We’re excited to celebrate another year here at Arciform and this year we held our holiday party at the De Wolf’s new home: The Isam White house. Here’s a peek inside the home and festivities:
Moving from their beloved Victorian home in Goose Hollow, Lynne, Alex and their two children, Margot and Anderson, have lived in their current home for over 3 years now. After being referred by Dan Volkmer to Anne De Wolf as a talented designer who specializes in historic remodels, they began a whole-house remodel with Arciform.
“What we liked most about Anne was she knew her stuff when it came to historic home restoration, but she also had a funky flair about her designs,” says Alex as I step into the gorgeous home built in 1909 by local architect A.E. Doyle. Doyle also designed the Multnomah County Central Library, the Meier & Frank Building and the famous Benson Bubblers!
I notice wallpapers that are a clear trademark of Anne’s style and relish in the light, fun and sophisticated feel the Kitzis-Strasfeld home emanates.
Lynne Strasfeld and Alex Kitzis are doctors. They’re used to chaos and high stress situations. I keep this in mind when they tell me they chose to live in the home throughout the remodel.
“Living in the home during construction allowed us to be a part of the process, and we were able to make on-the-fly decisions and adjustments to the remodel plan,” Lynne tells me.
“Things like adding a counter below the microwave in the kitchen and replacing the mudroom were decided in-the-moment,” says Alex.
“And best of all, Jamie and Adam [Arciform’s lead carpenter and project manager on the project] were always respectful of our space; in the end they became like family,” Lynne says
Two weeks ago I was here getting photos of the home for both Arciform and interior designer Jenna Sheingold. During the photoshoot I played ping-pong in the fully finished basement with 9-year-old son Anderson – he shamelessly beat me five times in a row.
12-year-old Margot showed me her beautiful bedroom. I notice the light sea green ceiling (painted in Benjamin Moore’s Neon Celery) and the attached bathroom with beautiful details like classic white hexagonal tiles with black accents on the floor, the Carrara marble shower threshold and pretty wall-mounted sink by Duravit. The walls have been painted in Ice Blue by Benjamin Moore.
“I like how light and bright my room is,” says Margot.
Today I’m at the home with the Lynne, Alex, Anne, photographer Christopher Dibble and their cheerful golden retriever, Sadie. We’re getting a few more photos, and I’m learning more about the remodel. Anne brought pastries from Ken’s Artisan Bakery and we sit down to enjoy them in the garden room and chat more about the home.
What I love most about these interviews is hearing Anne talk about historical architecture. First of all, she has a charming German accent. Second, she knows her stuff and is passionate about design.
The remodel included expanding along one wall of the kitchen by three feet, removing a wall from the dining area to the living area, adding a new family room and bathroom to the basement and restoring historical details such as the oak hardwood flooring, large, west-facing windows and the pass-through butler’s pantry, among other things.
“The Kitzis-Strasfelds loved their previous home as well. They moved from an old Victorian just ½ mile from their new house. They were especially fond of their former kitchen with its cozy nook, so we took those elements and carried them into their new home. We expanded the kitchen, added wainscoting and banquette seating to the existing nook and used the same paint color—Gaelic Garden by Columbia Paints,” says Anne.
As we exit the house through the cheery red front door, Lynne tells me, “we had many happy hours sitting in our old kitchen, and now we feel the same about our new kitchen.”
This house is on the Ainsworth Holiday Home Tour which happens this Thursday, 11/30! Be sure to check it out.
Photo Gallery (photos by Christopher Dibble):
If you were downtown on Saturday, September 30th, you may have noticed a 2,860 square foot historic house moving through the street… in two pieces. Don’t believe us? Check it out here:
That’s right, we cut an 1880 Italianate in half, and with the help of OXBO, moved it 1.5 miles through PSU’s park blocks across the 405 freeway and to its new home at the intersection of Southwest Broadway Drive and Grant Street.
“The original location of the home placed significant development pressure, causing the house to sit vacant for years without investment and placing it under constant threat of demolition.” says Arciform co-owner, Richard De Wolf.
After ten years of levying for the homes preservation, Arciform started work in preparing the Morris Marks House for its new location on Friday, September 22nd.
“Cutting a house in half is no easy task. The intricacies involved include making sure services are out of the way, determining engineering requirements, predicting how the house will behave while traveling and then doing the actual cut and shoring of the building. The process took us 4 weeks, with 3 team members working on it from 7:30am-4pm each day.” says De Wolf
The Morris Marks house weighs approximately 84,000 lbs. Steel beams were inserted underneath the home’s foundation and each half (42,000 lbs each) was lifted using hydraulic lifts.
“It may look a little run down right now, but don’t worry, we’ll have this home shining like it once did years ago. At the same time, all of its services and foundation will be engineered for the future.”
“I’m happy they left the ivy on!” owner Karen Karlsson exclaims as her home moves through the PSU park blocks.
Inside the home there are many examples of wallpaper spanning several generations. The woodwork is mostly intact, the original wood floors will gleam again soon and the curved staircase and rails will show its craftsmanship to new generations to come.
Outside the home, the wide projecting cornices with heavy brackets and richly ornamented windows, porches, doorway and single bay define the classic Italianate style.
The plan right now is to convert this home into office space on the upper floors and an apartment in the basement level.
“We’re in the permitting stage right now, there is amazing potential for the restoration of this incredible home and we’re so happy to have saved it from demolition,” says DeWolf.
Originally built for a shoe merchant, it’s last use was a boarding home and in recent years, it has avoided demolition by the thankful efforts of the Blindheims (previous owners), Rick Michaelson and Karen Karlsson (current owners and developers), the City of Portland and all of its departments, OXBO (the team that rolls it down the street) and the tireless efforts of the Arciform crew.
Stay tuned for the exciting transformation as we continue to update you here!
Does your rec room need refreshing? Maybe the bedrooms feel blah or your mudroom is miserable? Don’t fret. No matter what your style or which of your rooms need attention, Junior Designer Amy Wigglesworth has six fabulous furnishing finds right here in town.
1. Canoe offers “simple, beautiful, & functional objects that can be used & enjoyed everyday”. As you wander through the showroom, it’s easy to see the essence of the Pacific Northwest in the most fundamental ways. Their selection of Oregon-designed housewares is a must for any contemporary living space. You’ll find them across from the Portland Art Museum, at 1233 SW 10th Ave.
2. You don’t have to be a historical furniture nerd like me to appreciate the work of designers such as Pierre Jeanneret, Mies van der Rohe & Ray & Charles Eames. Hive Modern, located at 820 NW Glisan, represents some of the most trusted & innovative furniture brands including Herman Miller, Cassina, & Knoll. So whether you are in the market for high end luxurious furniture or not, I highly recommend stopping by & immersing yourself into the Womb Lounge Chair, Wassily Lounge & the Barcelona Couch.
3. Just down the street from Hive is another fanciful showroom, EWF Modern. This furniture showroom explores the symbiotic relationship between modern & organic aesthetics. The playful combinations of form & texture support their philosophy that “design takes its cue from nature”. Check them out: 1122 NW Glisan St.
4. Looking for a more eclectic vibe? Cielo Home is a treasure trove of new & antique furniture & housewares. This classic Portland shop has everything from sophisticated Louis XVI chairs to enchanting light fixtures. I mean, what more could you ask for? Located at 528 NW 12th, this is a place to get lost in.
5. Another great shop for those with a more eclectic palate is Digs Inside & Out at 1829 NE Alberta St. This showroom is perfect for interior & garden design. Digs believes in lots of color & combining old with new. This is evident throughout their boutique, mixing contemporary hanging planters & light fixtures with vintage furniture & classic posters.
6. For those of you who hold sustainability close to your heart, look no further than Salvage Works. Lumber from deconstructed homes, warehouses & barns here in the Pacific Northwest are curated into selections of heritage lumber, wall cladding, & custom furniture here. If you are in the market for a reclaimed beam, live edge shelving or a custom made table, check out Salvage Works at 2024 N Argyle St.
This is just a little taste of remarkable showrooms here in the Portland area. Whether you’re due for a whole house overhaul or want a special piece to perk up your home, there is a showroom here for you. Let us know, in the comments, your favorite spots to shop, & keep an eye out for future posts on more great resources both here in town & online.
– by Amy Wigglesworth; edited by Stephyn Meiner
This week Richard was interviewed by Amy Rosenburg on Veracity’s StreetTalk Podcast which digs deep into Portland’s ever-changing communal landscape. Listen here to hear why Historic District’s are important and how you can help save them.
If you imagine your ideal kitchen, do you dream of a spacious room connected to the outdoors through a sunny breezeway that provides lots of storage?
In this 3rd chapter about our 1920 bungalow project, Arciform’s lead carpenters Jamie Whittaker & Eric Delph share stories about the kitchen addition, with all of its special touches.
Jamie tell us that this kitchen is the hub & heart of the home, a space for living & creating. It’s full of ideas from the whole team that became reality, but not without challenges.
Some of his favorite features: the two beautiful dutch doors, one leading to the new covered back porch & the other to the the side yard.
The custom kitchen table, which provides space for eating or lounging while watching a TV that can be concealed behind a drop-down panel in the wall.
Another favorite piece is the fridge. It started as a big, modern appliance & we “dressed it up” like a vintage cooler you might see in an old general store.
The spacious salvaged island provides plenty of room for family time, & the built-in storage has a pressed tin door panel to resemble a pie safe.
Eric lists the 1929 Magic Chef range as a gem. Our client bought it online from some distant state & had the seller store it while we remodeled. When our client called for delivery, he learned that the seller had passed away & the range could not be found! Our client had to fly someone down to find it & bring it home.
He also lists the large vintage sink as a favorite element, with its built-in double drainboards and legs.
Arciform & Versatile Wood Products Teams on this project included:
Thanks to our wonderful, creative & inspiring clients, we were all able to do what we love to do!
When you hear the word garage, adventure doesn’t usually come to mind. Garages are supposed to be functional and practical.
But our clients at the 1920 bungalow in First Addition, Lake Oswego have a pretty special garage. Arciform‘s talented craftsmen created the structure just for them, and it had stories to tell before it was even completed. It’s sure to be the setting of many future memories.
Project Manager Adam Schoeffel shares 4 reasons this garage is such a special place:
#1: Roof Trusses & Interior Paneling
Adam redesigned the trusses to accommodate a grading issue which caused the garage door to impede the plane of conventional truss design. He upsized framing members and ordered a vaulted scissor truss for a more hand-framed look. The trusses were painted to contrast with the aged patina of the salvaged lap board which clads the walls and ceiling.
#2: Storage with Icebox Panel Doors
Adam and Site Co-Lead Eric Delph (the bearded one above) collaborated on this project, but the idea came from the client. Eric co-designed and constructed the unique storage with its icebox doors, and it looks as if it’s always been there. It is a real conversation piece, and everyone wants to open and close those doors.
#3: The Seed Cabinet
Our client found a handsome antique seed cabinet and knew it would provide great storage. It sat in the garage for many months while Arciform worked on other parts of the home.
One day, four of the cabinet drawers vanished! Without hesitation, Site Co-Lead Jamie Whittaker took charge of creating replicas. The old walnut was tough to match, but Adam found an alternate species that was very close and poked around several salvage shops to find the right hardware. They even matched the original drawer boxes, using flat-sawn fir. Jamie’s four drawers were so convincing, it was hard to tell which ones were new.
About six months after the project was completed, the four missing drawers were returned with an apology note attached to them!
#4: The Rodeo Sign
This is no small souvenir, but a family heirloom which holds years of memories. Our client has roots in St. Paul, OR, and has remained involved in the St Paul Rodeo for years.
The sign is made up of planks bolted together, then carved and painted. It needed stabilizing, so our crew disassembled it, stored it and later installed new pipe through it, slowly compressing the boards. They took great care to keep the words and images in alignment and looking crisp. Our clients intended it to be hung on a basement wall, but it was way too big, and looks truly at-home in the garage!
There are still more stories to tell about this project! Don’t miss our final post in the series next week: Adventures in Remodeling, Part 3: the Kitchen.
How do you make your home something special to you? This series of 3 posts will share stories about how we helped clients make this home all their own.
In 2011 on a corner lot in the heart of Lake Oswego sat a charming 1920 bungalow for sale. It captured the hearts of a globetrotting family living in Florida, and they purchased the house with plans to relocate closer to their Oregon roots.
They hired design-build firm Arciform to help turn this gem into their forever home. With plans for a cross-country move, a flurry of emails, team meetings, and trips to local salvage shops started.
The home sits in First Addition, one of Lake Oswego’s oldest neighborhoods. Many homes in this area were first owned and occupied by Oregon Iron & Steel Company workers, built in a variety of architectural styles.
Principal Designer Anne De Wolf worked closely with the couple on a thoughtful interior remodel and additions. They shared a respect of the home’s style and era, using this to guide design decisions: from how to increase the footprint, down to door & cabinet hardware.
Reconfigured spaces and more square footage were desired, so the new plans provided a larger kitchen, a mudroom, a master suite, a new bath for the kids, and an outdoor living space.
The couple has a knack for finding wonderful old pieces with stories to tell. There are many antique fixtures, finishes and furnishings integrated into the project. Reclaimed sinks, shiplap paneling and more were salvaged from all over, including demolition sites, Salvage Works, Aurora Mills, eBay, and The ReBuilding Center.
The clients’ inspired vision brought so much fun to this project. One of many examples is the creation of the secret wine cellar.
It all started with four existing concrete steps in the basement. Though he didn’t know what to do with them, our client knew he wanted to do something. What purpose could those serve: storage of some kind? He needed somewhere to keep their wine…but how would they access it?
The adventurous spirit of the client inspired the trap door in the new kitchen floor.
Site lead Eric Delph says, “When thinking of all the work accomplished at this residence, the one thing that stands out in everyone’s mind is that wine cellar! It evolved from an idea to reality with many hands and great interaction with the clients. From the hidden hatch doors to the storage system and that great final touch by the client himself: a confessional door!”
There are more stories to tell about this project! Stay tuned for the next chapter: Adventures in Remodeling, Part 2: the Garage.
As the built environment of Portland evolves at an astonishing pace, we place an immeasurable value on the preservation of our city’s architectural integrity. One of the ways that Portland protects the charm and character of our city is through the designation of Historic Districts. These are neighborhoods that have been deemed to be of particular historic or cultural significance and are protected by certain rules and regulations. If you are lucky enough to own a home in one of these special districts, (or if you are considering buying a home in one), you need to know what this means for your house and potential remodel projects. Luckily, you have a team of experts at Arciform to help you stay informed!
If you are considering a remodel that will alter the exterior of your Historic District home, it is very likely that your project will have to pass Historic Review. During this process, we are required by the City to produce detailed drawings and documents that demonstrate how the proposed project will enhance (and not degrade) the historic architecture of the home and neighborhood.
Whether you are building a dormer or adding a window and door (as in the above Alphabet District home), the City will carefully analyze the proposed design to make sure that the historically significant details of your home’s architecture are preserved and incorporated into the design. These details include (but are not limited to) such things as: balance, proportion, massing, roof pitch, building materials and millwork profiles. As experts in historic remodeling, Arciform is well-versed in the requirements for Historic Review and thus, we are able to effectively get ahead of the process and set client expectations for budget and timelines.
The beautiful home pictured above (located in the Irvington District) underwent an extensive Historic Review process for the proposed exterior work and new back steps and patio. Upon completion, the homeowners had a newly invigorated and more functional space, while maintaining the integrity of the 1915 Prairie Style architecture.
If you have been considering a remodel on your Historic District home, we are the firm for you! We can educate you about tax incentives and the Historic Review process, as our experienced Designers and expert carpenters ensure that your very special home will stay true to its unique character and to the intrinsic value of your neighborhood.
-By Anna Foltz
Today brings you our final edition of our Designer Holiday Gift Guide for 2016. Over the weekend we put up lights, festive greenery and baked gingerbread unicorns, angels and crustaceans, naturally. Now it’s time to for us to check things off of our gift lists!
Part Three of our guide brings goodies selected by Design Associates Anna Foltz and Bianca McKelvy. Maybe you’ll find something for someone on your Nice List?
For your Favorite Dog
Do you love outdoor adventuring with your canine companion? Ruffwear dog boots are a wonderful way to protect your pal’s paws from the elements. Find an assortment of colors and sizes locally at Pet Loft on SW Macadam Ave.
For the Kitchen
Out of the Woods of Oregon
These beautiful wood cutting boards and utensils are made in Eugene, OR from sustainably sourced native red alder. The cutting boards are available in the shape of any of the 50 states, so offer a home-state gift to your friends and family in any part of the USA! Purchase locally at Presents of Mind on SE Hawthorne Blvd.
For that Quirky Friend
In a city that prides itself on weirdness, Paxton Gate is a source for oddities and ephemera for those who might appreciate a gift that’s a little. . . different. The shop feels a bit like a neo-Victorian biology lab, with eclectic displays of framed insects, taxidermy, exotic plants and jewelry/apparel inspired by nature. This is a fun and funky shopping experience that you don’t want to miss!
For the discerning fashion enthusiast in your life, Xtabay Vintage Clothing Boutique is a gem on SE Clinton St. This charming boutique features a choice array of vintage apparel, jewelry and accessories, all in impeccable condition.
For the Home
Handmade in Portland, these unique wind chimes are made of obsidian dug from lava beds in Eastern Oregon and driftwood from the West Coast. The delicate music they make is as enchanting as their organic sculptural designs.
Something to Make
I love getting my hands dirty and am always trying to learn how to create things instead of buy them. Gifting a workshop from WildCraft Studio School would be great for a crafty friend.
For the Home
Maven Collective on SE Stark in the Mt. Tabor neighborhood always has a well curated selection of vintage home goods, furniture and plants.
Last Call at Jimmy Maks
Jimmy Maks, one of the last great jazz clubs in Portland, is closing at the end of the year. So if you’ve never been, I highly recommend you make it down to the Pearl District and treat yourself to the awesome sounds of the Mel Brown Quartet before their closing night Dec 31st.
Ace & Jig creates some of the most beautiful and eclectic textiles and turns them into comfortable, fun garments.
I found local artist Martina Thornhill on Instagram and fell in love with her beautiful ceramic pieces.
Have you ever seen embossed leather this fun and creative?! I want one of every bag, in every color.
Here’s wishing you all the best as you create or look for that special something for all you hold close in your hearts this Holiday Season!
-edited by Marty Hegg