Well, I’m in love.
I know, I know, I just got out of a long-term relationship with another house. I’m just barely past the separation anxiety that came with leaving my big bathtub and those awesome walnut floors, and here I am with my fickle, fickle heart mooning over this beauty…
But I mean, come on. She’s gorgeous, right?
Say what you will, guys, this is not a rebound relationship. I’m pretty sure this is the real thing. I mean, I flirted with that old farm house and the kitchen-less flip, and I am in a purely short-term relationship with the farm house rental. But in about six months or so, I really think I’ll be ready to settle down for the long haul.
Maybe on this hill, if my offer goes through on the property…
And because I can’t go seven consecutive seconds without dreaming up my next big project, last week I met with Edit from Residential Design (who lent her genius to the Memorial Addition as well) to start putting together the plan for my garage/workshop/loft combo. I’ve been told that’s a mouthful and given its hopeful location and the tentative look-and-feel I’ve taken to calling it Hillside Cottage. Or, you know, love muffin, but only in private.
So I thought I’d take you along on a little journey with me. Not the mushy falling-in-love kind, but the whole “hammering out the storage details of the rest o,f my life” kind, which, let’s admit, is way more interesting.
It started with a conversation with Edit about what I was looking for and a couple of inspiration images I like. So basically this post, which can be boiled down to:
- 3 car garage (one bay is totally for my future tractor) plus workshop on lower level
- Lofted living space on second level with one separate bedroom, one bath, and laundry area, and a possible woodburner
- Standalone structure that an actual house can be added onto at a later date
Edit’s recommendation was that we start with the general idea, and then work out the specific details like the kitchen appliances, etc. Which brings us to the current plans, which are actually pretty good as they are. Here are a couple of tweaks I’m considering:
There were two versions of the first floor layout but I like the one that gives me the most workshop space best. The addition of a small half-bath here is brilliant, especially when a bathroom break is needed from things like mucking donkey stalls where it is not okay to go traipsing through the house without a shower.
The small adjustments to this space include closing in the stairwell/hallway area and adding a coat closet to give that space a more finished feel. The one thing I’m still hung-up on is the placement of the workshop doors. I’ll likely need double doors into the garage as well, but the entire shop can’t be made of doors so there’s a little figuring to do there yet.
The living space upstairs has everything a girl and her cat could want, but I still have a couple of additional ideas for it.
First, Edit and I talked about adding a little more square footage by extending the length by 3′. Since I want the structure to go up quick and easy we won’t make the width any greater than 24′ so the I-joists don’t require additional support.
There are also some “easy adds” like a stairwell off the upper patio and a set of built-ins that incorporate a twin mattress as a seating area that can be converted to a guest sleeping area. Something like this…
Slightly more difficult is figuring out things like a “workspace”, although I’m kind of digging a built-in desk nook like this one and I’m willing to sacrifice a little closet space for it. (And thank god I didn’t go to the trouble of building a desk yet.)
Since most of the bedroom will be short knee-walls I’m also glad I haven’t built my Pipe Dream bed yet (now I know to keep the headboard under 4′), and the height will also present some fun storage challenges, but I’m hoping to use every available square inch.
Some other nice-to-haves I’m considering:
- Attached overhang to use as an outdoor workspace or a donkey shed
- An entryway directly into the closet/stairwell area of the living space (this is probably wishful thinking)
- A storage closet on the garage level to make up for the lack of attic/basement space
I’ll spend a little more time visualizing actually living in the space and what else I might need, and then we’ll do a round of revisions to the drawings that will hopefully include elevations. Or maybe it’s better if it doesn’t, since these rough sketches already make my little heart go pitty-pat. Anything more formal and I’m a goner.
What do you guys think? If it was your workshop/garage/loft combo, what would you need?