Magazine article Sunset

Less Room and More Space to Spread Out

Magazine article Sunset

Less Room and More Space to Spread Out

Article excerpt

With children gone, most couples want one of two things more space to spread out in, or less space to maintain. But can you have both? This 1,600-square-foot house, designed by Portland architect Michael McCulloch for Linda Larsen and Don Nickerson, says yes.

No one (including guests) feels cramped here, and the open plan and small number of rooms don't rob anyone of privacy. The secret to having it all in so little area is establishing a series of small, open spaces that share the volume of the two-story living room: two cozy studies off the public core downstairs, and the couple's totally private retreat upstairs.

Downstairs, the narrow kitchen opens to a dining area; both overlook a sunken study. The dining space opens to the living room, which soars up to the second floor; there, interior windows let the bedroom share light (and heat if it's wanted) from the south-facing window wall. Below the rest of the house and opening onto a deck, the sunken study is separate enough to serve as Linda Larsen's getaway Her husband's study also serves as an office and guest room. …

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