No one can be close to others, without also having frequent opportunities to be alone.


Give each member of the family a room of their own, especially adults. A minimum room of one’s own is an alcove with a desk, shelves, and curtain. The maximum is a cottage—like a Teenager’s Cottage (154) , or an Old Age Cottage (155). In all cases, especially the adult ones, place these rooms at the far ends of the intimacy gradient—far from the common rooms.

… the Intimacy Gradient (127) makes it clear that every house needs rooms where individuals can be alone. In any household which has more than one person, this need is fundamental and essential - The Family (75), House for a Small Family (76), House for a Couple (77). This pattern, which defines the rooms that people can have to themselves, is the natural counterpart and complement to the social activity provided for in Common Areas at the Heart (129).

Use this pattern as an antidote to the extremes of “togetherness” created by Common Areas at the Heart (129). Even for small children, give them at least an alcove in the communal sleeping area - Bed Alcove (188); and for the man and woman, give each of them a separate room, beyond the couples realm they share; it may be an expanded dressing room - Dressing Rooms (189), a home workshop - Home Workshop (157), or once again, an alcove off some other room - Alcoves (179), Workspace Enclosure (183) - If there is money for it, it may even be possible to give a person a cottage, attached to the main structure - Teenager’s Cottage (154), Old Age Cottage (155). In every case there must at least be room for a desk, a chair, and Things From Your Life (253). And for the detailed shape of the room, see Light on Two Sides of Every Room (159) and The Shape of Indoor Space (191)

Reference for full-text of Pattern: p. 668high-confidence