TMS Architects recently had the opportunity to work again with Rob Karosis to photograph an unusual architectural project that Shannon Alther, TMS principal, worked on recently. The homeowners of this beautiful home and barn had lived in the area for years and were thinking seriously about downsizing…apparently all they really needed in a new locale was access to the internet and an airport. However, the more they thought about leaving the area, the pull of family and grandchildren was hard to ignore so they came up with an ingenious solution in lieu of leaving the family home.
Since the main house, built in 1709, was attached to a large barn that had been constructed in 1850, they decided to rent out the main house to their son and his family and turn a portion of the barn into their living quarters. This is where Shannon came in as he assisted with the details necessary to reconfigure the barn space into a cozy home perfect for two people. The homeowners had a concept and a rough floor plan but they wanted to make sure that it was (1) a sound idea and (2) that it be engineered and designed properly. The wife originally said she sold the idea to her husband by convincing him that all they really needed to do was “add a wall”. As you can see from the pictures, the project was a bit more complicated than that but is a wonderful example of creativity, sustainability and re-purposing. The construction work was provided by the homeowners’ son, Tim Willis, whom they describe as CIO and CPS of the project…that would be Chief Innovation Officer and Chief Problem Solver.
A quote on a blackboard in their new home, attributed to Marilyn Monroe, sums up the spirit of the residence beautifully. “Sometimes good things fall apart so that better things can fall together”.