Project: Whidbey Farmhouse
Architecture: DeForest Architects
Architects Team: John DeForest, Michael Knowles, Meredith Kelly
Interior Design: NB Design Group
Landscape Design: Kenneth Philp Landscape Architects
Structural: Evergreen Design Company
Contractor: Heggenes Construction
Location: Clinton, Whidbey Island, Washington
Area: 4900 ft2
Photo Credits: Tim Bies
Text by DeForest Architects
This Whidbey farmhouse is balanced between two landscapes—a dramatic bluff overlooking Puget Sound to the west and rolling pastures to the east.
The clients asked us to design a house that would be warm and welcoming for a variety of sizes and types of gatherings–from just the two of them to work retreats and family celebrations. They also wanted a modern home that was in harmony with its rural setting and the vernacular farm buildings nearby. In fact, the project included designing a horse barn and a full woodworking shop.
In response, we organized the house into two simple, barn-like forms connected by a light-filled stair. The south half contains living spaces for entertaining and every day. The north half is focused on spaces for visiting friends and family—two guest bedrooms, a bunkroom for grandkids, and a cozy media room for watching movies together, a family tradition.
Steel structure and floor-to-ceiling sliding doors connect the living and dining rooms to outdoor spaces positioned to take advantage of sun and views in both directions. An open kitchen, pantry and glassy breakfast bay complete the ground floor. Up above is a generous primary suite with the owners’ bedroom, bathroom, closet, and workout space. The bathroom includes a soaking tub in a bay window that floats above a verdant ravine lined with old growth trees, ferns and other native plants.