One of our earliest commissions, this eclectic project spanned several years and only recently could be labeled as complete. The original home, a typical Philadelphia row, had been in the clients family for generations and had begun to show its age. Our client envisioned a renovation which modernized the home while celebrating the original character and spirit it had carried for years. We worked to open the space on the main level both inside and out. The renovated façade refreshed the entry and opened the front sitting room to the street. By pulling the first floor back 2’, the large window floods the formerly dark cellar with natural light creating an inviting, usable space. On the main floor the leaded glass trimwork, formerly separating the living and dining room, was relocated to the front, framing the window from the inside. A new steel stair and railing leads to the 2nd floor bedroom and office loft which overlooks the rear sitting room. The garage door at the rear opens the double height sitting room to the rear deck creating a calming private space to be enjoyed in good weather.
The words of the client upon completion of the project:
"For the last 6+ years the only refrain that most of you have heard from me about my weekend plans is "I'll be working on the house this weekend". Thanks to the help of many talented Philadelphia artisans and to the patience of one of Philadelphia's top young architects, the house is complete.
From the original & traditional design features in the front interior that were seamlessly married with the more contemporary layout and materials that flow through rear and upper floors, the house tells a story of several generations of my family that have resided within its walls for close to a century. And it accomplishes all of this while remaining true to the industrial aesthetic that is the era of when the house was originally built and a part of the larger Philadelphia context.
Most importantly, this house is a true labor of love dedicated to my late Grandparents, 'Bizzy' and Mabel Trotter, who were revered in this small neighborhood of Philadelphia. Through the Trotter's house I found their spirit, I found the many neighbors they inspired, I found my own life's inspiration and I found my home on Cambridge Street. And now that I'm done tearing down walls I guess I need to find a new topic of conversation with you other than "I'm working on the house".