Having worked on many projects for friends and neighbours in Westboro, designer Jane Keyserlingk finally put her talents to work on her own home. While many people would have opted to tear down the modest bungalow, Jane and husband Tom decided to renovate the home they had raised their family in.
Many elements played into their choice for working with the existing structure but Jane says the maple tree on the front lawn was the deciding factor. “We could not rationalize all the costs associated with tearing down the house and potentially losing the tree, not to mention that it seemed wasteful to destroy a solid foundation and first floor.” The objective was to gain size and increase living space and the solution was to add a second storey. The end result is an impressive family home in one of Ottawa’s most desirable neighborhoods.
Interior walls were opened on the main floor to create a more livable space and bedrooms were moved to the second floor. The entire process took five months. Jane started the general layout then worked with Steve Ardington, of Ardington + Associates Design, to come up with the working drawings. Fine Spaces was hired to do the build. Jane has developed strong ties with local trades and suppliers and worked efficiently with each of them to ensure that the renovation would be done on schedule. She believes that all renovation projects are most effective when client, contractor and tradespeople have a good working relationship and unified vision for the project outcome.
East Coast Influence
The main floor blends formal and casual living space with an east coast vibe. “Much of the inspiration for this project came from our many summers on the East Coast of Maine and Nova Scotia” says Jane. The exterior offers a New England style with a combination of Malbec wood siding and eastern white cedar shakes. The look continues inside with a soft, neutral colour scheme throughout. The living room is dressed in warm cream and beige fabrics to create an inviting space. The dining room, directly across the hall, has an air of formality dressed in white with a touch of glamour, but the large harvest table calls to an inviting entertaining style.
Classic elements, like a centre hall floor plan, combine with modern touches like an open concept linear space on the main floor, to incorporate a clever home office for both Jane and Tom. The t-shaped Laurysen kitchen tastefully blends grey and white cabinets which are tied together by artful backsplash. Upstairs, the bedrooms each take on the occupant’s personal style. Daughter Megan is drawn to shabby chic style with a traditional bed and vintage décor detailing. Son Adam’s room falls into a more urban style of décor. Jane has created a calm oasis in the master bedroom, but the ensuite adds a glamorous component with a floating tub, spa like shower and crystal chandelier.
The family now has a home that not only meets their needs but also has the approval of their discerning neighbours. Blending in with the architecture of the area was the goal for Jane, who thinks that it’s crucial for an addition to look like it’s always been there rather than added on. “I am most proud when customers and neighbours comment that the additions and renovations I have designed on older homes look as though they have always been there and were part of the original home,” states the thoughtful designer. Contact Jane firstname.lastname@example.org
Jane’s Tips for Renovating
• Live in the space before you renovate
• Design the renovation to integrate with the existing structure
• Choose products and materials that will stand the test of time
• Develop a good working relationship with your contractor/designer
• Decide on your design plan and make material selections well in advance of starting the project