The American home may be shrinking, but not the great american dream. Americans are still living large, just doing so in smaller spaces.

To some trend-watchers, the down-scaling of the American home comes as good news. Architects, designers, and social observers say our willingness to resize our floor space means Americans are rethinking the way we really live and how we use whatever space we do have. Home, they say, has become less about impressing others and more about making ourselves happy. And since we are mostly Boomers — that tidal wave of Americans born between 1946 and 1964 — who have long been accustomed to getting what we want, happiness is often defined in terms of luxuries and personal amenities.


“Natural materials like American Hardwoods are redefining the word ‘luxury,'” said Linda Jovanovich of the American Hardwood Information Center. “Hardwoods bring richness and warmth to even small rooms, whether it’s used on the floors and walls, or crafted into built-ins. Custom hardwood furnishings like bookcases and cabinets make a home personal, yours alone, and isn’t that the ultimate luxury!”

More ideas are to use a sectional sofa to delineate an intimate seating area within an open floor plan. And find a standing wood-panel screen to create privacy or isolate a work space, say, in a bedroom office area. And don’t forget to make it sustainable. Living green is a high priority for the anti-McMansion generation.

So while the size of the “average” U.S. home may be shrinking, remember that it’s more about a space that satisfies the psyche in the process that defines the ultimate in luxury. Think custom kitchens with pro-quality appliances, posh home-spa baths and the beauty and warmth that only come with hardwood flooring, cabinetry and millwork.


This article is courtesy of Home Improvement News and Information Center.