Homework: Lessons

big picture and little details

Maybe it’s too obvious to say, but the first step in trying to improve the appearance of your house is to take a good, long look at it. Do this from the vantage point from which you and your guests typically view it. Then ask yourself the following questions. The answers will guide your renovation.

» Do I (or others) think the house looks handsome?
» Is the overall composition appealing?
» Are its prominent features balanced with more minor ones?
» Does it look dull, normal or too busy?
» Do the architecture and landscape work well together?
» Do the colors and details support the home’s design strengths?
» Are there any issues that negatively affect its curb appeal?

My first impression of the example house is that it looks washed out. A longer look reveals that there is actually a lot to work with. By removing the fabric awnings and painting the shutters a dark green for a jolt of contrast, the balance of the overall composition comes alive.

A new, permanent front door overhang, a real Juliet balcony, new garage dormers and coach lamps add minor supporting details. The existing landscape is bolstered by adding more red perennials and removing two evergreen bushes in the generous lawn.

The ‘big picture’ response here was that there was nothing major that needed to be changed. A handful of small improvements, though, make remarkable upgrades to the home’s overall impact.

Homework is penned by Paul Doerner, founding partner of The Lawrence Group. If you would like your home critiqued, contact us at homework@townandstyle.com