An Elegant Edwardian Home Is Treated to a Thoughtful Revamp

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By Jennifer Baum Lagdameo
Toronto’s Paul Raff Studio takes an avant-garde approach to the restoration of this historic home.

Tucked away in Toronto’s Annex neighborhood, the Madrigal House has been beautifully reimagined for a family of five by Paul Raff Studio. A deliberate homage to the 19th century, the architects have renovated the home with a "sensitive and revisionist" approach to retain the property's gracious Edwardian proportions, while seamlessly integrating modern touches throughout. "Our objective was to go beyond the conventional approach of juxtaposing modern architecture with a historic structure," the team explains.

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Madrigal House by Paul Raff Studio integrates modern and Edwardian touches.

Madrigal House by Paul Raff Studio integrates modern and Edwardian touches.

The grand stained-glass entry opens onto a central hall that stretches throughout the original part of the home that contains the living area and music room. 

The grand stained-glass entry opens onto a central hall that stretches throughout the original part of the home that contains the living area and music room. 

Newly commissioned stained glass adorns the music room and staircase, while thick, curved banisters, crown moldings, and 10-inch beveled baseboards are modern touches of what would have been native to the home. The existing Jatoba floor underwent chemical treatment to help bring out more period-appropriate hues. 

Newly commissioned stained glass adorns the music room and staircase, while thick, curved banisters, crown moldings, and 10-inch beveled baseboards are modern touches of what would have been native to the home. The existing Jatoba floor underwent chemical treatment to help bring out more period-appropriate hues. 

A look at the living room vignette. All original ornamental details have been pared down to fit into the context of a more modern aesthetic.

A look at the living room vignette. All original ornamental details have been pared down to fit into the context of a more modern aesthetic.

At the back of the home, a new extension includes a spacious, modern kitchen. 

At the back of the home, a new extension includes a spacious, modern kitchen. 

Here, more traditional details give way to contemporary design. Unadorned Anigre veneer millwork frames boldly articulated elements, such as the black lacquer espresso station and linear stainless-steel bar. The large island provides increased workspace, and the cabinets add extra storage without destroying the clean, contemporary lines. The flooring is Loire Limestone.

Here, more traditional details give way to contemporary design. Unadorned Anigre veneer millwork frames boldly articulated elements, such as the black lacquer espresso station and linear stainless-steel bar. The large island provides increased workspace, and the cabinets add extra storage without destroying the clean, contemporary lines. The flooring is Loire Limestone.

A look at the spacious eating area, office nook, and a bespoke built-in daybed, completed with a reading light. Large doors open the space to the outdoors for integrated indoor/outdoor living during the warmer months.

A look at the spacious eating area, office nook, and a bespoke built-in daybed, completed with a reading light. Large doors open the space to the outdoors for integrated indoor/outdoor living during the warmer months.

A close-up of the daybed and additional storage cabinets. 

A close-up of the daybed and additional storage cabinets. 

The kitchen/office nook. 

The kitchen/office nook. 

Contemporary details in the kitchen flow into the dining room where a preserved sense of the home's original Edwardian character continues to exist. 

Contemporary details in the kitchen flow into the dining room where a preserved sense of the home's original Edwardian character continues to exist. 

The dormers are clad in a modern zinc siding and jut out from a traditional pitched roof. Here, the Cenia Azul limestone façade feels restrained, yet still fits into the context of the more traditional neighborhood that surrounds it. The stone has been bush-hammered for a lighter finish and an almost suede-like texture, which complements the sleek dormers and custom mahogany windows and doors. 

The dormers are clad in a modern zinc siding and jut out from a traditional pitched roof. Here, the Cenia Azul limestone façade feels restrained, yet still fits into the context of the more traditional neighborhood that surrounds it. The stone has been bush-hammered for a lighter finish and an almost suede-like texture, which complements the sleek dormers and custom mahogany windows and doors. 

A close-up of the dog-door leading out to the backyard. 

A close-up of the dog-door leading out to the backyard. 

A full look at the exterior of the home from the backyard. 

A full look at the exterior of the home from the backyard. 

The second-floor bedrooms feature built-in office nooks with storage. 

The second-floor bedrooms feature built-in office nooks with storage. 

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Pablo Designs Brazo Table Lamp
Pablo Designs Brazo Table Lamp
Brazo’s precision machined aluminum construction allows for optimal task lighting control with 360° adjustability and 90° tilt. Brazo features a luminous and energy efficient LED light source which can be dialed to any desired beam spread and brightness depending on the task.
Tolix T14 Wood Chair
Tolix T14 Wood Chair
Tolix expertise also embraces working with stainless steel. Furniture specially designed for 100% outdoor use. This impressive technical achievement by the brand responds effectively to weather conditions worldwide.
Saito Wood - Waste Basket - Small
Saito Wood - Waste Basket - Small
This wooden wastebasket by Saito wood is the product of a long and fascinating history.   This Saito Wood wastebasket is created by molding plywood to form a cylindrical shape. The product’s origins date back to the Second World War when there was a metal shortage.
A detail of the office nooks with a teal daybed and built-in shelving. 

A detail of the office nooks with a teal daybed and built-in shelving. 

Here is another one of the built-in office nooks. 

Here is another one of the built-in office nooks. 

A large dressing room in the master suite shows off a uniquely customized built-in closet, which is perfectly inserted into the original curve of the ceiling. 

A large dressing room in the master suite shows off a uniquely customized built-in closet, which is perfectly inserted into the original curve of the ceiling. 

The master bedroom also has a marble-clad ensuite bathroom. 

The master bedroom also has a marble-clad ensuite bathroom. 

Project Credits:

Architect of Record: Paul Raff Studio Architects / @paulraffstudio

Project Team: Paul Raff, Samantha Scroggie, Lynne Eichenberg Sean Solowski, Nathan Dykstra, Dina Sarhane

Interior Design: Paul Raff Studio Architects

Structural Engineers: Neumann Associates Limited

General Contractor: Arcademia Group Inc.