Historic Carriage House in Lancaster City


Kevin, a designer at Horizon Kitchens, insisted that Phil call me; I was the person Phil needed to execute the kitchen remodel Kevin had designed for his carriage house in Lancaster City. 

The structure had been converted into a residence in the 1960’s, and the kitchen dated to that time.  The space is small with no viable opportunity to expand the square footage. Kevin’s design maximized the available space.

Phil has a strong sense of style and an extensive knowledge of antiques.  We collaborated to refine the design, and select all the finishes and products for the project.  In the process we became personal friends and continue to upgrade his house with custom furniture and other smaller projects.



Crow bars, screw guns and hammers gutted the kitchen and removed the outdated low soffit. The new cabinet height of eight foot one scales nicely with the nine foot two ceiling.  The space above the cabinets was filled with a set-back soffit and a continuation of the room crown molding.



The island is a piece of furniture with English style legs.  One leg was built hollow to allow electric for an outlet.



To minimize the impact of the fridge we paneled the side and the doors to match the kitchen.  The dishwasher is also paneled to look like the rest of the base cabinets.



The backsplash is random width v groove boards painted the same color as the soffit.  The boards are set up on a 3/4” plastic molding so that moisture does not affect the paint over the coming years.  In another nod to practicality we stood a piece of the counter stone upright behind the induction cooktop.



Things are not always what they first appear.  To balance the drawer bank on the other side of the kitchen we created false drawers on the trash pullout.



A pullout drawer under the sink allows the owner to get to the cleaning products in the back of the cabinet without having to get down on his hands and knees.



Lemans pull out units by Hafele allow access to the blind corner cabinets.



I consider hardware in the kitchen to be jewelry.  We selected a beautifully detailed knob for all but the glass door cabinets; there we used this rat tail latch which I love.



We decided to leave this whimsical iron hook projecting out of the original bead board ceiling.



The laundry is located in an uninsulated brick room down a short hallway off of the kitchen.  Phil left the door open to allow natural light in to the hallway.  It did not take me long to determine that the cold air wafting around the first floor originated in the laundry.  The door needed to be kept closed.  To keep the hallway from feeling like a dark hole we removed the wood panels from the door replacing them with tempered glass.



I paid my way through college working in theatres doing a lot of lighting work.  It still amazes me the improvements that can be made to architecture with good, layered lighting.  Even during the day this painting comes alive with the addition of two MR16 spots, the effect is even more dramatic after sundown.



The entrance to Phil’s house is through a beautiful garden courtyard.  The gate however left a little to be desired, both functionally and aesthetically.  The new custom gate and posts are constructed out of Azek. The arc across the top supports an antique horse head weather-vane and also braces the post to keep the gate latch in alignment.



Another antique accent in the courtyard.


Bruce Gingrich is a residential designer and custom builder based in New Holland, PA.  His company, Glenn Gingrich, Inc. is a design, build, remodel firm that executes projects from conception to completion.  His functional insight, meticulous planning, building expertise, and customer collaboration can give you the living space of your dreams.


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