previous
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Custom Flooring Inspiration
    Custom Flooring Inspiration
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
  • 12 Remodeling Secrets
    12 Remodeling Secrets
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • Remodeling Articles and Videos
    Remodeling Articles and Videos
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • Pro Tool Rental
    Pro Tool Rental
  • Projects Done Right
    Projects Done Right
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
next
Pin It

Designed for Its Place & Time

At the top of his game, architect Obie Bowman orchestrates his signature materials and details into a contemporary retirement house

After their last home was severely damaged by a falling tree, Ted and Diane Johnson asked architect Obie Bowman to make sure that their new home could hold up should the same thing happen again. Bowman responded by designing a 2831-sq.-ft. house with an exposed steel I-beam skeleton. He expanded the sturdy metal appearance of the house by wrapping most of its exterior in Galvalume siding, even bringing it inside in several places. The long, narrow house is laid out on a flat area below the top of a ridge. A series of doors off the living and dining areas open onto a terrace overlooking a valley to the northeast that then wraps around the south end of the house where it overlooks the vineyards below. A smaller terrace lies off the lone bedroom and is the first part of the house the approaching visitor sees, made more dramatic by the sloped roof that covers it. A utility wing containing an office, laundry, garage, and mechanicals is joined to the main house at a 100-degree angle. As author Charles Miller writes, such an expensive and difficult-to-build house will never be mainstream. But for its multitude of clever ideas that can be applied elsewhere and for its integration with its specific setting, this home in Healdsburg, Calif., is Fine Homebuilding's editor's choice for 2012.

Online Extra:  2012 HOUSES Editor's Choice

Designed for Its Place & Time

Become a Fine Homebuilding Member

to view this article and over a thousand more

Learn More