Archive for November, 2010

Nov 24 2010

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10 Characteristics of Traditional House Plans

020H-0019 Traditional House PlanTraditional house plans are found throughout the United States and Canada topping the list as the most commonly built style of home. They appeal to all ages and lifestyles from singles and new families starting out to growing families, retirees and empty nesters. Traditional home plans are designed to satisfy the needs and preferences of the typical American lifestyle. Below are 10 characteristics of these popular designs:

 

1.    They are sometimes referred to as American house plans or American style floor plans.

2.    Traditional house plans are available as Ranch house plans and Two-Story homes.

3.    The exterior and floor plan of these designs incorporate a unique mix of architectural styles and features from styles throughout history.

4.    Simple rooflines, covered entries and at least one front facing gable are characteristic of most traditional style houses.

5.    There are no specific guidelines regarding the size and shape of these houses. They can range from a simple starter home to an expansive luxurious residence filled with state-of-the-art amenities.

6.    The exteriors of traditional house plans are warm and inviting while the interiors offer practical features and layouts suiting the needs of a broad range of homebuyers and builders.

7.    Traditional floor plans blend familiar features with modern and up-to-date elements while satisfying the requirements of everyday living.

8.    Functionality is key. Open floor plans with the kitchen overlooking the family room or great room creates a functional and central gathering area. A meal prep island and walk-in pantry are practical kitchen features than lend functionality and efficiency.

9.    American homes plans often include convenient elements such as a home office for the work-at-home-parent or built-in cabinets in the family room.

10.  Traditional floor plans are available with a variety of foundations including basement, walkout basement, crawl space and slab foundations.

 

No matter what size or what features a traditional home design includes, one thing is certain, they deliver comfortable and functional living for today’s busy lifestyles.

 

Browse The House Plan Shop’s collection of Traditional house plans.

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Nov 18 2010

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The House Plan Shop: Christmas Crafts – Make your own Christmas Ornaments

It is that time of year when we create gift lists and shop for the perfect gift for a special loved one or friend. Sometimes, the best gifts can’t be bought online or at the store. Sometimes the best gifts are homemade – created with our own hands, talents and ambition. Homemade Christmas ornaments are the perfect way to remember someone special this holiday season whether it is a co-worker, an old classmate, grandchild, cousin or friend. Kay’s Country Cottage recently posted a blog on how to make homemade holiday ornaments including salt dough ornaments and glass ball ornaments. Simple and fun, these easy crafts create memorable holiday gifts and add a little personal charm to your loved one’s holiday decor.

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Nov 17 2010

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6 Things to Know about Baby Boomer House Plans

053G-0024 House PlanThe people of our society born between 1946 and 1964 are known as Baby Boomers. There are 75-80 million Booomers out there, and they make up more than a quarter of the population in the US. Furthermore, they represent nearly half of our current workforce. Many in this collective group of people are newly retired, about to retire, or looking forward to retirement not too far down the road. This amazing group of people has had quite an influence on society – the way it has grown and changed. Likewise, they have played an influential role in home design. Baby Boomers have their own ideas about the homes they wish to live in after retirement. Below are six floor plan elements commonly requested by Boomers.

 

1.    One-story floor plans with no steps at the entry allowing occupants to move around efficiently and safely within the home.

2.    Safety features like no-slip flooring, walk-in showers and specially designed thresholds eliminating slips, trips and falls.

3.    Flexible rooms than can serve a specific purpose and easily convert to another purpose as the occupant’s lifestyle changes and evolves.

4.    Open living areas that can be arranged differently to accommodate various situations, gatherings and events.

5.    Indoor and outdoor entertainment spaces that can satisfy both formal and casual gatherings such as playing games and barbecuing with the grandkids or hosting and elegant, holiday dinner party.

6.    A guest room with private bath that can accommodate an elderly family member in the occupant’s care or a place for the kids and grandkids to sleep when they visit for the weekend.

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Nov 10 2010

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This Week: Featured Cape Cod House Plan – The House Plan Shop

026H-0060 Cape Cod House PlanTrue to its New England roots, this Cape Cod house plan displays an array of exterior features that have graced America’s landscape for hundreds of years. A siding façade and shuttered windows give this home a simplistic look, characteristic of the style. The steeply sloped roof with side-end gables and charming dormers replicate the homes of long ago, designed to withstand the stormy weather of the New England seaboard. But don’t be fooled, Cape Cod home plans like this one are now commonly found throughout out the United States and Canada from coastal areas to the Great Plains.

 

Now take a look inside. The side-lighted entry welcomes all where the foyer greets guests. The formal living and dining rooms are positioned at the front of the home offering the ideal arrangement for entertaining and hosting special dinner parties. A fire place anchors the living room and a notable chimney highlights the exterior. The casual gathering areas are positioned at the back of the home. The open floor plan encourages conversation and relaxation while delivering efficient family living. Take a look at the gas fireplace and the rear porch with sliding door access from the family room. Notice the strategic positioning of the kitchen serving both the dining room and nook with ease. The 2-car, side-entry garage holds the laundry facilities. A private bath enhances the first floor master bedroom. Upstairs, two family bedrooms boast double closets and enjoy the views from the dormer windows.

 

A timeless classic, this Cape Cod house plan is sure to please you and your family. To view more house plans in the New England style, please visit The House Plan Shop.

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Nov 03 2010

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The Splendor of European House Plans

002H-0080 European House PlanEuropean house plans are exemplary reminders of the splendid style and history that our ancestors brought with them from the Old World. Today, they continue to display touches of elegance and refined style reminiscent of the past. Showcasing a variety of European influences, these Old World home designs encompass a broad range of architectural styles including English, Italian, Tudor, Spanish, French and Mediterranean. Ranging in size from cozy chalet home plans to majestic chateau floor plans, most European house plans have a few common characteristics.

 

  • Though some European home plans are small, most are grand in size making them a perfect fit for large lots.
  • Swooping rooflines with flared corners at the eaves are often one of the most recognizable characteristics of these designs.
  • The exterior of these houses commonly features a façade of two or more materials such as stone, brick, stucco or siding.
  • European house plans are often recognized for the exquisite ornamental detailing highlighting the façade such as copper roofs topping bayed windows, stylish quoins accenting corners, decorative keystones, turrets and towers.
  • Varied rooflines frequently portray the look and feel of a storybook castle.
  • Many of these houses have steep rooflines which provide space “in the roof” for a second story living area that cannot easily be noticed or seen from the exterior.
  • European house plans with an upper level may offer a full second story or just a bonus room.
  • The floor plans of these homes are often as grand and luxurious inside as their exteriors appear.
  • European floor plans frequently incorporate rooms of large proportions, spacious gathering areas and volume ceilings.
  • Other interior design elements include rich detailing, decorative trim and fanciful ceiling treatments.
  • Due to numerous design styles and varying exterior looks, these homes are found throughout the United States and Canada.
  • Small European home plans offer the same notable design elements as the more generously sized luxury homes.

 

Large or small, one-story or two, European designs deliver a striking combination of comfort and refinement making them popular among a wide range of home buyers. Visit The House Plan Shop to view a grand collection of European floor plans, many with photos.

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