Anatomy of a Bryn Mawr remodel

The dilemma:

Thomas and Jennifer Bohmbach, a young Bryn Mawr couple, recently purchased a Dutch Colonial home with an addition plagued by mold and water issues. They hired Southwest-based Shelter Architecture to inspect the structure and come up with a plan to remodel the house to showcase the couple’s passion for modern art.


The design solution:

Shelter has designed a new contemporary addition for the couple, said Kurt Gough, a founding partner at Shelter Architecture + Interior Design, 2913 Harriet Ave. S.

“The solution was a playful, modern facelift that creates interesting patterns of light inside with small 2-by-8 fiber-cement panels, reframing the running bond brick pattern as a rhythm of glass and colored panels in a pixilated pattern,” he said. “The intent was not to match the existing home’s style but to intentionally draw a line between the old and new. The window punches provide interesting plays across the interior walls framing the outside as art within their collection. Care was even given to give the couple’s dogs a view of the backyard through a floor-level window.” 

Inside, the home has cabinetry that blends in with the red oak of the original home’s built-ins, but comes with modern updates, such as a grey wash and glowing orange LED lights.

“The lighting and museum picture rail provide the couple the ability to make their home an ever-changing gallery,” Gough said.

A new master suite was added that opens up to a small photography studio. Shelter worked to make sure the updates to the home would be low maintenance. 

“However, the real interest of the house is the dynamic play of modern details inspired by old world patterns and materials,” Gough said. “All the while preserving the original footprint.” 

Remodel features/materials:

• Low VOC custom cabinetry 

• LED accent lighting 

• LOW VOC finishes (which release minimal air pollutants)

• Dual flush toilets 

• Icynene spray foam (helps making homes more energy efficient)

• Low maintenance, anodized and insulated commercial windows

• Durable fiber cement panels with integral coloring

• Rainscreen siding systems 

• Super insulated polycarbonate windows

• Reused brick cladding