Other things took priority. Wiring the house. Plumbing for sinks and the shower. Walls. Ceiling fans and lights. Finally, this September (more than a year after the start of our build) we turned our attention to the exterior of the house again. Bill designed a deck we could build in pieces and take apart, if that ever became a necessity. As soon as we had the platform in place—even before the boards were screwed in place or the railing built—we installed the rest of the house siding (no more Tyvek!) and finished the eaves. Now it feels as though the house is complete.
From our first sketches, we had corrugated metal and pine boards in mind for siding. We like the mix of "industrial modern" and "rural rustic" for our mountain setting. The materials echo the construction of many of the farm buildings in the area—plank barns and metal sheds. They have the added advantage of being affordable choices. Sheets of metal run around $20; eight-foot shiplap boards cost less than $10 each.
Mixing the two materials helped break up the 24-foot-long sides of the house. And it made it possible to give each side a distinctive look. One side, the side that faces the home of our friend/generous landlady, has only wood because she's not a fan of the metal. Two sides have their own pop of color—green and blue doors.
Form follows function in our design. We wanted a home flooded with natural light, so we worked a total of 11 windows and three glass doors into the design of our 250-square-foot house. Putting windows at the same height and keeping their proportions similar hopefully gives the house a sense of balance even though there's a lot of asymmetry going on.
Now that our house has four finished sides, we're working full time on getting the deck finished—more on that later.
Please click on the images below for more details.