Friday, January 28, 2011

The Exterior

I realized that, until now, I haven't really shown you all that much of the outside of the house besides the front door.  I guess you caught a glimpse in the post about the maple tree, but that's about it.  While it's going to take us forever to do the outside, we have officially begun the process.

I am beyond excited to be working with Bethany Rydmark, an extremely talented landscape designer.  She visited a while back to take measurements and photos and talk about what we want.  Last night she presented us with three different incredible ideas for the front and back yards.  We immediately fell in love with one for the front yard, and then a combination of the other two drawings for the back.  I am unbelievably impatient to get started, but it's January and we're broke.

Anyway, on to the fun stuff!
Here's a little sketch of the design for the front yard.  Please excuse my photographs of the photocopies.  They really do not do Bethany's drawings justice.

drawing provided by Bethany Rydmark Landscapes
Here's what it looks like currently:
The scraggly ornamental cherry trees are going bye-bye.  I'm sorry, but they have to.  They're all up in the wires, the cherries are nothing you'd want to eat, and they create an unbelievable mess of leaves and super-stain-creating cherries.  Plus, they totally block the house during most of the year.  Don't worry, the big tall cedar tree is staying.

A new ornamental shade tree will go in on the left, along with lots of delicious dense perennial plantings.  Pops of orange red and yellow because Bethany knows what I like ;).  I love the low horizontal fencing out front, and she's made a spot for me to have a sign for my business [or just an Orange Door Cottage sign, I haven't decided].

There will be a crushed gravel pathway leading around the right side of the house to the backyard, and - best of all - NO LAWN.  I'm sorry if you're a lawn person.  I really do appreciate some good grass to go barefoot in; but we a are child-free, pet-free couple who do not want to have to store a lawn mower.

Here's a bird's eye view:
drawing provided by Bethany Rydmark Landscapes

Then in the BACK, here is what we have currently:
There is also this thing:
And here's another angle:
Our dreams for the back include. . .
  • a back porch on which there is room to sit, eat, draw, play the ukulele etc.
  • a sweet outdoor dining space for pretty pretty garden parties
  • the ability to still having a parking space back there
  • raised beds for growing fruits and vegetables
Bethany fit all those things in.  We are probably going to combine two of her plans -- the other one has a corner for a compost bin which is important to me.  It's not shown here, but we'll work it in.  Here is the preliminary design for the backyard:
Picture all of that here:
Dense plantings all along the back of our neighbor's fence [if you were standing in the photo above, your back would be to our back neighbor's fence].

Horizontal cedar fencing all warm and yummy like THIS stuff.

The trellis spanning the gap between the car park and the dining area we'd be able to grow grapes on.  Underneath, potentially a hammock.  I love me some hammock time.  For parties, we could just move the car to the street to open up that whole area for dancing and shenanigans and what have you.

It all looks so good to me.  I want to sit on that porch right now.


  1. i love that slope on your roof! i think it is my most favorite of your house :). i cannot wait to see the finished product when you have all the landscape done!

  2. The roof slope is totally my favorite thing too ;). I can't wait for the landscape to be done either -- but I imagine it will take us years!

  3. Love the drawings, so good when you have a direction to work towards even if you can't do it straight away.

    Hope to see new posts soon, but no pressure, I'm sure you're very busy!

  4. Thanks Tara! Yes, I've totally slacked on posting this past month :(. A big flurry of activity is going to be settling a bit next week though and I will have more time to spend here.