written by:
April 1, 2015
Rather than stick with the visual language of the existing house, the architects of these structures go bold with mind-bending updates.
Toronto Contrast House Exterior

A 1,850-square-foot Victorian in Toronto was smartly renovated by DUBBELDAM architecture + design. The team juxtaposed the home’s 125-year-old red brick façade with vertical, black-stained cedar cladding at the back. “We wanted to celebrate the old alongside the new,” Heather Dubbeldam says.

Courtesy of 
Bob Gundu
Originally appeared in Bright, Efficient Upgrade Transforms a Victorian in Toronto
1 / 5
Backyard of an Industrial Bungalow in Phoenix

A 1927 bungalow in Phoenix’s Coronado Historic District maintains its original brick facade, but turns into a gabled steel, glass, and concrete structure in the back.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Amazing House is Half Historic and Half Modern
2 / 5
Hello house in Melbourne with brick wall

This Victorian-era home in Melbourne, renovated by OOF! Architecture, maintains privacy from the street, but does so in an unusually "friendly" manner—with a giant brick wall that spells out "Hello."

Photo by 
Originally appeared in This Bold Renovated Victorian Spells Out "Hello" on Its Facade
3 / 5
Cut Paw Paw house in Australia with indoor-outdoor balance

When renovating a pre-WWII bungalow in Victoria, Australia, Andrew Maynard Architects decided to leave the structure deliberately incomplete. The existing bungalow transitions into an empty frame that houses an open-air corridor.

Courtesy of 
Peter Bennetts
Originally appeared in Indoor-Outdoor House Looks Completely Unfinished, And That's the Point
4 / 5
Scaiano Stone House Renovation in Switzerland

A super modern interior was carved out of a centuries-old building in the small Swiss village of Scaiano by Jérôme de Meuron. The new, minimal space features gray plaster and oiled larch wood, though portions of the original stone are also visible.

Courtesy of 
Hannes Henz
Originally appeared in Minimal Swiss Retreat Carved From Centuries-Old Stone
5 / 5
Toronto Contrast House Exterior

A 1,850-square-foot Victorian in Toronto was smartly renovated by DUBBELDAM architecture + design. The team juxtaposed the home’s 125-year-old red brick façade with vertical, black-stained cedar cladding at the back. “We wanted to celebrate the old alongside the new,” Heather Dubbeldam says.

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