Our clients wanted a design that would not show a garage, especially a three car garage, on the front of the house. Greg Mix was the architect on one of their previous homes ten years previously, so they chose to work with him on the project.
Like many homeowners wishing to design a new home, they began by looking at stock plans. They found a stock plan on Steve Fuller’s webpage that seemed to fit the bill, but they recognized that there were a great many modifications they wanted to make to the design. We advised them they would need to purchase a license to design a derivative work from his firm, since the original layout was copyrighted by him, and even though the changes were to be substantial, it would still be a "derivative work".
Major changes were made to accommodate a larger laundry room, a laundry chute, a walk-in-pantry, back entry porch off of the garage area, back foyer, back powder room, broom closet, an elevator, and in particular a small private office/planning area for Mrs. Reynolds that looked out over the turn around area in front of the garage. They also wanted a back porch and outdoor living area in the backyard.
The kitchen counter tops are made from Cara marble, the country kitchen sink is cut from the same material and the top of the center island is solid cherry. The cabinets are finished in a simple off-white to fit in with the country kitchen look. The floors are recycled heart-pine which has a beautiful deep color and wood grain.
The furniture in the home is a Country French Simple style while the large mantels at the fireplaces are authentic Early American pieces.
We started our design approach by relocating the stairs to a more central area of the house directly off of the Foyer. This also helped to resolve several problems upstairs where they needed baths, bedroom entries and walk-in-closets where the stair had been located in the original design. In order to get three bedrooms, each with its own private bath and walk-in-closet, plus a bonus room in a structure that was to look more like a story-and-half house, we needed to make the best use every square foot of the second floor. Extra light and floor space were gained in the upstairs rooms by strategically placing large dormers. Another good idea that the builder came up with is a permanent built-in attic stair.
The front of the house is in the New England style or an as the architect calls it, "Old Buckhead Cottage" style, with a weathered granite and cedar shake exterior. To look at it from the street you would never know that it was over forty-seven hundred square feet of floor area! The roof forms are, on the whole, kept below two stories to give it more of story-and-a-half appearance. The blue stone on the front porch and two bay windows also add more of a country charm to the look of the house. In fact, for consistency, the weathered granite and blue stone flooring was used all around the house for the porches, chimneys, walls, the outdoor fireplace, patio walls and as the stone base of all of the exterior walls.
Mr. Reynolds also wanted a private hallway from his study to the Master Bedroom that would also have access to the Master Bath. This resulted in a route that actually gave the Master Bath more privacy. The Builder, Chuck Magbee, installed a beautiful glass shower where glass comes right down to the flush tile floor. There is no raised curb at the shower. Mrs. Reynolds also had him install a “Marlborough” slipper tub manufactured by Victoria and Albert. And it is a romantic curvaceous slipper tub for two!
We knew that getting daylight into the Great Room would be a challenge with the roof of the Back Porch blocking the sun. Therefore the Great Room was vaulted with a large dormer to allow sunlight to flood the space. French doors were placed to allow access to the Back Porch, and skylights were placed in the roof of the porch. An outdoor stone fireplace was added in one corner of the back porch. During construction, the owners decided to eliminate the screens, open the porch, and extend the blue stone flooring onto a large outdoor patio space. The patio is curved along the back edge with a low stone wall and then a planting bed with a walkway made from chips of blue slate.