Patterns of Home: Creating Rooms, Outside and In
Outdoor rooms should be as well considered and as well proportioned as indoor rooms
The essence of a home is a notion that, while hard to describe abstractly, seems to be understood intuitively. We all have a sense of the spaces and places that possess it: entries that invite, kitchens that work and are a pleasure to be in, rooms that feel right, and those that, somehow, don’t. And while such things are, of course, subjective — a matter of taste, preference, desire beneath the varieties of taste and style, there is a definable underlying essence that can be embodied in a wide variety of homes — big and small, traditional and modern.
So how do we capture this essential quality to create houses that are memorable, satisfying, and enduring? After designing hundreds of houses ourselves, we have come to believe that the key is to apply a group of design concepts — what we call patterns — that focus on the experience of being in a home.
In this excerpt from Patterns of Home, we discuss the pattern of Creating Rooms, Outside and In — or, designing a house with a lively balance of interior and exterior spaces.
Max Jacobson, Murray Silverstein, and Barbara Winslow are internationally respected architects practicing in Berkeley, California. Jacobson and Silverstein were part of the editorial team, led by Christopher Alexander, responsible for the highly influential book on architectural design, A Pattern Language. They also wrote The Good House, published by The Taunton Press. Photos by: davidduncanlivingston.com; drawings by: Martha Garstang Hill