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The craftsman
Vol. VII, No. 5 (February 1905)

The open door,   pp. 626-634 ff. PDF (2.7 MB)


Page 633


                               OPEN DOOR
    "It is true, that an average client will ask for more of 'style'
as they call it, than is
possible for the proposed outlay; yet the time taken to educate, if possible,
each indi-
vidual client up to an acceptance of a simple home development, is always
time well
spent; and, moreover, causes much interest when the house is built by comparison
with
its ornate, inconvenient, awkward and characterless neighbors.
    "Among the things which I endeavor to insist upon, is the cutting
out of the 'parlor'
as a useless room in a small house, developing instead a living room. Another
point,
is cutting out back stairs, which, in a small house, are a waste of valuable
room.
    "With the above two items cut out of our 'ideal' plan, we have got
almost back to
the development of the English cottage, with its atmosphere of 'home' and
simple in all
its purpose and expression.
    "Now let us see what the requirements may be:
    "First, a moderate sized vestibule or entrance hall.
    "Second, the most important room in the house, the living room;
this, in the smaller
types, to be used also as a dining room.
    "Third, the dining room of moderate size.
    "Fourth, the kitchen, small, but with good-sized pantry adjacent,
and, if possible,
between kitchen and dining room.
    "Fifth, stairway so situated as to be equally convenient to kitchen,
or living room.
    "Sixth, for this climate a veranda is essential, whether as a development
of the old
English porch or as a separate, and more private out-door room.
    "These seem to be the minimum requirements of first floor, for an
average family.
For second story the bedrooms must fit the size of family, and necessarily
have a good
sized bathroom, and linen closet.
    "This brings us to the point of considering the roof, which, preferably,
should be
kept low, and of decided effect on the final result. The average housewife
will speak
with horror of bedrooms cut into by roofs, little knowing that if a dormer
is well placed
and of suitable size, such a room has a quaintness and hominess of effect,
quite impos-
sible in the full height room. Such a room is never hot in summer, if properly
venti-
lated.
    "As I have outlined above, such the problem seems to me; and in
the limits thereof,
lies the salvation of the small house architecture of to-day and of the future.
    "Let us turn back to the Anglo-Saxon home types, and give new life
to the develop-
ment of the Old World cottage types; that in this, as in all else, we may
not forget the
heritage which is ours, of the life and faith of a glorious Past.
    "You have, Mr. Stickley, a tremendous field open to you, if you
will work out for
the average family new-old types of small houses consistent in their planning,
simple
in their aspect, convenient in all respects, united with the life of the
Past and low in
cost.
    "Types that may have an intimate understanding of the plain and
common life of
the daily toiler, who may be ambitions enough to wish for what is right and
good in
homes.                                                                  
       633


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