I have a blog friend who is in the planning stages for building a house, and has already started to think about the process and scout out items for his future house. We have been comparing notes as I go through my own house build.
One thing we have both observed: we notice very different things when it comes to houses, architecture, and decor. My friend commented that his approach to building a house will be quite different than my approach has been; he has a firm grasp on many of the detailed items he would like in his future home, but is still not sure about the big picture – the architectural style or floorplan he might want. For me, before even looking for a lot, I had a pretty clear idea of the general style of house I wanted, the high level floorplan, the overall feel I wanted in the interiors, the landscape, and the design. However, I really did not think much about the details that would go into the house.
Now that I am in the middle of the house build, I have been plunged into the world of details, and am having to make decision after decision – which is causing me to notice the details much more (and I wonder if I will ever see houses in the same way now that I am aware of all of the thought that goes into selecting each element of a house). This is where my blog friend and his wonderful images in his inspiration files have been extremely valuable to me. In almost every situation, whenever I have to make a decision on some element, I look at my friend’s picture files and there are dozens of pictures that focus on the specific design element I am researching.
For example, my friend notices the door and cabinet hardware, the hinges, the way in which a tile is set in a floor, the way in which the downspout is designed (the above picture is one he took at a house that was on the market in Atlanta).
Another picture my friend took, of an interesting detail in a driveway. I rarely notice this kind of thing.
A shutter detail my friend noticed, on a house under construction.
A beautiful motor court entry.
The detail at the edge of a driveway.
Door handles by La Forge.
Tile details in the arched entrance of a shower.
Interesting design in the shower – the lighting in the walls is a nice detail.
Great shower design – I rarely notice tile.
A beautiful fireplace – now I always notice fireplaces, but before I never did.
An interesting doorknob – I really never notice doorknobs.
So many great details in this space – the floor, the cabinetry, the countertops, the lighting.
Hinges. I don’t think I have ever noticed a hinge.
More door hardware.
Knobs (I love these – anyone recognize them?). But, I rarely notice them.
Looking through these pictures, it made me think about what I notice. I notice the ‘space’ of a house, the floorplan, how the rooms relate to one another. I notice the light patterns and the windows. I notice lighting and the general decor, the feel of a space. For some reason, I notice the floors. Perhaps this is why I enjoy perusing the real estate listings – I love it when a listing shows the overall scheme and how the rooms in the house relate to one another.
Before the house design process, I didn’t tend to notice door hardware, cabinet hardware, tile patterns, detail landscape elements, roof materials, detail architectural design elements such as moldings and trim. Before a few weeks ago, I didn’t notice countertop material – that has changed! I am not really a big fabric person, so I don’t really notice fabrics unless they are disruptive to the design scheme; despite this, I always notice window treatment styles.
Comparing and contrasting my approach to my friend’s approach makes me realize that each and every person really has their own perspective on design and their environment. So, readers, what do you notice? Do you walk into a room and always see certain elements? Do you notice the details? Are there particular details that you notice when you first see a space?
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