The old kitchen in this small 1927 single-storey bungalow was a cramped space enclosed on three sides, with a dropped ceiling and cabinets dating from the 1960s. An addition allowed for reconfiguring interior spaces. Outfitted with white-painted, flat-panel cabinets and bungalow windows, the renovated kitchen is more fitting for the house. It includes storage on every wall.
Countertops are soapstone. The centerpiece is an island large enough for informal dining, placed right under a broad skylight that lets in light even on cloudy days. The owners requested clever solutions to make small appliances easily accessible, like the mixer that pops up on a sliding shelf. The room opens to both the dining and living rooms, as well as to the newly added family media room.
Upstairs, an expanded master suite gave the couple a sitting area, bath, office, walk-in closet, and well-appointed laundry room. Although this bathroom has just a single pedestal sink, cleverly de- signed cabinets on either side serve well, providing hidden storage and fold-down surfaces for toiletries.
It’s All In The Setback
Like so many homeowners, Mike and Cheryl lived in their small 1927 Arts & Crafts bungalow near the beach for years before necessity—in the form of active teenagers—demanded they expand it beyond a single-story, one-bathroom house.
And therein lay the rub. How could they enlarge the kitchen, add a family room, and build a master suite with bath and laundry without spoiling the bungalow’s low-slung gable profile? Oh, and there was the little matter of efficiently how to heat all that new space: the original 1,300-square- foot house was served by an inadequate floor furnace.
For help, Mike and Cheryl turned to Ione Steigler and Joseph Reid of IS Architecture. The design team came up with a plan that included an expansion to the rear and an entirely new second floor, cleverly set back so as not to overwhelm the original roof line. (It’s not a new idea: Period houses like this were called airplane bungalows, and the perched second storey sometimes called the cockpit.)
Although the top-floor addition incorporates period details from the façade—including wood-slat vents—subtle differences keep it from being a copy of the original house. Eave overhang is less deep, for example, and windows are complementary rather than replicas.
The addition more than doubled the overall square footage, yet it’s hard to tell that the house was altered. Their contractor, McBreaty Construction, had experience with historic buildings, too: “Those guys understood what full dimensional lumber was,” says Mike, “the kind that was used in the Twenties.”
Rearranging the placement of two of the existing bedrooms and bath on the first floor allowed for maximum use of space and easier flow. The new additions accommodate a larger, more period-appropriate kitchen and adjacent family/media room as well as an expanded master suite upstairs.
As for the heating dilemma, that was solved with a luxurious solution: radiant under-floor heating throughout the house. Now that the work is complete, Mike and Cheryl plan on staying a long time. “I can’t think of a reason to leave,” says Mike. “The problem is, where do we go for vacation?”
Design: IS architecture, La Jolla, CA: (858) 456-8555, isarchitecture.com
Builder: McBreaty construction, San Diego: (619) 561-0546, mcbreatyconstruction.com
Cabinets: Chris Miller custom cabinetry, El Cajon, CA: (619) 579-2355
Art Glass Window: alpine stained glass, El Cajon, CA: alpineglass.com
Lighting: rejuvenation rejuvenation.com
Ext. Lighting: Old California lantern co. oldcalifornia.com
Windows: Kolbe windows & doors heritage series kolbe-kolbe.com
Grilles: Reggio Register reggioregister.com
Rugs: The Persian carpet persiancarpet.com
Paint: ‘Palladian Blue’ (kitchen); ‘Brittany Blue’ (bath) Benjamin Moore benjaminmoore.com
Tub & Sink: Bain Ultra bainultra.com
Tile: Daltile daltile.com
Hardware: House of Antique Hardware hoah.biz
Towel warmer: Myson mysoninc.com