The difference between well thought out interior design in properly laid out residential house plans with one that has not been properly conceived can be night and day when one considers several important factors of design. One type of regular house plans can look quite unique while others can feel quite bland. The difference in their quality is largely due to an interior designer or architect’s design concepts.

Sizes of spaces and Internal dimensions on residential house plans

living room of a residential house plan

a living room with different surface treatments

It is interesting to note that the dimension of a space within residential house plans defines their spatial quality in such a profound manner. We often perceive space with regard to the volume that we experience within it. This means that the internal dimensions of a space create specific feelings within the minds of the users of that space.

An individual experiences a sense of constriction; enclosure and claustrophobia when the dimensions of a room are constrained on residential house plans. One experiences a sense of being enclosed and somewhat intimate when the size and volume of a space is not large, with the feel of extreme privacy. This is why some exclusive restaurants create specific niches and dining areas with smaller enclosures that are to give a customer a sense of intimacy and privacy.

However, creating large dimensioned spaces or residential house plans gives a sense of grandeur and pomp to a space. Large rooms have wide volumes that create a sense of space and airiness. The end effect of this is that large spaces can give a user a sense of anonymity or being dwarfed by the spatial volume. This feel may be acceptable in a public room or hallway, where the extra volume of air occasioned by the larger space is required. One may remember how in meeting halls for example, there are high volumes with high ceilings.

In residential house plans, this feel may be exploited in the larger more public rooms of a home, especially the lounge and perhaps hallways. If a home is large enough, a designer can choose to create the living spaces with higher ceilings having a double volume. This allows various spaces adjacent to the living space to overlook into it, which can create interesting visual drama in a design composition.

It is thus seen that by manipulating the surfaces enclosing a volume, a designer can manipulate the sense of space that an occupant feels when they are in the space. For example, if the floor plane surface is recessed lower than other levels around the it, that space takes on a different intimate character in contrast with spaces adjacent to it.  This is the idea behind the sunken lounge in residential house plans, hence their popularity with those who are interested in creating a feel of intimacy in their living rooms.

A similar effect can be experienced when modeling residential house plans by simply playing with the ceiling plane of a building. One can lower the ceiling in certain areas where an intimate feeling is desired, creating a feeling of enclosure and humanness of scale. However the opposite, raising the ceiling, creates a larger volume which gives a feeling of public space as the volume dominates the individual within it. It may give a greater volume of air, but the scale of the space makes it feel public and open.


Quality of light and air within residential house plans

The quality of light and air that is experienced within an internal space in residential house plans also goes a long way in defining what the feel of a place is.  Having good amounts of both is an advantage, and is sure to lead to better user experiences within the space. Having less means that a space or even entire house plan may fail to be approved by a municipal council.

A space having plenty of light creates a feeling of openness and a sense of a larger volume. This can be especially pronounced when the light is coming from natural sources, such as sunlight. Day lit spaces will tend to have a large volume feel, and are great for public spaces with more occupants. For example, in shopping malls that have a high level of internal focus, a designer is able to create a feeling of openness within simply by creating a roof light with an atrium that circulates light into the whole of the space.

In residential house plans with high degree of enclosure, one can use creatively placed lighting to create a greater sense of openness in a space, especially by using indirect lighting techniques. Placement of light sources in a line at a ceiling architrave or molding can create a nice light wash feel on partition walls, and can make the space have an illusion of being larger than it actually is.

Having less light in contrast creates a sense of intimacy and enclosure in a space. This is the same effect that some eating places striving to create a more cozy ambience try to create by dimming lights or using different colors of light that have a lower degree of brightness.


Choice of colors  and textures of surfaces with residential house plans

The other area in which a designer can manipulate residential house plans to create interesting moods to internal spaces is with regard to their colors and textures. Using colors that are bright and warm will liven up a space while also creating a larger sense of space.  Having colors that are cooler and darker also creates a sense of space that is enclosed and diminished. Brighter colors would tend to feel wider than darker spaces, which have a tendency to recede.

The tactile quality of surfaces goes a long way in influencing how an individual perceives a given space. Textures that are glossy and reflective will also serve to increase the feeling of size of a space, while those that are matt will do the opposite. This is the rationale behind the use of mirror space in interior design. Mirrors being great reflectors or light and even the actual reflection of internal spaces creates a strong feeling of increased volume within a space, giving an endless character to a space that could be quite constricted.

Modeling an interior space on residential house plans therefore has endless opportunities that can be harnessed based on a designer’s or client’s aspirations. The onus is on the architect or interior designer to decide which design methods to use when shaping spaces on these residential house plans.