Last week I posted about one of my friends reached out to see if I would design a home for her and her family. Of course, I told her I would be interested in doing the job.
We messaged back and forth and she said she had some ideas and thoughts that she wanted, she just needed it to actually be drawn out. So from the start, I figured it would be pretty easy since she knew what she wanted, and I’m not going to have to use my imagination too much; especially since I’m kind of rusty from not having done this for a while---like 10 years.
So she started sending me ideas for room sizes and the locations she wanted them in relation to the other rooms. For example, she wanted a foyer that leads down a wide hall, on the left there will be a game room and half bath, and then on the right there would be a library and a kitchen. She also said she wanted a pool room at the end of that hall, and for the main house to be two stories tall, with a basement. And yes, I said the main house. Along with that, she wanted two mini-houses and a theater connected to the main house through a branched off hall.
So I started going through and sketching out some ideas, and as you can see below, these are some initial sketches of stuff that I threw together.
I originally tried two different ideas for the main floor of the main house. One with a game room running long ways; another one running vertically, which pushed this foyer over and made the stairs going up to second floor different, and ultimately we decided to go with the one going horizontally with the foyer more in the center.
I also started to design an overview of the entire property, so that I would kind of know where all the branched off buildings were located in relation to the other buildings.
So I started sketching that up, and you can see the overview plan originally, but she wanted to make some changes, like the routes going from the main house to the mini-houses she wanted it to be going from the pool house to the theater then to the mini-houses.
But after I got those pretty well down and the way that she wanted them, I started working on the design of the mini-houses. She wanted them just to have a bedroom, bathroom, and a kitchen for a single person to live in. In one of them, she also wanted a gym. So I figured I would go ahead and try to tackle that one first, because I was wanting them to kind of be close to each other in design. So I figured I’d draw the one up with the gym and then the other one I would just remove it. Of course, I knew I would have to make a few minor changes, but it would still have the basic look as the one with the gym.
So I sketched up a couple of different options that you can see above this for the first mini-house. After I had gotten those designed, we had a video chat where we discussed what exactly she wanted and which options of the main floor we were going to use, and which one of the mini-houses was going to be used as the base model.
After our chat, I went in and started actually proportioning everything and sizing everything to scale, and then started to think about the second floor and what rooms were going to go where. And since we had the main floor of the main house pretty well decided upon, I knew the space and limitations I was going to have with working on the second floor. Once I started trying to work the rooms in, that’s when the issues started to arise with structural integrity and room sizes.