Entryway Design | At Home With P. Allen Smith

Uploaded by ehowhome on 19.07.2012

-  Other videos in the series - At Home With P. Allen Smith

Imagine a street with no house numbers. How would you help friends find your house? An
entryway is one of the most, well, defining aspects of your home. It is a signature, your
signature. In my house, when I tell someone how to find it, I say "Hey, it's the house
that's grey with a red roof and white picket fence." You see, even the porch itself says
"Welcome." -- it is a point of entry. But let's talk about the garden itself: Once you're
inside the picket fence here, you go around the garden -- I created several different
entries, several different ways of saying "Welcome" throughout this garden space. Let's
take a little tour. This is the fountain garden. It takes its name from, well, the fountain,
you can see right here. But these entryways really define it -- they give it a sense of
"welcome." What I did here is used elements from the house itself -- and I think that's
very important. You see, I took the same column profile, a simple Doric column from the house,
and created these arbors. Now, I have a 3 foot, just a little over 3 foot, entryway
here, but the sense that you get: It's much larger. Actually, these columns from side
to side, outside to outside, would be about 5 feet. So it expresses itself in a much larger
way. And to carry on this idea of the same element of architecture, I created this entablature,
which matches the entablature on the porch. And then above it, I did a bonnet to support
growing vines or just to cap it off and give it a finished look. And you might think that
these are antiques, fragments from some other building or something like that --you can
certainly use that-- but I actually had these made to fit these arbors. And if you look
at the very top, we just used a fence post finial, a little fleur de lis at the top to
finish it off. Now, if you take a look at the sides, I had the same welding shop create
some panels on either side to really give this a sense of entry. And when you're talking
about entryways, you can't forget about the floor. For instance, here, I have brick panels
laid down on sides, with a brick border that serve as the foundation for these columns.
If you look at the walkway leading up to the house in the front, you'll find that walkway
and the steps are made of the same brick. So I'm carrying that same element through
the garden. I filled in with just gravel, because I love to hear that crunch through
this natural material. Now, let's take a look at some other examples of entryways in this
garden. Over here on the side, I wanted to make sure that I had an entryway for guests
to come in from this angle, up to the house. This entry serves two purposes: One is to
say "hey, enter here." And secondly, it's a support for this rose. This is a New Dawn
Rose, and when it blooms it is fantastic. This bonnet is designed where the pitch of
the bonnet is similar to the pitch on the roof of the house. And what I used on the
top to help support this arching rose is some rustic limbs form cedar trees -- gives it
sort of a unique quality. And you can see here with these sides panels, I used the same
type of material. Again, the floor here is red brick, which matches the red brick from
the other arbor as well as the entryway. You see, by using elements that you see with the
house, it creates harmony in the garden. This continuity is a predictable element that brings
a sense of cohesion to the entire landscape. So let's go take a look at another one. Now,
this space, which is another entry, but it's also a living space, is called the breezeway
or the loggia. Now, I want you to think about something. You're probably thinking: Allen,
this is really dull because you're using the same materials over and over. I'm daring you
to be dull. If you use these same materials over and over in key places, it does indeed
create a sense of harmony -- and that's what it's all about. Just follow the precedent
of the house itself. The house was built originally in 1905, then in 2005 --a 100 years later--
I made this connector. Yeah, 100 years. I know I don't look like I'm a 100 years old.
I think I'm holding up pretty well, don't you? So what I did is I built the garage and
this connector, but I used the same elements from the house. It's so important to think
that way. This entryway or passage, from one side of the garden to the other side of the
garden, is reminiscent of the porches of this 100-year-old house. The beadboard ceiling
-- again, we're back to the white columns. And of course, the floor, again, is the red
brick. Be dull, don't be afraid of it. Come on, let me show you a couple of other arbors.
Now, this entry into this small, narrow, side garden couldn't be simpler to create. What
I did was planted a hedge and carved an arch in it. Not only does it allow me to keep in
line and cut this each time a shear the hedge --I can clip it with precision-- but it also
allowed me to pull the tops of these two hedges that are closest to this entryway over to
create the arch itself. And this is a Camellia hedge, a Sasanqua Camellia hedge -- it blooms
in the fall. It's covered with pale pink blossoms -- it's really pretty. Now, you might say
"Well, what does this garden look like in the winter?" Well, I gotta tell ya', with
these architectural elements through the garden, when it snows, it becomes a magical place.
So if you'r interested in any of these entryway ideas or the plans or designs for them, you
can learn more about them in my first book "Garden Home." If you're enjoying these segments
on style, tell a friend about them. And subscribe to eHow Home.