This Seattle home, located above a prominent boulevard overlooking Lake Washington, plays off a number of influences including Federalist and Georgian styles from the East Coast merged with West Coast sensibilities. Among the liberating ideas that blossomed in this design was the freedom to use ornamentation that was dramatically over scaled. While its dignified pediment, cornice, and ornamental roundel appear properly Georgian, the outsized five-foot-high corbels and the curved bay with its wall of windows ensure that it will not be mistaken for a replica. The black-stained shingles echo the Bay Area Arts and Crafts tradition as well as the early twentieth century houses of Ellsworth Storey, who some consider to be Seattle’s first regionalist.
On the inside, our clients wanted a dramatic departure from the predictability of Georgian and Federalist architecture. On arrival in the entry hall, one is greeted by a stairway with a handrail and pickets scaled for a much larger home. Tall white wall paneling, and an irregular, softly curving second-story balcony above. The plan is designed to draw daylight deep into the interior. The interior design is seasoned with a rich blend of beefy black-banded casings, crown moldings and coffered beam ceilings, contrasted with stained and waxed concrete floors. To enrich the owners’ love for cooking and entertaining, we crafted a poured concrete proscenium arch—another over scaled element—to create a cooking alcove in the kitchen. A smaller echo of that arch forms a fireplace surround for warm fireside dinners. A contemporary powder room, the owners’ stunning modern paintings, and unusual woven wire metal cabinet faces all add imaginative, unpredictable touches. The home unfolds as an adventure in modern living, decidedly not as a museum of dated ideas.
Interior Design: Rocky Rochon Design
Landscape Architecture: Robert Shinbo
Construction: Delta Construction
Photography: Ben Benshneider