Part 3 – Chen Kirkpatrick Residence, Washington

Part 3- Chen Kirkpatrick Residence (PDF)

  • Louis Pereira

    John – I really like the transformation and how you were able to make it work so well within the the given parameters. Although, Paul’s courtyard concept would work nicely, i would rather spend the remaining budget for the Landscape.

    Just a foot note – i noticed the left side-lite in the projection is now missing in the final plan compared with the original. I don’t think it would be necessary to remove it since it is likely to have a low cabinet there.

  • John Brown

    Good point about budget. Design is always a balance between letting your imagination run wild and the sober reality of cost and construction isn’t it. I like the way the conversation evolved in this project, first exploring the potential of a radical idea and then stepping back to evaluate its overall potential and impact.

    Given that the house is only 20 years old, demolising it probably doesn’t make much financial or environmental sense. Creating a great garden, particularly in a climate like Seattle, is a very good idea and would enhance the livability of the home.

  • Louis Pereira

    i lost some of my work yesterday but managed to keep the attached JPG of my markup for this Design Project. Although i was able to open up the plan there are still some problems with it as well as some unkowns.

    i proposed creating another projection left of the front entry to accommodate a full closet. This may or may not be allowed in some cities – i know that where i live, there is no restrictions to having a projection as shown on either side of the house. i also wanted to straighten the stair-run at the base of the stairs. i would also propose the new stairs to be open riser.

    I proposed some millwork separating the Study and front Entry, with some sliding glass doors to stack along the west wall. i like products from Sliding Door Company or Raydoor to achieve this. (see attached)

    I was fixated on making the kitchen work along side the stair-run but it certainly isn’t as effective as John’s more central placement of the Kitchen. It also created too much floor space at the top landing of the basement stair-run

    I like a galley style kitchen especially with a narrow house and this case i arranged it so that the kitchen has two working triangles with a prep sink between the Fridge and Cooktop.

    Like John’s, i also had the 2 pc. bath in the same location. I used the remaining length of wall for a additional storage and seating off the back entry.

    For the Fireplace, i wanted to create something a bit more unique so i punched some low windows flanking each side of the existing fireplace. With a new hearth you could create additional seating or more additional storage underneath, as well as cabinetry above concealing media components and perhaps a flat screen TV (refer to attached precedents)


  • Grace

    Very, very nice, Louis! I also put the kitchen in the location you have it. Sorry, John, but I don’t like the kitchen stools so close to the fireplace.

    If the little bath could be tucked under the stairway somehow, behind Louis’s kitchen cabinets, I would prefer that to having it protrude into the living area. Not sure it’s possible.

    Also, loved the courtyard!

  • John Brown

    Thanks for the plan and the great precedent images. The strength of your kitchen location is that it puts the living area and dininig room together as one space. The disadvantage is that you walk from the entry into the kitchen. Something for the clients to decide upon I suppose. I also like the way you expanded the back entry, combining it with the stair to the basement, but where is the closet?

    The tv / fireplace combination is also a strong idea. Thank goodness for flat screens!

  • John Brown

    Good comment about the guest bath. By moving the kitchen forward in the plan, the bathroom now opens onto the dining room, which some people may find a little odd. Unfortunately it would be tough to put the bathroom under the stairs because there is also a stair to the basement accessed by the rear door. Being able to use the understair space for storage or guest bath is one of the advantages of living in a climate that does not require a basement.

  • Louis Pereira

    Grace – Thanks for the comments. As for the 2pc bath, it would be difficult to tuck it behind the kitchen for reasons explained.

    i did create a variation (attached) illustrating a slight shifting of the kitchen. I also reversed the Side Entry door and window. The door entry is now next to the closet. But like John says, the bath room is stil near the Dining Room…so turn up the music!


    John – I agree about the disadvantage of greeting visitors to your home and having them walk through the kitchen to get to the living and dining room. In fact I prefer your spatial sequence, in this case front-to-back, of Dining Room > Kitchen > Living Rm. Ideally, when welcoming guests into my home, i often think about this progression of spaces and would rather have the following scenarios:

    1. Living Room > Kitchen > Dining Room OR
    2. Living Room > Dining Room > Kitchen

  • Louis Pereira

    Oops! Forgot to attached revision


  • John Brown

    That revision certainly addresses the closet issue for the back entry but I have to say I think I prefer your original plan with the door adjacent to the top of the basement stairs. What if you removed the the stair wall behind the first cabinet to expose it to the stair and then reversed the doors so that it would be the closet? It might make the back entry feel more like the rest of the house.

  • Louis Pereira

    Hmmm…not sure i follow now. Can you post a sketch?…

  • John Brown

    Sorry, here you go.


  • Louis Pereira

    Oh, i see what you mean now. That solution does provide more useable floor space at the side entry.

    Perhaps it was overlooked because i didn’t label my plan, but i did propose a closet near the back entry by the Living Room in my original sketch.

  • Tony

    I like all the furniture suggestions, but i am dumbfounded by the back wall of the family room (across from the fireplace). I just don’t think that placing two tall china cabinets or bookshelves against that wall is good enough. What if that became a long work desk – maybe with two castor chairs – and the front room had no desk and was only a more intimate TV room – I think that would be nice.

  • John Brown

    Interesting idea for a work desk at the back end of the living area. It would certainly be nice to sit and work adjacent to the garden and there is enough depth given the guest bath.In fact it might actually make the guest bath feel less intrusive into the room. I really like your idea of making it a long two person desk as well. It is appropriate for the client.

    The question would probably be put to the clients as to their preference for an enclosed study at the front or an enclosed tv area with a larger workspace at the back.

    Good idea and a welcome addition to my proposal.

  • Louis Pereira

    I thought it would be worthwhile to post this precedent image illustrating Tony’s concept of the ‘Long work desk’ and how it could work near the Living Room


  • John Brown

    Thanks Louis,
    I also like the slot window just above the table. It allows those seated to have a view outside without taking away any of the much needed storage above the desk.