New House Gets a 19th-Century Makeover

Atlanta Manor House Home Exterior

Architect Peter Block gives a brand-new Atlanta home the character and authenticity of a centuries-old manor house, minus the leaky pipes and drafty windows.

01 of 06

Remake History

Atlanta Manor House Home Exterior

When it comes to designing houses, architect Peter Block tries to avoid strict stylistic definitions. "First we go for feel," he says. "Style finds its way." Case in point is the new home of Marcia and Mark Miller, located on a rare expansive lot in Atlanta's Buckhead area. For its design, Peter looked to the English Country houses of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. "The roofline, beams, small-paned windows and sculpted chimneys are all specific references to this period," he says.

Love it? Get it!

Front Door: custom mahogany, Lighthouse Woodworks; 770/789-1273.

02 of 06

Notice the Details: The Limewash

Notice the Details: The Limewash
Photo: Emily J. Followill

The custom mixture of lime, pigment, and water penetrates the brick facade, rather than forming a layer over it, resulting in a finish that has instant patina and can last hundreds of years.

Love it? Get it!

Paint: BioCalce Limewash; romabio.com

03 of 06

Notice the Details: The Windows

Notice the Details: The Windows
Photo: Emily J. Followill

The variety of window shapes—vertical, horizontal, and round—all encase small glass panes. "That's what would have been used historically, before large sheets of glass were possible," says Peter.

Love it? Get it!

Front Windows: Heritage Series; kolbe-kolbe.com

04 of 06

Notice the Details: The Back Bay

Notice the Details: The Back Bay
Photo: Emily J. Followill

"We created this curved, steel-framed window to give Marcia a window seat," says Peter. The copper roof, popular during the Middle Ages, will mellow over time.

Love it? Get it!

Roof: cedar shake

05 of 06

Notice the Details: The Chimneys

Notice the Details: The Chimneyss
Photo: Emily J. Followill

Peter designed the chimneys in the style of English architect Edwin Lutyens. The top half of the chimney, the flue, is rotated 45 degrees on the base for an added accent. Clay chimney caps top the spires.

Love it? Get it!

Walls: wood-molded brick; statesvillebrick.com

06 of 06

Architect's Advice: Peter Block

Architect's Advice: Peter Block
Photo: Lee Hopkins
  • I'm inspired by...those who think outside the box without being different just for the sake of being different, such as antiquarian and designer Axel Vervoordt.
  • What makes a new house old? Crafting with real materials...and heart.
  • Small upgrade that makes a big difference: Put all your lights on dimmers. Low lights create an intimate atmosphere.
  • Best architectural detail: A plastered barrel-vault ceiling for dramatic volume.
  • Favorite building product: Roma's lime-based paints and finishes. romabio.com
  • Easiest way to add curb appeal: Plant a great tree!
  • Worthy splurge: Mortise lock boxes on every door.
  • No Southern home should be without...porches for entertaining and living outdoors.
  • Favorite Southern building: That's a tough one—probably Drayton Hall just outside Charleston, South Carolina.
Was this page helpful?
Related Articles