This Stately, Century-Old Craftsman in Oregon Conceals Bright, Youthful Interiors
There’s no dearth of cute Craftsmans in Portland, Oregon, but the prairie-style home with a clinker brick facade that Anyeley Hallová and Ed Halla discovered on a double corner lot was a rare find. "The home is straight-up magical," Anyeley says. When they came across it, the couple scrapped plans to build from scratch and jumped at the chance to renovate something unique. They brought in Lever Architecture, who introduced more indoor/outdoor living spaces and opened up the interiors, ensuring that the residence will remain relevant into the next century. "[The remodel] was always about a dialogue between the old and the new," says Ed.
The couple asked Lever to retrofit the home for their busy family of four while incorporating nontoxic, sustainable materials and creating spaces that promote healthy living. "We share values [with Lever] about environmentalism and responsible building practices," says Anyeley, who is the founder of Adre, a social equity–focused real estate development firm that she says is dedicated to "good design for all people." (Ed is an entrepreneur in the food and beverage industry.)
Sustainability guided the gut remodel, from structural materials to finishes. "We know that buildings contribute to around 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, so we wanted to be responsible," says Anyeley, noting they chose quality insulation, low-VOC products, and energy-efficient infrastructure at every turn.
At the same time, the homeowners were happy to embrace the 100-year-old home’s idiosyncrasies. The fireplace, for instance, is crooked—but as Ed notes, that’s part of its charm. "It’s one of those Easter egg moments of the house," he says. "Life is not always very well put together either, and when I see an imperfection like this preserved and celebrated, it gives me joy."
The home’s facade is another element that the design team respectfully left untouched. "It’s rare to see an entire house clad in this type of brick, and even more rare to see a prairie-style house with brick," says Anyeley of the home’s distinctive curb appeal. "Somebody took a great deal of time and trouble to craft the exterior."
Lever Architecture relocated the kitchen to the sunny side of the house, which changed the flow of everything. "Our social interactions nowadays happen in the kitchen," Ed points out. "The kids are running around while we’re making dinner, and then we can just walk outside." It was a big change that the family considered carefully. "You try your best to be timeless," Ed adds. "There was a lot of discussion [with Lever] about how things will look in 20 years."
The color palette is earthy and neutral with jewel-tone accents. Soft white walls display the couple’s art collection, which showcases works from a number of female and African-American artists, including Anyeley’s brother-in-law, Lyndon Barrios Jr., and her sister, Addoley Dzegede. The kitchen shines with cheerful blue accents, inspired by the decor of Le Marianne, one of the couple’s favorite Parisian hotels.
The homeowners’ attention to materials extends to the certified organic, zero-waste mattresses by Avocado selected for the remodeled bedrooms. The primary suite, after all, was designed with the feel of a "Scandinavian or spa-like environment," says Ed. There are no distractions, no television, no overstimulation—just soft textures and calming shades of gray.
The couple enjoys the enduring, historical character of their Prairie-style gem, but now the home better reflects their personalities and lifestyles. Anyeley reiterates the project’s guiding concept: "We wanted to focus on design choices, however small, that don’t contribute to any negative effects on the environment and create a healthy, resilient home for our family."
Learn more about Avocado mattresses at avocadogreenmattress.com.
Architecture: Lever Architecture / @leverarchitecture
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