For this busy family living in the suburbs of New York, their comfortable bi-level style home had begun to feel a bit cramped. Mom, dad, two growing kids, a large Golden Lab and lots of family gatherings and playdates with friends, beckoned more living space to enjoy family meals, kick back after a long day or sing happy birthday around the dining table. An addition off the second floor of their home into the backyard space was the solution to giving this family more room to spread out and have plenty of space to entertain family and friends.
Most bi-level homes are situated in the same manner; kitchen opens up to dining area and there’s usually a sliding door that leads to an upper deck, whether it’s off the kitchen area or the dining space. This set-up makes it relatively easy to expand your living space outward. With a little reconfiguration of your deck layout (or a brand new Trex deck in this case!), you’ll be able to gain even more livable space both indoors and out.
The homeowners worked with a General Contractor to design and build the addition, which can be used year-round. They wanted a relaxed, farmhouse-feel to the space, and chose a gorgeous knotty pine ceiling, which they left a natural color. A large, round wall clock in a rustic style, makes a simple statement, yet is a classic farmhouse-style decor element (think Joanna Gaines!).
The high ceiling and large windows that envelop the room allow for tons of light and nature to stream in from their surrounding backyard, which was also expanded by clearing an unused portion at the back of the property. A comfy hammock tied between two trees in the yard can be seen from the light-filled space. Cordless pleated shades from Home Depot provide privacy, but aren’t fussy and allow the light to stream through. An artificial Boston fern in an iron stand is well-appointed in the space and they don’t have to worry that their dog will eat it!
For the flooring, the homeowners chose a wide plank vinyl laminate in a dark tone. Laminate was the best choice for a few reasons; they have two young kids who love to run in and out of the house from the backyard and a large — and adorable — Golden Lab. Laminate is easier to clean since it can be mopped like tile, yet it’s softer on bare feet; plus, they don’t have to worry about it chipping and denting, as would be the case with hardwood. The wider plank is also a nod to the farmhouse feel the family was hoping to convey in the space. French doors lead from the former dining area of the home into the new space, providing one larger living space that flows throughout.
We chose a serene, elegant color for the walls from Benjamin Moore called Quiet Moments 1563. The light, sophisticated color complements both the dark floor and natural ceiling. Sofa and love seat in a beautiful shade of light cocoa provide a neutral backdrop for the homeowner to have fun changing out her throw pillows with the seasons! Both were purchased at Bob’s Furniture and since they didn’t “break the bank,” the family’s Golden Lab is allowed to make himself comfortable on them!
A white-washed sideboard purchased from HomeGoods provides much-needed storage for board games and a few of the kids favorite things, which are hidden behind the louver-style doors. Melamine dinnerware for outdoor dining on the deck is stacked neatly in the center of the cabinet and offers easy access when the family is getting ready to fire up the grill! (There is a door to the deck area from the space, which makes for easy entry in and out of the home.)
The family’s existing farmhouse-style dining table and chairs were brought into the room and provide the perfect place to enjoy family meals together. The black wood chairs offer the perfect balance between the natural wood tones and light walls throughout the space.