A brief review of 'The Farmhouse, New Inspiration for the Classic American Home,' by Jean Rehkamp Larson. For those clients drawn to the possibilities of a 'new old' farmhouse this book is a look at some recent interpretations; including both traditional and fairly quirky modern variations. Although many of the farmhouses featured have lost their reason to exist or are no longer surrounded by working farms, the intent of a practical, thoughtful house that relates to the land and environment around it still makes sense. No matter where you live, seasons and weather patterns are consistent, the sun rise and sunset are predictable. For a farmer who knew the land, and often built several iterations of farmhouse over generations the traditional farmhouse was a model of practicality, thoughtfully sited and built to last. Common to many farmhouses were features that made living and working on a farm more practical: ample storage, generous porches for shelter and additional workspace, appropriate locations of kitchen/ cooking areas, central fireplaces for efficiency, durable and renewable materials and typically a conservative size. These are the important takeaways for any thoughtful architecture (let alone the farmhouse). This book explores these concepts and presents a portfolio of projects that are each compelling in their own way.
We often encourage our clients to build a structure like the traditional farmhouse, designed to endure and get better with age.
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