I am a total magazine junkie, but am an avid recycler, so once a new issue comes in, I purge the old one only tearing out the articles or pictures that inspire me.
Except for Inspired House from Taunton Press. I have all of the 15 issues and have no intention of sending them to the recycle basket. Unfortunately the magazine was canceled this past spring. But the other day I was in CVS and discovered the Great Homes DESIGNED FOR LIVING issue right next to House Beautiful. It’s recap issue of popular past articles. With article titles like: "Add Without Adding On", "A Better House, Not a Bigger One" and "The Healthful House", it is impossible for me to not be inspired.
OK, so I, the architect, am inspired, but what do you get out of it? For anyone thinking about building a house, renovating an existing house, adding on or tearing down, IH can be an invaluable reference and education tool and one that every homeowner should look at even before hiring a design and/or construction professional. Sure, you can look through Architectural Digest at all the celebrity homes, but for the rest of us who are not celebrities with unlimited resources, IH offers many practical solutions to problems that we all face day to day in our houses, apartments and condos.
Sarah Susanka, AIA, one of my favorite architects, was a regular contributor. I appreciate her "build better, not bigger" approach to American residential design. Especially right now with energy prices continuing to go up, concerns over how the building industry contributes to environmental issues and skyrocketing (not an overstatement) construction costs, building over-sized houses may not be what we need.
Back issues are currently available, but are limited since the magazine’s cancellation. They are available at some public libraries. The website has helpful articles and resources If the magazine is hard to track down, Sarah Susanka’s books and articles are available on her website, at bookstores, on Amazon and even at some libraries. I feel her books offer the same types of practical solutions.
I plan to highlight a couple of IH articles that I think will be helpful for those of us that need or want some minor tweaking to our homes to make them function 100% better.