This timeless Colonial Shingle style home design is situated on a rocky ridge with spectacular views in Rye, New York. The architect, McKee Patterson, AIA, of Austin Patterson Disston Architects in Southport, Connecticut, achieved a delicate balance of subtlety and grand presence through finely wrought details that allow the homeowners’ art—and the stunning waterfront setting—to shine.
“There’s a fine line between something looking too ornamented and not ornamental enough,” Patterson says. “It’s tricky to know where to stop and where to go.” Patterson and the homeowners agreed that the home should strike a balance, encouraging an easygoing pace without sacrificing beauty. As Patterson says,
“It’s hitting the right balance of trim and décor, being welcoming and not stuffy.”
The property had held a ramshackle house where the homeowners lived while they raised their children. The structure, which originally had served as a pool house for a large estate, had outlived its purpose. “It made no sense as a house,” Patterson recalls. “It was all one story and was a piece of this, a piece of that, added together. None of it made sense.”
Set back from the street and positioned about six feet above the grade, the award-winning home greets visitors in gracious style, appearing smaller than it actually is. “On the street side, we’re hiding the massing,” Patterson says. Working with the builder, Paul Tallman of Tallman Building Company in Fairfield, Connecticut, Patterson and the project manager, Gabriella Albini, took care to save old-growth maple and oak trees, giving the home a longstanding air.
The couple brought their dream to Patterson: a home that would be cozy enough for the two of them, but large enough to accommodate their children and grandchildren, who visit for several weeks in the summer, spending long days swimming, sailing, and kayaking. They also wanted space to hang their art collection. Overall, a relaxed air was important to them, but so was elegance. “It was all about getting the right proportion of house to fit their program and fit on the lot, and not make the lot look small,” Patterson says. The gambrel rooflines of the 6,100-square-foot home gave Patterson a way to “sneak in some attic space,” which houses a children’s playroom, as well as storage.
The classic Shingle style exterior is perfect for displaying small touches: a rope frieze on the front windows; portal windows with decorative lacy framework that bookend the house; and diamond-pattern windows over the attic. Garlands of grapes stamped in zinc hang above a trio of window frames over the front door, a nuanced reference to the owners’ appreciation of wine. In back, a spacious screened-in porch set above a fieldstone foundation complements the exterior beautifully, while also giving the homeowners a comfortable way to enjoy the fresh air and another view of Long Island Sound.
Read the entire article and view more photos of this Colonial Shingle Style home.
Courtesy of Period Homes magazine