When Bill and Jennifer Gilmer bought this circa-1928 Bethesda, Maryland, house, its charm was long past and its shortcomings were undeniable. The roof leaked, the upstairs floors sagged, and the place was poorly insulated.
One day, Jennifer discovered a set of plans the former owners had left behind that had been drawn by local architect Amy Gardner. Jennifer, a kitchen and bath designer, knew good design when she saw it. “Before, I had assumed we would remodel the house in keeping with its traditional style,” she says. “Instead, we called Amy, and she opened our eyes to the fact that our efforts didn’t have to be so predictable. We could keep the essence of an American bungalow while adding an Asian-contemporary feel to the home.”