A classic Ditmas Park Victorian house, complete with a wrap-around porch and rambling roof line, provided an opportunity to create spaces that ranged in scale from intimate reading nooks to generous living areas lit from bay windows. Throughout the house were scattered intricate original details – provided one knew where to look.

The design process was one of discovery: throughout the house, we uncovered opportunities for lofted ceilings in unexpected places, interesting geometries waiting to be revealed, and historical details hidden behind generations of paint. The project spans the full gamut of construction, from gut renovation to careful restoration work, which allowed for a lively intermix of contemporary details and historical charm. The central stair became the through-line that connected these varying levels of renovation, which culminates in the open suite on the top floor, where the dropped ceilings were demolished to reveal the geometry of that rambling roof line – reimagined as a tent under which a young family could grow together with a degree of informality and expansiveness uncommon for New York.

Ditmas Park Residence
Freestanding House
2,600 GSF
Michael Vahrenwald