Architect Treff LaFleche uses
his own home to set a smart,
sophisticated, sustainable standard
WRITTEN BY GAIL RAVGIALA
PHOTOGRAPHY BY PETER VANDERWARKER
man’s home may be his castle, but when that man
is architect Treff LaFleche, it quickly becomes
his laboratory. In the last 18 years, LaFleche has
renovated four houses for his family, all in the
same neighborhood (two on the same street)
of stately 19th- and early 20th-century structures in Newton, Massachusetts. Each
time, the reconfiguring and rebuilding
has been done with an eye to discovering better ways to practice his craft.
“The experimental-test-lab quality
does sometimes annoy my wife,” says LaFleche with a bemused
raise of the eyebrow.
His latest outsized Petri dish is a 1905 Shingle Style house
with storybook charm. “The area was once a farm, and the house
was built for the farmer’s son,” says LaFleche, who is a principal
at LDa Architecture & Interiors in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
“It was a small cottage, much simpler compared to other houses
in the area.”
That suited LaFleche and his wife, Melinda, who, in 2006,