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This 19_20?,!:udor posed a
~ trio of ,challenges: a poorly done addition, a steeply . sloping lot, and maintaining the home's original charm,
It was a fairy-tale house-a beauti u I
brick-and-stone cottage with period detailing on a wonderful tree-shaded lot in a great neighborhoodand in move-in condition, too.
But the. plot thickens. Before Julie and Hunter Walor, the home's new owners, could reach the "happily ever after" part, there were a few problems to solve. An ill-conceived addition had been slapped onto me back of the house 15 years earlier. The addition's large, boxy rooms were out of sync with the more I intimate, detailed, and architecturally interesting rooms in me rest of the house. diminishing the interior's charm. The addition's modern design similarly blemished the exterior. while 3. lO-foot drop between the front of the house and the back meant that the home's channing story-and-a-half facade grew to a full three stories that loomed over the backyard.
What to do? The Walors decided before buying the house that they would remodel, and initially they planned to have the work done before they moved in. But they were advised by their architect and designer to live in the bouse first. "Well. they were absolutely righr," Hunter says. "You really can't imagine how the space works until you five there."
Taking their time before diving in allowed the concept to develop. The problem area. on this house was clearly the old addinon, which housed a two-car garage on the lower level and a family room and kitchen on the main level, Originally, the Walors just envisioned building a master suite on top of the addition and fIXing some leaks between it and the anginal house. As their plansbeca.me dear, though. they decided to raze
above Irlght:: llle Walors added a wel'comlng: stone walk that leads from the street to the front door; Before, the' approach to the home was from tne dri:veway lothe side door.
rigM: French doors lead from the rear deck to, the f'amily room. Because tile deck is 81'80 near the Ikitchen, the' fam ily freqli/entl'y g~lIls and drnesoli/tdoOfS.
opposite: lhe comf'orta_ble' family room offers respite' from the da.y. The' al'lTlo'ire opens to reveal a TV; Better yet. Julie Walor can escape here to take in the view 01' the lush baclqlaId.
nding the flavor
a color-scheme can be a tough task wilen decorating a brand-new room. to start.? Designer Kim Toliver has a commonsense suggestion for narrowing
options: "Start with the hardest-to-find piece," she says, notlngl that most often a rug. In the case of the WaJors' master bedroom, however, it was, the IItIQ~"'-trF!::ItmF!nt fabric that set the tone. "We happened to find that first, anc Julie It right away, so we used that as the' starting point. n Coordinating accessories
furnishings were added, and finally. wall colors picked. FortUnately, In this case, rug was easy to find.
AugustlSeptember 2004 REMOOEUNG IIlEAS 97
the old addition and build a new addition in its place. plus have a detached two-car garage constructed
':At first. we tried to work around the exi ring addition, but what we really wanted to do wa to bring back the main character of the house from the '20s," Hunter says, "It was easier and mer-e economical to pull off the old addition and tart [rom scratch."
Because the Walot decided to stay within the home's footprint. they stuck with the plan to locate a rna ter uite on the top level. project architect Mike Culligan say. UWe had the challenge of making a three-story addition look as though it belonged to the rest of the bouse," he says. "We had to make it work in scale and proportion, and we did that by accentuating the horizontal planes."
inside, the goal was imilar+to make [he addition appear searnles . "The original house wa one of tho e wonderful, classic old houses that just felt right," Culligan ays. "The original rooms are in the right spots they are the right ize, and there are good bones." He took pains to make the rooms inthe new addition feel like they had been there all along.
'There are now arche throughout the house [see "Ihie to Form," below] that lead you through it with
true to form
An arched passageway was one of the most charming features of houses built in the 1920s. These graceful portals defIned room transmons, framed interlor views, and introduced gentle curves Into otherwise linear architecture. Irs a detail that architect Mike Culligan reproduced several times in the addition, copying arches built into the original snuctare. "There's a trick to getting the proportions sImilar," he says. "If you were Just to duplicate the curve and enlarge it, it would look out of proportIon." He made a pattern on the floor first, making sure proportions were balanced. Then he transferred the shape to a plywood template. "It takes hands-on attention on the Job to get It right," he sa.ys.
above left: An arch in the upper-level master bedroom defines the sitting area and is repeated tn the custom doors that open to a balcony railing. The chaise is Julie's favorite reading spot.
left:: The modern master bath gets a traditional look with a marble-topped dual vanity, raised-panel cabinetry, vintage-style 'iiQlrtfixtures, an oversize mirror,and an antique 'dr'essing table .. opposite: A passageway leads from the vanity area to the bathing area. The extensive use of marble and cabinetry that
I matches the vanity provides continuity; the passageway invests the bath area with the' ambience of a private retreat.
opposite: The hom a's garage was formerly tucked under tne overhang where the stone, column is now. By tJUliding a detached gar.age, the house could be reconfigured to' include a finished walk,-out basement.
righ.': A patio for ,entertaining,. a limestone retaining, wall, and II wrought-Iron fence break up the height of thetl1ree-story rear addition and prevent it Dam overwhelming the backyard.
a. nice flow," Culligan says. "There are two way in and out of every room. But it is not predictable+thete is a sense of discovery. All the spaces are different but are also cohesive and integrated with one another."
Those new spaces include a finished walk-out basement on the lower level. Above that are a family room and screen porch on the main level, which replace a big, boxy great-roomthat occupied that spot in the old addition. Botb rooms open onto a deck that the ! Walors use for grilling and informal dining. The addition's upper level features a spacious, treetop master suite with lots of architectural interest, including a vaulted ceiling, a Sitting areathat Julie uses as a reading nook and a large master bath.
Even though these spaces are large, they're treated as a series of smaller rooms that all relate to one anomer. The si.tting area nestles under an arched ceiling, for example. 'Julie and I didntwant a huge room where you felt that. you were just in one space," Hunter says. "1 like having this separate cove to retreat to. It feels like an area that you might find in an old house."
Likewise with the master bath. "I did not want this to end up looking like a big hotel bathroom," Julie says. "So Mike [Culligan] broke it down into three different sections: The vanity is in one, [he shower in another. and the tub and toilet in a third little room."
The finished job i a study in how an addition can mimic the scale, detailing, and overall. feel of a vintage home. It even pleased the former owner.
'f\fter we finished, the woman who had lived here for 30 years came over [0 see it several times," Julie says. "She loved what we had done, and her approval made me feel good, too." HI
FOR RESOURCES, SEE PAGE 122.
By subtracting an old addition, 11 19205 house began to recover from the mistakes of the past. Another smart piece of subtraction was separating an old tuck-under garage from the house.
what it took
WRITER: Dan Weeks PHOTOGRAPHER: Jon Miller, Hedrich-Blessing ARCHiTECT: Michael CUlligan. REiD EDITOR: Hilary Rose
• Removing an ill-conceived, too-contemporary addition that was tacked onto the back of the house 15 years ago.
• Constructing a two-story addition that blends architecturally with the existing structure and allows for a new family room, enclosed porch, and library.
,. Jettisoning an attached garage to make way for a walk-out basement, which allows the back e,xterior of the house to match up more attractively with a backyard that is 1 0 feet lower than the front.
• Developing a spacious master bedroom suite.
• Reworking the kitchen into a more open configuration that now includes the practical asset of a walk-in pantry.
Gather a wealth of remodeling knowledge at - www.bhg.comlsipHlesselltials.
100, R£MOOEUNG IDEAS August/September 2004
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