Home trends can manifest in a variety of ways. Yes, there are a lot of fun color schemes, tile choices, floor plans, and even structural trends to consider - but what about lifestyle needs? We’re seeing a big increase in the need for multigenerational homes, and we have a hunch that it’s not just because of the built-in babysitting. Many of our clients are modifying their spaces to help their families live their best lives in retirement and beyond, and they’re doing it in style.
We recently reimagined this Arlington family’s house into a home that would comfortably fit all three generations under one roof—no bulky, tacked-on in-law suite needed!
Reorganizing and Raising the Roof
The grandparents in this family had lived in this house for many years, and as we began reorganizing the layout and function of the three stories, we learned that the second floor held deep sentimental value. The grandparents had painstakingly designed it themselves when they first moved in, so it felt natural to make this space theirs and reserve the third floor for the younger family members.
To create the groovy, penthouse-like area the homeowners’ children and grandchildren wanted on the top floor, we quite literally raised the roof. Zoning regulations meant there was a cap on how much space we could add, but with attentive planning, we came within 0.10 percent of the allowance, allowing for just enough room for an ultra-cool loft.
A Space for Everything - and Everyone
With less than 1,000 square feet to work with upstairs, we faced the challenge of creating a full primary suite and a space for the kids, complete with a bedroom and bathroom, while still injecting the fun and funky style this family loves.
A crisp white color palette serves as the perfect backdrop for the bold pops of color and texture that give this space its unique personality and flair. Built-in shelves in the hallway and loft area provide a convenient amount of display room to showcase family photos and eclectic collectibles.
Both bathrooms sport contemporary black-and-white geometric tile with chrome fixtures that serve as a striking contrast to the bright white showers and soaking tub. Closed storage, custom nooks, and spacious countertops on the vanities add a much-needed layer of functionality without compromising on style.
As an added touch of architectural grandeur, we pushed out and curved the shower wall in the primary bathroom, loaded it with a stunning tile treatment, and added a matching curved railing around the stairs that lets in the natural light while keeping everyone safe. Lastly, we tucked away just enough room to add in an elevator if the stairs ever become an issue for the aging family members.
Cool Projects for Cool People
Three generations might be living in this home, but this new space feels nothing like a cramped family reunion. Design and execution like this open up the possibilities of what a multigenerational space can be for families that are ready to make the switch to this lifestyle.
“The grandparents are healthy and want to help raise the twins while their parents work,” said our own Michael Sauri in a recent Washingtonian article that featured this project. “Everyone is thinking ahead to when the parents may need to help the grandparents age in place.”
Whatever the future might hold for this family (and many others like them), designing a home that has the ability to stylishly meet current and future needs is a great way to keep building memories that will last a lifetime.