Q: How do you design a great Great room?

A: The Great Room is where people live. Most often home designers have the kitchen and great room together as one big open room. The Great Room has to be big enough yet not too big. This is where I see the frustration. I would suggest you understand how you will furnish the room. Then design the room to accommodate enough space for the furnishings and your ability to move about. We find a minimum size of 16’ wide and 22’ long works for most people. It is common to have rooms grow to 20’ wide to 26’ long. Occasionally people go larger.

Typically the fireplace is the focal point. We see mental wrestling matches in how the fireplace and the television might work together. Understanding your focal point in the Great Room is critical. Is it the fireplace or the television? Think of where you want to center your focal point. If the fireplace is the focus then the fireplace is typically centered in the great room. Be aware that when you do this the television will not be centered with your seating arrangement. What I suggest people do is to have all the wiring and cabling for the television be in three places. One set left of the fireplace, one set above the fireplace and one set to the right. This way as time moves on you can adjust placement.

If you are building a home I suggest you put much thought into the Great Room. Visit model homes. Take a tape measure with you to get a sense of scale. If you work with a designer know what your furnishing dimensions are. They typically can draw the dimensions into the floor plan to give you some help.

Build for life.

Next week I will discuss more on windows.

Please submit questions to jon@quailhomes.com Jon can be reached direct at 360.907.5800. Tune into Green Building with Jon Girod on 1550 a.m. on Saturdays at 9 am. See you next week!