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Inside the Not So Big House: Discovering the Details That Bring a Home to Life Paperback – Oct 2 2007

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Inside the Not So Big House: Discovering the Details That Bring a Home to Life + The Not So Big House: A Blueprint for the Way We Really Live + Creating the Not So Big House: Insights and Ideas for the New American Home
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"Sarah Susanka has teamed up with design writer Marc Vassallo to help her readers incorporate the details of not-so-big living into their decorating schemes...As the 25 homes featured in the book demonstrate, such additions combine good looks with function to unify and enhance interior spaces.""- Boston Globe"
"Susanka has become the poster girl for an architectural movement that worships scale and simplicity. Here she and Vassallo go inside 23 not-so-big houses to illustrate the details -- built-in storage, diverse ceiling heights and materials, color, simplicity, tricks of the eye -- that not only give a house personality but also make it more livable."
- Lynette Evans, "San Francisco Chronicle"

About the Author

Sarah Susanka is one of the leading residential architects in the United States. Her first book, The Not So Big House, topped best-seller charts in Home & Garden categories across the country in its first year of publication. To date, over 500,000 copies have been sold. As a result of her first book and the new vision it holds for the American home, she was featured by US News and World Report as one of 18 innovators in American culture. Susanka has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show, the Charlie Rose Show, and NPR’s Diane Rehm Show, as well as on numerous radio shows around the country. She is a former principal and founding partner of Mulfinger, Susanka, Mahady & Partners, Inc., the firm chosen by LIFE magazine to design its 1999 Dream Home.
Marc Vassallo received a degree in architecture from Cornell University, interned at a small architectural office in Colorado, and designed and built his own energy-conserving house in Virginia before turning his attention fully to words. He has since published numerous magazine features and short stories, and was awarded an NEA fellowship for his fiction. During eight years with The Taunton Press, Vassallo served as a magazine story editor and chief editor, and as the company’s editorial director. Vassallo lives with his wife, Linda, and son, Nicky, in New Haven, Connecticut, where he writes frequently about home design and is also at work on a novel and a collection of stories. His second book with The Taunton Press, The Barefoot Home, published in September, 2006

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
Shortly after I started my architectural training I moved into a house with 15 other architecture students. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 45 reviews
97 of 105 people found the following review helpful
Not for Everyone Feb. 22 2006
By S.A.L. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book follows up on the other books by the author, The Not so Big House, and Creating the Not so Big House. When published, those books created a sort of mini-revolution in the "bigger is better approach" to homes.

This book follows up to the original idea of a not so big house by offering attractive and functional details one can add to it.

There is nothing overtly wrong with this book, it is beautifully photographed, but I did not gain a whole lot from reading it. As the title indicates, it's about detail, the stuff that is extra to an already well built house, (ie built in bookshelves, window seats, etc.). Because the possibilities with detail are nearly endless, the author chooses some of her favorites and devotes the book to exploring them. If those details are exactly what you are looking for in your plans, this book is probably worthwhile, albeit pricey, but if the details are not suited to your lifestyle or aesthetic consider skipping it.
140 of 154 people found the following review helpful
Living Well in a Little Space Nov. 7 2005
By John Matlock - Published on
Format: Hardcover
There was a time when I wanted and even could say needed a McMansion type house. At the time I had a wife and a house, a boy and a girl, a dog and a cat, a car and a pickup. But the boy and girl grew up, the dog and cat passed on, wife went away and the house wasn't where I wanted to live (or clean, or cool, or heat). So I moved to a less than 1,000 foot house whose age was listed by the tax assessor in 1942 as 'old.' And now I'm in the remodelling mode.

This book is a fairly typical architecture picture book. What makes it unique is that it is filled with houses about the size of mine. It shows the interior treatment that some 23 small house owners have used to get the most effective use out of the small space available.

What I wanted, and what I got out of the book was a lot of ideas about how to do things. I haven't decided just yet what I'm going to do, but re-doing the floor is next. Then the kitchen. I think I want to do something like page 56 of this book.
42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Yet Another Winner from Susanka! March 1 2006
By Reed Clark - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book (as all of Susanka's books) is ideal for both the home owner as well as the house hunter.

Regardless of whether you have a large or small home or an expensive high-end or sheet rock box, this book will help you turn your house from a place where you reside into a home where you LIVE.

My only complaint about this book is the lack of floor plans. However, you can download most of the floor plans of the projects in this book by going to Susanka's web site (if you can't find it, just google "notsobighouse").
57 of 64 people found the following review helpful
Less is most definitely more March 21 2006
By Michael W. Hawkins - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In this astonishing book, which is filled with wonderful ideas, as well as being a beautiful coffee table book, we are granted an inside look at a truly new concept in home design in our age of teardowns and mega-mansions, a concept that smaller can be more satisfying than larger, if properly done. Here we are presented with something seldom viewed these days, how to make a house a home. There is something for every taste herein, and it is even multi-cultural, with oriental viewpoints as well on both furniture and flow of the home. Spend some time with this excellent book to see how every size home can be made more personal and beautiful, no matter what the budget.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Another great book Feb. 23 2006
By K. Keller - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Sarah Susanka's books finally explained why I've never been comfortable in many large homes and why I've always hated huge master suites with tall ceilings. I've been asked many times who my designer is and have friends and colleagues asking me to help with their home design. I just sold a home and buyers were asking my advice with their design problems. The home sold within a week for a record amount for the neighborhood. I owe it all to Sarah's books for rewiring my way of thinking about architecture and design.