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The Not So Big House Collection: The Not So Big House and Creating the Not So Big House [Anglais] [Broché]

Sarah Susanka

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.4 étoiles sur 5  32 commentaires
127 internautes sur 129 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Good but uneven: first book 4.5 stars; second one 3 stars 5 juin 2003
Par Henry Perkins - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
[This review of the 2-book collection is a shorter summary of my two longer reviews of each book. For more detail, look at each book review separately. The collection is a good buy, at only about 1/3 more than the "Not So Big House" book alone.]
"The Not So Big House" is an excellent book on efficient use of
space and attention to detail to achieve comfort from a house design. The graphics, layout, and text are all uniformly excellent. The book only disappoints at the end, where Susanka throws together too-brief treatments on solar design, environmental concerns, and ways you might save money on your "Not So Big House". You'll notice a pronounced emphasis on Craftsman-type design in the houses depicted -- lots of natural, exposed wood. There are lots of very useful ideas (including double-duty spaces, built-in storage near the point of use, an "away room", and acoustical privacy) that most architectural books present poorly or not at all.
"Creating the Not So Big House" is a good book, but in comparison to the first book it's rather a let-down. In the first book most photos were much larger and clearer; in this book some are too small to be very useful. Also, Susanka is not a professional writer, and could have used help here like she got from Kira Obolensky in "The Not So Big House". More architectural styles are represented in this book than in the original, but there aren't many new architectural ideas if you've read the first book (although spatial layering, and themes and variations are both new and useful concepts from this book).
Summary: This is a pretty good collection at a decent price. The first book is clearly superior to the second; however, the collection price makes it a reasonable bargain. Get this if you're planning a new house design AND you can afford more attention to detail than standard builder options allow. You'll end up with a personalized, comfortable, Not So Big house with a Not So Small pricetag.
56 internautes sur 56 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 These books will NOT save you money. 8 juillet 2005
Par K. P. Fisher - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
It's not about that. If you're looking for information on building a smaller, lower cost home, these books won't help much. In general, the author's message is to spend MORE per square foot, and learning to get more use out of a smaller space. On the other hand, if you like your neighborhood, but feel you need a bigger house, these books may give you some ideas on remodeling (instead of moving) - which could save you a lot of money by not buying a bigger home that you hate just as much as your old one.

I think these are fantastic books. Excellent photos and floor plans illustrate each point in a crystal clear fashion. The author starts with a few basic concepts and shows their execution in various ways in different houses. A great tool for anyone planning to buy, build or remodel.

In the editions I received, both books have 10" x 10" pages. Excluding the Introductions, Afterward, etc... First book: 187 pages; probably more photos than text; medium-large, easy-to-read print. This covers the basic concepts with dozens of examples. Second book: 250 pages; probably more photos than text; medium print (a bit smaller than the first book, but still easy to read). This book focuses on 25 different homes, highlighting the key features of each.
95 internautes sur 101 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 GREAT FOR BUDGET and IDEALISTIC MINDED! yes, both. 22 avril 2004
Par Todd K Hannula - Publié sur
Building a home: GET ALL YOUR DETAILS IN THE CONTRACT PRIOR TO STARTING, (INCLUDING PRICING OUT YOUR ALLOWANCES TO ENSURE THE BUILDER HAS PUT ENOUGH ALLOWANCE IN CONTRACT), MAKE A BUDGET-Detailed, and get these books: These books have been the cornerstone of our building project. True, she has advice that is for both large and small budgets (some of the details are pricey) BUT..the point of the book is spend same money on smaller scale and you will be happier. If you are building a 5,000+ sqft house, you will find these books amusing. But if you want to build a more reasonable size home, these books are great. We built a 4,000 sqft home (includes basement and above garage) and used several tips (lighting, mail area, etc.).
My advice:
1. Use a builder with design services (our architects were living too large for our budget and they build homes that are not pratical (waste material in sizing).
2. GET EVERY LITTLE DETAIL UP FRONT IN CONTRACT. This was painful for the builder--he did not want to do it. But we are only 1% over budget and only overbudget b/c we could not nail him down on kitchen allowance and he underestimated our taste.
3. Make lists/clip pictures/and dream everyday.
4. Build for expansion...maybe you cannot afford to get it all now. Set it up for easy adding later.
Good Luck!
65 internautes sur 68 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Using this book if you're on a budget 1 mars 2004
Par Un client - Publié sur
I agree that this book isn't as useful as I'd like for those of us who are on a budget when building a house -- we're limited to off-the-rack home designs, and can't afford to have a builder put in all the options available to those who can afford to hire an architect. However, since my spouse and I are pretty handy when it comes to woodworking etc., we will be putting some of the book's principles to use when it comes to building our next house. We've also put some of its ideas into action in our present house, putting in built-ins and other storage spaces that allow us to use the space we have more efficiently. Builders are often happy to make small changes, like moving a wall to enlarge a pantry, at little or no cost. Knowing to look for those sorts of solutions and ask for them have really made our home more user friendly.
The houses on either side of ours are the stereotypical "McMansions" that the book is aimed at counteracting, and I see more of them going into developments every day. I never see my neighbors in their three-story great rooms (which have so many windows it's practically a goldfish bowl). The neighbors love our house, which we chose specifically because it had a big kitchen which looks directly onto the living room -- the space is warm, inviting, and definitely used. If more people read and absorbed Sarah Susanka's ideas, they could make informed choices when shopping for a new home, and maybe we'd see fewer of these huge, unfriendly mini-mansions being built.
34 internautes sur 35 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Grewat idea, even better pictures 3 août 2003
Par Obie's Mom - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
This book has given us many ideas for our own home, and although I don't agree with the author's espousal of the wonders of a 'great room' (which I find an expensive trend that really only counts when you live in a one room cottage) I like her ideas about sightlines, storage spaces and the fact that people don't really need as much space as they think they do. The pictures give concrete examples of Susanka's principles, and the book is organized with nice flow.
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