The homeowners wanted to establish the kitchen as the heart of the home, so the lower level, including the kitchen, was designed using a great room concept.
The media room illustrates the coupling of the client's desire for cutting edge features with traditional details, like the moulding.
It was important to maintain the traditional look of the exterior, especially since approval for the addition was required by the Blue Ridge Architectural Review Committee.
Dining, living and media rooms, along with the kitchen, were combined into a seamless, open space.
Part of the second-story addition was the creation of a master bath. Plans were made for a soaking tub to be brought in during the framing stage through the created dormer.
During the desing process, the clients announced their want of a soaking tub in the master suite. The tub has views of Puget Sound out the window.
The family's second-floor laundry room received updated finishes as well as an increase in storage space.
A complete remodel of the kids bathroom included upgrades to the plumbing fixtures and a better use of the room space.
Before: The great room concept achieved during the addition made the kitchen the home's central gathering point in a way that was unobtainable before.
The Blue Ridge Architectural Review Committee asked to see skeleton framing before approving the proposed addition.
Before: Kitchen belonged at the heart of this family home, but the space was small and dark before the addition.
Before: The lower-level of the Seattle home was cut up into a number of small, poorly related rooms prior to the remodel.
Before: The dining room took up space which would have been better used in the neighboring kitchen.
Before: The kids bathroom received updated plumbing fixtures during the remodeling process by Sockeye Homes.
Before: Cramped and dark were words used to describe the master bath before it was expanded into a master suite.
Before: A second-story laundry room lacked storage prior to the remodel.
Before: The 1930s home had been added onto three times prior to the addition by Sockeye Homes. This nook was opened into the great room concept the clients' desired.
Transformed from a small, dark space, the updated kitchen is much more conducive to the family's needs.
To complete a home addition in the Blue Ridge neighborhood of Seattle, the Blue Ridge Architectural Review Committee must approve the plans. The review process ensures any additions stay true to the traditional nature of the home and neighborhood and gives neighbors a chance to review how plans may affect them and their homes. So, Tod Sakai, president, Sockeye Homes, Kent, Wash., moved this project forward knowing the plans could not be submitted to the city of Seattle until they had the neighborhood’s approval.
When Sockeye was hired to complete a 300-sq.-ft., two-story addition in Blue Ridge, Sakai knew any exterior changes to the home would be driven by the style of the neighborhood. Temporary “example framing” was erected [see photo, pg. 16] for neighbors to view and consider for approval. Additionally, before approval was given by the committee, the design had to be adjusted to an 8-in. offset, causing the new dormer to not line up exactly with the existing dormers, because the home’s southern neighbor objected to the view before the adjustment.
Once approval was given for the exterior, efforts turned to the interior. But first, the clients had to make a decision regarding a six-by-six post that would remain in the midst of the great room space. This was discussed in a meeting with the clients, the architect and structural engineer.
Sakai recommended removing the post, explaining that although it would add time and cost to the addition, it wouldn’t be possible to easily remove the post in the future. “I told them, ‘I don’t want you to regret that fact when you enter a great room you can’t arrange your furniture around this six-by-six post,’” he says. After much contemplation, the homeowners decided to proceed with the addition, minus the post.
Modern Meets Past
This addition by Sockeye Homes is the fourth addition to the 1937 home, which Sakai says raised some concerns for himself, the architect and structural engineer. No one knew exactly what the team would be working with until they began the partial demolition. “The additions and remodels before our time were botched, so much that the foundation was off 1 1/2-in. from one end to another,” Sakai says. “We had to do a lot of masking of the past.”
Because of substandard framing in combination with the latest addition affecting load-bearing walls, the team had to replace 10 beams, four of which were steel, extending 22 ft. from the new addition. Poor framing from the past also affected the work on the ceilings and floors. Coffered ceilings in the kitchen hid previous mistakes, which Sockeye Homes corrected to obtain a level five ceiling finish for the clients. Floors had 8-in. to 1/4-in. steps, which then had to be shaved off or raised to make level. Sakai says there were elements of the home his team could not correct; instead they were correcting the variances.
Updates also were made to the home’s plumbing, electrical and heating systems during the remodeling process. The company did energy remodeling throughout, which increased overall the efficiency of the home by more than 150 percent. Modernization of the insulation and the home’s infrastructure were key factors in increasing the structure’s energy efficiency.
Sakai points out elements of the home’s design in which modern meets past. “When you look at the television area, the surrounding casework, millwork and crown moulding is very traditional, but the clients wanted to have a 3-D television built into the space to make it look very sleek at the same time,” he says.
The second-story work encompassed remodeling the laundry room and kid’s bathroom, as well as adding a master suite. Part of the master suite work included introducing a soaking tub, which Sakai says the clients informed them of when they were still in the design process. By using a crane to fit the tub through the newest dormer, which was the only accessible point of entry, the team was able to install the soaking tub in the master bathroom positioned with a view of Puget Sound.
Sakai says it was a testament to his crews that they were able to successfully complete such an intricate project, especially because they did not really know what they were getting into until they began. Even collaborations with the clients and their hired architect and structural engineer were seamless, “so all cylinders of this remodel and addition really hummed well,” he says.