When we last left off with the design process, I shared the exterior design and architecture of our home with you! While the house was being designed, we had weekly meetings with our architect to review each step and the design plans as they evolved and needed tweaks. I remember being SO pregnant at the time with my second baby (this is back in 2014 when we designed the house!), and there was so much to consider. We were designing and building for our future life with two kids (a life I wasn't living in YET), so it's wild to see this house now coming to life with our two kids now being 4 years older since it was originally designed by our architects at Project M+. Here's a look at how the layout of the house was designed to consider form, function, and our family's needs....
As a refresher, the overall shape of the house is like a "U" on the bottom with a long rectangle on the top. It was designed to give flow and movement between the inside and outside and really make the house feel one with the outdoors. When you look at a house to buy, layout is something you notice but you don't have a ton of say over. The layout of an existing home may be important in your decision to buy a house, but often you work with what exists. So in thinking about layout for our home build, we had to retrain our brains to think about how we wanted rooms to flow with one another because we actually had the ability to decide...!
The First Floor: When we were thinking about how the rooms were positioned, we started with the bottom floor. This is the heart of the home where we will spend most of our awake hours and where we will entertain with friends and family. With the U shape, the two largest rooms and biggest areas for entertaining were at the ends of the "U". They both surround the outdoor area so it made sense for us to focus those larger areas on the living room and the kitchen. We did away with the idea of a formal living room and more casual living room because we wanted to take advantage of the outdoor space, and we didn't really feel the need to have two living rooms like some homes have.
Also, while I would normally want the kitchen and living room to be side by side and spill into one another, the unique shape of the bottom floor makes it such that you can see the living room from the kitchen and vice versa through the large glass doors in the courtyard. Since we'll have an outdoor dining area, we're making our kitchen island a spot for quicker meals inside and the more official dining room in the back of the house by the kitchen.
The Second Floor: The second floor is all about the spaces we retreat to for relaxation and rest. Similar to how traditional two-story homes are laid out, all of the bedrooms are upstairs. With the desire to mix indoor and out, the master bedroom has a balcony and the girls' rooms share a balcony. It's a 4-bedroom home. And while we designed it so each of our girl's has their own room, they LOVE sharing a room currently in our apartment, so we'll keep them together until they are ready for their own spaces. The second kid's room will serve as their playroom until then.
When it comes to the master bedroom, we didn't need a huge bedroom. Sometimes I walk into homes, and the master bedroom is the size of a whole apartment! For us, it was more important to have double sinks in our bathroom and a bigger closest. I am finally getting a walk-in closet! If you follow me on Instagram stories and have seen my TINY closest, you know part is extra thrilling for me :P
Finally, our 4th bedroom will serve as an office/guest room. We don't have quite enough space in this house to have a separate stand-alone guest room, so this felt like a great way to double up on potential use of the last room. If you have any questions about any of this, please leave a comment below!
Check out my post over at Architectural Digest's Clever for tips on what to consider when deciding the layout of your house during a custom build or major home renovation. Plus, I'll start sharing my design inspiration for each room with you in upcoming posts!