Our client’s grandmother had acquired this house in the 1940s, renovated it herself into a quadraplex, and rented it for income during difficult economic times of the 1940s. Our client and his wife approached us to make it a modern family home for themselves.
Because of the family’s history, preserving as much of the old house as possible was particularly meaningful, and how we introduced new elements and materials would be emblematic of a house adapting to one family over several generations — a unique and valued task for us. Our approach on the interior evolved into an effort to reveal the older materials by juxtaposing them with new elements such as a long, space-organizing cabinet ‘spine’ — all within a fairly restrained but varied palate of wood and white materials.
On the exterior, we wanted to be clear that our slim tower addition was new, but that it was also ‘stitched’ formally to the old house — for continuity for the project and for the perception of scale from the street and neighbors.