When you say UTILITY, what is in there? Will you have a tankless water heater serving the kitchen and your canning needs? Fast hot water is not an issue with the bathroom as much as it is for the kitchen, which must be a certain temperature to give sanitary dish washing. And will the heating system be in this utility room? Also, where will your power supply enter the house, where is the breaker box and the outside meter? Will you read your meter yourself, or does the power company use those auto sensors that can read your meter from the street, regardless of where you locate it?

I think that the spot where the walk in shower now is located is a good spot for a garden tub. It can have a standup shower in it, of course, but the real walk in shower needs to go in the 2nd bathroom. Think about having that bath toward the front of your master bath area, backed up to your vanity. Shorten that sink countertop so that a pocket door can access the 2nd bath, with the doorway maybe lined up from your walk in closet. I would make most of the doors in the bath area POCKET DOORS. Especially the 3 foot wide door into your walk in closet. There is really no room at all in the closet. It sort of defeats the purpose of wheel chair accessible door widths if when you get inside the closet you cannot get around the door without ducking into the hanging clothing. So a pocket door, or a separated bifold door (hung like a french door) might work fine.

I have some remarks about windows and lights, and need to know the shape of your roof also. And if you have a cathedral ceiling in the living/dining area.

Ok, let me stop here, my focus was interrupted by the work crew doing my closet/tub bumpout.

More later for sure.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 3:09PM
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ML, I know you have a great deal going on with your own home, so your efforts to help me are greatly appreciated.

What is very frustrating to me is that this designer came out to our home, walked on the house site with us, and sat at our kitchen table while we discussed things.It was a three hour visit. Knowing that conversations can be forgotten, I wrote out a detailed list of "needs". This floor plan is what I ended up with.

When I e-mailed him this morning with the items that aren't working, he sounded as though he didn't understand what I was talking about. I sent another reply clarifying things. I just got another e-mail from him saying that some of my e-mails had contradictions. I know they don't, as I reveiwed them to see. So....I politely asked which things were contradictory so that I could clear things up. I haven't heard back.

He knew which end of the house was facing the front after he came out here to the property. He even remarked that I would be able to see what is going on at the barn, as well as see who was coming in the driveway from the sewing room. I also specified the need for a coat closet, cleaning supply closet that can hold products, as well as vacuum cleaner, mops, buckets. They sure aren't here.

I have no idea what is in the laundry room on the plan. I see a box that looks like a dryer? Maybe he put a counter in there. and yes, the dryer needs to vent directly outdoors. They are a fire trap otherwise with lint buildup in the vent line, and besides, they work better that way.

We aren't sure if we'll go strictly tankless, or a regular water heater that my husband will make solar powered, and the tankless as back up. We designed a solar hot water system in our last house that worked great. One thing we have down here is lots of free sun. If the room dimensions are left generous, and somewhat "blank" we can design on the fly as we build.

I can't read any of the dimensions on the plan that I printed out from his e-mail, even with reading glasses, so I feel whatever size we feel we need something to be, will be....

We do not have to work within this fella's constraints on the rooms. I think we should make closets the size they NEED to be, and comfortable to use. I want to be generous in adding closets, and I want my master bedroom and bathroom to be really comfortable in size. While I certainly do not want McMansion stuff, I do finally want a decent master area and do not want to "downsize" that. The bedroom closet is useless in my opinion. Our last home had the double closet thing forming a "hall" into the bathroom. It was a narrow space, which made it awful getting into the closets. If it were generous spacing, it may be nice, but that can put the toilet a long ways away if not done right.

My wish list for the master bath is a generous garden tub, a large walk in shower, a nice sized vanity with sink, and a good sized linen closet. And a toilet, of coarse. I will take whatever room is necessary to do that. I saw a picture of the master bath doors being glass french doors with sheer curtains on them. It looked into the tub, and was very nice.

The second bath can be just a powder room, if need be. A second shower would be nice if someone visits, but am not sure how much it is really needed. Again, this needs to be generous in size, perhaps allowing room for a future shower. I've been in powder rooms that I could barely get myself and my hind end in, let alone close the door.

We don't give a hoot about resale. I could care less about what some other pereson thinks. Society seems really hung up on very confined protocols, and I opted out of that when I sold my house and moved out in the country. So if this is a rather unusual sized house to only be a one bedroom home, so be it. I know many on this forum feel the same way.

I agree with you about having rooms going off a foyer. It's logical, and makes for easy access. At this point, my husband is suggesting not walling in a specific sewing room, and parking my machine in a corner somewhere.

To give you an idea of the roofline, porch, and general style of the house, you can go to the website Click on the plans link, and when they come up, scroll down to "The Fowler" design. That is how we want the outside of our home to look like. That's my dream house. (Don't like the floor plan).


    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 3:52PM
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Sandy I linked to our master bath in this house and you can see the door out to what is our back yard and dogs yard. It is just a single door and I am good with that. I love the double french doors but for me they take up too much wall space.

The walk in shower is behind the bedroom door that is opened to get picture of bathroom. Toilet is just past the shower.

I still say work your bath and laundry as one room. We had that on the house we built and I LOVED it. It happened to be our masterbath room and for you with door to out side from master bath already desired you get the job done. So what needs to be changed in your master bath to do this? REALLY it was wonderful to have the laundry handy. We had it in what was going to be a closet framed for it but never did close it in as I liked it open.

I will see if I have any pictures of it. Was before digital.

I would draw on graph paper the outline of your house then cut out the kitchen and dinning room and master bed and bath and study and keep pushing them around like we do with furniture cut outs until you find what works then fine tune it. You need to walk away from this plan so you are not locked into one thing of it.

I think there is a way to get your walk in closet situated to make a hall way to master bath if that is what you want. I am confused there as to why you do not want master bedroom open to master bath. OK I see he has no door. So put a door there?? OR am I seeing it wrong?

We once had a master bedroom with hall to toilet and shower in seperate room and in the hall was long closets on one side and vanity on the other. I remember it was 9 foot long. That REALLY worked well for us. Seemed kind of weird at first but turned out really nice.

I do not know what that is beside your shower in master. Another small closet?

One last thing. I have to cart my laundry all the way through the house to hang it on the line in the back yard. No place for a line in front because DH will NOT let me put in on the car port. GGRRRRR I keep hoping to talk him into it. Anyway I use one of those roll around laundry carts. I love it. Holds laundry up while I am hanging it too so no stooping for each piece. I know exercise is good but when I bend over then stand up I get faint and it makes me crazy. Then look up to the line and I almost fall down. So I need to be able to pick up my laundry from standing position.

Anyway I need to go back to work here.Laying pavers hauling mulch watering and it is already 90 degrees out there. I will not be much longer outside this trip.


Here is a link that might be useful: Master bath

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 4:25PM
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Sandy, I am thinking this house with deep porches all around is going to be rather dark inside. So I will check what the roofline is like, to see if any skylights can be added.

Why I say this, you have that lovely long window in the dining area, then the french doors in the living room. Only I'd call it the GREAT ROOM because IT IS NOT THE ENTRY ROOM.It would be easier to place skylights in the roof than to insert more windows into the log walls beneath that porch. You'd get more LIGHT for your square foot of window with skylights than you would with windows under the porch.

And I think I'm spotting a male chauvinistic p... in your designer. It feels like you are running into a brick wall, and all the things that YOU want, which will make this home function for YOU, are ENTIRELY IGNORED. It has a totally masculine orientation to this design, and it is not at all friendly to a woman's concept of a comfortable home. Plus, it does not show me that he was able to design even a good Florida cracker house either.

For one thing, the cracker style has a way of allowing straight air flow through the house. That could be achieved by lining up the doors on an axis front to back, and right to left. And all he'd have to do to screen the bedroom doorway from the entry is to put up a stub of a door height wall that sticks out and hides the bedroom/bath if the doors are open.

But do think about centering the entry door straight in front of your steps. Have it all bevelled leaded glass, and have a long bevelled leaded glass light on either side of the door. I think you can omit french doors for the actual entry.

And as far as your sewing, I think it would be very easy for you to build in a cabinet/closet even with a pair of pocket doors, to leave your sewing area there, making it private, but also accessible from the great room or "study."

I don't think you have a "study", which would require being some place quiet and off to the side. You might have a very busy activity room, which serves as the hub of everything in your house. I don't know what they call such a space these days.

As soon as I can, I'll try to draw what I have in mind, but compare it to all your wants, and the references you've given me. Heck, I think all of us here can together design a house with all you want in it.

As a sort of joke about a design done by committee, did you know that if God assigned a committee to design the HORSE, it would have looked like a CAMEL?

Enjoy your evening. See you guys tomorrow.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 9:22PM
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Good grief Sandy, doesn't it make you wonder if architects even live in houses? I swear the guy who designed ours had never even been in a house before!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 10:05PM
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Sandy I had the same kind of comments from manufacture home guy when I TOLD him what I wanted he tried to argue. Finally I told him we would go some where else if he did not want to do what I wanted since it was our money buying the house. Some times a person has to be pretty blunt with what they want. I hope you are not too stressed out over this tonight.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 10:09PM
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ML, thanks for the picture of your bathroom. Yes, that kind of door works. I also would like the laundry room handy to the master bathroom, but also handy to a neutral area of the house. Maybe the master bath can open to the laundry which can open to a foyer? Hmmm....needs some thought. The master IS where most of the laundry is generated.

The wrap around porch really doesn't make the house dark as long as there are enough windows, which we will have. I've been in a model log home with this porch, and also a customer of theirs who was generous enough to let us go through their home during their final stages of construction. Now if we were to have big trees close to the house, that would make it dark. We will have no trees in close proximity of the house. They fall on houses down here during hurricaines.

We also were invited to a cabinet maker's home to see his log home with the wrap porch. Believe me, the porch is divine.

We are going to build a frame house (with 2 by 10s to beef it up. This is larger than normally used). It will be log sided. We are doing this rather than all log so we can insulate it well, and to make it easy to wire. It also allows great flexibility during construction for changes, as well as any future remodels. The cypress log siding makes the home look exactly like a log home, particularly since we are using wood for our walls. No one will know the difference just by looking at it.

I think you're right about this guy being a chauvinistic p........

I am SO SICK OF NOT BEING LISTENED TO by these men! I mean, I made an explicit list for him.

I like your laundry cart idea. I'm going to get one. My husband and I were thinking of having a ramp in place of one of the sets of steps, to make it easy to get heavy things in. I also have a mom that uses a walker so if she comes to visit, a ramp on one side would make it easy for her.

I do want the master bath as part of the master bedroom. What I meant by hall was the typical design that is on stock plans where the two bedroom closets are on either side of the bathroom entrance, sort of making a hall. we had that in our last house It was O.K. I think potty access can be made better, just not sure how yet.

The windows this guy put in the house are not exactly what we are planning either. The placements are not balanced at all, as you pointed out on the front of the house. And yes, windows and doors are aligned for good air flow in a passive cooling design. Right now nothing is even balanced for a nice looking outside facade.

We will use sliding french doors, and banks of double hungs. All Anderson 400 series. What I mean about banks of double hungs is where three to five are placed touching each other. I think the units are available already assembled like that.

Do you believe this guy e-mailed me and said he was confused. He thought the house axis was going to be rotated so the bedroom was on the driveway side. Why in heck would I want that?! We may rotate the axis very slightly to catch more prevailing wind, but never such that the bedroom would be in full visibility of someone coming up the drive! I like to sleep with windows and blinds open when weather permits.

As far as this stupid thing he is calling a "study", it is supposed to be a sewing room, with big windows looking out, and glass french doors opening into the living room(great room). I'm about ready to leave most of the house open and stick my machine in a corner of the living room.

My husband was just grumbling that we paid this man already for a floor plan. Of coarse, we get some revisions with that fee. I told my husband he could deal with him. I'm cooked. I'm going to go put my bathrobe on, and have a nice cold beer in a frosty mug.


P.S. I love your entry thoughts ML with the beveled glass and such. I can see it in my mind, and it's beautiful.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 10:31PM
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I agree that having the laundry next to the mstrbath would be very useful. water lines there and most everything would be going back into your bdrm or bath! a few to the kit and other bath but that'd be the lighter load!

My mstrbdm has a closet on either side of the 'hall' to the mstrbath. I think the bdrm is about 12 x 13, the closets 4.5 x 5 and the bath about 7 x 13. that's a big bathroom for me. but I don't need a tub or door to the outside in mine. would like the door tho for the dog!

the 'hall' is only about 4-5' long. that's not much. I only have a tiny rectangular window high up in it (but also have a skylight).

do you want double doors at every outside door? and inside door? I understand allowing room for them in the future in case needed - but maybe now they could be single panel glass door with glass side panels? in the event double are needed the space would be there you'd just need to change the doors out.

I would be asking that guy if HE was the one who came to your house and spent 3 hrs with you and dh... then I'd tell him that there is no way i could make heads or tails of that mess - and ask who in the world he designed it for.

surely he must have mixed your plans with someone else's...

the 'study' space closest to your mstrbath could be the laundry area w/door out. the lower part there could be an alcove opening into the LR for your sewing.

and on the other side (toward kit) the small bath at the top (exterior wall area) with a large closet on the lower part. the entrance will need to stay wide enough for future double doors etc.

I'm tired too and pinky is hurting. I took bandage off to let it get air before bedtime. now is bedtime! will be back tomorrow!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 2:37AM
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"I do want the master bath as part of the master bedroom. What I meant by hall was the typical design that is on stock plans where the two bedroom closets are on either side of the bathroom entrance, sort of making a hall. we had that in our last house It was O.K. I think potty access can be made better, just not sure how yet."

This is what we had only both closets were on the one wall. They were walk in but not really deep. Vanity and double sinks on the other across from closets.

And Sandy the master closet he has for you does not work very well . We have had it that way twice and both times I took out the cross bar in back. It seems like you are loosing rod space but in reality you gain because hanging clothes in the corners makes a mess.

I fixed the rods in our master here before we moved in. the factory was supposed to do it but did not. Another thing they did not listen to me. GGGRRRRR

I am also done in and heading to bed.

Sweet dreams ladies and gents.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 2:53AM
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O.K. We know the plan stinks. there anything good at all about it, or do we need to start from scratch?
I've seen some cabin designs where the great room and kitchen/dining ran straight up and down through the middle of the house, with everything else flanking off on either side. My husband doesn't seem too wild about that design though. He thinks it may make the main rooms feel closed in.

If there are some good points on this plan, what do you feel they are? By this, I mean the basic room boxes and what sizes would be "luxurious" without being McMansion?

We already know none of the closet and storage areas are good.

ML, your floor plan is nice, but you did mention the long hall. How do you feel that could be changed?

Basically, should I try to work within the main parameters and just try to rework the laundry and spare bathroom flow?

I'm going to have a cup of cvoffe and try to think.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 9:53AM
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Have any of you had what I jokingly call the "crapper in a closet"? Many master bath plans have the toilet in it's own little space, many with a window (which is good!), that closes with a door for privacy. It seems like a good idea, but want to know if anyone had that and if they liked it or hated it.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 10:38AM
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Sandy, I did not mention a long hall. What I was indicating was a LONG VISTA. The LONG VIEW completely through the house from front to back and side to side, by lining up the entry doors, just like the way the steps are all lined up.

Front and back have them lined up with the exterior steps.
Side and side, not lined up with steps, but try to line them up with each other. So the cross ventilation will be great.

Speaking to what is good about the design, I think the porches and the steps are really fine features. It will give you a challenge about LIGHT inside the house, but you can perhaps have skylights above your windows on the roof area, which would be easier to build in there than to modify the log walls for windows. If you like your western view, think about skylights above the big window in the dining area, and the pair of french doors from the living room. I also see that by lining up the study and its doors with the double wide french doors, you'd have a long view from the study to that western view you like so much.

I need to know what shape of roof you are planning. Will it be HIPPED all around? Will it have gables at either end, with the porch roofline sort of a shed shape? Like a big brimmed straw hat? I think they say the hipped style is very resistant to wind damage. But with the gable ends, should you have cathedral ceilings everywhere but the bedroom and bath area, on the end gable by the kitchen you would have the opportunity to have some very high windows that would allow a lot of northern (true color) light all the way through the space. Such a sweeping open area would lead your eye down the length of the 36 foot living/dining area and UP that high wall without a stop.

With the north end being open to a cathedral ceiling, you'd again have a chance to IN THE FUTURE, build a small interior BALCONY....a relative of the LOFT, but not as big nor as enclosing. What it would do is actually continue the ceiling over the kitchen and be only wide enough to put a couple of reading chairs, or maybe a daybed for you to lie on when you want to watch it rain and read a book. Maybe six feet wide? Held up by two to four big posts and beams like your logs. It would be the CHOIR LOFT. hehehehe.

I think that end of the house is the one where the driveway is located? I also think that this North end of the house is a natural place for your guest entry. YOUR OFFICIAL FRONT DOOR. Think about it anyway. That would lighten the load on your poor study, and make it more than a passage way and keep guests from arriving in the middle of your sewing and laundry and canning projects, and seeing you au naturelle in the bath. You see, that balcony over the entry could have a small section of lattice or whatever to really screen someone at the door from seeing any further into your home.

More later. We'll be fine tuning your design compass until we figure out where you want that important entry doorway.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 11:17AM
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"I would be asking that guy if HE was the one who came to your house and spent 3 hrs with you and dh... then I'd tell him that there is no way i could make heads or tails of that mess - and ask who in the world he designed it for."

I'm afraid I wouldn't have paid him either.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 11:42AM
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The roof will not be a hip roof. It will have a relatively steep pitch...can't remember the ratio....maybe 8 to 12? Something like that....I'd have to ask my husband. It's exactly like that Fowler design I mentioned.And yes, gable ends. It's a classic cracker.

The porches really do not make the house dark. Really and truly. I've been in 4 homes with them and they are not dark. Skylights have a tendancy to leak, so will not be having any. I also had a neighbor that had hailstones from a bad storm break theirs. During a hurricaine passing through the center of the state.

The porches are a clasic cracker design. We get such intense sunshine that getting light into a home here is not difficult. The porches not only add ambiance, they protect the house structure immensely from UV and rain. Comparing the sunlight here with upstate NY during the summer (when they actually get some)really drives home the sunlight comparison. The sunlight ALWAYS seems diluted up there. This is why solar power is worth investing in down here. Wind power is better up north because they get more wind and heavy breezes than we do.

I asked my husband to e-mail the man we hired to do the floor plan. I want him to deal with this person now. He basically told him we gave him very detailed notes on what we wanted, what was wrong with his design, and that it wasn't up to us to sketch it out. We gave him a good general placement of rooms along with the written notes. That it was what he was paid to do. If we sketch it out (which I'm starting to do along with stress eating) then we may as well do the blueprints too. So far, we haven't heard back. My husband also said that we had many comments about how the design was from a few builders, and they all felt it was a horrible design. Didn't know you were all official builders, did you! He also mentioned the fact that very little was of any use for handicap access, and we had asked for a universal design.

Unfortunately, the payment to him was upfront. A mistake,I know, but seems that's how all these people work. I will let my husband deal with the money issue if this whole thing goes really sour, which I suspect it already is rapidly in the process of. Anyone bent on truly providing customer service would not have replied the way he did, and would have started to rework the design. I'm so mad!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 1:03PM
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Sandy, you've probably answered this before but I don't want to go read through all the whole thread right now. Sorry, I'm just lazy I guess. ;) Anyway, did you want the closet in the bathroom or was that his idea? I've seen closets in bathrooms a lot of times but seems like with all the related humidity, it wouldn't be good for clothes.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 4:37PM
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Well, my husband heard back from this critter and he said he would "have something later next week". Wouldn't you think this dude would get a hold of me, look me in the eyes, and say let's brainstorm here and get it right?!!

Frankly, I've emotionally given up on this guy and am going to try and sketch something out myself. Any ideas from any of you are welcome, but it sounds like you have your own hands full as well. I'm about ready to go back to my loft design and be done with it.

I am so sick of being told by these schmucks what I want and don't want, and how my ideas just aren't good for x reasons. Like the whole loft thing.

The fact of the matter is, there have been two model log homes I looked at where I started mentally placing my sewing machine, desk, and cutting table up in the loft. It was almost immediate. If the kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry area had been planned better, I would have used their stock plan.

It sure would solve where to place a nice entry way that could double as a nice seating/library area. And it solves where to put the darn sewing room. I would just need to chop some square footage off the main floor so the house is not so gigantic. What do you think?


    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 4:47PM
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Sandy, I visited the Cracker Log Homes and looked at the Fowler with the wrap porch. The high tin roof, and such.
I see that at each end (left/right) it has a gable so that would be good for a loft at one end. The load bearing walls are the ones which I think your designer left in place, so structurally you could change everything else inside. As long as you leave those alone, I think we can play around with the rest of it.

An issue: The a/c unit is shown being in the attic space. Also, will ANY OF THE GREAT ROOM OR ANY OTHER AREA INSIDE HAVE A CATHEDRAL CEILING? Or will it all be with 8 or 9 foot ceilings throughout the house?

I'm thinking that it could be cathedral on the side with the great room and dining room. Yeah, we will move all the rooms back into the places you liked before plan 2, 3, and 4 showed up. I think we can deal with the plan 1 and add the loft down over your masterbedroom, with a lot of extra storage under the crawl spaces, and locate the air handler for the a/c there too. You would not need a set of folding attic steps at all.

And actually a short hall behind the steps accessing the loft will be a nice feature.

Of course, you may have to decide on what is most important, the 15 x 15 bedroom or a generous great room, since it will be more used than the large bedroom. I think maybe slimming down your bedroom to 15 x 13 will be ok. All you do in there is SLEEP, right? The dimension from the master bath to the side wall (not the end wall will remain the 15 feet I think, because that is where the load bearing wall is located.

The FRONT DOOR FACES EAST. That is the door at the TOP of the plan, am I correct?

By moving the entry to be exactly opposite the wide steps on that wall, it will have more importance, and make it obvious which of the four sides is the front door for guests or for deliveries to come to. If your UPS or Fedex guys come to the wrong place, they'll only do it ONCE!

I reread all your information again very carefully, and realize that the barn is out between your house and the road. The great room is on the BACK SIDE OF THE HOUSE. So, my question is, why is the designer continuing to draw the FRONT ENTRY AT THE BACK DOOR? On every one of his plans, he puts BACK PORCH or REAR ENTRY. Is he dyslexic? If so, I have a lot of sympathy for him, what a handicap in his profession.

Honey, I have 4 huge sheets of quadrill paper taped together, and am beginning to draw this sucker big enough to read. I might have to mail it to you!

But I see that there is a difference in square feet by changing the dimensions even one foot in either direction.
Making it 35 x 55 = 1925 sq ft.
56 x 34 = 1904
56 x 32 = 1792
The plan you have is drawn as 56 x 32 = 1792 so that is what I'm staying with. That extra sq ft amount of living space can be gained in your loft, perhaps without any great expense.

I think a traditional cracker house had a real dog trot open in the center. However, you can get a similar effect in your house but INSIDE, by lining up that front door and that back door going out from the great room. It will work very nicely too.

The fewer walls we add inside the house, the more space will be devoted to living square footage, IMHO. So trying to keep it open in concept is my goal here. I hope I can come up with something you can take to that designer without too much more work. I sure wish I was a real architect. Houses are such wonderful things to play with.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2010 at 10:14PM
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ML - sounds like you're doing a very good job of it! can't wait to see what you draw up.

btw, my friends with the double mstrbath have their bed up to the shared wall with a door on each side into 'their' part. the part behind the headboard area is the shared closet and shared shower with entrances from each side. the closet is directly behind the headboard wall and the shower behind the closet (along the exterior wall).

depending on the depth of the bathroom area it could be a double rod closet w/ walkway between rods of clothes.

the female side would have the tub. the guys side wouldn't have much - sink/vanity and toilet. IF the guys side was on the inner side of the house a door could be on the wall shared with entrance area? and used from other rooms when needed.

if bathroom is 14 x 13 deep and allowing for a shower about 5' x 4' there should be plenty of room for a good sized closet with 2 rods 5' long.

14' in width minus the 5' for the shower and closet areas would allow about 4' for individual bath sides. maybe female side should get 4.5' width to try and fit a tub in for her.

or go with the 15' width she posted for. that's exterior end to the entrance area.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2010 at 10:48PM
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Where did I read, Sandy, that you were considering a sort of second bedroom? Although you were not thinking of ever selling, you were considering having that in the plan?

If so, then the public portion of the bath, whether it is used daily by your DH or not, should have some bathing feature in it.

And if you have the second bath as a full bath, I'm trying to make it function as the second half of your master bath. I believe that in this case, you should only have ONE separate shower, due to making universal designs which uses more of your space. To make a huge shower, and a tub, and a second shower, would be much more expensive than making only the ONE shower. Of course, there will be a stand up shower inside your tub, but that does not count. I think it will be best if the second half of your master bath is designed for use by your DH, with the shower in it, and that will be also functioning as the guest bath too? And if you wish to take advantage of the shower separate from the tub shower, I see no reason why you cannot do so. Just like DH would be able to sit down in the tub, or stand in it for his shower.

I would think that for security reasons, I would not want any more exterior doors than the three.....entry/front door, kitchen side door, and double french doors out the great room. If you have a yen to come inside for your cleanup after gardening, that is where we need to address the mudroom feature, to keep from chopping up the prime real estate in your master suite area.

I'm already seeing this area having the laundry room off the foyer/study, which should also function as the mudroom. It would lead directly from laundry into the guest bath. Laundry on one wall, guest bath door on other wall. I suppose there would be your linen storage here as well, and a pocket door to/from the main portion of the master bath . Inside the guest bath there would be a second doorway preferably a pocket door, which would allow access to this bath from the master by you or your husband. It would be a simple bath, with a walk in shower, your MUD shower if you like, and then a toilet and sink. I'd make the sink a good size and out of stainless so you could use it for cleaning up after gardening. This is just a thought, a way for it to look, to stand up to a practical function.

Then across the foyer/study from the master side, a short aisle maybe which will have the core of pantry, and mass storage area for your canning products and supplies. I think shelves against the outside wall which display your home canned goods in their glass jars will be very decorative and a source of pride and make a statement about WHO LIVES HERE. Those could be up above some shallow cabs below. Take wall cabs and put them below, unless you want to give over 25" depth to storage all along here. I would not even consider a door necessary from the foyer down this aisle, which winds up in the kitchen.

With this foyer and the real front door centered on the broad steps from the porch to the house, you will have a good spot to access a coat closet, and at the far end of it have your kitchen prep sink. If you bring in veggies or fruit from the garden, you can have the big freezer at your back. The regular sink would still be in the spot where Plan 1 shows it, you would be able to see who comes to your house from either sink. Especially if you put another window above that prep sink. If you believe in garbage disposals (which I don't) then the prep sink is a good place to install it, right?

I'll have to draw this out for you, so I won't go into description with the kitchen area. It is a matter of push/shove until you get it right for the way you cook. Even an island is possible, along with that eating countertop. I'd get swivel stools with backs, since turning to watch the dining and great room would be a plus. And like someone else suggested, a curving bar might be a friendly thing so you can see other people better.

I tell you, Sandy, this is very exciting to work on.
I'm seeing the steps up to your loft providing the screen you need to protect the entrance to your master bedroom. And that gives another place for even more storage. I never met a set of storage cabs I did not like. Even a closet, but just built in cabs would be great too. Resist the urge to hoard though!!!! Some of that storage downstairs could be used for your FABRIC...which I know HAS to take up a lot of room. I've had that problem myself.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 11:13AM
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I did a quick read through, but have to come back and digest this better later. I will answer a few questions, but my brain isn't awake yet and will suely miss some. I probably should get some more printer paper today and print this out so I can answer questions better.

I'm not really very concerned about security. Although I know fences can be cut, we installed nasty barbed wire all the way around our 10 acres, with a farm fence strong enough to keep horses in. Seems to be the norm here. It keeps the cows in, and sends a message to outsiders. We will eventually put a sensor alarm on the gate and on the house, etc.

That said, we don't have problems in this area, since everyone living in this area is of a self sufficient mind set, and have no problems whatsoever using the means necessary for self defense. If someone wants to get you bad enough, they'll get you, so I don't worry about glass doors.

There are a few cracker styles in existance. The dogtrot was one of them, but there were also single pen, double pen, saddlebag, shotgun, I-houses (were two story), and in the early 1900's the Georgian, Southern Plantation, and Victorian styles began to appear. The most important theme that ran through all of them was the protective porches. If fireplaces were used, they went on the gable ends, and because of this, had no porch in that area. The kitchens were almost always an outbuilding, but generally attatched to the porch.

Haven't made a final decision on the loft yet. I guess I am leaning away from it after looking at my husband's engineering drawings. It makes for a VERY complex construction. We also ran into logistics with floor planning and subsequent lining the sight lines of the upper windows with the open lower area (great room). It all ripples, and I've about given the loft up. I don't have the energy anymore to deal with making a complex situation work out. Ten months ago, maybe, but I'm getting burned out now and just want my house.

Over the weekend we visited a building that had a large gazebo connected to the house at the porch deck. I could envision that as a sewing studio. What surprised me was there wasn't a feeling of going outside the house to another building. The 8 foot porch span to the other structure didn't seem any different than a hall, and had a "safe" feeling.

I will have a kitchen island, but have decided on not having a fixed one. I.m afraid of it eventually annoying me by having something in the middle of my room that couldn't be moved without demolition. We would never sit and eat at it, as some people do. We like the kitchen table. I actually have no problem with the table in the kitchen, as long as it doesn't block a working path.

What I am planning is to purchase a 60 inch by 30 inch Boos brand kitchen island, with the bOos Block maple top, and put their heavy duty casters on it. I will need to provide a spot to put it when not in use, but I have an idea of the east side having two storage closets flanked by a window in the middle. That makes a storage spot for it. They are expensive, but not nearly as costly as a built in unit.

A foyer, as this idiot has redrawn it, should never be a narrow corrider. I don't even really care if there is a foyer or not, but unless the kitchen or great room were in a position to make a logical entrance, we may need one. Foyers can also make a logical transition space in which to branch utilitarian rooms off of, but they have to be done just right. i would most likely opt to keep it large and open, and making sure it could double both as entry and a sort of "library" area.

We decide that one really nice master bath is what we will do, with the second bathroom close by. An optimal design would place close enough to be convenient to the master, but still convenient to the rest of the house. Most of the time my husband and I don't really have issues with sharing the bathroom, but there are certain times when I'd like more privacy.

I saw pictures of glass french doors connecting the master bedroom and bathroom. It was situated where a beautiful bathtub and vanity were in view, along with the windows there, and the toilet and shower, linen closet out of direct view. How the indirect area was arranged, I don't know, but that shouldn't be too difficult to figure out. It evoked a feeling of being on vacation in a serene and luxurious setting.

If you were to look at a blank rectangle in front of you, the long side near you is the "front" of the house (east). The other long rectangle that is the "back" is west looking at our woods. This is where we want all the good stuff. The right hand side is north, which is where the driveway will lead to, and my kitchen quadrant. The left side is south, and where the master quadrant is. No point of our property has view of any other homes, and no aspect of it is unattractive. It's just that the backside has the mature oaks, so is a little prettier. At least until I get some other trees going.

I have no problem rotating directions of rooms. In other words, the master area can run sideways rather than up and down, IF it worked better with the whole layout that way.

I'm thinking where the original "study" was, give or take some rearranging, could be the entry, with laundry area or bathroom or whatever could flank off of. However, the entry could also be into the kitchen area somewhere. We are not formal people.

I would like to come up with a neat idea on how to have my large freezer and an extra refrigerator convenient to the kitchen, or even a part of it somehow. I don't want these items stored far from the kitchen ever again. Maybe I need a kitchen entrance where they sit, which then opens right into the kitchen.

I don't believe in garbage disposals either. I compost all my scraps. I have two Can 'O Worms vermicomposting bins in the barn. They keep my husband company in his office.

I am not going to short change myself on space within the needed areas. With this amount of square footage and no other bedrooms needed, it would be silly to make our bedroom and bathroom, kitchen etc. cramped from the get go. I would actually prefer a 16 by 15 bedroom, so that I could put an old fashioned makeup dressing table in there, and a nice blanket chest. Things that make a room. After living in this small mobile, with a 12 by 12 bedroom, and a king size bed in the middle, I never want to go back to that. If this wasn't temporary, I would be moving out. There is no reason for me to "settle" since we have a clean slate. Though a 32 foot depth on the gable ends is an economical foundation to build, if we need to go a little wider we will do it. Most likely, we can make a satisfactory layout based on the 32 ft depth.

I need lots of storage, but not because I got into the habit of hoarding, like many people do. I use everything I own. Some more often than others. My fabric collection is quite extensive, but that's my hobby. I could fill a large 8 by 8 closet with sewing supplies. I have lots of books, all used at various times. There are also various embroidery hoops to my machine, cutting mats, which all need careful storage. many things, like threads, interfacings, stabilizers, can be bought bulk to save money, so that's what I do when I see a good deal. So...I could easily fill space and gave up on trying to cram it in the house and not being satisfied.

I decided I was not going to communicate with this most recent designer again. I'm done. There is something wrong with this man. Maybe it is medical. Maybe it is self induced. I don't know and don't care at this point. I've written this off as a $500 loss. I told my husband if I am doing all the work I am certainly not giving this guy a floor plan that he will sell to someone else and profit from. Thank goodness my husband has the Chief Architect software. It appears very tedious and "I" would never be able to figure it out, (also known as no desire to figure it out) but am sure happy he has the knowledge and enjoys computers the way he does.

So anyway, I think it best for me not to look at the screwed up plan at all any more. It makes planning a good design impossible.

Well, have to run. Have my doctor appointment.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 12:41PM
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Sandy - did you want your laundry with door to outside to hang clothes on the front of the house?

rhome on kitchen forum has her fridge/freezer on one side of a short hall going from her kitchen to her laundry or garage (i don't know which). I don't know what's on the other side of the hallway either. Maybe the pantry?

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 4:09PM
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Hi Sandy,
I hope you don't mind if a lurker contributes a thought to your house. I've been following your posts with great interest. You mentioned wanting a garden tub. If you haven't had one before, I'd suggest you go shopping right now, find what you'd like, and then kneel down to find out how it feels to clean it. I've had 2 garden tubs (in the houses when we bought them); I hate the things! Every week I amost fall into the tub as I'm leaning across it to clean the other side. How will I manage when I'm 80?
Best of luck,

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 5:33PM
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good point Pat! i have thought of that. I might have one and don't really want one. I haven't seen the mstr bath yet - well, just a tiny bit of it. I have a regular tub in the main bath and don't need 2 anyway.

now a foot 'tub' I'd take. the kind at the nail salon for a pedi. those are super duper!

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 6:15PM
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Oh Pat, you made me chuckle! Yes, I had a beautiful garden tub in my last house, and I did enjoy soaking in it..... when I used it. I used it maybe a total of 6 times in 12 years. I have assumed that the reason I didn't use it was because I didn't like the bathroom very much. It had top quality everything in it, very pretty stuff, but no window. Rooms with no windows make me feel like I'm in a cave. A dark one. And it didn't matter that I had a beautiful 7 fixture light in there either. There wasn't a window!

It IS a pain to have to clean something that is not used, and my husband points out that I probably won't use one much. He said window in the bathroom or not, if I had wanted to soak, I would have used it anyway....

However, I love luxurious showers, and perhaps that's where the space and the money should go.

Do they make home pedicure tubs?! Now THAT would be something else!

We had a lovely built in pool with hot tub with our last home. I don't think we can afford a pool like that again, and not sure I'd want it to worry about anyway. But.... a nice hot tub would be wonderful for aching bones, and would be do-able at some point.

Now, the laundry room. Yes, I did want a door to the outside because I hang my wash out when the weather is nice. It was requested umpteen times in the plans, but it falls on deaf house designer guy's ears. I sent him a rather scortching e-mail today, but professionally worded. No reply. I am so sick and tired of people that are great until you write them a check. The plans he sent after the above one went from bad to horrendous. The rooms are switched around from where we explicitely said we wanted them, among other things. I just don't get it. You give someone detailed things wanted in a home, and they disregard them. I wish it wasn't too late to stop payment on the check.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 6:27PM
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if your laundry is up by the mstr bath that is up by the entrance area then the door would be going out the front...

tho, if your laundry was in the far upper right corner and the bath was 'around' it then the laundry room door could go out the side... and you'd still be able to have a window in each of them.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 8:09PM
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Sandy, what parts of the above plan do you like and want to keep? I'm having a sick day and have been sitting around looking at fil's plan books.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2010 at 3:05PM
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"Do they make home pedicure tubs?! Now THAT would be something else!"

i looked online and they're several thousand $'s! too much for me. I do have a little plastic foot tub that plugs in and vibrates. I'll have to stick to that!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2010 at 8:25PM
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Sounds like the pedicure tub is out of my reach. Oh well.

Marti, sorry I didn't see your question. I'm dealing with a nasty dental issue and am scheduled for oral surgery in a few weeks. So...I'll be in and out somewhat. I do check my e-mails though if anyone wants to get a hold of me. Now back to the plan. There really isn't much of that plan that I like. The orientation of the rooms isn't even correct.'s an open plan, which is what we want.

This man essentially ripped us off. He never even responded to my e-mail that he didn't follow ANY of our very detailed guidelines, and that he hadn't put the rooms in their proper orientation within the floor plan. I can't believe that two log home dealers use this guy! I'm very ticked off, but need to get over it. It's done, we've been taken to the cleaners, and there isn't any recourse at this point, so staying angry will only make me ill.

I'm just going to throw a few things on the floor plan to get us going with the permit process. In the meantime, the floor plan can keep being tweaked as we build. That's the beauty of building your home yourself.

So....any ideas, sketches, etc. will be welcome! Including things that haven't worked out for you all, or that you later changed, (or wish you could have).


    Bookmark   September 1, 2010 at 10:22PM
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Oh Sandy, dental surgery is the pits for me. I feel for you. I hope you're not in too much pain.

I've been playing with your plan, and it may not be what you want at all. I was just trying to put the things you want on the base he drew since foundation structure is a big part of the cost of drawing plans. If you put a loft on, the roof would have to be redone though.

Have you thought about stretching the kitchen and pulling it forward and putting the laundry room and bathroom behind it? You could have a formal entry AND access to the side yard to hang laundry and garden, plus you shower handy. Oh I forgot to put the freezer back in the pantry too.

I also don't see why you couldn't put a loft over the kitchen area. It could overlook the living and dining room. I'm not an architect, but I just tweaked your plan a little to see what it would look like. I also redid your bathroom to see if a walk-in shower could be added and a garden tub. You could either put a tub in there or the linen closet.

I also didn't see where the architect put your water heater and hvac, and his numbers didn't quite add up right so I added the biggest numbers across.

It's crude and I don't have your real measurements of anything.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2010 at 2:08PM
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