MARRYING NEW ROOMS to old is always a challenge. But putting a modest addition on a not-so-modest Georgian house in Bethesda presented some special challenges.
The owners of this massive brick home wanted an addition off their breakfast room that would open the rear of the house to the view of the wooded back yard. "We wanted something with a lot of glass, but that just doesn't go with a brick Georgian style home," recalled architect Amy Weinstein. To counter the mass of brick and bind the new bay of large casement windows together, Weinstein created a small temple-like addition with a two substantial columns on either side.
Weinstein picked up on the classic motifs in the existing house as she constructed the addition in the back. She took an oval window much like the one seen over the front door and put it on its side, complete with keystones. Rather than use wooden siding so common in additions, she selected to cover the pediment with slate to complement the brick yet to create a lighter more lively look than she would have achieved with additional brick.
The effect is new yet old; the addition is believable in the context of a Georgian brick home, but it is not quite reproduction -- exactly the effect Weinstein sought to achieve.
"I believe architecture should be harmonious, not reproduction" says Weinstein. "After all, architecture should reflect the time in which it was created."