The Not So Big House – Sarah Susanka with Kira Obolensky
As you know from reading this blog, I’ve been obsessed with living a more sustainable and efficient life as well as designing more sustainable and efficient homes based on shipping container and SIP modules. The Not So Big House – A Blueprint for the Way We Really Live is a book that I’ve come across several times over the last couple of years and for whatever reason it just hasn’t made it into my personal library until now, and I’ve got to say my library has suffered for it. In fact, in the very first chapter Sarah says “What…I suggest is that when building a new home or remodeling an existing one, you evaluate what really makes you feel at home. In other words, concentrate on, and put more of your money toward, what you like rather than settling for sheer size and volume.” This sums up for me what is at the heart of this book and the lesson it tries to impart on current and future homeowners.
Throughout the book Sarah takes us on a journey from one beautifully designed home to another explaining all along the way that our idea of the “modern home” is essentially a den of wasted and unused spaces that were never meant for modern living or entertaining. She offers us an alternative that is the Not So Big House ideal of homes designed with purpose, designed for THE homeowner not A homeowner. Again, Sarah says it best: “The Not So Big House offers a way to bring the soul back into our homes, out communities, and our society’s fabric. The house of the future will be Not So Big – and an expression of who we are and the way we really live.”
While reading this book I learned a great deal about where we’ve fallen short in residential design and where we can improve by getting back to designing homes for people instead of developers or that “ideal” client and I want to pass it on. Please leave a comment below to enter and on February 11th, via random drawing, one reader will win my copy of The Not So Big House, second edition, by Sarah Susanka. The winner will be notified via email and mentioned in a new post on this blog.