There’s nothing I love more than flipping through magazines and books looking at gorgeous homes. When I was building my house, photos from books and magazines were my primary inspiration in designing our Victorian carriage house.
Now that the housing market has begun its rebound, I’m beginning to consider ideas for the main house (to be built on the same site as our carriage house). I am not sure what I want this time, but my starting point is this: a gorgeous post and beam home that suits New England and complements the Victorian-style of the carriage house (which will then be used as our 3-car garage and guest house once the main house is finished). As before, I am turning to magazines and books for design inspiration. Here are 6 books that are my current favorites.
1. Creating a New Old House: Yesterday’s Character for Today’s Home, by Russell Versaci. The Taunton Press. Copyright 2008. $39.95.
This book isn’t specifically about timber frame homes, but it does feature some beautiful homes that have great beam work. I absolutely love photos of the Spanish Colonial Revival home, starting on page 25. Many people think the post & beam is synonymous with colonial, barn or lodge styles but these photos do a great job showing how beautiful timber frames can be used as the framework for European influenced homes.
Check out page 27 to see how to do a post and beam Spanish Colonial porch, or refer to page 29 to see gorgeous beams used to evoke Spanish Colonial style in the entryway.
2. Barn Style Living, by Tina Skinner & Tony Hanslin. Schiffer Publishing Company. Copyright 2005. Available for $29.95 through Yankee Barn Homes.
This book shows photos and sample floor plans for 30-plus timber frame homes. I just love these:
3. Ultimate Horse Barns, by Randy Leffingwell. Voyageur Press. Copyright 2008. $34.95.
This book is aptly named. The horse barns in this book will make your jaw drop. Check out my absolute favorite – the barn at Grand Central Farm in Brewster, New York on page 161. Click the link to see the barn. Due to copyright issues I couldn’t post the photo here, but it’s worth the jump!
Another show stopper is the Hamilton Farm in Gladstone, New Jersey on page 111. When the building is the historic headquarters of the United States Equestrian Foundation, you know it’s going to be good. Follow the link to see the photos. The brick and tile work on the interior is absolutely amazing.
4. Timberframe Interiors, by Dick Pirozzolo and Linda Corzine. Gibbs Smith. 2000. $39.95 (hardcover).
If you love timber frame, you will love this book. My favorite room is on page 164, where an owner used the timber frame great room for a full bar. The timbers give it a saloon feel, while the cathedral ceilings of the great room evoke the feeling of a church! What a contrast – a bar that feels like both a saloon and a church!
5. Creating the French Look, by Annie Sloan. Cico. Copyright 2008. $24.95
You might think French style is not synonymous with post and beam style, however, weathered beams are often a hallmark of true French Country or Provence-style homes. If you are inspired by the casual, effortless elegance of that aged French look, you will find this book to be a wealth of information.
6. The Farmhouse: New Inspiration for the Classic American Home, by Jean Rehkamp Larson. The Taunton Press. Copyright 2006.
This book is a gold mine for taking the classic farm house and showing what’s possible when applying today’s modern features and technology while never losing the essence of the original style. I love every house in this book!