A Darkened Cedar Dwelling in Portland Embodies “Less But Better” Design

A Darkened Cedar Dwelling in Portland Embodies “Less But Better” Design

By Arlene Hirst
After debating whether to renovate or rip up a wobbly old house, a family in Portland, Oregon, opts to start fresh and unlock the site’s full potential.

Cara Frey and Jennifer Warner lived in the same bungalow in the Sabin neighborhood of Portland, Oregon, for close to 14 years, and they spent almost every spare minute working on some part of it. "My wife and I did everything we could, even painted it black ahead of the trend curve," says Cara, half joking. Not that they minded—quite the opposite. The women, both "boring" lawyers, according to Cara, find home improvement a good way to let loose pent-up creative energy. But when there was nothing left to update or change, a move seemed inevitable.

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