This 1917 farmhouse in rural Northern California was big on charm but lacked a basic modern convenience: The only bathroom was small and located downstairs, beyond the kitchen - quite a trek from all the bedrooms upstairs. REDHOUSE solved this problem by creating a shed dormer over an existing 6’x8’ attic storage area. Now these eco-conscious home owners enjoy a comfortable and convenient bathroom upstairs with “green” design features such as dual-flush toilet, FSC-certified framing lumber, refinished fir subfloor instead of new flooring, zero-VOC paint, salvaged door, salvaged marble countertop, recycled content insulation, and plumbing for grey waste water diversion. Because of the home’s remote location and the verdant tree outside, the clients are able to enjoy “bathing in the treetops” with full length windows on either side of the sink and a skylight above the shower. By using a traditional dormer design, and matching the siding and window proportions, from the exterior the addition blends well with the existing house.
The homeowners of this modest post-war cottage were in desperate need of a second bathroom and studio space for the husband, a very talented painter. REDHOUSE rose to the challenge creating a beautiful and functional addition that had minimal impact on the already small backyard. By careful planning, we were able to carve out a light-filled high-ceilinged artist's studio space while still maintaining the existing low roof line on the exterior.
The Italianate Victorian farmhouse, built in the 1870s by W.S. Williams, is one of the oldest structures still on its original site in Davis. After years of neglect and poorly constructed additions, REDHOUSE was called in to oversee the restoration (per the National Trust guidelines) of the original building as well as adding a thoughtful and appropriate addition at the back.
Bringing back the original detailing required some sleuthing (see the photos) as well as some educated guessing. Chris' passion for, and knowledge of historic structures was put to the test. And the results speak for themselves.
The house now retains its original Victorian charm yet has all the functionality and convenience of a modern home. Here's to another 140 years of enjoyment in the home!
REDHOUSE brought new life to one of the oldest homes in Davis
before - years of neglect and poor repairs
Shadows of the original porch posts and an old window
Found in a old photo of the garden - remnants of the original porch posts were used to build a garden pergola
New porch posts and window bring back the original beauty of the house
View of the front porch and new bay window
the original bay window was removed sometime in the 1940s
An old photo of the original bay window
The new bay window
Restoration began with stripping away previous poorly constructed additions
The new rear addition - detailed to match the original but the roof is stepped down and the wall jogged a few inches to clearly delinate new from old.
This artistic and active family needed more space but wanted something more than a "shoebox" addition. REDHOUSE created a vibrant and light filled second story that is integrated into the existing architecture.
Rather than detracting from the original, this addition adds charm and character to the facade of the house.
Here only traveling salesmen and strangers use the front door; Friends and family come through the side door behind the garage. The new stairwell was located in the functional and welcoming family entry. The french doors and brick were salvaged and relocated, as were many features in this home
Garage and family entry beyond
front facade after
front facade before
in 1936, this Woodland home still had many of its original features including
the kitchen cabinetry and tile countertops, beadboard in the laundry room, even
the original furnace in the basement!
The home owners wanted a master bedroom suite and a more functional
kitchen but were adamant in saving the original charm. REDHOUSE was more than
happy to save this gem! The worn kitchen
sink was replaced with an exact match while still being able to save the
original tile countertop. A wall of new cabinets (with a new range and modern
refrigerator) and tile countertops were
built to match the exiting on the opposite side of the room. A sympathetic
addition to the back of the house contains a charming breakfast nook and mudroom
that leads to the new master suite.
With a view of the golf course but a dreary and unusable patio, the clients came to REDHOUSE to add outdoor living space. The patio cover and outdoor fire place make this area comfortable in any kind of weather.
Copper gutters and a rain chain carry water off the roof
A hybrid 50’s ranch style house, which had been previously remodeled badly, was completely transformed. The owners wanted a large “English cottage” style home to complement the lush, mature landscaped back yard.
The remodeling was extensive: the entire house was gutted except for a study and guest bathroom at the front of the house, which remained relatively unchanged. Bumping out part of the house in the front allowed for a two-car deep garage in place of the existing one-car garage as well as additional space to enlarge the kitchen and add a small study. A second story was added and includes two children's bedrooms, a family/guest room and a small bathroom. The dining room was also enlarged by a small addition in the back.
The master bedroom suite and living room/dining room received new insulated glass divided-light wood windows and French doors overlooking the park-like back yard. The new windows not only increased energy efficiency but contributed to a more traditional feeling to the house. An asymmetrical vaulted ceiling in the living room/dining room, lit by simple low voltage halogen lights adds to the openness of these rooms without detracting from the attractive view.
Chris even painted the trompe l'oeil ceiling
An architect by profession but a poet at heart, Chris was asked to write a poem about the Freeport Water Intake Structure. The poem describes the design concept. The first stanza is engraved at the center of the plaza.
The smallest stone falls–– Into the silent river, Into the Sacred River. And so the ripple begins.
A dragonfly, wings aflame, A flute aloft,a flutter, A seraphim,a whirlwind
That bends the reverent Reeds.
Where the circles commingle, Grassy ring, water ripple, Two creates One, Earth Spirit Flesh–Vesica Piscis. Poet Fish bubbling babbling Overflowing water words Tongue struggling tail thrashing Inhale!–his invocation:
O River Voices resound From Stone and Bubble and Wing! Our–smallest–action -Changes – every thing.
Twist of Fait
This is a collection of photos from my personal home, built in 1913 by W.R. Fait. We were on the 2007 Stroll Through History Tour, the 2009 Dickens in the Valley Home Tour and our "pumpkin house" has been a Halloween favorite in the neighborhood for years.
"How far that little candle throw his beams, so shines a good deed in a weary world"