Blank Space

I’ve often thought that new homes, especially modern ones, can look really barren.  New modern places are usually built above ground a bit (ours will be at least 3 feet off the ground to accomodate for our wiring and plumbing, to allow for ventillation, and also the occasional Houston deluge).  When your house is elevated, there’s that blank space between it and the earth, like this:

image from Momoy

I like the above house a lot (and it may even be constructed of containers), but it just needs something around the base beyond the small front deck.  You could choose to clad it with siding all the way down to the ground, but that may block any access you need to your plumbing and wiring down there.  Instead, you could put up a screen of some sort, like the one below, to at least distract your eye:

image from Small Eco Houses: Living Green In Style book

Or you could use plants, and why not?  Plants are easy to work around or remove if you need to get under the house, and they’ll only help cool the space.  Of course, you want to be careful with the types of plants you place around a foundation, because those with strong root systems (think bamboo or trees) can cause damage.  A vegetable garden would work well here, as would a succulent collection, and many other combinations.  Below are some nice beds planted against the house…and, yes, I realize that not all are actually hiding the open space at the bottom of the homes, but they all could function that way.

image from Design*Sponge

image from Small Eco Houses: Living Green In Style book

image from Apartment Therapy (I love the rusty borders on this one.)

The best idea yet?  A combination of a screen plus plants.  This way, the screen becomes a trellis for the plants, a sun shade, and a distraction from seeing the negative space below the foundation.  The Cordell House, by our own designer, does it really well below:

image from Sweet Green Home


5 thoughts on “Blank Space

  1. I’m so inspired by your blog! I stumbled upon this idea a few weeks ago but I have been repeatedly discouraged by some of my friends because ‘nobody does that’ and ‘nobody’s gonna give you a loan for THAT’, my husband loves the idea and is supportive of it but is starting his last semester of school and is afraid to be distracted by anything (understandable). I’m so glad to see that there’s someone else in Houston who is doing what I DREAM of doing!! It makes me feel like my dream is attainable!! Thank you 🙂

    • It’s totally possible, and if you are in Houston, it’s totally do-able too. There are at least a couple of builders in our area doing container homes, so there are a couple of banks who will totally lend on this type of home. Start looking into it, and maybe by the time your husband is through school, you’ll have a better idea of who you want to go with and what you want. Good luck, and I’d love to hear more! 🙂

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