Sunday, December 22, 2013

XHouse1 First Build - project foundations

Its a long path to building a house, for almost anybody. If it is going to be a house that you love, one that you invest your spirit into, a house that represents who you feel you are, it rarely happens in the blink of an eye.

For our XHouse1 customer (we'll call them MJ for short) the story goes back 15 years, back before we even began selling houseplans. MJ and family had built their own house in 1998. That home was built at a time when MJ and spouse had not thought that much about what they liked or wanted in a house. But the project to build their own house started them on an interest in house design which persisted even after their first home was done.

footings are poured at the Indiana XHouse1 site

So this side interest in home design led to some familiar sources. MJ found the ideas and concepts in Sarah Susanka's Not So Big House movement very appealing. Exposure to modern residential design through various sources eventually led to the realization that modern design really appealed to them. And yes, Dwell magazine drifted in and out of this picture, but was not responsible for this shift in outlook.

Somehow this path eventually crossed with our houseplan catalog, before the XHouse1 design was posted, before the XHouse group of plans was launched. So MJ began following our catalog and watching other customers build our plans, watching new designs be introduced.

The XHouse1 design began with a discarded option from a custom design I was working on in 2007-08. I felt the interior spaces were compelling, and I loved the way it resolved into a simple exterior volume. So I made the decision to develop this design into a full fledged houseplan and offer it to others. In May 2009 we published the Design Prints and the XHouse1 entered the catalog officially as the first design in our new XHouse collection.

MJ had watched the development of the design as it was posted to our blog and once the house was posted to the catalog it jelled for him. The house had everything they needed to accommodate their family of four, and it did so within a minimum area - for them this was a Not So Big House. A few months later in 2009 MJ got the Design Prints and became convinced that this was the house that they wanted. But there was no rush and the time to build again was not right then.

foundation walls begin at the Indiana XHouse1 site

The story, and photos of project progress, will continue so please follow!

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