Who doesn't love a good before and after story? Nichols Design Group was hired to turn a relatively modest 80's era split level in Weston into a "cool" home for the client without making it ostentatious. We needed to add garage bays, create dedicated guest quarters, design new front entryway, improve curb appeal, connect the house to the beautiful, natural landscape which surrounds the house. It was an aggressive scope for the budget, further complicated by very little wiggle room to expand the home's footprint. We spent nearly two years in design development before we found the intersection of "want" "need" and "budget". The client has been very hands-on in every phase - which at the end of the day (speaking for myself) has made me a better designer.
One of the most useful things I learned in my merchandising career is how to take control of what people see. It's the same in fashion, merchandising, graphic design, photography, marketing, interior design and architecture. We can't always just "tear it down" - real life and real budgets prevail in the real world. How to bring order to a disorganized, misshapen facade - we had out of balance massing, varied window sizes, odd placement, lack of symmetry, no focal point, no clear entrance -
Like a beautiful woman with a lumpy shape - What do you do? Create interest from the neck up - beautiful scarf, necklace, earrings, make up, haircut. It's no different here - we added dormers to draw the eye up, created interest with varied shingle shapes, black window sashes to downplay odd window sizes and styles, added shallow pergola to break up the massing, added grey lattice work below the pergola as a tool to knit structure and landscape together.
With the home sited behind a berm of ledge and woodlands - barely visible from the street, we saw an opportunity to expand the outdoor living space on the "front" of the house, and integrate the front-facing rooms with a new front terrace through french doors in the new atrium/foyer.