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Evolving Traditional Design Strategies for Today’s Homeowner

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Home Design

Evolving Traditional Design Strategies for Today’s Homeowner

A glimpse into more practical home design and the importance of asking “why”


November 10, 2021
Home office design
Image: Stock.adobe.com

Despite classic rules of thumb for home building and design, Housing Design Matters suggests a more evolved approach centered on practicality for today’s homeowner. Housing design takes inspiration from decades and even centuries past, but some traditional blueprints are no longer functional for the average home.

For example, home offices have traditionally been situated next to the foyer, but this ages-old “show den” concept can provide a cluttered welcome to incoming visitors rather than accentuating the power and prestige of a homeowner as classic home office placements once intended. Instead of accepting standard home design trends, Housing Design Matters invites homeowners to instead ask “why” and to find a more logical approach for a modern household.

Of course, the show den with the big desk facing the foyer is as relevant as a dinosaur. Where is the computer? Can you face the foyer and the computer at the same time? Computers have cords and monitors and stuff – none of which was designed to look good from the back side.

One theory is that the home office replaced the formal living room or dining that was in this location. Builders and designers need to put something there by the front door. You couldn’t just arrive in the main living area – or could you? After all, why can’t the entry have its own moment? What if we put a bedroom there that didn’t open to the foyer? Are we that impatient that we can’t take a few more steps to “arrive”? Jay Kallos with Ashton Woods describes it as “discovery” – rather that being in your face the moment you walk in the door.

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