When we first spied this Connecticut ranch house, its virtues were largely hidden from view, blocked by a badly placed garage addition, which rose like a stop sign as we approached. Inside this classic, but outdated ranch, the rooms were small and dark, as if hunched against the woods outside, and each other. In short this little house was badly in need of a make-over.
The first order of business, as with any make-over, was a new approach, quite literally. And so we created a formal courtyard, which welcomed visitors into the house, and put the garage in its proper place. Inside a realignment: a bigger kitchen, more windows, and a floor plan that created a natural flow from room to room. Enclosing a porch created an inviting hallway to the master suite. A bank of French doors at the rear of the house opened its eyes to a new rear deck looked out to the backyard, the pool, and the woods beyond.
And, finally, new cedar shingles completed the transformation. The ugly duckling ranch had become a swan--a charming country cottage.