The third round of floorplan edits moved the office upstairs, which radically changed the overall use of space:
It removed the dead space around the master bedroom, save for a short hallway. The office’s views improved, at the cost of figuring out how to get office access from the front of the house to near the back. The activity room size increased appreciably, with plenty of space for bunks and a TV. Things were starting to look very good.
We measured out the spaces of some of the rooms in our current house to get a feel for them. They felt about the right size. We ended up referring to these sketches quite a bit in the design phase. It is hard to imagine what a 8×12 room feels like, but once we could say “oh, it’s a little smaller than this bedroom over here,” we were able to put things in context.
Now that we had a floorplan that looked on paper, we wanted to figure out how it looked in real life. At least in two dimensions.
Life-Sized Floorplan in Chalk
So we drew a life-sized version of our floorplan:
We measured out the floorplan in an empty parking lot. A few lines were a little wonky since I was doing most of it solo and by hand. I measured out the dimensions and then drew it freehand with sidewalk chalk. After double-checking things, we were pretty accurate to the plans – accurate to at least the foot, though not the inch. We used my actual truck for scale, since we were a little concerned about the size of the garage. I have a lot of gear to store.
Overall, we were happy with the size of things. Bedrooms felt well-sized but not too huge. The activity room felt like it had enough space for a couch and TV and bunks and kid stuff. Kitchen, living, and dining were all plenty large. The only edits we wanted to make were pretty limited. We wanted to increase the size of the garage so we could have storage to the side of the vehicles. We also wanted to tweak the alcove near the powder room, reducing the length of the master bedroom hallway to open up a small alcove there. Then we could shield it with a barn door between the alcove and the kitchen. That way, if clients were over we could block off the “office” side of the house from the kitchen/dining area. We could also use the barn door if we wanted more sound insulation between the kitchen and the master and office.
On the whole, the mapping exercise was very worthwhile. It gave us a nice opportunity to get a better sense of what the house would look like and feel like from the inside.