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This Dutchess County Home Gets a Modern, Ecofriendly Update


By Kelly Sanchez, Houzz


For a family residence in Dutchess County, James Crisp of Crisp Architects reconciled old and new, gracefully combining original elements and later additions with new spaces that stay true to its farmhouse origins. “The house had a very nice historic section, but like many old homes in this area, it had been added on to,” he says, “and rarely are the additions cohesive or suitable for the modern family.”

Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


“We started with the old pristine portion of the house and then worked out from there,” says Crisp. The new addition is set on pier footings so as not to disturb the roots of the existing oak trees on the property.

Wherever possible, Crisp emphasized energy efficiency, utilizing geothermal heating, soy insulation and old wood and stone. “Using reclaimed materials not only gives you a wonderful patina, it’s very green, without having it in your face,” he says.

Some antique windows were refurbished, while UV-coated, double-paned windows were installed to conserve energy. “You get winter sun that warms the house, so you don’t use as many lights,” notes Crisp. “Mature trees all around keep the house cool in summer.”


Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


Benjamin Moore’s Pumpkin Spice lends a glow to the family room, which is lit by Deanna Wish Design’s whimsical twig chandeliers. Crisp raised the ceiling heights and brought in old rustic beams to accentuate the space. The architect relies on sources such as Carlisle for reclaimed beams and floors. “The Internet’s amazing,” he says. “You can get beams shipped anywhere.”


Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


Ample windows open up the kitchen, which Crisp relocated from its original spot. Custom cabinets, granite counters and a farmhouse sink join a pair of dishwashers and a Sub-Zero refrigerator.

Crisp installed a super-charged motor in the basement to double the capacity of the downdraft Wolf range. The pine floors are inset with limestone. Lighting is from Visual Comfort & Co.


Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


Family and friends often gather on the porch, where the fieldstone fireplace gets is put to good use early and late in the season. “In fall, you wrap up and sit in front of the fire,” says Susoev. Adds Crisp, who’s also co-author of the book On the Porch, “It’s rare that I don’t put a porch on a home.” The flooring is bluestone.


 Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


Barn doors over the master bedroom fireplace conceal the television and pay homage to the property’s rural origins. Benjamin Moore’s Blue Porcelain on the walls is picked up in the blue chair upholstery. “The wife is very much an aqua-blue person,” says Susoev.


Crisp Architects, original photo on Houzz


Crisp played off farmhouse architecture in his design of the new poolhouse, which contains a sleeping loft and a kitchen. “Whether you’re trying to be traditional and match the house or not, you can really have some fun with poolhouses,” Crisp says. The barn at right is still used to store tractors and other implements.

Related: 6 Designers Share Their Favorite Blue Paint Colors

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