“It was sort of locked in time in the sense that it was obviously in need
of serious attention in some areas, but the family made it welcoming,”
he says. “Its charm is really in the way that the family lived and how
welcoming they were of friends.”
The original structure — at its core a simple Colonial hall-and-
parlor configuration — was expanded to include a second story in the
early 18th century, plus a family room and new kitchen in the early 20th
century. But the layout was choppy and the traffic flow did not favor
social interaction. “Seventeenth-century houses get added onto and
lived in in such a way that the kitchen is an accessory structure — out
of the way,” Weatherall says. “Their kitchen was distant from the liv-
ing room. When people came into the house socially, they were spread
out.” The homeowners requested a new design that would revitalize the
space and, expains Weatherall, “breathe some new life into it,” while
also bringing back some of its old character and, of course, making
entertaining family and friends a priority.
“It’s a family house,” says the wife, a Boston-area attorney, “a
farmhouse with a lot of visitors and pets coming in and out. It needed
to be more comfortable, livable, and durable for traffic.” With the help
of interior designer Sally Wilson of Wilson Kelsey Design in Boston
and Salem, Massachusetts, and Weatherall, they got to work.
Homeowners and designers agreed that the original timber framing, which had been covered up in a previous renovation, should be
showcased. Weatherall especially admired where the old timbers
“leaned and twisted.” Where repairs had to be made, he did so with
carefully selected matching species of wood. Now the exposed beams
stand as beacons from the past, a tribute to the house’s history and its
The new design also boasts a large porch and entryway across the
a rustic heirloom table is the centerpiece of the dining room (above).
Mortise cavities in the timber framing (facing page, top left) and the original
front door (facing page, top right) with outer “storm” door, speak to the
house’s 1670’s roots. A new hallway (facing page, bottom) makes for easy
access to the living room from the family and dining rooms.