House of the Week | McLean contemporary for $1.425M

As you enter this contemporary home filled with angles, curves, squares, circles, triangles and rectangles, the words Plato had inscribed above the doors of his school come to mind: “Let no one destitute of geometry enter my doors.”

Plato, the great Greek philosopher, had a passion for geometry, and had he been alive today no doubt he would appreciate the whimsical and playful way the McLean house’s shapes draw the eye.

Built in 1979 as a farmhouse-style dwelling, the home was transformed in 1993 by architect A. Michael Milne.

Two large skylights above the two-story foyer paint the entrance with natural light, creating a bright and airy welcome. With more than 50 windows and glass doors scattered around the home, light ricochets throughout the space and bounces off the natural finished oak floors.

The sunken living room is deceptive. The closer you step toward the eight-foot tall wall of glass, the ceiling disappears, opening up the space. Light pours in from the clerestory windows. Tucked beside a bookshelf is a wood-burning fireplace framed in black granite with a deep, barrel-shaped oak mantel.

A demilune cutout in the wall between the living and dining room adds visual interest.

Sunshine seeps into the kitchen at all angles — from a circular window above the cooktop, a large square picture window along a wall and two large skylights above.

In the stairwell that extends to all three levels, a long rectangular window frames sunsets at dusk.

The home has two master suites, one on the main level and another on the second floor. There are two additional bedrooms and five bathrooms in the home.

Lines and curves play off one another in the upstairs family room. On one side, an arch-shaped balcony overlooks the living room; on the other, right angles form the balcony that looks down on the foyer.

Among the outdoor spaces are extensive decks on the front, side and back of the house and three outdoor balconies. A stone patio in the back yard is surrounded by the perennial gardens. The home looks out onto Franklin Forest, a dedicated Fairfax County park.

The 3,413-square-foot home is listed at $1.425 million.

Listing: 1933 Birch Rd., McLean

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Kathy Orton is a reporter and Web editor for the Real Estate section. She covers the Washington metropolitan area housing market.
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