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7th Nov, 2016
Blog, New Home Plans

Ranch House Plan, New Home Plan, Flagstone 31-059

The Flagstone is a charming, bungalow inspired ranch-style home design. Walking through the front door you are drawn through a long foyer. To the right is and opening that leads to two bedrooms and bathroom. On the left a pocket door hides a mudhall that transitions between the garage and the utility room. In the rear of the house is the great room with a corner gas fireplace that can also be enjoyed from the dining room and kitchen. Accessed off the great room is the master suite which features a large sized walk-in closet and well appointed bathroom.

7th Nov, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Featured House Plan of the Week, Cape Cod House Plan, Home Plan, Beach House Plans

Exterior shingles give a cottage flavor to the Cape Cod Colebrook house plan. This two-bedroom plan would make cozy beach house, or it could blend harmoniously into a woodsy setting.

Most of the living spaces are on one level, except for the large loft above the garage with a shed dormer window to the front that overlooks the vaulted dining room below.

Charming Craftsman-style stick work ornaments the apex of the front porch gable. Stone veneer bases provide a foundation for the handsome wooden columns that support the porch. Windows and a sidelight sparkle across much of the front facade.

Once inside, gathering spaces are to your right. The dining area flows into the living room, which is completely open to the kitchen. The living room is vaulted, sloping to the left and right by the window bay up front. Another vault bisects the room, with slopes running down, front and back. 

Natural light flows into the living room during daylight hours. Two clerestory windows crown the standard-height windows below. The upper windows are square and much smaller than those beneath them. A wood or pellet stove would fit nicely into an alcove by the kitchen, at the rear of the room.

Kitchen counters and cupboards wrap around three sides. Standing at the kitchen sink, you can gaze out the window, supervise kids at play, or chat with people in the living room. 

Bedrooms, a bathroom and a large utility room are all off to the left. The rear bedroom is larger and has direct bathroom access. Its closet spans one entire wall. In the utility room, a deep sink is built into a counter next to the washer, and overhead cabinets fill one wall.

1st Nov, 2016
Articles, Blog

At the beginning of the 20th century, Frank Lloyd Wright introduced a distinct new architectural style that expressed the flat, sweeping prairie of his native Midwest. Simplicity was the name of the game, combining comfort, utility and beauty in a modern look that was a huge departure from the ornamental Victorian house of the previous century.

Modern Prairie Style House Plan, Home Plan, Arrowwood 31-051

Appearing to rise from the earth, these homes blended with the landscape. They were earthy and unique, with a façade that hugged the ground. From 1900 to 1930, the prairie-style home was the fashion trend of the home design world.

“Prairie-style homes are bold and modern,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs Inc. “They are rich and warm with natural colors that are not only inviting but comforting. It’s hard not to feel welcome in a prairie-style house.”

And while Wright broke with tradition in creating his new design, his classic lines thrive today – with just a few changes, of course.

“Because prairie-style homes don’t dominate the lot, its lower profile appeals to homeowners,” McAlexander said. “It’s also an easier home to build and an easier home to maintain, and with that in mind, homeowners take the general concept of the prairie style and add a few 21st century twists to it.”

Prairie-style homes are predominantly known for their use of natural elements and motifs. Stone, brick, stucco or finished wood is layered horizontally, giving the home linear shadow lines and a rich contrast with bold design elements. A variety of geometric shapes and forms inspired by nature are highlighted through window arrangements, columns, low walls and planters. The prairie design works with the landscape rather than against it, both in the interior and exterior.

The most prominent exterior design element is the roof, which utilizes wider overhangs to help emphasize those horizontal lines. In Associated Designs’ Arrowwood home plan, the hip roof profile draws the eye to the horizontal overhangs while the natural, earthy tones of the materials give it a subtle, simplistic feel. It does indeed blend in with the surrounding landscape. And as with all prairie-style homes, the Arrowwood also features a covered porch and a recessed entry.

“Those same natural materials and simple lines are also seen inside the home,” said McAlexander. “This helps complement that warm exterior.”

Quite often, the living space of prairie-style homes is centered on a living room off of the entry. This open space would be separated from the kitchen and dining areas that include exterior windows and doors that open up to outside living spaces, such as the Arrowwood’s back porch. But that is where the Arrowwood’s similarities end.

 “Clients these days are looking to keep the traditional low angles and horizontal lines, but combine those ideas with more modern elements such as glass, transom windows and shed roofs,” said McAlexander. “Inside, the popular great room dominates these modern prairie-style homes.”

The classic, prairie-style home interior had more formal, separated spaces, which gave it a more confined and darker feel despite the warmth of the simple, natural tones. By opening up the interior spaces, the modern prairie home has a more connected floor plan. The Arrowwood’s great room flows into the dining and kitchen areas.

Other updates are more subtle, said McAlexander. For instance, the raised entry roof is not a traditional motif in the prairie style, but it adds interest and character to the front elevation while still retaining those classic horizontal lines. The Arrowwood also incorporates some ranch-style exterior elements such as the wider gables, but the natural stone and wood link back to Wright’s original prairie design.

The interior also has gotten a few modern updates. Fewer people are concerned with matching the interior detail with the exterior, so there’s often more color, more depth and more space, such as vaulted ceilings.

“Prairie-style homes are a popular trend today, but as with all trends, people make adjustments to fit their lifestyle or their interests,” said McAlexander. “This doesn’t mean that Wright’s classic prairie-style home is disappearing. It’s more that even the most traditional of lines can go off on a few tangents with often amazing results.”

And that’s always been the case with home design. Victorian homes gave way to prairie-style simplicity, which in turn was replaced by ranch-style living and so on and so forth. Home trends are constantly changing, and that’s what makes the modern prairie-style home design something that can’t be ignored. 

As seen on Newswire
31st Oct, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Featured House Plan of the Week, Southwest Home Plan, Santa Rosa 30-800

 

A bright tile roof caps the smooth stucco of the Southwestern-style Santa Rosa house plan. Designed for construction on a sloped building lot, this home has three levels. Gathering spaces are on the main floor, and bedrooms are above. A roomy two-car garage and two large storage areas are on the ground floor.

A welcoming arched opening leads from the garage on the right to the handsome railed staircase leading to the main floor. A wider arch, opening onto the entry porch, frames the front door, along with a windowed bench to the door's left. Inside, art niches on both sides of the door trim the short passageway into the foyer.

From the foyer to the right is a den or home office. Straight ahead, an arch marks the passageway that leads to a spacious dining room, windowed on three sides. That hallway also runs past an utility room, then onto access a covered patio with skylights. Sliding glass doors in the dining room open to the patio as well.

To the left of the foyer is an arched opening which leads into a foyer extension with a coat closet and a bench for shoe removal. The next arch opens into the living room, which features a corner fireplace and recessed home entertainment center. This space is open to a gourmet kitchen, and also offers access to a side deck.

Upstairs, owners' suite features include a railed balcony, a walk-in closet and a bathroom with a shower, spa tub, dual vanity and private toilet. Each of the other two bedrooms share a jack-n-jill bathroom.

28th Oct, 2016
Blog, New Home Plans

New House Plan, Home Plan, Contemporary House Plan, Quail Ridge 31-060

Clean lines and prairie-style influences create a contemporary look to the Quail Ridge home plan. Walking into the foyer you can choose to walk through the set of French doors to the den on the left or proceed straight to the vaulted great room. The four panel sliding glass door at the rear of the great room extends the living area to the covered patio. The left side of the main floor also contains the owners' suite - which features a luxurious bathroom with walk-in shower, soaking tub, and walk-in closet and is linked to a secondary suite with its own walk-in closet and curbless shower. Upstairs are two additional bedrooms with a jack-n-jill style bathroom, and loft.

 
 
24th Oct, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

European House Plan, Home Plan, Featured House Plan of the Week, Southwick 30-482

The European exterior is a composition of rough, earthy texture of stone veneer here runs a complementary counterpoint to the classical columns, graceful arches and ethereal neo-Gothic windows. These elements, along with the wrought iron balcony railing, blend to give the estate-size Southwick a pleasant French flavor.

Entering through the vaulted porch, you stand in a naturally bright foyer. Windows surround the door on the sides and top. Double doors on the left open into a vaulted den that also function as a library, study, or home office.

Directly ahead, ornamental columns flank a wide, arched opening that leads into an open living room. A gas fireplace is centered along the left wall, and custom cabinets fill that wall on both sides. Wide windows span most of the rear, offering a great view while letting in plenty of natural light. Another column-rimmed, arched opening is across the room from the fireplace. This one links the living room to the dining area and kitchen.

French doors are centered in the half-octagonal window bay that expands the dining area, offering easy access to a large, partially covered patio. This entire space is open to the large kitchen. Kitchen amenities include: a built-in hutch and desk, corner display shelves, and a large work island/eating bar.

The vaulted master suite features a luxurious bathroom, large walk-in closet, and direct access to a vaulted, covered patio ideal for a hot tub. Two additional bedrooms are upstairs, along with a vaulted loft, a two-section bathroom, and a bonus room with a gas fireplace, home entertainment center and balcony.

17th Oct, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Contemporary House Plan, Home Plan, Norwich 30-175

Intriguing angles, combined with arched windows and brick detailing, draws one to the Norwich. Cedar shakes, corner quoins and small sections of lap siding contribute to the visual appeal to this contemporary house plan. This single-level plan can be adapted for wheelchair accessibility.

Standing in the entry, you face towards the kitchen, living room and dining room. The vaulted living room is stunning with its richly glassed rear wall. An entertainment center is on one side of the fireplace while cabinets, shelves and a small sink are on the other side.

A raised eating bar lends partial separation between the kitchen and a dining room, and French doors open to access a partially covered patio brightened by skylights. Kitchen features include: a walk-in pantry, built-in appliances, and a work island.

The small powder room and large utility room are mere steps away. Linked to the garage, the utility room serves as a mudroom.

Angled walls and a coffered ceiling frame the luxurious master suite. Its gas fireplace can be enjoyed from either the spa tub or the bed/sitting area. Light flows through glass blocks illuminating the tub, and the large closet provides ample storage space.

A dramatic arched window graces the other bedroom, which is vaulted and has access to a two-section bathroom.

French doors open into a room concealed by a 6-foot-high partition that bounds the living room. With tall windows opening towards the front, this space could serve as a den, home office or even a third bedroom.

10th Oct, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Featured House Plan of the Week, Cottage House Plan, Home Plan, St. Clair 30-383

The three-bedroom St. Clair cottage house plan is much larger than it looks from the curb. It's about twice as deep as it is wide and offers nearly 1700 square feet of living space, a covered porch, patio and two-car garage.

Craftsman-style detailing gives the home a pleasantly familiar look and sense of nostalgia. Examples include the signature Craftsman windows, tapered columns atop stone veneer bases, and a cross-gabled roof. Novel tapered side trim on windows and the garage door echoes the shape of the columns.

The interior floor plan is modern day. Entering the foyer brightened by sidelights and a transom to the right, arched openings lead into the living room, then two equal-sized bedrooms and a bathroom on the left. A step-in coat closet is straight ahead.

Light flows into the living room through windows on two sides. Another arch defines the living room into the dining room, which in turn is open to the kitchen. Pocket doors on the left side of the dining room reveal a large study alcove with built-in shelves and a desk. This makes an ideal location for a library and the family computer.

Counters and cupboards line two sides of the large kitchen, while an island with a raised eating bar provides additional work and storage space. Other kitchen amenities include a step-in pantry, and sliding glass doors, which access a partially covered curved patio. Laundry appliances are nearby in a passthrough that connects to the garage.

Features in the master suite include a large walk-in closet and luxurious bathroom with dual vanity, shower and graceful claw foot tub.

3rd Oct, 2016
Articles, Blog

Picture yourself standing in a great hall in a medieval castle. The ceiling soars above you as in a cathedral with a chandelier’s lights twinkling. Your eyes are drawn to the living area and immense stone fireplace, the long dining table in the far corner. The large windows on the left spill natural light into the high-ceilinged room that has likely entertained guests in huge banquets and balls. Your imagination goes wild as you consider all the ways this great room can be utilized for your family and your lifestyle.

Your home could be just like this castle – filled with light and space and greatness.

The concept of a great room is actually nothing new. It began in the castles of Europe, and fell by the way side in the 1900s as living rooms and family rooms were built as separate spaces in houses. In the 1990s, developers across America were getting few demands for great rooms. Now, however, the demand for great rooms has risen to epic proportions. It has, in fact, become the biggest trend in housing development in the last few years, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). In Associated Designs’ 2016 Home from the Heart Survey, 86% of respondents wanted a great room in their dream home.

“The idea of a great room is fairly simple,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs. “It’s a large, multipurpose room that’s centralized in the design of the home. There are no walls separating the living room, family room and kitchen. It simply flows.”

A family room is where you and your family gather with friends, watch TV, relax and play games. The living room’s purpose is more formal. A great room, in a sense, combines the good of each of those rooms into one centralized, gathering space. Builders in a 2013 NAHB survey, described great rooms as some combination of family room, living room, dining room and kitchen, but it is not confined to just those rooms and can include a study area or a kitchen nook.

But a home with a great room doesn’t necessarily mean the square footage is high. While most homes with great rooms are more than 2,000 square feet, according to the NAHB, the concept of a centralized, multipurpose room can be utilized in smaller homes, too.

“It’s not reserved for mansions,” said McAlexander. “The great room is about allowing movement in a house so that you aren’t confining living rooms and family rooms and kitchens to specific spaces. They are all connected in some way.” 

There are two basic iterations of the great room: a true great room in which one large room contains the kitchen, living room, family room and dining room with no separation, and an open living style great room that provides some separation.

A true great room, like the one in Associated Designs’ Stratford 30-615 design, blends several rooms into one large space, each connected to the other. In the Stratford design, the kitchen, dining room and vaulted living room flow together in one expansive gathering space with a fireplace, wood box and window seat.

Great Room, Stratford 30-615, Craftsman House Plan, Home Plan Great Room, Stratford 30-615, Craftsman House Plan, Home Plan
Stratford's Great Room 

“A true great room can be a combination of several types of spaces, and that’s what this design does,” said McAlexander. “You have a centralized living space where everything happens.”

The open living style great room takes the grandness of the room and redefines it with slight separation. It’s still a great room, as all the rooms flow together, but there are clear delineations for each area’s purpose. The kitchen, for example, may be clearly marked by a curved countertop as in the Heartington 10-550 design. And while a true great room has vaulted ceilings, an open living style usually doesn’t. The bright and spacious living area in the Heartington is balanced by, and open to, the comfortably large kitchen and nook, but each space is set apart from the other.

Great Room, Heartington 10-550, Ranch House Plan, Home Plan Great Room, Heartington 10-550, Ranch House Plan, Home Plan
Heartington's Great Room

“It’s still open and flowing, and you aren’t confined to putting a singular purpose onto one area of the great room,” said McAlexander. “But some areas are clearly allocated a purpose. It allows for freedom of movement while still providing some order.”

Every man’s home is his castle, or so the saying goes, which means a great room can be utilized and designed in any way that suits your family, your lifestyle or your personality. As more and more homes are designed with great rooms, there will be countless versions and countless ways in which they will be used. In the end, that’s the beauty of the great room – a gathering space of infinite possibilities. 

As seen on Newswire
30th Sep, 2016
Blog, New Home Plans

Duplex Plan, Multi Family Home Plan, House Plan, Columbine 60-046

The Columbine is a charming cottage duplex plan which has two unique units. Unit A is 1-1/2 stories and offers an owners' suite and great room on the main floor with two secondary bedrooms and a full bathroom on the second level. This unit also has a tandum garage that can park up to two cars deep. Unit B is a little smaller and features two main floor bedrooms, a great room, and a single car garage. This duplex is designed for maximum privacy the only shared wall between each unit is between the garages.

26th Sep, 2016
Blog, New Home Plans

We've been busy here at Associated Designs and we're happy to showcase several new house plans now available. All of the new designs feature the great room concept and range from compact to mid-sized homes.

Traditional House Plan, Home Plan, Ferndale 31-026

Ferndale 31-026

  • Traditional House Plan
  • 1497 Square Feet
  • Compact Floor Plan
  • Split Bedrooms

Bungalow House Plan, Home Plan, Nanucket 31-027

Nantucket 31-027

  • Bungalow House Plan
  • 1859 Square Feet 
  • Covered Front Porch
  • Den
  • Corner Fireplace

Ranch House Plan, Home Plan, Dahlia 31-041

Dahlia 31-041

  • Ranch House Plan
  • 2017 Square Feet
  • Den
  • Split Bedrooms

Craftsman House Plan, Home Plan, Gardenia 31-048

Gardenia 31-048

  • Craftsman-style House Plan
  • 1819 Square Feet
  • Large Kitchen
  • Walk-In Shower

Craftsman House Plan, Home Plan, Northampton 31-052

Northampton 31-052

  • Craftman-style house plan
  • 2015 Square Feet
  • Great Room
  • Den
26th Sep, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Featured House Plan of the Week, Brynwood 30-430, European House Plan, Home Plan

Soaring arches blend with custom stone masonry in the European-style Brynwood, creating a visually intriguing front facade. 

Bright and spacious gathering spaces complete the ground floor in this luxury, three-level house plan. Bedrooms are located upstairs, and a three-car garage, plus a plenty of extra storage space, are below, accessed via a down-sloping driveway on the left.

Natural light flows into the foyer through sidelights and an elliptical arched transom. Straight ahead is a vaulted, richly windowed great room. On the foyer's left, a wide opening leads into the dining room. To the right, an alcove holds a walk-in coat closet and convenient powder room, which is linked to a larger bathroom, and a hobby or guest room.

Pocket doors at the rear of the dining room reveal or conceal a passageway to the large kitchen. The bayed nook has plenty of windows and additional windows in front of the sink offers views of the patio and rear yard. A cozy window seat lines one side of the nook; a pantry and built-in desk nestle into the other.

This area is also offers plenty of storage and counter space. Utilities are closeby, along with a toilet and a walk-in pantry.

Upstairs, skylights brighten the luxurious vaulted owners' suite. Features here include: a large walk-in closet, walk-in shower, a corner soaking tub, a private balcony deck with hot tub, and a study.

Two more bedrooms share a jack-n-jill bathroom. A vaulted loft with a balcony provides separation between the owners' suite and secondary bedrooms. 

19th Sep, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Contemporary House Plan, Home Plan, Featured House Plan of the Week, Westbrook 30-065

Raised brick planters and a lofty brick-columned portico give a sense of solidity to the Westbrook, a spacious contemporary ranch-style home that offers a wide selection of living environments. 

Sidelights and transom windows frame the door in the entrance. Entering, you find yourself in an octagonal foyer with an 11-foot tray ceiling.

The library and parlor feature 11-foot ceilings. The dining room has a step-tray ceiling that's nearly 10 feet high, and a built-in buffet/hutch.

The large kitchen features a center work island and large walk-in pantry as well as cupboards and counters on three sides. Windows brighten the area while columns mark the boundary between kitchen and vaulted family room.

French doors open on a charming side courtyard where brick columns support an overhead arbor of open beams. Another set of French doors leads to a large partially covered rear patio.

A long plant shelf spans the passageway leading to the secondary bedrooms. Each of these bedrooms has a boxed-bay window seat with storage below, and share a large bathroom with a dual vanity.

Amenities in the luxurious owners' suite include a large walk-in closet and as spacious bathroom with walk-in shower, spa tub, private toilet, and double vanity.

Utilities are centrally located in a large utility room that is easy to access from the three-car garage or the family room.

12th Sep, 2016
Blog, New Home Plans

New House Plan, Ranch style home plan, Eastgate 31-047

Craftsman-style windows and slender columns create a warm, natural feel to the Eastgate, a compact ranch home plan. Wide windows brighten the expansive living room and dining area, open to the kitchen which features an island with eating bar and corner walk-in pantry. A single door in the dining area opens onto a partially covered patio.

12th Sep, 2016
Blog, House Plan of the Week

Featured House Plan of the Week, Ridgeline 10-062, Lodge House Plan, Home Plan

The Ridgeline's contemporary floor plan may come as a delightful surprise for this log home. Stacks of peeled logs, accented by wide expanses of glass, form the exterior of this home. Corners are overlapped in the traditional scribe fit.

What's not traditional is the hexagonal shape and the naturally bright interior. Every room is richly windowed and allows for full appreciation of a view to the rear, whether is a mountain range, river or canyon. At the back sliding glass doors in the great room open onto a wide, railed deck that wraps around three sides.

A pot-bellied wood stove on a hexagonal stone hearth is at the heart of the spacious vaulted great room. Exposed roof beams sweep up to a lofty central peak over the stove.

The kitchen is in the left side, next to the great room and open to it. Range and oven face into the open space, across the eating penninsula. This compact kitchen, has plenty of counter and cupboard space, and a built-in dishwasher. Utilities are tucked into an alcove hidden by folding doors.

Both bedrooms are private, located on the far ends of the rectangular wings up front. The owners' suite has a large closet, linen storage and a private bathroom with an oversized shower. The second bedroom shares the main bathroom, which has a combined tub and shower.

A railed, vaulted covered entry porch extends a warm welcome to family and guests. Coat closets and storage space are just inside the front door.

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