Helen Thompson
Helen Thompson
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CREATIVE CLASS

In 2005, Austin artists Evan Voyles (The Neon Jungle) and Gail Chovan (Blackmail Boutique) were expanding their family and, consequently also expanding their home. Their cottage sits on a street of four identical cottages just behind South Congress Avenue; one of the couple’s goals was to maintain the historic charm of the street. They sought help from Weiss Architecture who suggested a setback steel structure with three levels set above the cottage—the structure would preserve the integrity of the original house but add functionality for the growing family. Voyles and Chovan soon became the parents of twins, but the newborns had health complications that took precedence and the course of construction was executed in stages. The renovation was finally completed in 2017—one of its many distinctions is that the project became the longest active residential permit in Austin. Each phase of the project added depth and dimension to the original design: Bough House captures the spirit of this creative family and showcases their gifts and passions.

The front facade of the 1680-square-foot renovated cottage preserves its original wood lap siding.

The back door, however, is part of the new steel-and-glass structure that complements the house.

The new view of Austin’s cityscape from the rooftop deck.

The new structure hovers behind the old house.

One of the three bathrooms in the house.

A bedroom offers a view of the treetops.

The dining room is a showcase for the couple’s collections.

Kitchen and dining are part of an open floor plan. Wood on the floors and ceiling is reclaimed.

An interior hall offers wall space for Voyles’ signs.

The glass-and-steel structure is visible from this vantage point in another interior hallway.

This house was on the AIA Austin Homes Tour last October—it you liked it you’ll enjoy seeing it again here. And if you missed the tour—don’t do that again!

PHOTOGRAPHY BY JAKE HOLT FOR AIA AUSTIN

Builder: Sewanaka

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