emma_lou2

Scale of living and dining

Em
yesterday
last modified: yesterday

I don't have exact dimensions, just general sq footage yet, but this is a layout our Architect (yes, big A Architect) sent me. I don't want to share the whole plan for sake of privacy/not sharing intellectual property, but this is really kind of alarming to me that this was sent and the way she presented it to me was as if she thought this was ready to go/completed so she could move on to the exterior. Is it just me or is the scale waaaaay off? It looks like the living room must be 18x14.3 which seems like a disaster. This is the only living room in the house (so, the "great room" by today's terms). We've been considering if we need to find a different architect but my builder keeps convincing me not to.


Comments (33)

  • PRO
    Patricia Colwell Consulting
    yesterday

    I have no idea without actual measurements . IMO a DR needs to fit your table with min 36" all the way around it and if you want a buffet that needs to fit too.and honestly I do not believe any architect would give you this to decide room size .Maybe check their actual credentials . BTW a great room usually includes the DR and how big do you need the LR to be that is what you need to convey to your "architect". Is the architect ? a friend of the builder ? I think you need to post the whole floor plan with measurements if you truly want to get some help.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday
    last modified: yesterday

    @Patricia Colwell Consulting in house srchitect for my builder - masters degree and licensed architect. 18x14 for a main living room though? I do know that for sure because i just noticed she had the 18’ wall dimension specified. seems disastrous no matter what

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  • PRO
    Debbi Washburn
    yesterday

    Is that living room dimension up to those 2 walls that create a hallway on either side? If so , that adds some space to the living room.

    I also agree that the dining room seems snug , but its had to tell .

    The kitchen seems pretty closed off from this area. Is that what you asked for?

    I would suggest getting some graph paper, drawing out these rooms to scale and then cut out colored paper to represent your, table and chairs and other furniture to "see" if it will all fit.

  • Naf_Naf
    yesterday

    Yes, it is roughly 18x14. That does not include the circulation area below. It is almost fully open to that corridor, so add about 4' to the 14' = 18x18

    Dining is roughly 15'x11'.

    The sofas she shows are only 6' long.


  • jkent9024
    yesterday

    When we worked with our architect, we provided him with a list of must haves and wants, (including approximate room dimensions in some cases), for him to use as a starting point. For instance, we told him that we DIDN'T want a sitting room as part of our primary bedroom, so it only needed to be large enough for a king bed and a couple of nightstands. On the other hand, we have a large family, so our great room needed to be large enough for 2 sofas and 4 club chairs. We have an antique pool table, so we gave him exact minimum dimensions needed for our billiard room.

    We didn't get everything on our want list, and it took a few back and forths before we arrived at our final floor plan, but giving our architect some direction made the process easier. How big do you want your great room? Have you told your architect that? Good communication is key to getting what you want and need.

  • Lindsey_CA
    yesterday

    From the little we can tell from the image you posted, it appears that it will be a royal pain in the patoot to carry food to the dining room from wherever the kitchen is located (presumably to the left of the living room).

  • houssaon
    yesterday

    The first thing thing that hits me are the two wall jutting out in the living room. One of them is an obstruction to the flow of the entry. They seem to be unnecessary.

    She drew a rather large entry, but provided no coat closet.

    If you don't have confidence in her, get someone new.

  • Dragon
    yesterday


    A two room screen shot is usually lacking any meaningful information. Also, why did you post this at all? In your other current thread you ask:


    "Original poster here - we may have to seitch architects. Recommendations im or around the middle region of South Carolina?"


    If you're switching architects (and hopefully you where serious so folks aren't wasting time answering) doesn't that make your question here pointless? Unless of course you're just trying to keep your threads at the top of the que.

  • tangerinedoor
    yesterday
    last modified: yesterday

    @Em

    I can't figure out what the problem is with an 18ft LR measurement and why it should be so egregious the architect designed it that way? What makes it a "disaster"?

    18' in a living room dimension sounds colossal to me, and since many people on Houzz want what I call colossal.... What's the problem?


    Maybe you could describe what you want? Maybe the architect didn't anticipate you'd think this was a "disaster" and thought they were doing exactly what you asked? Communication, communication, communication...

  • millworkman
    yesterday

    "We've been considering if we need to find a different architect but my builder keeps convincing me not to."


    Of course he does he does not want you to go anywhere as that will cut into his pocket. All they are doing is playing tetris with his models. Why would a real architect want to work with and fir a builder exclusively is beyond me. Unless of course he is brand new.

  • cpartist
    yesterday

    And why is he designing the floor plans before pasting on an exterior. Why isn't he designing the exterior and interior together?

  • tangerinedoor
    yesterday

    IMO this thread and the OP's question evidently continues from THIS THREAD. Same topic. I'm not sure what's being asked here, since the screen shot with dining room & living room were already presented and discussed.


    I find it annoying when people do this.


    @cpartist

    That may explain posters' curiosities about the architect. IIRC extensive changes were requested for a standard plan.


    IMO asking an architect for major changes on a standard plan doesn't equate to having an architect design a custom home that takes into a homeowner's precise needs.

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    yesterday

    Will the living room accommodate the number of people you want to seat in it?

    Will the dining room accommodate the number of people you want to seat in it?

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday
    last modified: yesterday

    @tangerinedoor I should have given that post as context our builder and architect (yes licensed architect) convinced us to keep going and just use some inspiration from other plans. This was a portion of our plan after she made updates. However I was shocked to see instead of listening to my wants and needs, we ended up with a replica of the plan but she made the living room smaller - and she added 200 sq ft to our bedrooms, and I have told her all along I wanted smaller bedrooms with no wasted space since we only sleep there. I keep looking for reasons to stay and push through but I think my gut is telling me to walk away. Early on before we started working on our plan, I was looking online at plans and everyone here told me to work with an architect because they would take into consideration our own needs and do something specifically suited to our lifestyle and land. That is not happening here and yesterday our builder told me most people bring their own plans and they rarely build a fully custom home from scratch, despite having an in home licensed AIA Architect. That is NOT the impression they gave me in our initial design meetings and they never asked me to provide plans I like after I explained what we were wanting. I am afraid to walk away because i know other people that have built custom and worked with architects that had a lot of struggles too but ultimately ended up happy.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    @cpartist that seems like a good question. I was actually pretty happy with the first plan she came up with until she presented the exterior a few weeks later. It brought to light huge problems which is why we're totally reconfiguring now. And then after I looked at some plans online to try to help give her inspiration, I saw some things incorporated in those plans I had initially asked for but she couldn't make work, so I realized we had made some big compromises because I'd given up on certain wants and convinced myself I wouldn't need them. When I started providing her online examples, she created a replica of one basically. I think my gut is telling me to walk away (my comment right above has additional context too) but I just haven't committed to that decision. I'm having some frank discussions with the builder today that will be very telling. I just am afraid I won't be able to find another architect.

  • millworkman
    yesterday

    "That is not happening here and yesterday our builder told me most people bring their own plans and they rarely build a fully custom home from scratch, despite having an in home licensed AIA Architect. That is NOT the impression they gave me in our initial design meetings and they never asked me to provide plans I like after I explained what we were wanting. I am afraid to walk away because i know other people that have built custom and worked with architects that had a lot of struggles too but ultimately ended up happy."



    Sorry to say but in my opinion you are sending good money after bad with this "team". A licensed real architect can and does design homes from scratch/specific wants and needs (I consider inspiration pics as still from scratch). Not put fluff on plans brought in to the builders office. He/she may be a legit architect but that does not mean he/she has a clue of what he is doing.


  • PRO
    Patricia Colwell Consulting
    yesterday

    You better find one and soon since this is not working.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    @Patricia Colwell Consulting interesting enough, I have a family member that is an architect (principal) at the most upscale and reputable firm in our city. I've showed her our plan but didn't ask for feedback as I didn't want her to be in an awkward position or take advantage of her expertise but she definitely wasn't like "oh this is great, I can see what's going on." Her work is amazing but I've been reluctant to use family for something that is a big and stressful undertaking, but may end up going that route or at least asking for a recommendation from her of someone else in her firm.

  • 3onthetree
    yesterday

    So this is the inspiration plan you gave her:





    It sure sounds like she has given you what you want this time. You have your new plan and she has squeezed the SF to meet your demands so the spaces (Living, hall, Foyer as shown) are all smaller. But now you complain too small? The Living size designed is constricted because of the slider placement (see inspo where couch can be put between doors) and need for pathway from Kitchen to Dining (inspo has same problem). The bedrooms maybe increased because of footprint or bathroom/closet layouts dictating bedroom sizes, have no idea without seeing process.

    BTW the Powder Room door should be turned into the Mudroom so you don't cart your food past the toilet.

    BTW BTW an architect shouldn't be copying another plan or editing another's creation.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday
    last modified: yesterday

    @3onthetree I havent posted her full plan but- I gave her that inspiration along with a lot of notes and a long conversation about what I would change. I told her I would want the laundry room by the bedrooms, kitchen cabinets added on the other wall so the sink could be at a window, and showed her many other ”keeping room” examples that I liked and asked that she not replicate the Southern living plan However, bedroom wing excluded, the rest she completely replicated the SL plan - and my thought was: 1) illegal? 2) would a good and reputable architect really need to copy a plan?

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    Instead of creating a new post hoping some of you will see this question and respond here: How long does designing a custom home usually take? I know there are a lot of variables but theyre wanting us to be under contract for construction by the emd of the month- our first design meeting was the beginning of May. Seems crazy fast and theyre wanting to rush us into build vs getting the plan right

  • 3onthetree
    yesterday

    It depends on the design, the architect, and the client. Some designs, considering their specific restrictions and criteria, take much more time to refine to be successful. The architect hired by the builder may only be paid for a certain amount of services and/or level of construction documents. The client may be inundating an architect with tile designs or changing their minds.

  • Mrs. S
    yesterday

    We have an architect and he has had, oh, about 10-12 meetings (zoom) with us. Like you, we said we wanted smaller bedrooms and larger utility areas (kitchen/bathrooms/laundry). Our plan came out in an L-shape, without us even having to bring him @cpartist "best houses" list of how the best houses are arranged. (And I had envisioned showing up with sheaves of printouts from these forums, hahaha).


    Are you choosing that blocky "inspiration" layout because you have a tiny lot? If so, I understand, but in that circumstance, you need, really, someone who listens and can show YOU ideas, instead of you presenting YOUR ideas to the expert.


    In those situations where you have a builder's favorite architect, and we have seen that before--the architect is a relative/employee of the builder, or the like-- then you are making a big compromise about to whom your architect owes their loyalty, their consideration, and who is really influencing the design. I guess you have to decide if layout and functional home is worth more to you than pleasing your builder and designing the format of home that your BUILDER likes.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday
    last modified: yesterday

    @Mrs. S this was great feedback, thank you. Our lot is 2 acres with a gentle slope, so pretty much no restrictions on what we can build.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    @Patricia Colwell Consulting I did end up reaching out to family and they are willing to advise me - not sure if they'll be willing to design my house but will know who I can trust to do it if not!

  • cpartist
    yesterday

    Em even the person who graduated last in their class but passed the exams still get to call themself an architect. Doesn't mean they have any talent and the fact that she works mostly from other people's plans shows that. Cut your losses and go find an architect who isn't tied to the hip of the builder. Someone independent who will create what you want.

  • cpartist
    yesterday

    Instead of creating a new post hoping some of you will see this question and respond here: How long does designing a custom home usually take? I know there are a lot of variables but theyre wanting us to be under contract for construction by the emd of the month- our first design meeting was the beginning of May. Seems crazy fast and theyre wanting to rush us into build vs getting the plan right

    My custom home took 8 months to design using a draftsman. And yes, your builder is trying to rush you. Don't let him. Good design takes time and it seems like this builder may not be what you want either. I hope you checked out all his credentials including how long he's been in business. (Secret: The longer the better and even better still is if he's been in business since before the Great Recession.)

  • tangerinedoor
    yesterday

    A contract by the end of the month would be absurd. You won't even know what the cost is until after the design is finished and the materials costed out. And there will be a lot of discussion at every minute step in all of that.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    @cpartist Thanks for the feedback. 25 years - they truly are the best in our area so I really don't want to burn bridges with the builder. Them having the architect on staff is apparently new, which I did not realize - they have not yet built a house that she has designed. Previously they had a self-trained draftsman. They build wonderful houses, but never set the expectation with me that they don't "design from scratch", and "designing from scratch" is exactly what I wanted. I may have mentioned this already, but before our first meeting I had actually sketched out a plan and told the architect "I'm afraid to even show you because I don't want you to think this is exactly what I want - it is just to show what rooms I want and the general side of the house I want them on." She said she'd use it as a loose guide, and ended up drawing it exactly. So, she used my floor plan (a non-architect that can barely draw a straight line) in lieu of what they apparently normally do of having the client provide the plan they want. I have spent hours and hours looking at AD house plans, don gardner, etc. and nothing is quite what I want enough to feel like I can purchase the plan and just have minor modifications. (My big requirement is clustered bedrooms all off of the same hallway, instead of a split floor plan, and those are hard to come by that aren't tiny old fashioned ranch plans). I've really sat and thought hard on this and think I'm finally feeling at peace with moving on. With a $650k budget (in a very low cost of living area), I can't settle. I also have two under two, and moving will be a little bit easier when they're a little older anyway. While I haven't yet had one final discussion with the builder/architect, I almost certainly plan on eating the money I've given them already, really vetting an independent architect or firm that is not hired by a builder, and spending ample time getting it right.

  • 3onthetree
    yesterday

    OP has not given enough information to make judgments about the architect, builder, and those contracts, hasn't even posted a full plan. It's not easy to find a builder now. Maybe trying to get dried in before winter. Mortgage timeline. Budget itself putting a finger on design and build process. Sometimes accomplishing one desire negates another. Only OP's point of view.

    As always, harsh criticism from the peanut gallery, burn it down and everybody is the worst (except for my guy). Until you have been an architect dealing with clients that have been brainwashed by HGTV and Houzz (often with no input but tile layouts, pendants, crafty decor, and no rooms on the west or north but put windows on every wall and make sure the footprint is in the shape of the Greek letter sigma) no need to pile on.

  • Em
    Original Author
    yesterday

    @3onthetree I agree there are so many different things that go into the process - I think what rubs me the wrong way is that she copied an online plan I showed for inspiration, exactly. Another plan in her portfolio that she sent me is also a popular one online. In our case, I did not buy the rights to the plan - I can't say for sure if the other client did or not though.

  • shirlpp
    6 hours ago

    Aside from copying what you sent her - determine what size living and dining space would satisfy you and discuss this with your relative.