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Still not getting the message

Posted by flgargoyle (My Page) on
Sat, Oct 4, 08 at 17:22

At one time, we were going to build part of our next house with timber framing, so of course I subscribed to a magazine. This month, two of the featured homes are over 6000 sq ft! I'd hate to see what they were pushing before downsizing became fashionable. I also get cottage magazines, and many 'cottages' are huge as well. I'd like to see a magazine featuring houses that mere mortals can afford, yet have a sense of style instead of the cookie-cutter 'burbs'. There is a small boat magazine- maybe someone needs to start a small home magazine. I guess that's what I miss about the old days- even very modest homes had style, and the average home was much smaller than today. Sigh....


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Still not getting the message

HG has a small house mag published a couple of times a year. But I'm off of mags due to the costs and so many ads. Can buy a book for what they are asking.

I'm a library person, have loved them from childhood. What has amazed me is the number of books which are selected for lost interest, never to be seen again. Most of the ones are decorator books, architechture, etc. I was thrilled one day to find a library which still had old Sears catalogs and Mechanics Illustrated. We have lost a lot of history with these books being put to rest.

Whether reality of small comes to be in the publishing end will be interesting. Have you considered looking at Europeon mags? One of my art publications was from England and not much more expensive than subscribing here. There could be options with their average home smaller.

Here is a link that might be useful: Inspirational Ideas for real rooms

RE: Still not getting the message

Jay, so true! I get so annoyed. Just picked up the latest kitchen mag from BHG, which screamed on the cover that it was all about small kitchens, only to find that their idea of a 'small' kitchen is apparently 18 x 18, with a mudroom, dining room, family room all opening off it.

And how does it happen that all the home remodels in magazines always feature houses with a useless bedroom or extra closet from which it's a cinch to steal floorspace ? :)

RE: Still not getting the message

Many many times I have thought about trying to start a print magazine or even an online magazine devoted entirely to truely small homes. There's only three problems, 1)I don't have a clue how to do either, 2)Magazines rival restaurants in first year failure and 3)my addiction to a regular, predictable income!

I like the online magazine idea best as it reflects our (small home dweller's) ideal of less paper and clutter. Plus, it would make storing the photos and articles we like much easier. Ever try scanning in a great looking photo from a magazine that is spread over two pages? Somehow that center crease just never comes out looking right.

When you think about the typical process of how we transition from late teen's into early adulthood, you have to wonder where we make the leap from adaequate to excessive. Follow me. As teenagers we often create "our own space" inside the confines of a single bedroom. We head off to college and get by just fine with a shared shoebox dorm, shared home where we agian create our own space inside a single bedroom or occupy a small apartment. At some point after graduation, we suddenly feel compelled to acquire larger-than-needed dwellings that need to be filled up with stuff we typically buy with money we haven't earned yet. Why is it that we can't hold onto the concept of "enough"? More people would probably embrace this concept if they could see it presented as a mainstream alternative.

Keeping up with the Jones's has bankrupted our economy but I don't see that message being delivered to the people. What I see happening is merely an attempt by the government to get things "back to normal" which will result in the general public continuing down the same path of over-consumption.

I would love to see a smaller, more sustainable lifestyle championed in print and electronic media. Unfortunatley, with the number of large homes already out there, and with those homes being capable of lasting a couple of hundred years, it will be nearly impossible to reverse that trend. Small homes and small home dwellers are destined to remian a niche.


RE: Still not getting the message

>Unfortunatley, with the number of large homes already out there, and with those homes being capable of lasting a couple of hundred years, it will be nearly impossible to reverse that trend. Small homes and small home dwellers are destined to remian a niche.

I'm not so sure, columbiasc. I was reading the text of an address a real estate analyst recently made to realtors in FL, and the gist of his remarks was that the mcmansion is over. Period. That younger people, who today begin life with mind boggling school debt and no prospect of the kind of rising inome which will allow changing up their homes every couple of years, are creating a culture which places no premium on a big house--regardless of income, the younger people he sees would rather have a really glammed up two-bedroom with all the latest electronic toys than a big house.

Encouraging news, if true (unless you invested in a mcmansion with plans to finance your retirement by selling it).

RE: Still not getting the message

Writersblock: And how does it happen that all the home remodels in magazines always feature houses with a useless bedroom or extra closet from which it's a cinch to steal floorspace?

I've wondered the same thing. Or they say they simply "bumped" out the kitchen two feet. Whenever I say that to dh he rolls his eyes and says there is no such thing as a simple bump out when there is new foundation & new roofline to consider which is just not worth it for a measley 2 more feet. Those folks must have enormous overhangs on their roof plus a patio that is already the same level as their foundation to make it a simple bump out.

RE: Still not getting the message

Writer's block - I think I need to clarify my comment about about the existing, larger homes. Those homes are already there. No one is going to tear them down to re-divide the lots and build smaller. At least not in our lifetime.


RE: Still not getting the message

EEEKKKK Having internet troubles here but since I got this far in a thread I am going to try to post.

Jay I am with you in not seeing anything small in a 6000SQ FT house.

Emagineer I stopped magazines several years ago. Once in awhile I will buy one and be sure to pass it on to the library or friend when I am done reading it. Usually it is on a trip for motel reading.

Writersblock. we have a 12 by 10'8" kitchen with four foot corner pantry taking up some of that space and since it is open to the dinning room and living room it does feel huge to me. The dinning room is 11 by 12. We use it more as family room because it has a couch. Couch is used as seating when I do put up the table.

We customized this manufactured home having the "guest bedroom" built with no closet for just the reason stated. Waste of good floor space. I am just now creating this room to be my guest/sewing /quiet reading room when wanted and exercise room. I certainly would not consider having a whole room devoted to guests that hardly ever come. So it is a ME room and a guest is welcome to use it. I also had my art studio room closet built with no door and curtains on top where wall would have been. I was able to build shelves on each end and lots of the wire shelves on the closet shelf all easily accessible. Then in center of closet I set furniture. See links. Not fine tuned yet. I am getting there.

Scott I heard on the news in Boise people are turning back towards the smaller more affordable houses.

Marti8a When we bought this house we added the optional porch. 8 by 26 foot. It is already on a foundation and under same house roof. This would be an easy remodel to close this area in and this would make the house HUGE to us. So far we have no intention to enclose it any more than to maybe put up side windows to block the weather a little. Than again maybe not. We have enjoyed sitting out there for lunches or just a nice cool down while working in the yard.
If we did enclose this porch to make it as a room I do not think it would be done to extend the living room or kitchen but to be it's own room for sale of my art.Like a little store front. Maybe some day.

I think the idea of a really glammed up small house is a great idea.


Here is a link that might be useful: Custom Closet

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