Back for a Second Look

Dear Homework,

About a year ago, you designed a dramatic two-story transformation of my daughter’s family home. For a variety of reasons, they now are considering moving, and it occurred to me that this could be a great retirement home for me. I’ve always dreamed of living in a Mediterranean-style villa, and I can picture adding two wings at the rear, which would create a great courtyard. My question to you is, what can I do to make the front façade look more charming and Mediterranean without completely starting over?

—Back for a Second Look

Dear Back for a Second Look,

The most effective thing you can do for this façade is to raise the living room ceiling and give a vertical accent to the elevation. Board and batten siding helps the design feel less ‘Colonial,’ and lowering the roof over the front door and raising it over the garage will add some variety to the fascia line, which currently is pretty straight and bland.

Next, I would use stained wood for the front door and garage door to add a bit of rustic detail. New red/brown, architect-grade asphalt shingles also help increase the Mediterranean feel. Flower boxes and wider shutters add charm and cast deeper shadows. The final architectural upgrade is to include a stone garden wall and stone light piers to add an extra layer to the composition. This will make it feel more like southern Europe.

While the existing landscaping has a certain wild charm, I show a more tailored scheme that includes upright evergreens to accent the façade at appropriate locations.

Of course, you could go with something more elaborate, but I think this approach would be an attractive prelude to your new rear courtyard.

Hope this inspires,

Homework is penned by Paul Doerner, founding partner of The Lawrence Group. If you would like your home critiqued, contact us at homework@townandstyle.com.