Basic Concepts

Log home designs can be divided in several ways. Understanding log home designs and basic concepts can help you select the design that is best for you. As you are getting involved in the design process, consider these basic concepts as they apply to your design:

o Shape of Log Used – the logs used in your log home can be shaped in various ways. They can be full round, D-shaped, square shaped, rectangular shaped or Swedish cope style. D-shaped logs will have one side of the log flat with the other three sides being rounded. The Swedish cope style has a portion of the bottom of the log cut out so that the log rests more securely on the log beneath it in the wall.

o Type of Log Wood – there are many wood species commonly used in log home designs. There is no such thing as a “best” wood to use, rather, each species has advantages and disadvantages. Wood types include cedar, cypress, Douglas fir, hemlock, lodgepole pine, oak, spruce, white pine and yellow pine. If log home designs, construction and maintenance are done properly, any of these woods will provide many decades of enjoyable log home living. If not designed, built and maintained properly, none of the woods will hold up very well.

o Peeled or Milled Logs – peeled logs used in log home designs will have the bark and outer sapwood removed. This can be accomplished by hand or by the mill’s machinery. Milled logs are run through machines that will create the desired log shape when finished. The log surfaces will be more smooth and uniform in milled logs.

o Corner Systems Used – here are the four main corner systems used in log home designs:

1. Butt-and-Pass – these corners are formed when one log stops where it meets the intersecting log, and the other log extends past the corner. There are many variations involving the shape of the area where the logs butt. Usually the passing logs have a cutout into which the butt log fits.

2. Dovetail Corners – these corners are used mostly with square or rectangular logs. The end of each log is cut in such a way that produces a fan-shaped wedge. As the logs are stacked, the ends of one wall’s logs will be locked into the perpendicular logs.

3. Notched – notched corners are also known as saddle-notch. A saddle-shaped notch is cut into the bottom of each round log so that this notch on the bottom of the top log straddles the top of the log coming from the perpendicular wall. Both logs then extend past the corner. The saddle-notch is one of the most traditional corner intersections used in log home designs and is favored by many handcrafters. These type of corners are very strong, but they do require more construction time. Notched corners are also easier to seal and hold corner logs better than butt-and-pass.

4. Post Corners – the log ends are cut off perpendicular to the length of the log and joined at the corners using what amounts to vertical posts. This type of construction is not as labor intensive. This corner style sacrifices some of the traditional log cabin or log home look. Using post corners will require a different engineering treatment than other log corners, because the vertical posts do not settle with the horizontal logs.

One of the best ways to learn more about log home designs is to view log home plans that have been successfully built. Every plan that you examine can give you design ideas that you had not thought of. Trying to create brand new plans from scratch can be time-consuming and expensive. You can save considerably if you can find great plans that exist that you like. Just be sure the plans service can make changes to the plans so they become exactly what you want. That way, you really can create the log home design that will provide you many years of enjoyment.

Most Dramatic Home Design Elements

When many people think of home interior design they often conjure images of high priced consultants and even more costly furnishings. Yet each day we walk right past or over the most important and least expensive design elements in our homes. These are basic design elements that set the tone for any other decoration we will accomplish in our home. But like most things in life, the simple things are often overlooked or taken for granted.

The first of these design elements is so basic and yet so under-utilized that it is almost laughable, and just so happens to be the cheapest tool you can use to enhance the appearance of your home. PAINT. Before we can design any other element in our home we must first set the tone and depth of the backdrop. We have to paint the interior of any design area to enhance all other design elements. Before we can furnish or accessorize any room in the house we have to paint first. Color trends have changed and if it has been awhile since you last painted your home, you may want to give serious attention to this basic but necessary design tool. There are many more wonderful colors to choose from now and the colors you choose will set the mood and the backdrop for any home design plan. (We have some suggestions on how to use color to compliment you home on our web site).

The second fundamental tool that will make or break your interior design plans is your choice of window coverings. Here again we see that so many times we look right past this basic design element and focus on things that really do not make the impact that a proper WINDOW COVERING can achieve. Installing the proper window covering in the right colors will add depth and perspective to your overall design and the effect is phenomenal. Once again, if it has been some years since you updated your window coverings, you may find that other attempts at enhancing your home fall flat because of an outdated covering or color. Most window dressing is inexpensive and the current trend is toward the most simple of styles, so this means less money you have to shell out to update your home design.

The last tool I would like to discuss is also just as important as the first two and yet so often overlooked that literally we walk all over it. You must update your FLOORING. You can do all you want with furnishings and such, but if you set everything on and against a backdrop of outdated flooring and flooring colors, you have pretty much just wasted your time. What is that I hear? Someone is complaining about the cost of updating to modern flooring. You can update your floors without spending a fortune. Many hard surface floors, such as laminate, are designed to be installed by the homeowner, as a do-it-yourself project and this saves you money. Still too much for you to spend right now? Let me ask you this. Would most of you drive around in a twenty-year old car? No! And yet many of us think nothing of walking around on twenty years of dust, dirt, allergens and just plain outdated color. Your home and your family deserve better. If you are renting or living in a dorm or other such circumstance, you simply cannot replace that outdated floor. Or can you? If all else is impractical, then consider using an AREA RUG. They come in all sizes, shapes and colors, and can be the perfect solution to your flooring problem. It is a fact, that you will not browse any interior design magazine without seeing an area rug on the floor. That is how important they are to home design. You will also be pleasantly surprised at how reasonably priced rugs can be.

There are many area rugs on the market that are definitely cheap. Now let’s not go too cheap though, because an area rug is a design element that can last a lifetime. And it’s portable. You can always take it with you, or move it to another area when you adjust your home design. Rug styles also last, they don’t become outdated the way that other design elements can. And the best news is that a good quality wool rug does not have to cost a fortune. We feature 10’x13′ area rugs on our web site that are less than $500.00. This is quality and economy that will last a long time in your home. Many of these rugs were designed to last twenty-five years or more.

If you have a tired and outdated home design, remember three important tools of basic, and inexpensive design. You and your family will be much more comfortable in a home that is well balanced by the backdrop of Paint, Window Coverings.

Elements of Modern Home Design

Updating a home involves many elements of change, which involves anything from modern furniture and artwork to room designs. A home can be transformed into a contemporary dwelling with features and accents that have a 21st century edge and style. Modern home design elements can add a touch of style and design to any home.

Modern homes can mean many things to many people, but all of them point to non-traditional style and features. Contemporary home furnishing outlets have home furnishings available, including things like glass panel kitchen cabinets and island kitchens with bar stool seating. These attractive furnishings can really serve as an attractive centerpiece for contemporary kitchen design.

Homeowners can also add updated features to their bathrooms as well to make them look neater and more spacious. Wall mounted cabinets are a great way to store bathroom items as well as give the room a decorative look. Some people choose to remodel their bathrooms with stylish vanity sets that are functional and attractive fixtures for bathing and pampering as they prepare for their day. These attractive bathroom accents add a touch of style and grace to a bathroom space.

Living room areas also lend themselves well to modern design features that can incorporate amazing colors, geometric shapes and contemporary furniture pieces. People can buy furniture coverings with vibrant colors and design patterns to enhance the modern color scheme and design. The living room will stand out and people can enjoy the contemporary feel when they entertain and relax in the room.

Room design and furnishings are not the only ways to modernize a home, however. Many homeowners are choosing to add additions to their homes to accommodate relatives or borders in addition to extra rooms, such as laundry rooms off of the kitchen or entertainment rooms the whole family can enjoy. Environmentally friendly features are also popular that help to brighten the home, save money and improve the environment. Solar paneled windows and energy efficient doors can really help to insulate a home and make it cost effective.

Modern home design elements can enhance a home and make it look more attractive and inviting. Additions can help to modernize a home and expand the possibilities of contemporary styles and design. Even small changes, such as updated furniture, color schemes and room design can bring a modern touch to one’s living space. After all, a home is not truly yours until you add some aspect of yourself into its design.