There are very few things that are closer to our hearts than the houses we live in. And there are even fewer things that we take a greater interest in than the homes that we personally own. The actual size of the house doesn’t matter really. It’s our personal little castle.
It is really hard for us to create a house that mirrors or reflects the personality and traits of its owner where it’s consistent to all of its parts, and faithful to its chosen style or character and also containing over all the elements of a good design. It’s no wonder that in these fast paced days, when our time is filled with so many interests, we sometimes feel like strangers in our own homes.
In a larger home we’re more likely to draw our design inspiration from widely separate fields, and we place in them the accumulated art forms of the distant past to finally build a great home rich in history and culture. Also, a spirit of pride and emulation usually designed into the construction of a larger home.
Too often though, this notion to build the super ornate house demonstrates itself like the construction of some fort that separates us from our ideals and the things that we actually wanted to accomplish. Our motives were to build something beautiful and ornate, but we wind up creating something large and gaudy. If the designer isn’t careful in their blending of treatments and trims, we wind up designing something that’s not really a reflection of the client, but something that’s from someone else’s past ideas and not really what they had in mind at all.
The same can be said about the ideas that influence us in designing a smaller home. Fortunately, it’s not true to the same extent. First, more often than not, the client lacks the money for the super elaborate. The materials we build the home from need to be found close at hand, and for economy’s sake, they need to be inexpensive.
In American homes, especially the smaller ones, we’ve learned to be inventive in order to make the home more personal in nature. Fifty five percent of the homes built in the United States follow the simple Ranch or Rancher design that has a very straightforward layout and can be built with economy in mind. The Rancher can also be adaptive in that it doesn’t have to follow conventional rules. For instance, a room or two can be added outside of the rectangle that’s the basic design of the building, and then treatments like ornate columns, shutters, gable vents, modified roofs, etc., can be added to make the house more individual.
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