Location: Frederick County, Va.

Slideshow

Merit Award: Winging It

This project offers sustainable design combined with artistic elements that add personal flair.

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Contractor: MT Puskar Construction, Flint Hill, Va. (no longer in business)

Designer: Chuck Swartz, Reader & Swartz Architects, Winchester, Va.

Though the original 1970s house lacked a definite style and was clad in baby-blue vinyl siding, it was in a great location on the site. To conserve natural resources, the owners and the designer decided to preserve the original structure as the core of the remodeled home and to add two wings to it. In one of the new wings, an open living room connects to the kitchen and outdoor areas. The contractor installed cedar tree trunks as structural posts in the kitchen and yoga room. Concrete countertops in the kitchen contain recycled glass, fly ash, and locally gathered river rocks.

Alternating horizontal and vertical cedar siding adds interest and texture to the remodeled exterior, and the siding is also decorated with art panels. The owners sent friends and relatives panels to paint, and the contractor inserted these into the siding.

Materials used include high-performance windows and glazing, high-efficiency plumbing fittings and fixtures, nontoxic insulation, geothermal HVAC, radiant-heat floor tubing, and a tankless hot water heater.

—Nina Patel, senior editor, REMODELING.