Light-filled, cohesive, pure, and unfussy: that, in essence, is how our clients on this project wanted their home to feel. They sought versatile, clean-lined, clutter-managing space for themselves and their two young children, with better views of, and access to, their back garden.
Most of the big moves PLANT made were at the rear of the house, where we replaced a small tacked-on mudroom with a highly functional yet polished space that combines ample open and concealed storage (for toys, boots, and outdoor gear, etc.) with bench seating, in-floor heating, and a slate floor. In the dining room, the retained window opening in what was previously the rear exterior wall provides an expansive view through the mudroom to the garden. The mudroom opens onto an outdoor dining area, which steps down to a new Eramosa limestone patio.
At the breakfast room the existing garden-facing window was replaced with a larger window that extends the glazing around the corner. Bamboo veneer wraps around the former exterior wall that now partitions the breakfast room and mudroom. On the breakfast room side, the veneer is laminated over metal, enabling the family to use magnets to pin up an ever-changing display of the kids’ artwork.
The bench seating is bamboo plywood, new window and door frames are Douglas fir, and a deep slate blue is the accent colour that ties the entire composition together.
PLANT designed the breakfast room table, which echoes the lines of the owners’ mid-century modern furniture collection and has a wipe-clean Corian top that is ideal for family arts and crafts sessions.
Thoughtful precision contributes to the versatility and amenity of this seemingly simple project. To cite two examples, the freestanding mudroom bench is sized to slot in between the breakfast room’s benches when additional seating is needed around the table, and the slight angling of the breakfast room’s slate-blue seating nook creates a comfortable backrest and an agreeable sense of enclosure.
On the second floor, the mudroom addition created the opportunity to add a walkout balcony play area to one of the children’s bedrooms.
We also renovated the front entry, adding a new slate floor and in-floor heating and replacing an undersized closet with a more open storage unit on one side of the front door and knobs for hanging coats on the other. The former closet had concealed a small leaded-glass exterior window. This window is now visible inside as well as out, through a painted, mirror-backed open compartment. A key dish hollowed into the bottom of this compartment exposes multiple layers of cross-laminated bamboo plywood below the painted surface.