Across the Pond

Chapel Hill, NC

We encourage our clients to look for and share with us design ideas and images that exemplify the qualities and character of places which they would like to have in their homes.  Across the Pond is a great example of this process.  The owners had studied many house designs and had collected examples and images of places in which they would like to live.  Through discussions, diagrams, and schematic design, we distilled the essence of their preferences regarding relation of building to site and overall organization as well as exterior and interior spatial qualities:

  • Simple volumes with gable roofs
  • Simple plan organization of rooms (on 16’x16’ module) arranged off a spine of circulation
  • Spaces that are spacious but cozy – think gracious southern living
  • Welcoming front entry
  • Welcoming connection from the garage by a covered and trellised walkway and a mudroom / dog room with adjacent outdoor shower
  • Individual windows composed as groupings on wall surfaces to articulate the massing on the building
  • Light from two sides in every room, sometimes diffused, allowing the rays of the sun to brighten the spaces
  • Visual connections through spaces and to the outside including spectacular views from upper windows and terrace
  • Outdoor terrace off the main bedroom

The owners have enjoyed designing a variety of outdoor places and rooms around the property that young and old—and the dogs—enjoy year-round.

We were gratified to receive a message from the owners twelve years after the house completed construction saying, “Thank you for giving us such a great house that…is especially photogenic, but most importantly…extremely livable.”

Header photo © Marilyn Peryer