I am forever intrigued what the lack of good houses on the market does to my real estate attraction. If a week passes and nothing interesting appears, I start to consider houses that haven’t sold yet, even if they don’t fulfill our wish list. If it is longer than a week, I tend to find myself on my favorite home sites browsing house plans. Dream Home Source is my standby that I’ve been consulting since sixth grade. Southern Living came into my life a year or so ago, and it is here to stay.
While drooling over some of my favorite two story plans on Southern Living, reading their detailed descriptions and trying to pinpoint what exactly I liked about them, I realized it was the blend of different architecture styles accurately described as “American traditional.” Something about those two words really resonated with me. I decided to expand my search of the particular architect that creates such quintessential neighborhood classics. That architect is Stephen Fuller.
On his website, it is easy to get lost in the mansion-esque plans I no doubt love to look at. But lately my drive has been more about realism than fantasy, and we certainly have limits for both budget and square footage. Reigning in my excitement, I narrowed my search to one-story homes that were showstoppers in their own way. I successfully found two that I can definitely see Ethan and I calling home. First up, the Cottonwood Homestead.
I envision the Cottonwood Homestead on some land, no more than three acres just beyond the reach of the city limits. It may have a gravel driveway leading up to it, but no shortage of magnolia trees and cicadas in the summertime. While new this home would be bright with terra-cotta paint, let time weather and age it a bit, just like your favorite painted rocking chair you’d set on the wrap-around porch. The illustrated hanging baskets make me feel right at home, how about you?
I adore the foyer action, the clearly marked openings for the dining room and great room, and although there isn’t a real second living area, the breakfast room is large enough to become a semi-formal dining area if need be. If you don’t know this about me already, I envision keeping my books/puzzles/board games separate from the television. Totally practical and space-saving? No. But I don’t care. The back porch could easily be screened in for buggy nights, and I’d straighten out the kitchen island because non 90 degree angles in houses bother me (so that goes for the jog in the master bedroom too). The bedrooms are decent-sized and closets are plentiful.
The Brookdale already had me by its name (a combination of my two favorite streets in Cape), but after taking a glance at the facade I knew this one was a contender. Marrying my love for colonial architecture and midcentury suburban sprawlers, this home has the look of the idyllic little one-story everyone loves in the most coveted tree-lined neighborhood. The copper bay window is enchanting, and the mix of brick and siding is lovely. This home needs a nice sized yard but nothing more than half an acre, so that all that beautiful landscaping could be maintained year-round. Also what is great about this house? It’s 2,204 square feet. Still a little big for us, but not outrageous.
Stepping inside, I’d add a bit more wall to enclose the dining room and create an entrance into the great room. Like in the other plan, I see us utilizing the breakfast area as the real dining space, so the front of the house could be a library perhaps? And yes, I’d be sure to include a rolling ladder for my floor to ceiling built-ins. I like the Jack-and-Jill bathroom, but the master bath is excessive in my opinion. I’d try to dock that down a bit to make space for an office nook or something. Or a private deck. What I really enjoy about this plan is the keeping room/kitchen action with the fireplace. Why that is not double-sided I’m not sure, but I’d remedy that in no time. Overall though, I think those are relatively small changes.
With our specific utilitarian needs and my obnoxious attention to detail, I would be so over the moon to see either of these houses come to life for us. Perfect piece of land, where are you?!