Renovations in New England usually involve updating crumbling molding, fireplaces, and floorboards. The region’s wealth of antique homes call for a special breed of care. But when the design team at Feinmann was tasked with revamping this 1960s ranch in Lexington, the challenge proved to be a bit more unique.
In typical midcentury ranch fashion, the home exhibited a closed-off floor plan. A cramped kitchen suited in brown linoleum was completely separate from a nearby living and dining area. Low ceilings and a lack of personality made for a tired environment, so the homeowners drew up a list of requests. Among them were a larger kitchen with a more fluid connection to the living area and a healthy dose of individuality.
Right off the bat, Feinmann stepped in with a bold concept that reveled in geometric shapes and angles. The design nodded to Japanese aesthetics by highlighting subtle wood combinations. Newly added sculptural wood constructions sought to open up both of the spaces by framing views. The structural additions also created elegant spaces for the homeowners’ handmade ceramic and wood artwork.
Immediately, the wall separating the kitchen from the living area was knocked down. A non-working fireplace was cleverly updated. The window and door placements were rearranged to overlook the backyard, and an inviting window seat was installed.
A triangular island was inserted in the kitchen, decked out in multiple forms of geometric shelving and storage (including secret compartments). Across from the island, additional storage abounds, and underneath, an angular strip of turquoise linoleum breaks up the gleaming hardwood with a pop of color.
Further inspiration for the living spaces was drawn from Japanese shoji screen doors—closets in the front hall as well as the kitchen’s partition feature their cubic pattern. A built-in shoe cabinet, desk, and additional shelving share the aesthetic. Multiple types of wood and wooden surfaces make for a harmonious blend of textures and soft colors. The craftsmanship displayed in the space’s open-framed woodwork ties each separate area into a neat, sophisticated package.
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