Archive for June, 2007

Maximizing a Craftsman House Plan: First Floor

Jun 27, 2007 |  by  |  House Plans  |  Share

firstfloor Maximizing a Craftsman House Plan: First FloorHere’s the standard floor plan that comes with the Larkspur, a Craftsman house I mentioned in an earlier post. Again, this home was designed by The Bungalow Company and since this is a “new” design that’s still a work in progress, there are no room dimensions, though the overall dimensions of the home are about 1700sq. ft. We think the layout is near perfect for our needs, though there are a few adjustments that we’d need to make before committing to this house:
1. Expand the kitchen in length and width to accommodate more cabinetry.
2. Remove the walls in the kitchen that surround the sink in the half bath. This will create additional space for kitchen storage.
3. Change the breakfast nook so it has three sides and is box-shaped rather than two sides coming to a point.
4. Make the space off of the living room, a dining room, which may necessitate the need to enlarge it slightly.
5. Expand the living room out a few feet.
6. Close off the door from the laundry room leading to the shared half bath; remove sink that’s positioned to the right of the toilet, which will allow some additional space to be gained in the kitchen; Remove walls dividing the toilet from what now becomes the large, private master bathroom; Insert a pocket door in entrance to master bath from master bedroom; Rearrange entire master bath to allow for a clawfoot tub, shower, two sinks and a toilet. This may require expanding the west wall slightly.
7. Add a small mudroom onto the back entrance of the house.
8. Add stairs somewhere that lead downstairs to the basement (leave it up to architect).
9. Add half-bath somewhere (leave that up to the architect).
Later, I’ll share some edits I made to the actual floor plan drawing that incorporates most of these changes. But wait! There’s more! I’ll also share the 2nd floor of the houseplan in my next entry. This floor contains two bedrooms and a bathroom which will be for the kids. I can’t even describe to you how great it would be to be able to put these ideas into action.
Over the next year or two I’ll be doing everything possible to make this dream of ours come true. I know that sounds ridiculously cliche’ and I’m smirking at myself right now for saying it, but that really is how I feel. Stick with me on this dream home journey of mine and I’ll fill you in on all the highs and lows of this process.
Man, this is gonna be fun…

Adding Craftsman Flair to an Old Shed

Jun 26, 2007 |  by  |  Craftsman Archives  |  Share

About a week ago we finally had our house painted. It was a long time coming, believe
me. We’d been putting it off for the past three years while we continued renovating the inside of the house and it was tough doing so because when the outside looks shabby it’s hard to feel good about where you live. After all, it’s what people see as they walk and drive by. I think for many, the “dirty ol’ white house on the corner” had reached a point where it wasn’t even being noticed. It’s not that it was completely trashy, but it was dingy enough for folks to just start looking right through it, as if it simply weren’t there.And with the house finished being painted people we’d never met suddenly were stopping by to comment on how nice the place looked and how much of an improvement we’d made. Clearly money well spent and without a doubt it raised the value of our home significantly.shed Adding Craftsman Flair to an Old Sheddsc06040 Adding Craftsman Flair to an Old Shed
However, in the back (unfenced) yard stood a raggedy shed painted with our old house colors. Our house being on a corner lot meant the shed was visible for all to see and now it truly stood out sitting next to a freshly painted house. I had to do something. It had rotten wood among many of the trim pieces including the front doors, missing hinges, and old, flaking paint everywhere. The roof resembled a hobbit’s house, complete with moss and other forest growth. I wasn’t going to replace all the rotten wood – some of the plywood walls were a bit crumbly at the bottom, but I decided to just leave them as is. I would have had to do a complete tear-off if I wanted to replace all the rotted wood and that wasn’t going to happen. The idea was to simply make it look good for at least the next couple years, just enough time to sell our house and move into our dream Craftsman.

The first phase of my shed renovation took place this past Sunday. As you can see I replaced all of the vertical trim pieces on the left side and also replaced all the corner trim details with dark walnut stained cedar. Yesterday I powerwashed the entire shed and after I replace a few more trim pieces on the front, I’ll be ready to paint all but the front doors. This weekend I’ll swap out all the dark blue pieces of wood for walnut stained cedar, install new hinges, handles and lock latch. I’ll be pushing to finish the doors in a day, but with a two-year old vying for my attention, it may take longer. I truly think it’s going to fit perfectly with the home when its complete and for once I won’t have to put a bag over my head when I pull the lawn mower out of the shed.Oh the joy of renovations. Do you think I’ll get the same kind complements after finishing the shed? Everybody loves a nice looking shed, right? Right? Anyone?

How to Install Your Own Craftsman Trim

Jun 25, 2007 |  by  |  On the Web, Web Smarts  |  Share

casingdiy 2 How to Install Your Own Craftsman Trimdoortrim How to Install Your Own Craftsman TrimReader’s Digest has this section within their website called RDLiving that actually has some pretty good home and garden articles. After digging around a bit I found this great article that shows step-by-step, how to install simple, yet intricate Craftsman style trim. From door and window casings, to base boards and even a plate rail. This is stuff that anyone with even the most basic craftsman skills could do. It’s just a matter of piecing everything together. In some cases you’ll need to feel comfortable using the miter saw, and of course ya gotta be handy with a tape measure (which believe me, isn’t always as easy as it sounds), but for the look you get, that’s really pretty easy. Not sure if I’d use oak even though that’ll provide the most classic look. If I were to use oak I’d probably go with a dark walnut stain. My wife and I both love the richness of a dark stained wood. Especially when you contrast it with a lighter shade of wall paint. I have some excellent examples of this in our current Dutch colonial, which I’ll share with you in future posts.
I need to do a bit more research, but I really like some of these trim designs and may end up using some of them in the craftsman home we’re planning to build.

The New, Vintage Stove Is a Thing of Beauty

Jun 23, 2007 |  by  |  Hot Finds, On the Web  |  Share

I love the vintage look, I really do and there’s a company called Heartland Appliances that offers beautiful cast iron stoves that are things of beauty. Each stove offers an oven, warming drawer, utensil drawer, and a pan storage compartment. Read More