A Garage Renovation Adds a New Light-Filled Sunroom
This yard in Morningside was compact, limiting the homeowners’ options for building a porch or deck. After trying out every option, the only place we could build anything was above the existing two-car garage. However, that wound up being a good thing, because the project evolved into a new light-filled sunroom. The scope of the project also included an improved entry experience and a new deck.
Well sometimes a project really, really evolves past the point where it began. These Morningside homeowners wanted space for their grandchildren to play when they visited. At first, they imagined a screened-in porch and a grilling deck. However, due to local ordinances and limitations on such a small lot, the scope of this project changed quickly to a fully conditioned sunroom. And that inspired them to improve the entry to their home. The result is a more attractive and cohesive facade, and a beautiful space the whole family will enjoy.
The house is sited on a pretty steep slope, with the garage and driveway located at the lowest point. So the entry to the main level was up quite a few stairs from the driveway. This whole area was a hodge-podge — the existing wooden stairs were unsightly and did not match the architecture of the house.
A New Addition Matches the Original Architecture
While we originally planned a covered porch, the project evolved into a sunroom and deck. Architect Patrick Kirkland of Kirkland + Associates Architects completed the architectural plans. It was very important to the homeowners that the addition was befitting of the 1925 home’s original architecture. Kirkland designed a garage that looks as if it has always been there. Elements like scalloped siding on the dormer, the windows, brackets under the overhang and rough-cut stone sills match elements on the house.
An Improved Entry Experience
The scope of this project allowed us to improve their driveway and entry experience. Gone are the wooden steps, which had seen better days. In their place we poured concrete stairs and a new retaining wall. There’s a landing at the lower level of the house, then the stairs continue up to the sunporch level. Decks connect the spaces outside and there is a new entry to the sunroom. Inside, a new breezeway connects the sunroom to the rest of the house.
Connecting the Addition
On the main level, a new door on the left offers direct entry to the sunroom. Beyond it is the new breezeway that connects via the interior.
A Light-Filled Sunroom
While Kirkland connected the new space on the exterior, interior designer Heather Hogan Roberts of Ivy and Vine connected the interior spaces to the new addition.Her design scheme is a 1925 cottage-inspired space with updated touches. The space is bright, light and airy.
The height of the space provides views of the tree canopy and the sky. Lots of windows let in the light. We crafted millwork that nodded to the historic home and added beams that look as though they could have been there since 1925.
The marble on an original fireplace inspired a new fireplace surround and hearth in the sunroom. Newer touches make the design look like it has evolved over time. These include the crisp shiplap and brass accents like the wall sconces. The dark finish on the engineered hardwood floors adds a more contemporary touch.
An Airy Space
The vaulted ceiling plays a large role in the home’s airy feeling. We extended the shiplap across the ceiling to add texture. White Roman shades and layered rugs soften the space. The shades also filter the sunlight. A ceiling fan keeps things breezy on warmer days. Recessed ceilings, wall sconces and table lamps allow the family to change up the mood with the lighting scheme.
This photo shows the new entry door to the sunroom. Its mullions match the historic style of the windows. A mini-split system heats and cools the room.
This is the interior of the breezeway, which leads to a bedroom. the shiplap continues down this new hallway.
We were also able to eke out enough space on the new deck for the grilling station the homeowners wanted. This photo also shows a new standing seam metal roof that Kirkland added to the existing garage. Underneath we installed wooden corbels.
Because the sunroom is located high off the street, it has privacy. The Roman shades add an additional layer and filter the light. A clerestory window lets in more light from up high.
This photo shows the exterior connection between the sunporch door and the entry to the main house.