BEFORE THE ARCHITECT – Mrs. AG's Home Design AND HOME BUILDING PLAN DESIGNS
MRS. AG'S HOME DESIGN PICTURES
BEFORE & AFTER HOUSE PICTURES
· · · · · · ·
Down all the years, we've preferred taking existing structures and redesigning them, because we learned so much more about home design and home drawing and home building than if we had started homes from scratch.
Almost all of our pics are of exteriors where you can see that a lot changed. A lot changed inside, too, and we're scrounging for some good interiors pics as well. In all of these pics, we (really, she) designed first and then we constructed virtually on our own. We did it all, turning over work only to subs who could do it better than we could. Throughout those decades, only a handful of subcontractors qualified - a father and son plumbing team, a tree cutter, a roofer, a septic contractor, a fine fellow who ran dozers and diggers. That's it. We did the site evaluation, drainage (after a while), foundations, framing, windows and doors, trim and clad and coatings, gutters, roofs, flooring, much of the plumbing but not all, all the electrical wiring, appliance installation, countertops and cabinets, and the home design and materials selections that preceded all the work.
These home design pictures are intended to give you some sense for the extensive scope and character of her work. On pic pages to come, we'll have more or less average homes, old homes, huge homes, fairly new homes. All home design and home redesigns are by Mrs. AG in the driver's seat and Mr. AG working on the lead in home building materials and methods, durability, safety, and convenience.
While you'll read it over and over again, these homes were dumps at first sight - poorly designed, poorly built, poorly modified, poorly maintained. Since the AG and Mrs. AG are not photographers nor especially self-consumed, they didn't take much in the way of before and after pics that'd entertain most anyone. The preponderance of these photo reviews area based on after-shots for resale purposes or to take away as memories near onto real estate closings.
Ranch home makeover. This is a case study in the transformation of a ranch house from tired-old to lively-new and much more functional. The setting is a brief, level relief in a steeply sloping lot starting high up behind in a granite outcropping and ending way down below in a small river. In other words, a home designing style long and narrow was the only reasonable option in this makeover; it was a ranch and would stay a ranch. To complete this setting, we note that the property faced open slope to the river below about 75' down and 75 yards away, wooded slope rising on the other side, and a lake far below and about a 1/2-mile away. We redesigned to the view, mindful of the topographical constraints within we had to operate.
GARRISON COLONIAL FACELIFT. This home was a dump. Its presentation was repellent, and that's in addition to its overall appearance as a worn out Garrison Colonial. We gave this one a fabulous facelift on the outside and a major rework on the inside. For now, we'll focus only on one before and one after pic to define ways in which you can do what you never thought possible for very little money and very careful planning.
PORCH DESIGNS. There once was this screened porch at the backside of a very old colonial home of ours, a porch in dire need of our porch designs. And the porch lacked life, luster. When the home was a creamery, before the turn of the last century, very likely this is where field hands changed clothes before entering the creamery with boots piled up and dirty overalls hung on wall hooks. But nowadays, the porch was almost in the way it functioned so poorly with the rest of the home. As our home became more and more appealing from our home design and home building plans, the more this porch looked lost.
KITCHEN DESIGNS. The kitchen design pictures of a ranch home. To say that this kitchen was from someone's kit-bag of kitchen designs would have been absurd, mindless. The kitchen was a dump. Dark. Dated. Poorly decorated. Small to the point of confining. Unwelcoming. Downright nasty. (Whatever you do, please don't write to tell us that this can't be the before to the after of these two kitchen design pictures. It's so. I know it's so firsthand. We did this with me in the driver's seat all the way.)
Screen Porch Enclosure. We bought a contemporary house years back, and, along with a lot of other work, designed and executed a screened porch enclosure. Big that home was - about 6500 square feet plus guest home, 3-car garage, greenhome, tennis court, and steel pool. You might be wondering why we thought that a screened porch enclosure was the right thing to do when we already had all the other space enclosed. Why? Because it begged us.
COLONIAL MAKEOVER. This is a case study in home design and home building plan designs involving the transformation of a colonial from tired-old and dumpy to chic and pricey.
RIVER HOUSE. Hardly anyone knew this home existed. It ended a private road with six other properties in front of it. Lots of land, and lost in all of it.
KITCHEN QUICKIE. Not everything the AG and Mrs. AG has been humongo in scale and scope. Here are a before and after of a small kitchen that started out el-yucko and ended quite pleasantly. (Please note that while the home design and workmanship are first-class, the photographs stink for quality reproduction. Apologies extended.)
ANTIQUE REVIVED. The owner/builders bought a tract on which this old home stood. They were to bulldoze it. Mr. & Mrs. AG talked 'em out of it, paid next to nothing, got next to nothing, and put this Humpty-Dumpty back together again.
DOGHOUSE RANCH. All we've got of this massive ranch is its backside. (The frontside was ok, too. Especially after the AG and Mrs. AG had about 200 forsythia planted in the large open area past the home front and drive, in an open area about 50 yards on a side.) It was an award-winning boxer dog kennel and breeding business before the AG and Mrs. AG got it.
1 DEMO, PLEASE. The AG and Mrs. AG would be delighted to show you all their inside work; however, they almost never took pictures of it and most of those that they did take don't make much sense unless you get a boatload of words with 'em and that'd take the fun out of album-touring. Nevertheless, here's about as good as it gets for interiors before and after. This is a smallish demo and redo in a Cape Cod.
CAPE COD. Mr. & Mrs. AG bought this Cape Cod in the worst shape of any home ever. On the outside overgrown with plantings and littered with paint peels, storm windows and screens. On the inside, the grossest kitchen to which they'd ever born witness. Interior doors were nailed shut. Food spills and splatters throughout the home from family food fights (no kidding). A raccoon colony in the attic - for years. While major attention was focused on the inside, curb appeal counts, too. Here are a before and after of this Cape Cod.
CONTEMPORARY HOUSE. Retrospectively, this was the AG's and Mrs. AG's most aggressive home design achievement. They bought an utterly lifeless contemporary house, bared to its bones, and renewed it. A huge home, it demanded more home design than outright home building. These many pics came from the sales brochure when the property went back to market.
· · · · · · ·
· · · · · · ·
(If this is your first visit to Before The Architect, please consider spending a few moments looking over the Site Map, in design of a custom home, plans, the home designers, about builders and building. Before The Architect E-mail: email@example.com.)