Thursday, September 8, 2011

Nonesuch House, Smaller Version

A Detail of the Preliminary Design for Nonesuch House by John Tackett Design.
 The owner of Nonesuch House, a new residence designed by John J. Tackett, originally wanted it to be built of stone with a slate roof.  The change to handmade brick and a standing seam copper roof is a story that would not be of interest to the readers of The Devoted Classicist, nor would the reasoning behind the increase from 5,000 to 8,500 square feet.  (Well, they might find it interesting as the process of home building, but it is too personal for this public venue).  However, it is thought that this preliminary scheme, smaller than the final version, would be of some interest.  The previous post showed the initial presentation of the proposed house in a bird's eye view.  This preliminary design, a quick 1/8" scale free-hand series of drawings showing all the floor plans and exterior elevations, was prepared for approval before commencing the construction drawings.  As the plan was beginning to be developed, I added a shallow vestibule at the main entrance (to be changed in the construction drawings for the larger house to a projecting pavilion with an entrance porch) and a fireplace at the end of the Living Room which occupied the angled wing on the left, a match to a Guest Bedroom not seen on the right.  (The fireplace was located on the long rear wall of the Living Room in the final plan, not visible in the photo of the previous post).
The Rear of Nonesuch House, a new residence by John Tackett Design, as shown in a preliminary drawing for approval.
Another hallmark of new houses by John Tackett Design is that all exterior elevations have architectural significance.  In this case, a wild forest immediately beyond the house prevents any long distance view of the exterior faces of the house, but it would still be seen up close.  While the functions of the interior were given preference over exterior symmetry here, the rear of the house held its own, none the less.  (In the larger scheme, the Master Bedroom occupies a whole final wing of the house above a screened outdoor living room with a fireplace).

A proposal for a latticed terrace above the service court at Nonesuch House by John Tackett Design.
In the previous post showing the service court on the north side of the house, a long narrow terrace tops the covered entrance to the double garage.  French doors lined a passage outside the Dining Room and I had originally feared that service vehicles might be in view in the court below, so I proposed a lattice screen for that terrace.  This lattice also shows in my exterior sketch of the area in the September 6, 2011, post.  As soon as the framing went up, however, it was realized that these concerns over sight lines were unfounded and the lattice was not needed.

Many have commented that the preliminary designs for my new houses and renovations are as interesting as the final schemes, so it is hoped that readers of The Devoted Classicist also find this to be the case.


  1. I love hearing about the whole process! Thanks for sharing these drawings.

  2. What a fabulous rendering, by the description it sounds exquisite with all the right materials..very exciting!

  3. Thank you, Helen, for your comment. I think there is a demand for even smaller houses, with just a few well proportioned rooms, in the 2,000 to 2,500 sq ft range for empty nesters that do not need more than two bedrooms, but want to keep some of their larger scaled pieces.

  4. John, I had meant to comment on your previous post about the beautiful free-hand drawings (to scale, no less) you produced, but work intruded. My apologies and I really do want to say how beautiful they are! Thought made visible by pencil or pen - priceless!

  5. Thank you Blue, for this compliment and all your encouragement and support with The Blue Remembered Hills blog.

  6. Looks interesting. Good work.

  7. Thank you for sharing your refined renderings. It’s always a pleasure to read about your projects.

  8. M.L.H.B., thank you very much. I always enjoy the properties for sale that you select to present on your blog.

    Your comments are always appreciated, PoE. Many thanks.


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