Daring Dormers Breathe New Life into a Derelict 1930s Farmhouse

Old meets new in this transformed brick farmhouse in Silverdale, Washington.

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This honorable mention in the 2023 Andersen Bright Ideas Awards is presented by Andersen Windows & Doors.
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On two acres of waterfront farmland in rural Washington, a 1930s farmhouse piqued the interest of a couple who had lived in a rural part of the Kitsap Peninsula for years. Overlooking the Dyes Inlet, a brick home was somewhat of an anomaly in the region—and it was this rarity that made the couple realize the home was something special.

With two small windows infilled, and the others replaced, the home’s east facade preserves the spirit of the original farmhouse. An exaggerated roof overhang to the south shelters the back porch.

With two small windows infilled, and the others replaced, the home’s east facade preserves the spirit of the original farmhouse. An exaggerated roof overhang to the south shelters the back porch.

Attracted to the home’s charm and uniqueness, the couple decided to renovate the rare jewel instead of tearing it down. Engaging Seattle-based SHED Architecture & Design, they quickly realized that the 2,182-square-foot farmhouse was not large enough to comfortably accommodate their lifestyle or frequent visits from extended family. Together with SHED, it was decided that the historic brick structure would be revitalized as a guest house, while a new primary residence would be built for the couple.

On the home’s east facade, a steel canopy protects the reoriented entry.

On the home’s east facade, a steel canopy protects the reoriented entry.

SHED’s strategic approach was to preserve the roof’s pitch, along with the east and west facades—while completely reworking the south facade to take full advantage of Dyes Inlet water views. Integral to the refreshed look was the incorporation of new and replacement windows from Andersen Windows & Doors—a frequent go-to for the SHED team in their historic brick remodels.

Overlooking the farmhouse orchard and garden, a new dormer at the home’s north facade incorporates windows for the primary bathroom and hall on the upper level.

Overlooking the farmhouse orchard and garden, a new dormer at the home’s north facade incorporates windows for the primary bathroom and hall on the upper level.

A small existing dormer on the home’s second level was dramatically expanded to accommodate two en suite bedrooms, each with new windows to more effectively highlight views. Sliding glass doors were introduced directly beneath the new windows on the south facade, carefully aligning with the dormers above. This vertical alignment creates the effect of the glazing cutting through the roof. "We settled on aligning the bedroom windows and sliding doors vertically, and expressing them as a dormer that punches up through the extended roof eave," explains SHED principal Prentis Hale.

Originally lacking views of the scenic landscape, the home’s new dormer windows and sliding glass doors open it up to its surroundings on the reconfigured south facade.

Originally lacking views of the scenic landscape, the home’s new dormer windows and sliding glass doors open it up to its surroundings on the reconfigured south facade.

The renovated interior improves the previously choppy layout, opening the main floor plan to better accommodate how the clients wished to live. The new sliding glass doors in the living and dining room capture views and improve indoor/outdoor flow. This area has become a favorite part of the home for the clients, who enjoy sitting at the dining room table and looking out to the water.

"We wanted to daylight the main rooms of the house—living, kitchen, dining, and bedrooms—in a strong, architectural way that was integrated with the building," says SHED principal Prentis Hale.

"We wanted to daylight the main rooms of the house—living, kitchen, dining, and bedrooms—in a strong, architectural way that was integrated with the building," says SHED principal Prentis Hale.

The 1930s farmhouse was originally comprised of small rooms clustered around a central hearth. Taking down interior walls, compartmentalized rooms were traded for an open plan to better organize the space for social gatherings.

The 1930s farmhouse was originally comprised of small rooms clustered around a central hearth. Taking down interior walls, compartmentalized rooms were traded for an open plan to better organize the space for social gatherings.

For the historic home, the SHED team chose to incorporate Andersen E-Series windows. "We use Andersen E-Series windows regularly on our projects, as they are affordable, high-quality, code-compliant windows," says Hale.

For the historic home, the SHED team chose to incorporate Andersen E-Series windows. "We use Andersen E-Series windows regularly on our projects, as they are affordable, high-quality, code-compliant windows," says Hale.

The 2,182-square-foot home’s reconfigured plan includes two bedrooms and two-and-a-half bathrooms. Upstairs, the en suite bedrooms are near-mirror images of each other and the symmetrical spaces benefit from new south-facing dormer windows overlooking the Dyes Inlet.

The 2,182-square-foot home’s reconfigured plan includes two bedrooms and two-and-a-half bathrooms. Upstairs, the en suite bedrooms are near-mirror images of each other and the symmetrical spaces benefit from new south-facing dormer windows overlooking the Dyes Inlet.

Warm, Scandinavian-inspired interiors create a cozy and inviting environment for the couple and guests.

Warm, Scandinavian-inspired interiors create a cozy and inviting environment for the couple and guests.

Recognizing the value of the unique brick home, the SHED team built upon the farmhouse’s simple strength—modernizing it without stripping it of its charm. "The best approach was to preserve the structure," says Hale. "For SHED, we appreciate the compact size [of the home] and the simplicity of the design, which demonstrates that direct gestures can lead to wonderful results."

Learn more about all the 2023 honorees and the judging process at andersenawards.dwell.com.

Related Reading: 

Before & After: A Couple Crack Open a Cramped Brick House on a Washington Oyster Farm

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Sarah Akkoush
Dwell Contributor
Sarah is a real estate developer by day and a writer by night. She can usually be found hustling, napping, or scooting up and down the hills of San Francisco on her Vespa.

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