Home Design Review

visual appeal and character

How attractive and pleasing your project is, entirely has to do with its’ design. A well- designed project will ‘fit’ the lot and the surroundings, and look as though it really belongs there.

But this doesn’t just happen by chance; it is the result of careful and deliberate effort. For lasting appeal, the ‘design elements’ have to work harmoniously together – the ‘three- dimensional forms’, the rooflines, the heights, proportions, window arrangements, use of materials, and so on.


How well your dream home functions and fits your everyday living is a direct result of the design. This begins with how well your layout is conceived, and how it relates to your site – taking advantage of all opportunities, locating certain ‘spaces’ to receive direct sunlight, or affording privacy from a neighbor. Is the kitchen positioned close to where you will be bringing in groceries? Can you overlook the backyard or lake when you are preparing a meal? Is there a washroom conveniently located for quick access from the outdoors?

The design of individual spaces is equally important – are they properly sized for realistic furniture layouts and circulation, do you have enough counter space and cabinets? Is the main entry large enough for your guests, with space for a bench to take off boots? Are the bedroom closets properly sized – for all of your clothes? And so on.


Design will also affect a less tangible, but equally important quality: the comfort of your ‘spaces’. You may not realize this, but comfort really has nothing to do with the quantity of space; it has to do with the quality of space. For example, bigger isn’t always better – often charm, coziness, character, and comfort may be sacrificed with spaciousness.

For your spaces to be comforting and ‘feel right’, careful consideration must be given to a number of design elements, such as proportions, sizes, heights, scale, flow, balance, contrast, natural light, and use of materials, to mention a few.