The Five-Bedroom House that Grew: Romsey Road by AR Design Studio

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Romsey Road is a five-bedroom house in the UK refurbished by AR Design Studio from an original 1950s-style dwelling. Beginning with the façade, new windows and white paint brought the exterior of the house a more contemporary look; the finishing touch for the exterior was a new gray porch roof. From there, the client’s brief was direct: “to create space and calm in the tight and complicated layout.” Dealing with the matter of space first, AR created a design in which two single bedrooms were replaced with master bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms. In the process of that renovation, the entrance area doubled, and a new stairway led to an improved landing and new family bathroom. The palette went neutral, with emphasis on white and gray, as seen in the bathroom with its play of light and dark — instant serenity.

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Next, on to the more public areas of the house. The kitchen and dining areas are open and expansive, creating an open living space bathed in light from floor-to-ceiling glass doors that lead onto an external glass-covered patio. The areas are tied together not only by the seamless use of white but by the same flooring material and flush thresholds between spaces, and a substantial overhang forms a smooth transition between indoors and outdoors. Finally, the garden is simple, but visually striking, thanks to the house itself serving as a focal point: gray on white, the bedrooms “stack” above the addition in counterpoint to the roof on the older portion of the home. It’s what the designers call “a simple but radical look” — a good summation of how Romsey Road’s remodeling fulfills the client’s needs.

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Written by Janet Butler

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Janet W. Butler is a freelance writer, editor, and editorial consultant by day and a “small soprano” by night. An RWA Golden Heart Winner, she is the author of the inspirational romance From the Ashes (“the best little book no one’s ever heard of”), published by SANDS Publishing in 2001; and a romantic suspense, Voice of Innocence, from Desert Breeze Publishing. She is a Chicago native transplanted to northeast Indiana, where she lives with her husband, daughter, and Cassandra “Trouble” Butler, S.R.C. (Spoiled Rotten Cat).

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