Draw­ing Board

About Face

Timber Home Living - - Contents -

Buy­ing a brand new timber frame home isn’t an op­tion for ev­ery­body. There’s a host of rea­sons for this. Maybe the lo­ca­tion of your cur­rent home is too good to give up. Per­haps you can’t bear the thought of leav­ing be­hind a life­time of fam­ily mem­o­ries or, more prag­mat­i­cally, you’ve paid off your cur­rent mort­gage and the thought of tak­ing on a new one makes you go a lit­tle pale.

Good news: You don’t have to tear down your ex­ist­ing home to get the timber-frame look. Need proof? Just check out the be­fore and af­ter pho­tos of this strik­ing stick-frame home, which was given a new lease on life thanks to a bevy of strate­gic timber ac­cents.

“We loved our home and its lake lo­ca­tion, but it was dated and needed to change,” ex­plains home­owner Vern Sessler. “We wanted some­thing that would be time­less, and a timber frame was just that.”

Built in 1991, the orig­i­nal struc­ture was in dire need of new sid­ing, win­dows and a roof, but the own­ers truly loved the over­all func­tion of the house and its many great fea­tures, such as the porte cochere and a bridge con­nect­ing the up­stairs bed­rooms.

“We hired New En­ergy Works to de­sign an ex­te­rior freshen-up of our house with some timber ac­cents, and the project quickly evolved into a full­blown re­model,” says Vern.

A new four-car garage and breeze­way trans­formed the ex­te­rior, along with new sid­ing, win­dows, dra­matic truss work and sev­eral cov­ered porches. Bold timber ele­ments cre­ated a new iden­tity for the home.

“The chal­lenge with up­dat­ing an ex­ist­ing home is de­cid­ing what to hold on to and what to let go of,” ex­plains Ty Allen, AIA, de­sign-build man­ager at New En­ergy Works Tim­ber­fram­ing in Far­mville, New York. “It’s all about achiev­ing bal­ance.”

A quick look at the Sessler home re­veals that the cou­ple found a way to

seam­lessly merge the best of the old with the new. “An older home with good bones is per­fect for this type of re­model,” says Ty. “You ba­si­cally have a blank can­vas, which you can use to your ad­van­tage.”

The project all started with a tim­ber­framed boat shel­ter on the prop­erty, fuel­ing the own­ers’ pas­sion for the style. Timber ele­ments were then in­cor­po­rated in porches, over­hangs and in­te­rior ar­eas. “The cou­ple was drawn to the heft and strength of timber,” re­calls Ty. “They felt a con­nec­tion with the qual­ity it im­plies, and they re­al­ized it was per­fect for a lake­side set­ting.”

In­cor­po­rat­ing the other timber ele­ments into the ex­ist­ing home proved eas­ier than ex­pected. Eye-catch­ing timber trusses were added over cov­ered porches and the ex­ist­ing porte cochere. The orig­i­nal one-car garage was trans­formed into a sun­room and side en­try that serves as a con­nec­tor for the new four-car garage ad­di­tion. In­side, a timber bent was added to make the in­te­rior feel like a con­tin­u­a­tion of the ex­te­rior.

“It flows per­fectly,” says Vern. “The cov­ered porches and fire­places feel like they have al­ways been there. It truly is seam­less.”

The ad­di­tion of timber has given the home new char­ac­ter. “The timber ele­ments al­lowed us to cre­ate a vi­sion, and to em­pha­size the strong lines of the home,” says Ty. “Any time we can take an ex­ist­ing build­ing and trans­form it with­out knock­ing it down is a good thing for our client and the en­vi­ron­ment.”

For the Sesslers, it’s a good thing all around — they love their lo­ca­tion, not to men­tion the home’s sense of fam­ily his­tory. “The house had 27 years of great mem­o­ries of rais­ing our fam­ily, and to us and our sons, this is home,” shares Vern. “Every day when we turn into our drive­way, a smile comes across our faces. We love this place.”

Bold timber ele­ments gave a new, time­less iden­tity to this 1990’s stick-frame ren­o­va­tion.

The porte cochere was one of the Sesslers’ fa­vorite fea­tures about the orig­i­nal house, but the long, low roofline it cre­ated blocked the sun and didn’t do much for its curb ap­peal. The new tim­ber­framed mod­i­fi­ca­tion (top) makes an im­pres­sive en­trance...

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.