Original Stone Farmhouse
Built in the late 1700s, the original two-story Pennsylvania stone farmhouse had a cramped, compartmentalized layout. For Jeffery Wyant and Maria Keares Wyant of Wyant Architecture the challenge was twofold: to honor the original architecture while creating a bright, airy, contemporary space for the family.
A New Look
“We ultimately decided to make only minor modifications to the original living space and instead open it onto the new addition,” says Maria. The resulting addition, which features a sleek master suite and a light-filled great room, expanded the family’s living space by roughly 2,000 square feet.
The Wyants united the exterior of the structures by sheathing the new addition with nearly identical stones purchased from a neighboring farm. The windows form a clerestory beneath the roof line before wrapping around the side of the house to fill the master bedroom gable. "It makes the whole composition lighter, like the roof is floating on top of the stone wall," Jeffrey says.
Besides creating more expansive common areas, one of the architects’ main goals was to redesign and re-orient the entryway. The aluminum-clad, fixed casement windows rise to the second floor and help blend the old with the new.
The Copper Roof
Riffing off the house’s original copper downspouts, the Wyants chose a standing-seam copper roof, which they extended down to create the wall at the rear elevation of the addition. “The copper will age and patina,” says Jeffrey. “It was shiny and bright when we first installed it, but it oxidized right away to a warm, bronze color.”
“When we drafted the plans for the new entryway, we wanted the connection between the addition and the original structure to be very thin and glassy, with the glass itself becoming a design element that served as a separator,” notes Maria.
“The terrace is protected on three sides—by the addition, a wing off the 18th-century structure, and the stone guest house—so it feels very intimate, which is nice, since the farmland beyond it is so open and vast," notes Maria.
Just as the exterior unites traditional and modern elements, so does the interior. Sustainable palm wood paves the floors on the second floor, and a striking staircase features reclaimed lumber for the treads and a custom-designed railing made from plate steel.
Japanese Rain Chain
The architects also installed a traditional Japanese-style rain chain on the terrace. “The chain hangs away from the building and becomes a water feature in stormy weather. The water’s both visible and audible, as it travels down the chain into the stone drainage bed below,” says Maria.
Besides the spacious master bedroom and its 400-square-foot deck, the second level of the addition includes a home office and a wide stair hall that connects the original and new portions of the house.
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