With 1,540 square feet of space on a third of an acre between farmland and the Branford River in Connecticut, the location and solid frame of this home appealed to architectural designer David Strong, who says it just "felt right." He meant to fix it up, sell it, and forget it. But somewhere between removing the asbestos siding and rebuildng the porch, this woodworker became deeply attached to the 1890 farmhouse he now calls home.
Removing the shingles revealed a remarkably well-preserved Victorian-era farmhouse with cedar shakes in the gables, horizontal banding in the trim, and bead-board paneling. "It was like unwrapping a present," says Strong, who carefully removed the asbestos while a helper kept the siding wet with a garden hose to avoid dangerous particles from becoming airborne. The original porch was reconstructed and a separate workshop and design studio built out back.