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If you ever have the urge to design an addition that is completely different from the existing house, my advice is to resist it. Unless handled by a skilled designer intent on making a bold artistic "statement," drastic deviation from the original style of the home is usually a mistake. It's difficult to pull off gracefully and, at worst, becomes an architectural eyesore. Introduce New Design Elements In general, the design guidelines for an addition should be dictated by the existing house: A successful addition looks like it was part of the original construction. But what if the existing building is not the best example of design or is lacking in architectural interest? Rather than match the poor