A Study In Creativity


November 07, 1993|By BETH SMITH

When architect Bruce Finkelstein received the job of designing a new study in an existing home, he knew the secret of the room's success would be avoiding that feeling of closure often felt in a small space.

At about 16 feet square, the addition would store a large collections of books, provide a retreat for a busy editor, contain the family's piano and, if necessary, serve as an extended dining room.

Mr. Finkelstein, of H.B.F. Plus, made it his goal to create a multipurpose room that would function on all these levels, as well as act as a light and airy companion to the contemporary home.

Working with builder Carlton Gabler, he avoided boxiness and harsh lines in the room by placing windows on angles in an extended bay and taking the ceiling to 12 feet. Acting as furniture as well as architectural elements, the windows became partners with the three pickled oak bookcases, visually eliminating the walls and opening up the space. Visitors feel they are actually in a much larger room.

The most eye-catching feature of the room is a round window that seems to float within the gable of the high ceiling. Collaborating with interior designer Edward R. Stough and cabinet maker Israel Gruzin, Mr. Finkelstein gave the window a cozy berth by cutting a semi-circular design into the top of the 8 1/2-foot bookcase. A soft and pleasing architectural element, the window acts as a picture frame for the high brances of a backyard tree. The view is the homeowner's favorite every season of the year.

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