Adding Dormers for Light, Living Space, and Charm 


Dormers come in all shapes and sizes. The most common is the “doghouse” dormer. The doghouse dormer is placed vertically on a sloped roof and given its own little roof, adding charm to the exterior of a home. Doghouse dormers are often associated with cottage-style, Craftsman, Colonial, or Greek Revival architecture, but they can be found on all sorts of homes with sloped roofs.

“A doghouse dormer is a way to change your roofline and make it more aesthetically pleasing. They add character to your home,” says Normandy Designer Maury Jones.

Beyond good looks, dormers really open up a space. Adding dormers can turn your attic from dusty forgotten zone to a light-filled art studio, office or bedroom suite. New bedroom with arched window to match architecture of home.“Increasing your useable area upstairs instead of building out  is a cost-effective way to add living or storage space,” Maury says, adding, “It can also be a smart solution for working within your town’s zoning guidelines.”

This clever add-on gives you extra space on an already-finished top floor. “Dormers are great for adding some smaller spaces like closets,” says Maury. It’s also possible to add or expand a bathroom in the area created by the dormers.

Whatever the function of the room, dormer windows provide beautiful natural light that will make it more pleasant.  Dormers can also add much-needed cross-ventilation for more pleasant sleeping. Even with central air and heating in modern homes, sometimes a nice breeze through an open window is just the thing.

porch addition

With so many benefits attributed to dormers, it can be easy to get carried away with their romance and practicality. Before you do, consider your roof. “You need a higher sloping roof with a steeper pitch. Dormers don’t look great on houses with lower roof pitches.” says Maury.

Are you looking to add more charm, light and living space to your home? Set up a time to talk to Maury about the possibilities. Find inspiration in the Normandy Remodeling photo galleries. If you enjoy design, follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest where we share our favorite projects and ideas.


Addition Bedroom for a girlGarage with bedroom addition above

Opened Up Tri-Level with Farmhouse Touches

Front room open to dining with fireplace

Being together is one of the best parts of family life. To make their home more conducive to gathering, this family needed to open things up on the main floor of their tri-level home.

“The flow wasn’t there. No one was using the front room. No one was using the dining room. The kitchen was closed off and dark,” says Normandy Designer Ashley Noethe.

It was time to reconfigure everything. “We took down the wall between the kitchen and the dining room and that opened up everything,” says Ashley. Some changes were smaller, but equally impactful. “We shortened the kitchen window, which allowed us to utilize a previously empty wall and add more cabinets.  It actually made the kitchen feel bigger and allowed us to double the counter space,” Ashley explains. Now there’s more storage, more prep space and most importantly, more seating.

White kitchen in a tri-level homeWith counter stools at the new peninsula, plus the now open dining room, there’s room for eight to 10 people to be comfortably chatting during prep and mingle time. Seating increased from a paltry four cramped spots to 10, and that increases to 14 when including the conversation area around the fireplace.

The homeowners have an affinity for farmhouse style. Ashley helped them identify finishes to bring this to life in their space. “The new configuration is brighter because there’s light coming in from all the windows. We played that up with a creamy cabinet color and light granite countertops. We also unified the flooring on the whole level by choosing a wide plank hardwood,” Ashley says.

Contrast is a trademark of farmhouse style. “We added in things like oil-rubbed bronze and black fixtures and contrasting grout on the subway tiles to play up the farmhouse feel,” Ashley says. A large double bowl sink completes the wish list.

Anything is possible as long as you have the patience to work through options,” says Ashley.White kitchen cabinetry with floating shelves “This is their forever home. It’s always important to get it right, especially when the family plans to stay put. Even though tri-level and farmhouse aren’t naturally synonymous, it has that feeling now,” she adds.

Do you love your neighborhood and want to stay forever? Remodeling can be better than moving. Set up time to talk to Ashley if you’d like to explore the possibilities that refreshing and reconfiguring your ranch, split-level, tri-level, or two-story home can bring. You’ll find plenty of inspiration in the Normandy Remodeling photo galleries. You can also follow along with us on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest for design ideas delivered straight to your feed.

Kitchen with white cabinets Fireplace with adjacent seating

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