Changing the Point

written by:
June 22, 2012

When Byron and Sue Henry began spending more time at their cozy lake cabin, they realized the existing layout no longer suited them or their two sons with growing families. So in late 2008, the Vancouver, Washington–based couple called Portland architect Michael Flowers and design partner Judson Moore of farm research and design to take charge of the remodel and expansion of their second home. Located on a secluded, half-acre hillside property overlooking Hayden Lake in Northern Idaho, the modern, 1,250-square-foot Henry Point cabin now boasts a fully-updated interior as well as an 830-square-foot loft addition that conveys a dichotomy of bright, alterable transitional spaces that engage the surrounding environment. The two, new independent living areas create a more comfortable multi-family experience.

With the aid of Byron's continuous input, Flowers and Moore were able to dramatically brighten the cabin's interior as well as enhance the relationship between the cabin and lake. "Byron was integral in the process from concept through building," Flowers says. "He allowed Jud and I the freedom to really get at what the place was about and find a balance between the existing and new while really anchoring the entire project back into the landscape. We really wanted everything to fit and feel together." The striking connection between house and land is accentuated by the fir, concrete, steel, and basalt used in the project, all of which were either locally produced or native to the area. In addition to being durable and low maintenance, these materials help mediate the wide variation in seasonal conditions at the lake edge. The result is a bright, adaptive cabin fit for Byron, Sue, and generations to come.

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  This is the reading room in the new addition; The T&G wood wall and ceiling finish are made from a reclaimed grain silo in eastern Washington built in the early 1900s.
    This is the reading room in the new addition; The T&G wood wall and ceiling finish are made from a reclaimed grain silo in eastern Washington built in the early 1900s.
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  Here's a shot looking back toward the reading area through the glass wall system. The steel moment frame is trimmed with the reclaimed T&G wood. The doors fold away to open the entire addition to the large deck overlooking Henry Point and the lake.
    Here's a shot looking back toward the reading area through the glass wall system. The steel moment frame is trimmed with the reclaimed T&G wood. The doors fold away to open the entire addition to the large deck overlooking Henry Point and the lake.
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  "We wanted to maintain a feeling of a bunkhouse by keeping everything open and connected but without losing that layer of privacy," says Flowers.
    "We wanted to maintain a feeling of a bunkhouse by keeping everything open and connected but without losing that layer of privacy," says Flowers.
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  From the upper sleeping level, one can see the kitchen and reading area (and a Louis Poulsen light fixture). The railing is made from steel and reclaimed wood. "The light fixture really balances the upper and lower levels," says Flowers. "You can stand behind the railing and feel some separation if you like, but the spacing between the bars and the single wood beam brings it all together."
    From the upper sleeping level, one can see the kitchen and reading area (and a Louis Poulsen light fixture). The railing is made from steel and reclaimed wood. "The light fixture really balances the upper and lower levels," says Flowers. "You can stand behind the railing and feel some separation if you like, but the spacing between the bars and the single wood beam brings it all together."
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  The lower-level sleeping area boasts a plywood wardrobe, Eames LCW, and Eames plywood folding screen.
    The lower-level sleeping area boasts a plywood wardrobe, Eames LCW, and Eames plywood folding screen.
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  "We opened the space up to light as much as possible and made the kitchen the pivot or control center of the place," says Flowers. "It's where most of the action happens outside of being down at the lake."
    "We opened the space up to light as much as possible and made the kitchen the pivot or control center of the place," says Flowers. "It's where most of the action happens outside of being down at the lake."
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  This shot looks north from the lake edge and shows the raised elevation and transition to the existing cabin.
    This shot looks north from the lake edge and shows the raised elevation and transition to the existing cabin.
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  The sightscreen on the west elevation is made of timber reclaimed from grain silos. "We chose materials that are both durable for the extreme temperature swings and winter conditions of the lake and would also settle and weather into the colors of the landscape as the seasons change," says Flowers, noting the rustic look of the wood.
    The sightscreen on the west elevation is made of timber reclaimed from grain silos. "We chose materials that are both durable for the extreme temperature swings and winter conditions of the lake and would also settle and weather into the colors of the landscape as the seasons change," says Flowers, noting the rustic look of the wood.

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