trend watch I M AG E M AG A Z I N E ’ S
BUILD, REMODEL & DECORATE
STEP UP TO STYLE Local Experts Lead the Way 1 image trend watch •
82 22 FEATURES
22 Even Better the
16 Ask the Experts
Second Time Around
Years after building the home, Northcape Design Build returns to expand the homeowners’ dream.
21 Builders & Contractors 32 Spotlight: Frank Anzalone Associates 38 Spotlight: Old Hampshire Designs
by Anne Richter Arnold
72 Pompanoosuc Mills
92 Color of the Year
A tradition of handcrafted furniture.
102 Spotlight: Pleasant Acres
by Katherine P. Cox
107 Outdoor Living
82 Turning a House into a Home
116 Spotlight: All Decked Out
For half a century, Gilberte Interiors has helped clients create fresh and comfortable living spaces. by Nancy Fontaine
136 Advertisers Index Real Estate 50 LindeMac Real Estate 64 Snyder Donegan Real Estate Group
108 Unique Outdoor Spaces Think Landforms for innovative landscape design. By Katherine P. Cox
80 Sotheby’s Four Seasons Real Estate 104 Coldwell Banker Lifestyles Finance 132 Mascoma Savings Bank 134 Sugar River Bank
Cover: Lake House by Frank Anzalone Associates. Photo by Great Island Photography.
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Mountain View Publishing, LLC
Make Yourself at Home
H Deborah Thompson Executive Editor dthompson@mountainview publishing.com
ow often have we said these words to friends or relatives who come for a visit? And what does the phrase really mean? To me, it means come in, sit down, relax, and don’t worry about putting your feet up on the coffee table—shoes off, of course! When people come into my home, I want them to feel as comfortable as they would in their own homes. Although making others feel welcome is admirable, thinking about this led me to a new question: What do we do to make ourselves at home? If we’re not doing all we can to make our homes as beautiful and livable as we would like them to be, what are we waiting for? Take on a project. It doesn’t have to be big or expensive; just choose one that you can afford and do it now. The staff and I would like to thank the business owners and their staff members who answered our call to participate in Trend Watch. We could not produce the magazine without their cooperation; they have graciously and generously submitted information and photos of their latest projects and offered comments about what’s happening in their respective industries based on their observations and their wealth of expertise. Special thanks to our dedicated staff and to Mike Morin for taking care of follow-up emails, phone calls, and interviews. This is our biggest issue ever, and we think it’s our best. We hope you agree! Enjoy!
135 Lyme Road Hanover, NH 03755 (603) 643-1830 www.uppervalleyimage.com Publishers
Bob Frisch Cheryl Frisch Executive Editor
Deborah Thompson Contributors
Tom Brandes, Katherine P. Cox, Nancy Fontaine, Mike Morin, Anne Richter Arnold Associate Editor
Kristy Erickson Copy Editor
Elaine Ambrose Creative Director/Design
Ellen Klempner-Béguin Advertising Design
Hutchens Media, LLC Web Design
In Memoriam Antranig “Andy” Aharon Boghosian, founder of Gilberte Interiors in Hanover, passed away on February 23, 2017, at the age of 86. He is survived by his wife Gilberte, son Aharon, daughter Cheryl, their spouses Kathy and Neil, and four grandchildren. Andy and Gilberte married shortly after his graduation from New Hampshire Technical Institute in 1953 and moved to the Upper Valley in 1958. They founded Gilberte Interiors, Inc. 50 years ago, in 1967. A celebration of his life was held on March 18 at the Hanover Inn. The publishers and staff of Mountain View Publishing extend condolences to the family. We will miss seeing Andy around town and on the golf course.
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KEEP US POSTED: Trend Watch magazine wants to hear from readers. Correspondence may be addressed to: Letters to the Editor, Image/TW, 135 Lyme Road, Hanover, NH 03755. Or email us at: dthompson@mountain viewpublishing.com. Advertising inquiries may be made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Trend Watch is published annually in the spring by Mountain View Publishing, LLC ©2017. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part is strictly prohibited. Trend Watch magazine accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, artwork, or photographs.
Ask the Experts 2017 If a homeowner can make only one improvement this year, what should it be? What’s on your to-do list? Are you looking for new furniture, scouting out sleek bathroom fixtures, or wishing for a natural stone wall or walkway? Read on for the best advice from those in our area who are in the know!
“NEW COLOR AND STYLE. MAKE YOUR HOUSE FUN TO COME HOME TO.” —DIANNE TITUS, CARPET KING & TILE, NORWICH & SPRINGFIELD, VT PHOTO COURTESY OF DASH & ALBERT RUGS
“Update floors and countertops for a better return on investment when you sell your home. Granite counters are certainly a selling point. There are a lot of people going to quartz for countertops, and we have four different lines of quartz now.”
“Get a new staircase from us! Let us design the staircase of your dreams, the centerpiece of your house.” —LUKE WATSON, COLONIAL WOODWORKING, BRADFORD, NH
—BILL RICHARDS, BARRE TILE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE, LEBANON, NH & SOUTH BARRE, VT
If resale is the primary goal, updating kitchens and bathrooms helps to sell a house. If the goals are more long term, I counsel clients to focus on changes that impact their quality of life, whether it be energy efficiency upgrades to reduce utility costs or adding a large soaking tub to a master bath for relaxation.” —DEB BRIEN, RIVERLIGHT BUILDERS, NORWICH, VT
PHOTO COURTESY OF RIVERLIGHT BUILDERS
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“Update kitchens and bathrooms to up the resale value of your home. We can help with whatever project you have in mind. We’re happy to help you rip out an old fiberglass tub and do a new custom tile shower. Or just redo your bathroom or kitchen floor.” —SONJA ANDERSON, FLOORCRAFT, WILMOT, NH
“DO A LUXURIOUS CUSTOM SHOWER, OR REMODEL FOR AGING IN PLACE.” —JESSICA BOISVERT, SUGAR RIVER KITCHENS, BATHS & FLOORING, GRANTHAM, NH
“IMPROVE YOUR BUILDING SEAL AND INSULATION WITH GREEN PRODUCTS.”
“Invest in flooring or backsplash material in the kitchen.”
—PAUL VAN WINKLE, BENSONWOOD, WALPOLE, NH
—RYAN CHASE, VALLEY FLOORS, BRADFORD, VT
“Go for energy efficiency, and new appliances are offering that. And there are rebate programs when you buy a qualifying appliance. I think there is something to be said for some of the connectivity coming out with appliances where you can operate your stove with your smartphone. They’re trying to make everything in your house operable through a mobile device. When we go to the product shows, that’s what a lot of the manufacturers are talking about.”
“CHANGE OUTDATED INTERIOR DOOR HARDWARE AND UPDATE TO A NEWER STYLE AND FINISH. IT IS RELATIVELY INEXPENSIVE AND QUITE POSSIBLE TO DO YOURSELF IF YOU HAVE THE TOOLS.” —SHEILA VARNESE, LAVALLEY BUILDING SUPPLY, WEST LEBANON, NH
—DAVID PERRY, PERRY’S OIL, BRADFORD, VT
Ask the Experts 2017 “ADD OR CHANGE LIGHT FIXTURES. IT’S LIKE ADDING JEWELRY TO YOUR HOME. YOU CAN GET A TOTALLY DIFFERENT LOOK FOR A FRACTION OF THE COST OF MAJOR RENOVATIONS.” —GREG ISABELLE, ILLUMINATIONS BY BARRE ELECTRIC, WEST LEBANON, NH & BARRE, VT
“As an interior designer, I want to answer this with a design improvement, such as wallpaper a room, update carpeting and tile, or improve lighting fixtures. However,
“Redo your kitchen and change your undercabinet lighting to LED. This will light your backsplash and counter space to brighten your kitchen.” —BRIAN HORAN, CREATIVE LIGHTING DESIGNS, LEBANON, NH
I do think that deferred maintenance to your home should come first. Taking care of the bones of our homes is critical to the long-term integrity of the structure. Fix the leaky roof, the window with a broken seal, or the rotten clapboards.” —ALICE WILLIAMS, ALICE WILLIAMS INTERIOR DESIGN, HANOVER, NH
“ADD A BACKYARD SHED FOR EXTRA STORAGE SPACE.” —JEN PROCTOR SINCLAIR, THE CARRIAGE SHED, WHITE RIVER JUNCTION, VT
“An outdoor room! With staycations becoming more common, focus on your patio or porch. With today’s materials, you can create an amazingly comfortable, durable outdoor living space that family and friends can enjoy for years to come.” —LYNNE WARDLAW, DECK DOCK, SUNAPEE, NH
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“Maintain the exterior. It’s exposed to the elements. It’s where it breaks down and repairs may come into play. The exterior of your building should always be maintained with a scheduled maintenance program—keeping exposed wood covered up, keeping things caulked, filled, and painted.” —JEFF WILMOT PAINTING & WALLPAPERING, SOUTH ROYALTON, VT
“Replacing old windows, for both aesthetics and energy efficiency. We have products for all budgets.” —JOEY CARTER, AMERICAN PLATE GLASS, CLAREMONT, NH
“A bay window can add value for someone think-
“Improving your lawn and landscape can increase your home value up to 15 percent and yield a 100 to 200 percent return on the investment, according to the Lawn Institute in an article published by Coldwell Banker.” —THERON PECK, CHIPPERS, WOODSTOCK, VT
ing of selling a house. Also, I’d suggest if they’re building a new house or doing an energy retrofit on their existing home, consider triple glazing.
“I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND CREATING AN OUTDOOR ROOM.” —MICHAEL BURNS, MB PRO LANDSCAPE DESIGN, ENFIELD, NH
Its benefits go beyond energy savings, including reducing condensation and sound transmission.” —STEVE CARY, LOEWEN WINDOW CENTER OF NH & VT, WHITE RIVER JUNCTION, VT
“Go for sustainable, low-maintenance landscape in front of the house for curb appeal.” —SEAN NORTON, SEAN’S LAWN N’ GARDEN SERVICES, THETFORD CENTER, VT
“LOOK AT HOW TO UPGRADE OUTDOOR LIVING AND CONSIDER A COMPOSITE DECK, SOMETHING THAT WILL BE LOW MAINTENANCE AND LAST FOR A LONG TIME. THIS IMPROVEMENT WILL HELP YOU RELAX AND ENJOY LIFE.” —SUE JOHNSON, BELLETETES, SUNAPEE, NH
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
builders • contractors Whether you’re building a new home or renovating one room, it’s a journey you’re not likely to take often. Be sure to travel the road with experienced professionals who can save you money and deliver your dream, on time and within budget.
even better the
Second Time Around BY ANNE RICHTER ARNOLD PHOTOS BY BILL FISH PHOTOGRAPHY
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YEARS AFTER BUILDING THE HOME, NORTHCAPE DESIGN BUILD RETURNS TO EXPAND THE HOMEOWNERS’ DREAM
Custom features like this reclaimed chestnut table complement the views to the lake.
When you build your dream home and then have a chance to make it even better, you want it to be perfect. That’s why the owners of one Lake Sunapee home decided to bring back their tried and trusted builder and architects, creating a home that will be beautiful and functional over time, a true “forever” home. Northcape Design Build, the firm that originally built the residence in 2000, is currently designing an addition to their home that will start construction in the fall. Brett Cusick, principal of Northcape, says, “What I love about this project is that it is an existing, highly satisfied customer who is coming back to make it even better. The original home was designed by our partner, Bonin Architects, and the addition is being designed by them as well.” Northcape is a full-service firm based in Sunapee, 24 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
New Hampshire, specializing in custom homes, room additions, and major renovations—from new construction to historic preservation. Their team of professional designers, builders, and craftsmen is committed to creating homes with exceptional quality and craftsmanship, aspects that have earned Northcape Design the Best of Houzz 2017 award. Building a Dream Brett says, “As a true design-build firm, we partner
Itâ€™s all in the details, from the materials selected to make a space cozier, the fixtures used to ensure that enough light shines throughout the home, and the custom casework made and installed by skilled craftsmen.
Brett Cusick, Principal
Geoff Martin, Principal
Wood tones and neutral shades in tile choices make the marriage between various wall, floor, and ceiling surfaces easy to live with.
Jim Goin, Superintendent
Carol Sullivan, Office Manager
THE NORTHCAPE TEAM Every job that Northcape Design Build undertakes is conducted with the utmost trust and respect. As general contractors, the team is guaranteed to uphold your project’s specific requirements.
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with customers from the get go. We handle everything from shoreland protection to local and state permitting; if a project requires town meetings or waivers, we are part of that, every step of the way. We take care of all phases of design, either in house or with our architectural partners like Bonin Architects. Because we have a true design-build approach when we present a proposal to the client, it is a fully detailed scope of work and a fixed price.” Bonin Architects, located in New London and Meredith, New Hampshire, serves New England with a focus on homes in the lakes, mountains, and coastal regions. Principal Jeremy Bonin explains, “As a design firm, we bring architecture and landscape architecture together in a collaborative approach to every project. Our values of honesty, integrity, commitment, respect, and service are reflected in all we do. Those values and hard work are the difference between building a home and building a dream.” Making a Great Home Even Better The original design of the home they are renovating was restricted by the lot’s shape and size, and one of the tradeoffs was settling for a secondfloor master suite. Jeremy’s design for the addition of the newly acquired
A unique aspect of the original home is the inclusion of a golf simulator. . . . Each golf simulator is custom built for the client’s specifications for a particular space. 28 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
adjacent property allows for a new first-floor master suite and an expansion, extending the possibilities of this home dramatically. The additional property and the location of the master suite wing also allow for a redesign of the entry, both architecturally and from a landscape perspective, resulting in a more comfortable, casual, and brighter approach to the home. Jeremy comments, “Integrating both landscape and architectural design with the existing home and hardscape allows us to echo themes in place while incorporating new ideas and opportunities for the approach, the entry, and the use of outdoor spaces. It’s a wonderful opportunity to come back again and make the home even better.” Brett is excited about the continued work on this home. “What’s great about the addition is that it is a first-floor master suite. The clients are thinking long term in order to create a house that works for them in the future. Adding this first-floor master allows them to stay in the home as their circumstances change. We are working with more and more
Lower-level living is just as comfortable as upstairs and features a stone fireplace, a custom wine room, and other beautiful spaces.
people who want to stay put and find ways to make their home work for them as their needs change.” Following this trend of aging in place, Northcape holds a designation through the National Association of Homebuilders called CAPS (Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist). The firm has the knowledge and expertise required to create a home where clients can stay and age successfully in an existing dwelling. Also through the National Association of Homebuilders, Northcape has acquired a CGP designation (Certified Green Professional). In keeping with its mission to focus on energy efficiency and sustainability, the firm understands environmentally conscious material sourcing and building techniques.
Technology, Transparency, and Communication For this and all its other projects, Northcape uses technology to allow the client to see what the finished product will look like. The design team uses photorealistic 3D renderings that allow the client to see an actual version of their home or addition. By interfacing with vendors, they can even see their actual appliances, paint colors, window styles, and more—all the details that create a realistic version of the final outcome. On a project, communication is key. Brett says, “Northcape has an online customer portal that we all share—trade partners, customers, vendors—accessible from anywhere and any device. It has made our system and process very clean and user friendly, www.uppervalleyimage.com •
and it starts during the design phase. Most customers are not in the area, so this allows them to ‘see’ their project develop even without being here. Photographs, selections of materials, and features for the home are all on a calendar-based schedule where they can see that their project is on target. It provides a huge amount of transparency for how the project is going and also helps us communicate with our trade partners.” A unique aspect of the original home is the inclusion of a golf simulator. Brett has been a dealer of aboutGolf PGA Tour indoor golf simulators for a number of years, the same system used on the Golf Channel and carrying the PGA Tour endorsement. Each golf simulator is custom built for the client’s specifications for a particular space. Brett notes that the house is evolving in a way that that will allow the homeowners to stay in it forever. “The addition seamlessly ties in with the beautiful craftsmanship of the original home designed by Bonin Architects, our highly respected architectural partner, and will be built with the same quality and pride as when we built the original home. We’re thrilled to be back a second time to create the owners’ dream home.” tw
Northcape Design Build 3 Alpine Court PO Box 549 Sunapee, NH (603) 763-2477 sunapeecustomhomes.com
With a focus on community service, Northcape is involved with the Boys & Girls Club and is a supporter of many local charities. Northcape also built and donated the Sunapee Welcome Center, a striking post-and-beam building in the center of town.
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Spotlight • Frank Anzalone Associates
By Tom BrAndeS
phoToS By Top KAT phoTogrAphy And greAT ISlAnd phoTogrAphy
TACKLING CHALLENGES AND SOLVING PROBLEMS When Frank Anzalone started his own architectural firm in 2004, he knew he wanted to work closely with his clients to create outstanding designs. Previously, he had worked for small, medium, and large companies, and while he enjoyed working on projects of all sizes, the relationships with clients were sometimes cold. Today, he is the owner of Frank Anzalone Associates, a threeperson firm located in New London, New Hampshire, that works closely with its clients to overcome challenges and create beautiful, enduring buildings. “We look at a project as a problem that needs to be solved,” says Frank. “Good design is good design, but we love a challenge, and the more difficult, the better. We love tackling tough jobs, 32 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
The placement of the doors and windows is designed to unite the inside and outside spaces as one, creating views and a natural path to the lake and giving homeowners the best opportunity to enjoy the beauty of New Hampshireâ€™s seasons.
BY NANCY FONTAINE
Above and left: When installed correctly, natural products cannot only be low maintenance but also retain their beauty for years to come. Center: The bright kitchen features black granite with a leathered finish. Right: The double-sided fireplace was built with local stone.
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and when people say something can’t be done, we smile and go to work.” THE HOLLINGER RESIDENCE A recent example of his firm’s work is the Hollinger residence on Pleasant Lake in New London. A seasonal home built in the 1960s previously occupied the narrow lot. Initially, Frank hoped to save or reuse portions of the home, but its lifespan was over. The Hollinger family wanted a home with indoor and outdoor spaces where
they could enjoy each other as well as the lake but still allow the owners to get away within the home. It needed to be comfortable, energy efficient, and low maintenance, and it had to work for their large family—now and in the future when children and grandchildren would visit. “Every lakefront property has setbacks and other restrictions, plus natural features that can be challenging,” says Frank. “There is a large, natural rock outcropping the family had named Turtle Rock that we had to preserve and work around.”
Frank designed the home to fit around these restrictions by angling it and providing lake views from nearly every room. By making efficient use of the available space, he was able to design a home that met his clients’ needs while harmoniously fitting into the natural space. NATURAL AND EFFICIENT Because the site was chosen for its nature views, Frank also wanted the home to minimally impact the lake www.uppervalleyimage.com •
and water quality. The new home is designed to manage and store rain and snow runoff on-site. “We used natural materials wherever possible to make the home low maintenance, including stained cedar shake siding, and for the roof, long-lasting cedar shakes and copper sheets where ice can form,” says Frank. “For the patios, we used stone from Northern Massachusetts that will last forever.” A propane-fired modulating boiler with 98 percent efficiency keeps track of indoor and outdoor temperatures, and an in-line on-demand hot water system significantly reduces energy costs. High-efficiency Pella windows further improve comfort and performance. “A good building envelope is key, including spray foam and cellulose insulation. A liquid-applied air barrier seals out moisture and drafty winds yet lets air pass over to dry the exterior wall so it lasts longer with less maintenance,” adds Frank. “It’s a beautiful, comfortable home that will serve the Hollinger family well for many years.” tw Frank Anzalone Associates 224 Main Street New London, NH (603) 526-8911 www.faa-arch.com
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Spotlight • Old Hampshire Designs
By katHerine p. cOx
Make your vision
A REALITY SMART DESIGNS FROM CONVENTIONALLY BUILT, POST AND BEAM, AND ANYTHING IN BETWEEN
When Jay Tucker of Old Hampshire Designs in New London was first building houses more than 30 years ago, homeowners wanted the soaring spaces characteristic of large post-and-beam houses. Today, he says, people are trending toward building smaller conventional homes with fewer costly amenities. Some of the features of post-and-beam construction are still desired, however, such as large family rooms and open spaces that remain popular in new, standard construction. HYBRID DESIGNS Jay offers his clients both options. In addition to building conventional homes, he is an authorized dealer and builder
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BY NANCY FONTAINE This conventionally constructed home was designed by Bonin Architects and built by Old Hampshire Designs on the shores of Lake Sunapee.
Old Hampshire Designs offers what Jay calls hybrids, conventional designs that may incorporate the post-and-beam style for part of the house. “Hybrids are for someone who doesn’t want all that wood everywhere, but in some part of the house, such as the great room and kitchen areas.” Clockwise from above: Timberpeg post-and-beam constructed homes provide an inviting rustic atmosphere. Darker wood beams, a plaster ceiling, and a stone fireplace help achieve the classic French Provincial appeal the homeowners wanted. Mixing painted cabinets with the natural wood tones of the timber frame brightens this spacious kitchen and softens the feel. The homeowner was intimately involved in the design of this kitchen, which features a soaring two-story window, LED lighting, and a light color scheme, making a bright gathering and working space. Inset: This mountain home features a contemporary stone fireplace, making the space warm and cozy.
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for Timberpeg in the Upper Valley and Merrimack regions of Vermont and New Hampshire. He got his start at Timberpeg as production coordinator in 1981, and in 1984, he started his own home-building company, Old Hampshire Designs, building conventional homes and Timberpeg homes as well. Timberpeg remains about 20 percent of his business, he says, and comprises mostly clients building in the lakes areas who “have in mind an Adirondack-
style house, a vision of a timber-framed type of home on the lake.” While it is a small portion of his business, “they’re a tremendous value. It’s a top-flight company in terms of quality of product and design services.” Old Hampshire Designs offers what Jay calls hybrids, conventional designs that may incorporate the postand-beam style for part of the house. “Hybrids are for someone who doesn’t want all that wood everywhere, but
in some part of the house, such as the great room and kitchen areas.” During the past few years, he’s noticed that his clients are building smaller, highquality, energy-efficient homes. “People are downsizing,” Jay says. “People have gotten more practical. They’re getting rid of all that fluff.” Baby boomers are moving into a phase in their lives where they don’t need all the high-end amenities such as big tubs “that they never use.” www.uppervalleyimage.com •
CONSIDER AN ELEVATOR Instead, Jay suggests they consider incorporating an elevator into their new home. “It’s cheaper to build up than build out,” he explains. A two-story home would be less expensive because the footprint is smaller. But some people looking at staying in their homes as they get older don’t want to have to deal with stairs. An elevator is the creative solution to that problem, he says, adding that he’s installed many residential elevators in new homes. Whether building or remodeling, kitchen and bath remodels remain favorites. “It’s a big step,” Jay says. “You need to feel comfortable with the contractor.” Don’t hesitate to check references and ask around. “I give 15 to 20 references so they know who we are. We’re going to hold your hand from start to finish.” A custom design-build construction firm, Old Hampshire Designs works with clients on all aspects of the project, from design to budgeting and permitting to hammering in the last nail. “We try to unburden the client, but they still have to pick out the light fixtures,” he smiles. As the contractor and builder, he says he helps his clients prioritize and tries to steer them away from costly mistakes. “What do you really need?” he asks them. A common mistake people tend to make, he says, is building for the “what-ifs.” “They overbuild for what they think their needs will be,” such as extra bathrooms. Jay prides himself on customer service that goes the extra mile, taking care of any problems that may crop up—anytime. “We have a tremendous reputation as the guys who will come back. I care about when the last gum wrapper is picked up when the project is complete.” tw
Old Hampshire Designs 263 Main Street New London, NH (603) 526-6945 oldhampshiredesigns.com
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INNOVATIVE DESIGN YANKEE BARN HOMES OFFERING QUALITY, STYLE, AND ENERGY EFFICIENCY
For more than 45 years, Yankee Barn Homes has been a leading innovator in the custom housing industry, pioneering the post-and-beam home as we know it today. Long before “green building” became a trend, Yankee Barn Homes offered classic American-style homes using the finest materials for durability, weather protection, and energy conservation.
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No two Yankee Barn Homes are exactly alike, as each starts with the vision of the homeowner. A custom-designed Yankee Barn Home delivers quality, originality, sustainability, and energy efficiency, ensuring a sound and enduring investment.
BY NANCY FONTAINE
The Bancroft is a contemporary post-andbeam barn home with an open floor plan. While the house has many interesting features, the one that immediately stands out is the two-story window corner entrance.
Above and right: The Southold is a show-stopping Long Island barn home. A blend of classic charm and contemporary design, the open concept features Yankee Barn Homesâ€™ signature two-story great room and utilizes a second-floor catwalk to open the room up. Far right: The company also builds custom barns (right), which afford a vast diversity in their purpose while contributing an aesthetic to any landscape.
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A PROCESS PERFECTED Today, Yankee Barn Homes offers their trademarked True Panel system, creating greater R-values than traditional stick framing construction. Assembled in New Hampshire using domestically sourced materials, these homes save on both build times and job-site waste. This process extends the build season to year-round, as the home components are prebuilt and can be stored at their New Hampshire facilities. No two Yankee Barn Homes are exactly alike, as each starts with the vision of the homeowner. A custom-designed Yankee Barn Home delivers quality, originality, sustainability, and energy efficiency, ensuring a sound and enduring investment. The company offers outstanding design-build services that bring ease to the building process. Yankee Barn Homes works with clients to lay out the entire home in the initial design process. BUILDING THE SHELL PACKAGE The skilled craftsmen at Yankee Barn Homes build the components of the shell package at their climate-controlled production facility in Grantham, New Hampshire. When ready, the components of the shell package are then flat-packed and delivered to the client’s building site, where a Yankee Barn Homes shell supervisor works on-site with the client’s general contractor to quickly erect the shell. The shell package utilizes highly efficient windows, doors, insulation, and meticulous house-wrap detail to create an impeccably sealed building envelope. A Yankee Barn Home provides clients with excellent architectural and construction value. From the superior quality of True Panel wall and roof systems to the controlled preproduction of frames and energy-efficient components, clients can count on design flexibility, a more comfortable home, and a better home-buying experience. tw
Yankee Barn Homes 131 Yankee Barn Road Grantham, NH (603) 863-2400 www.yankeebarnhomes.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
BELLETETES CUSTOMER SERVICE THAT’S SECOND TO NONE A company that truly puts customers first may seem like a rarity these days, but that’s just what Belletetes has been doing for more than 100 years. Jeff Michaud, General Manager of Belletetes locations in Andover and Sunapee, explains why their customers are so important to this family business. What has been the key to Belletetes’ success since 1898? The family puts customers first. Our customer service is second to none. We do everything we can do to help our customers with any of their project needs. How can you help the do-it-yourselfer with advice? We have a lot of employees who have been in this industry from 10 years to 35 years. I’ve been in the industry 30 years, locally. Most of my staff have used a lot of the products that they sell as well. I personally have built four homes. I have staff that have built homes, built cabins and docks, and put windows in. Our experience helps do-it-yourselfers looking for advice. Why do contractors choose Belletetes for lumber and building products? We carry premium-grade lumber. Belletetes carries a full line of premium products, premium framing lumber, premium studs, all the way to what’s called J-grade. But we also carry a second grade, if it becomes a very priceconscious situation. We try to give our customers many options, from the premier type framing to products that are a little bit less expensive. tw Belletetes 21 Sargent Road, Sunapee, NH (603) 763-9070 24A Ten Penny Lane, Andover, NH (603) 735-5193 www.belletetes.com
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BY MIKE MORIN
COUNT ON EXPERIENCE
LindeMac Real Estate
Linde McNamara Principal Broker Owner
LindeMac Real Estate 44 South Main Street Hanover, NH (603) 643-4900 www.lindemac.com
Norwich, VT $699,000
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What’s so great about living in the Upper Valley? The area we call the Upper Valley offers a wonderful mixture of culture, boundless recreation opportunities, top-notch education, and quality health care. The area includes many towns on both sides of the Connecticut River. A well-known institute of the Upper Valley is prestigious Dartmouth College, which enhances our economy and quality of life through its open-door policy of sharing its facilities with the public. The college’s 30 men and women’s intercollegiate teams’ athletic competitions and games are attended by most everyone in the community. Residents also benefit from the excellent health care at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Hospital, with world-class medical professionals at facilities throughout the state. The Upper Valley also offers an amazing variety of restaurants, farmers’ markets, and national retailers. The area is easily accessed through the services of Dartmouth Coach, which connects us to Boston’s Logan Airport and larger metropolitan areas. Voted one of the best US cities to live in, Hanover and the surrounding area provides residents with an exceptional quality of life. How can you help renters finally make the move to becoming homeowners? One of the main reasons to encourage an individual to buy rather than rent is that their money can actually go to work for them when they buy. When purchasing a home, a buyer can deduct mortgage interest payments and eligible expenses such as certain energy-efficient improvements. Unlike rent, a fixed mortgage rate will not go up. And with
mortgage rates now so low, when purchasing a home, a buyer takes a huge step toward protecting his or her family against inflation. How do you help a seller’s listing get maximum exposure? Most exposure now comes from the web, and buyers are using big real estate searches like Trulia, Zillow, or Realtor.com. Every property LindeMac Real Estate lists goes right onto all these national real estate websites and is easily found by prospective buyers. Our extensive knowledge of the wide range of advertising opportunities available today means we can be very specific in targeting the right publications for your property. We know which publications and websites to use to provide the very best exposure for your home. How is home inventory in the Upper Valley, and how can you help buyers if there are limited choices? The first thing buyers should do is get preapproved at a bank and have their finances in order. They should make a list of must-haves versus great-tohave features in a home. Buyers also need to decide what contingencies they are willing to eliminate from an offer. Hiring an experienced agent will not only help buyers find the right property but will also advise them on the state of the current market and assist them throughout the buying process. Due to low inventory, houses are selling quickly, so buyers should be ready to put their best offer up front so they have a chance to negotiate if other offers come in. tw
Hanover, NH $1,900,000 2017
builders • contractors
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Embracing Old New England Values BENSONWOOD COMPANY PHILOSOPHY PROMOTES SUSTAINABILITY CEO Tedd Benson founded Bensonwood in New Hampshire in 1973 with a mission to develop a better way to build. He was enthusiastic about the art of building but dismayed by the process, which was often defined by people working in uncontrollable conditions. Thus, exceptional quality buildings that lasted weren’t the usual outcome. He decided he would need to develop that better way, one in which the process and the product would be dramatically improved. That led to Bensonwood’s revival of timber framing, which brought much of their construction into the controlled conditions of workshops and out of the harsh New England elements. They now combine structural systems with centuries of fine, iconic building precedence, New England dedication to craft, and European methods for superior building performance. The Bensonwood staff does a majority of the work in the Northeast, but there’s no limit to where they build. They’ve built in every state except Oklahoma, as well as Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan. 52 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
What’s your style? Bensonwood has you covered, from rustic to contemporary.
GOING GREEN According to Paul van Winkle, Director of Marketing Communications at Bensonwood, the company has continually added to efficient off-site build/ on-site assembly methods, lowering carbon footprints while elevating high performance—from what’s designed and built to why certain woods and materials are selected to how they build. Today, they’re fully dedicated to the highest efficiencies and performance principles, often exceeding LEED, Net Zero, Passivhaus standards, and USGBC standards. They employ a range of new technologies, skilled crews, green innovations, master craftsmanship, and principles from the world’s best building methods to ensure that their buildings and processes are healthier and more sustainable and last for generations. REACHING CONSTRUCTION GOALS If lowering energy use, designing healthier environments, and reducing build times are among your goals, the off-site fabrication methods Bensonwood relies on can’t be beat. Combined with sustainably harvested (FSC-certified) woods, cellulose insulations, low- and no-VOC coatings and materials, and their ultra-tested high R-value roof and wall systems, their clients get huge gains in quality, health, beauty, durability, comfort, efficiency, and value. tw
Bensonwood 6 Blackjack Crossing Walpole, NH (603) 756-3600 bensonwood.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
builders • contractors
High Stepping Stairs COLONIAL WOODWORKING CREATING CREATING THE STAIRWAY OF YOUR DREAMS We spoke to Luke Watson at Colonial Woodworking to ask him about how the company works with its clients to install new stairways. How often are you asked to create a one-of-a-kind design? All the time. I’ll bet you we are 50 percent of each, looking at the numbers. Cookie-cutter styles go through and keep a nice flow going, but then there are always custom stairs being built at the same time, which keeps our work interesting but obviously takes more time. How do you integrate design and installation with a client’s contractor and other craftsmen? It takes lots of communication. It’s a matter of working here in the office with our estimating going back and forth from drafting and from the 54 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
contractor and the customer. It’s just a circle that goes around and around until we finally get what we need. We get the approval from the client, and then we can move forward with the project. Communication is key. Why is building a staircase and rail system in a shop better than doing the work on-site? Our shop is set up to accommodate any situation that arises. There’s a lot of machinery we wouldn’t be able to have on-site, and then there’s the other side of the work, where you’re on-site and you have to make adjustments or accommodations to make things work. tw Colonial Woodworking 65 West Main Street Bradford, NH (603) 938-5131 www.colonial-woodworking.com
Wired for the Future RICHARD ELECTRIC KEEPING UP WITH TECHNOLOGY Homes today are equipped with computers, high-definition televisions, fire alarms, smartphones, and many more gadgets we can’t live without. We spoke with Steve Richard, owner of Richard Electric, to find out how to keep our homes up to date to support the latest technology. Today’s homes demand the latest access to data. How can you help in that regard? Richard Electric furnishes and installs the wiring and devices for hard-wired high-speed data ports for wireless routers. This is required to get the most out of your wireless data points. An often overlooked priority in home safety is fire and life safety. Talk about those services. The main thing Richard Electric does regarding home safety and life safety is smoke, carbon dioxide, and heat detection systems. For most homes, this means providing the proper types of hard-wired detectors in the right locations. We know the codes and can advise where they are needed.
The type and location varies from state to state, and we work in New Hampshire and Vermont. The latest technology allows us to interconnect the various detectors wirelessly, greatly reducing the amount of patching and painting required. Talk about how Dartmouth College has relied on your expertise for decades. Since the early 1970s, we have wired many different types of facilities there, including multistory dormitory clusters, the Hood Museum of Art, Thayer School of Engineering, and renovations to the locker rooms and support spaces in Thompson Arena. We have installed large, complex fire alarm systems as well as unique lighting, control, data, and power systems for the college. We appreciate the opportunity to be involved with their projects. tw Richard Electric 131 A Street, Wilder, VT (802) 295-3894, www.richardelectric.com
builders • contractors
This kitchen was remodeled from a galley design to an open concept, which increased functionality and flow while meeting the company’s goals of quality, integrity, and customer satisfaction.
Go for a Team Approach MELLISH CONSTRUCTION & INTERIOR DESIGN OFFERING A ONE–TWO PUNCH Ben and Penny Mellish have been renovating and remodeling homes full time since 2008. Before that, in their spare time, they purchased a few homes, fixed them up, and sold them. Ben laughs as he says, “Both of us had full-time jobs at the time, so we like to say we didn’t flip the houses; it was more of a slow roll.” Ben was working as an engineer while Penny owned an interior decorating business for six years. After the children came along, Penny decided to give up her business. COMPANY BEGINNINGS When Ben started doing renovations and remodeling, it didn’t take long for him to see he needed Penny’s expertise. “I’d be at a client’s home,” says Ben, “and they’d ask me what color to paint the house, or what color carpet would look best. Those are natural things for Penny to answer, but I 56 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
wasn’t comfortable giving advice in those areas.” “Now we offer our services as a package,” Penny explains, “and we both go as a team.” She works with clients on design and décor while Ben takes care of the construction. “Many times people will say, ‘Oh, you remind us of the Fixer Upper couple on TV,’” Penny laughs. Ben reports that some of their business comes from would-be do-it-yourselfers. “When people discover they’ve bitten off more than they can chew, they call us in,” he says. “Don’t get me wrong; some DIY is okay, but some is beyond the average homeowner’s capability and should be left to the experts.” The example Ben uses is painting. “Shows and ads on TV make painting look simple, but preparation is as important as the actual painting. And the quality of the paint is important too. People may think they’re getting a bargain with
cheaper paint, but they’re not. Benjamin Moore paint, for example, has more pigment; it lasts longer, and it covers better,” Ben explains. Recently the couple has been focusing on larger projects. One of their current jobs is a whole-basement remodel that’s adding a media room, a large study, and a full bathroom. CONSIDER MODULAR Recently Ben and Penny have added Pro-Fab Modular Homes to their portfolio of services. These quality-built homes are energy efficient with wall insulation rated R22 and other smart features. There are many plans and options available, including designing your own floor plan. Choices in heating systems are available as well, from solar to oil or propane. Buyers can also elect to act as general contractor on the construction of their home or let the Mellishes take care of all the details from foundation to plumbers and painters for a move-in ready home. From the time the house is set on its foundation to moving in averages about 10 weeks. WAY TO GROW Ben and Penny agree that much of their business comes by word of mouth from their past clients. The couple feels their team approach to projects gives them an advantage: They have a designer and a contractor on-site almost every day, overseeing issues and solving problems, and putting their years of experience to work. Penny remarks, “I often go with customers to a kitchen or bath showroom to help them make their choices. People like having a knowledgeable person to guide them, and both Ben and I provide that guidance.” tw Mellish Construction & Interior Design 141 Olde Farms Road Grantham, NH (603) 863-6004 www.mellishconstruction.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
kitchens & baths
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Committed to Customer Satisfaction RIVERLIGHT BUILDERS WHERE COMMUNICATION IS KEY
FOR THE MOST RECENT TRENDS, Deb Brien, owner of Riverlight Builders with husband Chris since 2001, says, “We are seeing some great options in finishes, especially for kitchens and bathrooms. SICIS and New Ravenna have beautiful new mosaic tiles, including handmade mosaics that incorporate different materials such as glass, marble, and mirrored surfaces.” Stone countertops are still in demand for kitchens, according to Deb. “We are using more and more quartzite for countertops. Quartzite is a natural material found in a variety of colors, and it holds up well to heavy use. We recommend it in situations where the client is looking for a stone with the character and veining of marble but doesn’t want the maintenance issues that marble can present. There are also some great new manufactured surfaces such as Dekton that are extremely durable but offer organic-looking veining and patterning.” Top: A classic white kitchen with loads of natural light, wood v-groove walls, and quartz countertops. Above: This farmhouse kitchen features a soapstone farm sink and countertops, painted and natural cherry cabinets, and character oak flooring.
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ORGANIC MATERIALS ARE POPULAR What else do customers ask for? “We continue to build and install more white-painted cabinetry and woodwork than natural wood; however, we are designing many more spaces with a combination of painted and natural cabinetry and woodwork,” Deb says. “In bathrooms, vessel sinks, wall-
mounted faucets, and floating vanities and countertops continue to be in vogue, along with rustic accents using reclaimed wood, iron pipe, and more. There is a trend toward more organic materials overall.” ONE SURPRISING TREND Perhaps the most surprising trend Deb sees involves wholehouse renovations. “In many cases, it’s the nature of the real estate market and the lack of inventory in our area driving this trend, and we’re doing more and more of these renos each year.” She adds, “These are top-to-bottom renovations of existing homes, sometimes involving small or large additions as well. In some cases, floor plans are completely redesigned and structural changes made to accommodate them. Dated kitchens, baths, flooring, and other finishes are updated along with plumbing, wiring, and other mechanical systems. “In many cases, we’re installing new roofing, windows, and sometimes even new exterior siding and trim, making for some extreme home makeovers, if you will. These are fun projects for us, requiring a tremendous amount of planning and customer communication. Many times, these projects are undertaken with the owners in residence throughout the duration of the project.”
Riverlight Builders is a custom residential design and build firm. Deb elaborates on the company’s work: “While we don’t design every project we build—sometimes we work with other architects—when we do, there is a tremendous amount of collaboration among our team from the very beginning of a project.” Asked about creative solutions employed on a project, Deb says, “We recently completed a project on a historic home that involved redesigning the entire rear wing of the house. While we accounted for the removal of partition walls with structural changes, upon opening a major structural wall, we discovered it was never properly engineered when the rear wing was added and could have failed at any time. We added a large steel beam across the rear of the main house and made some creative changes to the kitchen design to accommodate it. It turned out beautifully, and one would never suspect the last-minute design change.” tw Riverlight Builders, Inc. 8 Beaver Meadow Road PO Box 1361 Norwich, VT (802) 649-1615 www.riverlightbuilders.com
kitchens & baths
Design & Function for Today
CABINETRY CONCEPTS & SURFACE SOLUTIONS Local business owner Ro Wyman brings exciting news from the recent Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) and from her clients in the area. Here’s what Ro reports: • Contemporary style for kitchens and baths has overtaken traditional
• More Internet connected appliances and docking stations
• White and gray painted cabinets dominate kitchen color schemes; blue painted and high-gloss cabinets are emerging
• Interior barn doors in kitchens and as shower doors
• Two-toned kitchens are gaining favor
• Floating vanities and open shelving
• Functional accessories for organizing cabinetry are in demand • Use of crown molding in kitchens is declining • Under-cabinet LED lighting is popular
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• Brushed brass and gold for bathroom fixtures • Multipurpose engineered stone used for stair treads, floor tile, and shower walls. tw Cabinetry Concepts & Surface Solutions 227 Mechanic Street Lebanon, NH (603) 442-6735 www.cabinetryconceptsNH.com
Top left: Bathroom featuring white marble and a walk-in shower with Artistic Tile waterjet mosaic. From top: Spacious vanity with Blue Flower granite countertop. Shower done with Winchester Tile. Detail of Blue Flower granite.
LAVALLEY BUILDING SUPPLY We asked Sheila Varnese, Kitchen Design Specialist at LaValley Building Supply in West Lebanon, to explain the importance of working with a kitchen designer. “Besides helping with the conceptual part of designing the kitchen, we help with fit and function too. We know things like how much space is needed for certain appliances to function properly, when and where you need to have fillers/ extended stile to assure proper fit of the cabinets, and how much overhang you need for sitting. We help you with the flow of space by using information about how you and your family use your space.” What’s new and exciting? “At a recent kitchen show, I saw faucets in the new rose gold finish, a beautiful look that is warm and not brassy. I also was impressed
with a new writeable surface from Formica, along with their new granitelook laminates. Lots of color is showing up in vessel sinks, undermount sinks, and apron-front sinks,” Sheila comments. What about appliances? “Appliances are also coming out in splashy new colors,” Sheila reports. “AGA displayed a deep-red range with options available for pretty pastel colors and some deeper earthy hues as well. On the other hand, black stainless is a new finish for appliances, a sleek alternative to the stainless steel we see now.”tw LaValley Building Supply 5 Airport Road West Lebanon, NH (603) 298-5641 www.lavalleys.com
One of Sheila’s projects in Etna, NH, features Medallion Park Place flat-panel cherry pecan cabinets with a honed Absolute Black granite countertop.
kitchens & baths SUGAR RIVER KITCHENS, BATH & FLOORING When we asked Jessica Boisvert at Sugar River Kitchens, Bath & Flooring about the latest trends in kitchen renovations, she said, “I’m seeing a lot of white and gray cabinetry and lots of texture, such as the use of chiseled edges, ledge-stone backsplashes, concrete stone, rustic wood, and engineered stone.” Jessica also stresses the importance of working with a local company and local installers. “Customer service and follow through are crucial. If there were to be an issue, it would be made right. It’s beneficial to have one place to go to for answers to your questions, to find products and materials, and to take care of installation.” tw Sugar River Kitchens, Bath & Flooring 368 Route 10 South Grantham, NH (603) 863-6996 www.sugarriverflooring.com
SHAKER HILL GRANITE Shaker Hill Granite has recently added a new custom cabinetry division, according to designer Lois Horan. The company offers several lines from stock cabinetry all the way to full custom cabinetry made to exacting standards. “We have a cabinet that will fit every budget and create the very look that you are trying to capture,” says Lois. In addition to the cabinetry showroom, the company also has a large tile showroom and an extensive granite yard to make your project as easy as stopping at one location.
Shaker Hill Granite
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PERRY’S OIL & APPLIANCE
Perry’s Oil & Appliance 173 South Main Street Bradford, VT (802) 222-9211 www.perrysappliance.net www.pattensgas.com
“People see our name and think of us as a heating business only,” says David Perry of Perry’s Oil, “but we really are in the appliance business. We have almost every brand out there. We’re competitive with the big-box stores, and we offer local service for everything we sell. We have a lot to talk about beyond being an oil and propane company.” When asked about the latest fuel-stingy kitchen appliances, David says, “We try to steer customers to what’s best for them. Manufacturers continue to make appliances more energy efficient. I’ve got a front-load washer on the showroom floor that costs $7 a year to operate. That’s almost half of what last year’s best performance was. Refrigerators are becoming more energy efficient as well.” tw
Besides Lois, Shaker Hill has secured the design services of John Napsey, another top local designer with over 30 years of experience. John, a cabinetry specialist, and Lois, a certified interior designer, bring a unique perspective to kitchen design, as both have experience working with upper-echelon clients from all over the world. tw Shaker Hill Granite 17 Granite Place Enfield, NH (603) 632-9800 www.shakerhillgranite.com
BY MIKE MORIN
SERVING A DISCRIMINATING CLIENTELE
Snyder Donegan Real Estate Group You are considered a leading boutique real estate firm. What does that mean in terms of properties and service? We are selective about the properties we choose to represent, including luxury properties and those at mid market price points, taking only those we think our firm is well suited to sell. Our focus on luxury properties includes a high level of attention to detail and a comprehensive, innovative marketing plan developed for each specific property we represent. Many of our agents bring rich life and work experiences to the business, often having worked in international careers before coming home to live and work in Vermont and New Hampshire.
John Snyder Owner
David Donegan Owner
23 South Main Street Hanover, NH (603) 643-0599 5 The Green Woodstock, VT (802) 457-2600 www.snyderdonegan.com 64 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h â€˘
We also employ agents with generational expertise in real estate and in the local communities we serve.
local community and economy, without having to divert funds to a corporate franchise located outside the region.
How does your expertise in digital marketing benefit your customers? Our partners bring a rich history of directing and creating global digital-marketing strategies for Fortune 500 companies. They have applied this knowledge and sophistication to continuously innovate and keep our firm on the cutting edge of a rapidly changing real estate marketplace. These strategies enable our firm to procure buyers from across the US and globally. We reinvest our profits entirely into the
While offering a great portfolio of premium properties, what can you offer someone looking for a more modestly priced home? We take everything we have developed for our luxury properties and utilize those same strategies for the sale of every single property we represent, regardless of price. How have historically low mortgage rates helped the buyers you work with? We have enjoyed one of the longest multiyear stretches of historically low interest rates in the United States, which were engineered to bring the country out of the great real estate recession. As this period of low interest rates comes to an end and as the stock market hits all-time highs, we are strongly encouraging our clients to buy real estate andâ€”at least in partâ€”to obtain long-term, low interest rate financing to fund those purchases. We have seen this investment approach pursued by buyers of homes priced from $250,000 to $4 million. tw
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Lighten Up LOEWEN WINDOW CENTER PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES ARE FOLLOWING THE TREND
For those not familiar with the Loewen brand, tell us what makes it a great product. It is a combination of extraordinary engineering, materials, and design. Windows are tested thermally as well as for air and water leakage and structural integrity. Loewen offers some of the highest thermal, air, wind, and water performance in its class. They were the first major window manufacturer to offer triple glazing in 1973. You get a very efficient and durable window, combining an aluminum-clad exterior with a fine furniture look of Douglas fir or plantation-grown Honduran mahogany on the interior. What is your range of services? Blueprint take off, jobsite consultation, quotes, providing technical information, and then we do after-service work. If somethingâ€™s not quite right and needs some adjusting, we do that under our warranty services. In the local Upper Valley area, we do installations for remodeling and replacement window and door projects.
Loewen Window Center of Vermont & New Hampshire 52 Bridge Street White River Junction, VT (802) 295-6555 www.loewen.com
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We spoke with Steve Cary of Loewen Windows to ask his advice about the latest styles and advances regarding energy-efficient windows and doors.
Above: Views from this kitchen are enhanced by Loewen tripleglazed picture windows with transom windows above. Top right: Picture windows and awning windows that push out from the bottom feature clear Douglas fir on the interior. Right: Casement, awning, and picture windows complement the look of this modern, open-concept home.
What are some trends you’ve noticed in door and window preferences? A continuing trend going on for a few years now is high performance. Just like getting better gas mileage with your car, the demand is for windows and doors to perform better and more efficiently. Aesthetically, there is a trend for a lot more glass. Living here in the great white north, we like to see the sun. Bringing natural daylight into our homes, especially during the winter months, is better for your health and can boast passive solar heating in a big way. But with this increased glass in our homes, it becomes a challenge for performance, so getting that thermal rating up there is important. Current design trends we’re seeing are narrow sightlines and blending a contemporary look with the traditional—the modern farmhouse, for example—sort of that classic-looking cape, but with more glass. tw www.uppervalleyimage.com •
windows AMERICAN PLATE GLASS FOR JOBS BIG AND SMALL Whether you need your windows replaced or a minor repair, American Plate Glass can help. Owner Douglas Scott talks about his company’s work and their long history in the area. As a traditional glass shop, what services do you provide that few glass stores do any longer? We still build and repair screens, build and repair storm windows, and, of course, we do the basic work that many homeowners need to have done. Not a lot of the big companies out there are still doing the smaller jobs, however. For replacement windows, you primarily work with National Vinyl of Chicopee, Massachusetts. Why are you so pleased with their products? Because it’s a good quality product and it’s a New England business. That’s our go-to company for replacements. We do install others when requested. What are people looking for in custom showers these days? They’re starting to look at the divided light showers, in which you can actually look through panes of dividers, so it’s like you’re looking through a large window instead of just a big open sheet of glass. There are division bars within the framework of the shower. How does it benefit a customer that you’ve been a family-run business for more than 90 years? Customers like the idea that it’s not a flyby-night company. If you have an issue six, seven, or ten years down the road, you’re still going to be able to get in touch with the same company and have the same people come back out to your job. tw
American Plate Glass 150 Pleasant Street Claremont, NH (603) 542-7787 www.americanplateglass.com
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CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
interiors From functional to intimate, the rooms in our homes reflect our unique personalities and priorities. Design professionals create the perfect spaces in a collaborative endeavor with their clients, making a house a true home. .
Contemporary heirloomsâ€” Wentworth seating and Belmont tables grace this lightfilled space.
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a tradition of handcrafted furniture TRADEMARK CUSTOMER SERVICE DOESN’T END WHEN THE PIECE IS COMPLETED
Dwight Sargent started building furniture more than 40 years ago in a garage near his house in Norwich on the banks of the Ompompanoosuc River. For a newly minted graduate of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, it was an unlikely business decision, but he really liked living in Vermont, and his first career choice didn’t mesh with his desire to stay in the Upper Valley. “I wanted to run a railroad,” Dwight says, but he realized that he would have to leave Vermont. “I really liked living here. I wanted to stay. I looked around, and I saw trees. I saw a resource.”
BY KATHERINE P. COX
PHOTOS COURTESY OF POMPANOOSUC MILLS
He’d built a few pieces of furniture before, and with a $2,000 loan from his father in 1973, Dwight built a shop, began making furniture, and took the pieces around to furniture stores. He also advertised in the classified section of the Connecticut Valley Reporter and people responded. He was still a student at the Tuck School, and by the time he graduated the following year, “it was paying me a living, and I had one or two people working with me. By 1979, I had 25 people working for me.” Three years earlier he had opened his first off-site retail store in Burlington. A store in Nashua, New Hampshire, opened in 1981. “I decided to stay away from Boston and the competition there.” Attention to Detail Is a Hallmark Today, Pompanoosuc Mills furniture is still handcrafted
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by 115 employees working in a 70,000-square-foot plant in East Thetford. Fronting the plant is an enticing showroom where their continually evolving lines of elegant and stylish furniture are on display. Nine other showrooms, including the original in Burlington, are in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Philadelphia, and Alexandria, Virginia. “I never wanted to be a small shop,” Dwight says. “I wanted to make furniture that would sell.” This reach and growth has not changed the central tenet of his business—working directly with customers, from design to delivery, to craft fine furniture that lasts, each order custom made. It’s what he believes sets him apart from similar companies. Dwight doesn’t look like a CEO of a $10 million company. Dressed in worn jeans and a work shirt, he strolls through the mazelike plant where he still has a hand in
Left: Pure elegance: The Vernon Double Pedestal Extension table paired with Mansfield chairs. Right: The Calais sectional, featured in both a living room and a dining room setting, can be ordered in any configuration and assembled in many different ways for ultimate flexibility when arranging a room.
That attention to detail is the hallmark of Pompanoosuc Mills, where each piece of furniture is made for customers according to design choices and wood preferences. www.uppervalleyimage.com â€˘
DWIGHT SARGENT Dwight had an idea that he wanted to build a full-service quality furniture company for people who wanted beautifully handcrafted furniture that was practical for everyday living. After more than 30 years in business, Pompanoosuc Mills continues to fulfill his vision.
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From start to finish, each piece is made in East Thetford by a loyal team of experienced Vermont furniture makers, some of whom have been with Dwight for more than 30 years, some straight out of high school.
all aspects of the business. He’s even been known to make a delivery himself. That attention to detail is the hallmark of Pompanoosuc Mills, where each piece of furniture is made for customers according to design choices and wood preferences. From start to finish, each piece is made in East Thetford by a loyal team of experienced Vermont furniture makers, some of whom have been with Dwight for more than 30 years, some straight out of high school. “I’ve got a great team,” he says. “We have people who love making furniture.” The designs are mostly his, Dwight says, “but customers have always had good ideas—pushing the envelope. ‘Can you do this?’ ‘How about this?’ Customers have always been a good source of inspiration, as well as our showroom staff. That’s the advantage of dealing directly with consumers.” One other in-house designer works with him as their lines continue to evolve.
Opposite: While most Pompy designs are for furniture, the Belmont lamp is an exception. It was designed and is also built in-house by Vermont craftsmen. Top: The clean, simple lines of the Reading bed and the ever-popular Thetford Hill rocker create an elegant space for nesting. Above: The Burlington dresser, inspired by mid-century modern design.
Clockwise from top: The concave curve of the Reading dresser demonstrates the superior craftsmanship that defines the Pompy workshop. The sturdy, practical New England hall tree comes in four standard sizes to fit most any space. Oriental in inspiration, the Mendon bed and nightstand are elegant additions to any bedroom.
Highlighting New England and Northeast Hardwoods From the popular and classic Shaker styles to Scandinavian and mid-century modern, customers can adjust the designs to suit their specific needs if they like and can choose the hardwood. Most of the wood comes from the Northeast, which makes transportation more economical, and includes ash, birch, oak, maple, cherry, walnut, and bird’s-eye maple. Dwight says it’s a conscious decision to use these woods. “We wanted to highlight New England and North American hardwoods. They’re great woods.” Tiger maple, spalted maple, quilted maple, bastogne walnut, and reclaimed redwood, sourced from 78 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
other parts of the country, are part of the American Exotics line of hardwoods and are available for specialized pieces. Stains and finishes can be individualized, and upholstered pieces come in a wide range of fabric choices. Special Delivery The Pompanoosuc Mills trademark customer service doesn’t end when the furniture is made. The company has its own fleet of trucks, and each piece is carefully wrapped in blankets before it’s delivered to its new home. “We believe that the delivery is the last part of the retail sale. It’s the last contact. It’s where
Dwight says they were green before the term became current. The woods used in their furniture are mostly locally sourced and sustainable. we can continue the good experience for the customer.” Wrapping furniture in blankets during delivery is not only good for the furniture—it’s less wasteful and is part of the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability. Dwight says they were green before the term became current. The woods used in their furniture are mostly locally sourced and sustainable. “Ninety percent of our wood comes from Vermont and New Hampshire,” he says. “In Vermont, landowners get a property tax break if they are in a sustainable forestry program. Virtually all of our lumber purchased in Vermont comes from properties that are in this program.” Wood waste from production goes into the company’s own boiler building. “Our heating has always been with our wood waste. We chip all our waste. It’s automatically fed to the boiler and provides all our heat for our finish room year-round, and during the winter, it provides 50 percent of the heat. We also generate about 10 percent of our own electricity.” Dwight says the whole operation goes the extra mile, especially for its customers, and he is proud of the product that is the result of a dedicated team. “We’re making a product that’s going to last, that’s beautiful, and that will totally serve your needs,” he says. tw Pompanoosuc Mills 3184 Route 5 East Thetford, VT (800) 841-6671 www.pompy.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
BY MIKE MORIN
ATTRACTING BUYERS FROM ACROSS THE REGION AND THE WORLD
Sotheby’s International Realty
Alan DiStasio Managing Director
17½ Lebanon Street Hanover, NH PowerHouse Mall West Lebanon, NH (603) 643-6070 email@example.com www.fourseasonssir.com/ region/the-upper-valley.php 80 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
Could someone living in Europe, for example, contact Sotheby’s International Realty to relocate to the Upper Valley? Yes, absolutely. The global marketing team at Sotheby’s International Realty delivers over 900 million brand impressions worldwide each year. This creates significant brand awareness that attracts buyers from all over the world. In fact, 55 percent of visitors to sothebysrealty.com come from outside the United States. In 2016 alone, our Upper Valley listing clients benefited from approximately 11.6 million search views through Sotheby’s International Realty’s web syndication platform. Our associates have worked with buyers from diverse countries such as China, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Hungary, South Africa, St. Martin, and the UK among others. With home inventories frequently low, is listing a home now better than waiting for nicer weather? It’s always to a seller’s advantage to list at a time of low inventory and high demand, no matter what time of year it is. According to Trendgraphix, the number of listings in the Upper Valley was down almost 10 percent in January compared with January of 2016, but the number of homes sold was up 35 percent in the same time frame. Total dollar volume sold was up even higher at 45 percent. There is no question that we are currently in a sellers’ market. It’s also worth noting that buyers and sellers transition into and out of the Upper
Valley in all seasons, so a seller would never know if she’d missed a potential opportunity to sell if she wasn’t on the market. Many of your agents and their families have lived here for generations. How will a customer benefit from this? We are in a people business that happens to involve the buying and selling of real estate. There is no question that for our associates to be effective, they must possess a deep understanding of the communities in which they live. That comes not only from the longevity of having lived in a certain place but also from being intimately involved in those communities. For a buyer who may be moving to the Upper Valley, say from the West Coast, this knowledge can be extremely valuable in helping decide the best place to live. Your website (www.fourseasonssir.com) features customer comments. It looks like they do the selling for you sometimes! We live in the day and age of Yelp. It is estimated that millennials will represent 75 percent of the workforce by 2025. That’s just eight years from now. They are also the fastest growing segment of homebuyers. It is important to recognize this because millennials rely on the Internet as their main source of information. It’s the most efficient way for them to research everything from the best restaurants in a town to who the best realtor is. So, simply put, our online reputation is extremely important to us. tw
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Turning a House into a Home FOR HALF A CENTURY, GILBERTE INTERIORS HAS HELPED CLIENTS CREATE FRESH AND COMFORTABLE LIVING SPACES BY NANCY FONTAINE PHOTOS BY CHARLES PARKER/IMAGES PLUS
f you walk or drive down Allen Street in Hanover, you can hardly miss the three-story Gilberte Interiors storefront. In business for 50 years, it has become a landmark. Gilberte and Andy Boghosian started the company, and although they have turned the reins over, they are still involved. Their children, Aharon and Cheryl Boghosian, now run the business along with Neil Roth. Customers who walk into the retail showroom and design center are always welcomed, but Cheryl says, “Our focus is on clients coming to us for our interior
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design service. We do both commercial and residential design—designs, fabrication, and installation.” Understanding Trends While Staying Current Accordingly, Cheryl and Aharon have to always be aware of the design environment. “We keep up with the latest materials, design trends, and what’s new on the market and available with materials and technology. We’re constantly meeting with design reps, attending design shows, and reading about the latest innovations,” says Cheryl.
Left: Soft natural materials and shapes create an inviting living space overlooking the treetops and hills of the Upper Valley. Right: A custom squareshaped dining table surrounded by soft upholstered chairs invites long evenings of relaxing with friends and family. Inset: A beautifully set table adds to the ambience.
Recent color trends have included “natural tones, neutrals, grays, and mushroom tones,” Cheryl says. www.uppervalleyimage.com •
“We want to make choices that make sense for our clients; this is what drives good design.” —Cheryl Boghosian
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The things that customers ask for change over time. Currently, the focus includes “using ‘green’ products with attention to health and wellness,” Cheryl says. That involves using natural fibers and materials that are environmentally friendly. “Natural fibers feel good,” she adds with a smile. Another trend is integrating technology into interior design, including motorized blinds and shading. “People want to control things from their smartphones,” Cheryl says. “We are able to provide those options.” Recent color trends have included “natural tones, neutrals, grays, and mushroom tones,” Cheryl says, but “a punch of color is back in, and large patterns are back. The bones of a project—like tile—may stay neutral though, which is easy to live with.” Cheryl and Aharon give a lot of thought to the materials they use. “We love using new materials. We love seeing what’s new on the
market for faucets and tiles as well as technical products like grout. Where we can use something that’s made in the United States, we use it or recommend it,” says Cheryl. Careful Choices Drive Good Design “We update our libraries [of samples] daily,” Aharon adds. “As engineering has improved and globalization has given us access to a greater market, we’ve added more products. As much as we thought we had planned enough space for products, we always have more than we can display.” He continues, “Our influences are not just indigenous to the Upper Valley. We offer an urban selection even though we’re very rural here. People are amazed at the diversity of products we offer.” When Cheryl approaches a new project, the first thing she finds out is how the customers are going to use the space. She thinks of all the details. Where are you going to charge your
phone? Where are you going to read? Where does the lighting need to be? And uses change at different times of the day and in different seasons too. “We want to make choices that make sense for our clients; this is what drives good design.” Sound expensive? It might not cost as much as making bad choices. “Occasionally clients come in and say, ‘We did this, and it didn’t work. Can you help?’” says Cheryl. “This is why we feel an interior design firm is very important. After listening carefully to our clients, we can recommend what we feel is best or provide clients with their best options. In the end, that saves them from making mistakes that cost time and money. We help them do it right the first time.” A Wide Clientele People from all over the country agree. The experts at Gilberte Interiors do most of their
work from New York to Maine, but they also have projects on the West Coast and in Florida, Virginia, and the Caribbean. Sometimes the work comes from people who have moved away from the Hanover area but still want to use this well-established and highly reputed company, and sometimes people with second homes want their help. In addition, Gilberte has many customers who are recommended to them by their existing customers or that they’ve met in their travels. “How you connect with people is really important,” says Cheryl. “We can show them how we can make their lives and the design process easier for them.” Aharon says, “Clients can be at a loss because they might do a big renovation only a couple of times in their lives.” Other interior designers help with “broad brush stroke” plans. “We help them with their selections, and it’s all right here in our building. We put it all on one table.” Perhaps most importantly, “We can
Opposite: The bedroom’s soft tones capture the light of the ocean setting. Above: Bath designs by Aharon Boghosian use a combination of porcelain, glass, and stone tiles highlighted with clean-lined metal fittings. Lighting design and functional details transformed these baths from their existing roots. Inset: Sleek hardware like this faucet completes the clean, modern look of the bathroom.
keep a client focused on a budget. We can tailor the elements that they are interested in to fit that budget—a key ingredient that separates us from everybody else.” Professionals appreciate Gilberte Interiors’ work as well. “We have builders and architects who contact us to work alongside them on a project,” Cheryl says. “From space planning to product selec tions, we can make the process easier for all involved. We will create drawings and layouts for clients, and we will use them in the design and implementation process as needed.” Details and a Personal Touch As the company’s designer, Cheryl likes to create spaces that are calming and easy to spend time in. “People’s lives are busy. They bring that busyness into a space. We do what we can to bring a sense of calm to their lives. That doesn’t mean it has be bland, boring, or uninteresting though. I like to figure out how to make a space exciting without being overwhelming. I
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can tweak lighting and throw in artwork or accessories to jazz it up.” In considering how to get the most from any space, Cheryl says, “The space has character to it. We’re not going to fight that.” She offers the example of a recent project in Rhode Island. “The client bought a small property and worked with us to tweak the layouts and the plans. Our design included the furniture layouts and finish selections and followed with lighting design and cabinetry details. This allowed the builder to keep the project on track, and he was able to contact us with any detail questions. We were able to specify all the lighting, furnishings, shading, and accessories, and then fabricate and install as the project became ready.” The home’s square footage wasn’t huge, so it had to be planned efficiently. “We designed furniture and flooring that are going to work well in a beach house. You want people to feel they can walk in with sand on their feet,” says Cheryl. “The owner is an art collector, so we put a priority on
lighting and spaces that would allow each piece of artwork to shine.” Details and a personal touch are hallmarks of the Gilberte business. Why go the extra mile? “We enjoy spending time with clients on their projects,” says Aharon. “Every one of us loves being around people, hearing their life stories, seeing their living spaces. You have to develop a pretty intimate relationship to help them get what they most desire in the end.” Cheryl adds, “Our clients are really important to us—these relationships continue long after the project ends.” That feeling of relationship and family extends to employees as well. “Our employees have been with us for a long time,” says Aharon. Is it any wonder Gilberte Interiors has been on Allen Street for 50 years? tw Gilberte Interiors, Inc. 10 Allen Street Hanover, NH (603) 643-3727 www.gilberteinteriors.com
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Trends in Home Décor
From rustic sliding barn doors to a sophisticated wall grouping and a comfortable living room, neutrals and wood tones work with any style.
ALICE WILLIAMS INTERIORS CREATING COMFORTABLE SPACES We asked Alice Williams about what color suggestions she is making for her clients’ homes. “More clients are choosing grays over taupe colors as the neutrals in their homes,” says Alice. “Painted cabinets in the kitchen and bath are no longer just white. We are happily encouraging clients to stretch a bit by using some color on the walls in their homes. Light grays, soft sage greens, and butter yellows are all neutral colors that are easy to incorporate in an overall color scheme.”
An up-and-coming material is manufactured stone, according to Alice. “Manufactured stone has been on the market for years, but is just becoming popular in our area,” reports Alice. “This includes brands such as Quartzite, Wilson Art, Silestone, and Zodiac. In the past, granite has been the countertop material of choice. I am finding that most of my clients prefer stone that is quieter with little pattern or movement. Manufactured stone is consistent from one slab to another and comes in a huge selection of colors.” tw
Alice Williams Interiors 50 Greensboro Road Hanover, NH (603) 277-9361 www.alicewilliamsinteriors.com
Exciting New Products ELEANOR SHEPARD SMART DESIGN CHOICES “Furniture-style and built-in hutches add additional storage and countertop surface to any kitchen or dining room space,” says Eleanor Shepard of Shepard Interior Selections. “Our clients are requesting pieces that coordinate well with the surrounding spaces but are unique in their own way, such as finishing them in contrasting tones, using glass doors on upper cabinets and back-lighting them, or by adding a wood countertop to set them apart from the rest of the space.”
Eleanor continues, “Open shelving in kitchens and bath vanities has also been a popular request from our clients, which makes spaces feel more open and accessible to all who enjoy them. This is a nice look but definitely requires less clutter and more organization, which fi ts very well in second and vacation homes. Shepard Construction and Shepard Interiors work together with their clients to achieve the desired look and necessary function of each individual piece, depending on how it will be used.” tw Shepard Interior Selections 85 US Route 4, Quechee, VT (802) 457-1116, www.shepardinteriordesign.com
“Reclaimed and natural wood for furniture, countertops, and ﬂoors is trending for interiors.” —Eleanor Shepard, Shepard Interior Selections, Quechee, VT
Clockwise from right: Wellborn Cabinet built-in hutch by Shepard Construction. Kitchen remodel with Wellborn Cabinets, Cambria quartz countertops, and open shelving by Shepard Construction. Hubbardton Forge Cosmo sconce with trending two-tone finishes, handcrafted to order in Vermont.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF ELEANOR SHEPARD
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JEFF WILMOT PAINTING & WALLPAPERING BRUSHING UP ON INTERIORS AND EXTERIORS Jeff spent time with us to answer our questions about his company. How does being a small company work for your clients? The obvious answer is you’re getting to know the people. You’re working with them, getting to know them, and clients need to be able to trust you in their home when they’re not around. That’s important. What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about pleasing a customer? Listening to what they have to say. And especially at the end of the project, making sure they’re truly content with everything and feel they got the value they expected. What are the trendy colors you’ve seen of late? The grays are still playing and have been very popular last year and the year before as well. I’m actually starting to see some more vibrant colors being introduced, especially with the younger crowd. They’re going to some brighter, more colorful selections. It’s nice to see. It’s nice to work with color. What other services do you offer? All types of painting, both interior and exterior. We also install wall coverings. We refinish wood floors and do power washing and siding restoration. tw Jeff Wilmot Painting & Wallpapering, Inc. 23 Lyon Road South Royalton, VT (802) 763-2055
Rooms are enhanced when painted with shades from Benjamin Moore’s Cool Collection. Photos courtesy of Benjamin Moore.
“Color changes with light. Paint a sample directly on the wall or on a piece of poster board. Make sure you like it in the glow of early morning light, in the low light of sunset, as well as in the cast of a light bulb.” —Alice Williams, Alice Williams Interiors
2017 PANTONE COLOR OF THE YEAR (GREENERY)
NEW & NOW
INTRODUCE A BIT OF GREENERY INTO YOUR HOME
6 92 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h â€¢
1. SAFAVIEH LIAM OPEN BOOKCASE, SPLIT PEA www.houzz.com
2. PH 50 PENDANT LIGHT ylighting.com
“Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we yearn for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate and revitalize, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another, and a larger purpose.” —Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute
3. WEGNER STYLE CH24, THE WISHBONE CHAIR www.zoetico.com
4. ORLA KIELY STEM JACQUARD TOWELS www.johnlewis.com
5. LOLOI WEBSTER GREEN COTTON THROW PILLOW www.amazon.com
6. MOOOI CLOUD SOFA, VELOUR MOSS www.moooi.com
7. MIKASA DAYLIGHT DINNERWARE www.mikasa.com
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Floors by Mannington are Provence Champagne wood (left) and Versailles Fount wood. Photos courtesy of FloorCraft.
Style & Function Underfoot FLOORCRAFT DURABILITY MADE BEAUTIFUL
Mannington’s Normandy Oak Brulee wood.
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Today’s choices for flooring are beautiful and durable, and the endless options available ensure that you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for. We spoke to Sonja Anderson at FloorCraft to find out how she assists customers in their quest for their perfect floor. “At FloorCraft, we feel it is important to help people from the beginning of the project to the end. When people first get the idea that they’d like to do some remodeling or when they need to choose a whole new house worth of flooring, we are happy to come out and assess the situation. We make recommendations and point them toward several products that might be appropriate. Then, while they’re in the showroom, we will help narrow their selections and help them
with design advice. Once selections are made, we offer guaranteed installations by our local craftsmen.” Sonja says that working for a company that has been in business for 25 years has taught her valuable lessons, especially about customer service. “We stand behind our installations. If something goes wrong that is installation related, we’ll find a solution and resolve the problem. And being a part of a small business is really great because we’re all involved and willing to jump in and help the customer in any way we can.” tw FloorCraft 231 NH-11 Wilmot, NH (603) 526-2600 www.floorcraftnh.com
CARPET KING & TILE CARE IN INSTALLATION We asked Dianne Titus of Carpet King & Tile to share her views on what’s happening in the world of flooring. What are the latest trends in wood flooring and carpet? In wood, a distressed, painted wood, and for carpet, as always, wool. We’re getting more and more wool carpets— wool looks, patterns, and colors. For sure, the new trend in regular carpet is very, very soft, silky soft. What about colors? Gray is the new beige. How do you guide buyers to locating the best installer for their flooring choices? We do the installations. We want to make sure customers are getting the full benefit of the beautiful carpet
BARRE TILE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE OFFERING QUALITY PRODUCTS they’re purchasing, so I want them to go with my installers.
We spoke with Bill Richards at Barre Tile, who shared some advice and trends.
What mistakes do buyers of floor covering seem to make? The biggest mistake is being able to handle an order if they bought online. It could be raining, and a 300-pound piece of carpet that’s 12-feet wide is delivered. Or carrying in all those boxes of tiles when one box weighs 60 pounds. How are you going to carry in 100 of them? In addition, when you buy it from me, I’m going to stand by the warranty. Who are you going to call if you ordered it online? tw
When people renovate their homes, what are they going to for upgrading? Hardwood and porcelain, really. It’s been trending that way for quite a while. And quartz counters are really taking off.
Carpet King & Tile Route 5 South, Norwich, VT (802) 649-3030 www.carpetkingcarpet1norwich.com
Barre Tile of New Hampshire 187 Mechanic Street, Lebanon, NH (603) 448-4940 barretile.com
What are the advantages of using natural stone for countertops? They certainly add dollar value to your home. As far as durability, there is a certain maintenance issue involved in a lot of it. Darker colors are pretty indestructible and don’t scratch easily. And if they do, they’re fixable. Lighter colors are more porous. We’re doing a lot in quartz, and that lessens that maintenance factor. tw
VALLEY FLOORS CUSTOMER SERVICE IS KEY Ryan Chase at Valley Floors spoke to us about the current flooring business. What trends are you seeing in recent years? Custom tile showers are still very popular. Tile material has not changed in design, but continues to look better and better. Natural stone is still very popular, both in custom shower work and throughout the home, whether it’s on backsplashes or floors. How does being part of a buyers group help save your customers money? It allows us to compete with the big-box stores, so we’re all on a level playing field. The distributor, NRF Distributors, is one of the top-five largest flooring distributors on the East Coast. That gives us the buying power of some of the big boys although we are a small, independently run business. Why is it important that you offer a military discount to all members past and present? There’s an Army National Guard barracks 96 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
BIRON’S FLOORING MAKING LIFE EASY Biron’s Flooring offers hardwood, carpet, vinyl plank, sheet vinyl, area rugs, tile for floors, and tile for backsplashes and showers. “We give you flooring options that fit your lifestyle,” says Amy Howald. “For example, you may love the look of hardwood for your mudroom or family room but have four large dogs. We might recommend a vinyl plank or a porcelain tile option instead. Vinyl plank is a relatively new product that offers a wood or tile visual but is more scratch resistant and 100 percent waterproof. This product is also fabulous for kitchens and bathrooms.” Amy continues, “Once you have picked out a product, our estimator comes out to your home or business to measure and ensure that your estimate has no surprises. From this point, we offer an installation crew that is not subcontracted; they are Biron’s Flooring employees. This is something that makes us especially unique. Our installation crew takes great care to install products based on each manufacturer’s specifications. Come and see us at our newly remodeled showroom.” tw
Dartmouth College Baker Library cork floor project.
Biron’s Flooring 1011 John Stark Highway Newport, NH (603) 543-0329 bironsflooring.com
in our town, so we’ve known a lot of people who go through there. They’ve been deployed, and many of our friends and even employees have been on active duty. It’s near and dear to everybody and is very real for us. What separates Valley Floors from others in the flooring business? In the last year, we have become a Hunter Douglas dealer, so not only do we sell and install floor covering but we are also in the window treatment business with Hunter Douglas and other name-brand shades and blinds. It’s a win-win for us and for our customers because the two go hand in hand. When somebody is replacing their floors, it’s an inexpensive add-on that brings function and beauty to any room. tw Valley Floors 515 Waits River Road Bradford, VT (802) 461-4617 www.valleyfloorsinc.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
Light Up Your Life CREATIVE LIGHTING DESIGNS SMART, BEAUTIFUL CHOICES When we spoke with Brian and Lois Horan at Creative Lighting Designs in Lebanon, they had lots of news to share about what’s happening in home lighting. What trends in lighting are you seeing? The latest is everything LED. Everybody’s moving toward LED fixtures because soon the incandescent bulb as we know it will be eliminated. If you’re not on the LED bandwagon, you should be. The bulbs are more
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From left: Maxim Java with handcrafted shade of recycled corrugated paper. Varaluz Rain Mini Pendant is made of recycled hand-pressed rain glass. Maxim Eternity features polished chrome with beveled crystals. Maxim Orbit is available in two sizes and two finishes.
seeing the new use of unexpected materials in lighting, such as crystals, chainmail, wood, cardboard, and recycled paper and glass. Exciting new hoop-style lighting illuminated within the ring is a big trend, as is orb-style lighting. tw
Creative Lighting Designs 227 Mechanic Street Lebanon, NH (603) 448-2066 www.creativelightingdesigns.com
energy efficient, last longer, require less maintenance, and offer great color renderings for style and decorating. Talk about how people in older homes thought they could never have recessed lighting. You can now do recessed in very small places. New recessed LED lights are replacing old-fashioned recessed lights, which required that a large can be inserted in the ceiling. The new lights are only threequarters of an inch thick and require no can, thus allowing homeowners to put recessed lighting into areas where they have no access from above to install, something that was required by the older style lights. Since the new lights are LED, they generate no heat, which means they can touch insulation with no worries. Tell us about materials and finishes. Brass is coming back, but with new names like champagne, Sedona sunset, and soft gold. Weâ€™re also www.uppervalleyimage.com â€˘
lighting ILLUMINATIONS BY BARRE ELECTRIC SENSIBLE SOLUTIONS Greg Isabelle of Illuminations by Barre Electric spoke with us about home lighting. What types of lighting have grown in popularity? I would have to say that the category of LED would be the highest growth in lighting. Under-cabinet lighting as well as recessed lighting for kitchens is quite popular. People want the clean look. They want the light without seeing the source. Why is it important to have the right lighting? Sometimes you need lighting to read by; other times you want to set a mood with different types of lighting. In the showroom, I was just talking to some people about lighting controls. It’s like the volume control on your stereo. When was the last time you turned on your stereo and kept it at the same volume all the time? Sometimes your favorite songs come on, and you crank it up a little bit more. Other times you turn it down.
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Above left: Hubbardton Forge Cirque chandelier lights a stairway in a Waterbury, Vermont, home. Right: A mid-century “sputnik” chandelier features LED nostalgic light bulbs.
How does your staff help a customer get the most from their lighting products you provide? We want to find out what kind of project they’re doing, or what they use that room for. Then we build the lighting around that, so it’s specifi cally tailored to what they’re looking for and how they’ll be using that particular room. tw
Illuminations by Barre Electric 1 Glen Road Plaza West Lebanon, NH (603) 298-8036 900 US Route 302 Barre, VT (802) 476-0280 www.barreelectric.com
Spotlight • Pleasant Acres
leave the worry to us CONSIDER HIRING A PROPERTY MANAGEMENT TEAM
“People don’t hire someone to manage their home from the yellow pages. It is a relationship built on trust.” 102 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
If you own a home in New London, Sunapee, or the surrounding area, you may want to call on Pleasant Acres for the wide range of services this company provides. Pleasant Acres is an award-winning landscape, property management, and property maintenance company celebrating its 16th year in business this year. Since 2001, the company has been serving the owners of some of the finest lakefront homes and country estates in the area, and they also take care of cabins, condos, and everything in between. Owner Matt McClay says, “Most of our clients own second homes here, but we also take care of full-time residents. Residential property management is essentially handling any aspect of the house and grounds a homeowner might need. This goes from general house checks to being on call for alarms and other issues that come up, like a leak, a low-temperature alarm, or a needed bathroom renovation.”
Matt continues, “We can handle things like getting quality firewood, having it delivered, and stacking it. We even handle building the fire and delivering groceries so people can arrive and have a carefree experience. Our goal is to take the headache and worry of second-home ownership away from people.” A WIDE SCOPE OF SERVICES Matt explains the scope of his business. “Many people buy homes here and don’t know who to use for a cleaning service, plumber, painter, snowplow person, yard service, or roofer. We handle things in house as much as we can, from grounds care to handyman-type repairs. But any tasks outside of what we are comfortable handling, we oversee having the customers’ vendor or our own vendor complete. We have a great network of subcontractors who can handle any repairs, improvements, or maintenance.”
Other things Matt and his crew take care of in their clients’ absence are accepting deliveries and being at the home when service people come in. “We meet delivery people and service vendors many times a day,” Matt says. “We absorb the headache of late or no shows and changes in scheduling of service or delivery people. We help make sure that the work is done properly and that no damage is done to the property by being on-site for the vendor’s visit.” When asked about the strangest delivery he’s ever accepted, Matt laughed and explained, “Marble statues were delivered that were to be placed on each side of a front door. The delivery company arrived and said they wouldn’t deliver these heavy pieces down the stairs that led to the door. We accepted delivery, and then used our staff and equipment to lower the pieces down and into place. Besides that, we have had furniture delivered for nearly an entire house, being at the site for multiple days, accepting pieces, and helping to make sure everything went well.”
“I have been a client for over 12 years and am always impressed with the quality of work and professionalism of the staff. Their service is timely, efficient, and always courteous!” —GP, Sunapee, NH
MAKING LIFE EASIER Matt says most of his clients are from Massachusetts or Connecticut, but some are from Southern New Hampshire or even Florida while others may own a primary house in New London and a summer house on the lake. “Some people come for the entire summer and weekends in the winter. Others come for just a couple of nights a year,” Matt says. “Whenever they’re here, they can call on us for anything they need. And when they’re not here, they know they don’t need to worry about anything.” The mission for Matt and his company is to make life easier for clients. How do they accomplish this? “We have had clients arrive for their first time here in six months on Memorial Day weekend,” Matt explains. “We work to make sure they’re greeted with a perfectly prepared house, grounds, and even a boat—everything ready to entertain and enjoy. There’s no stress and no rush when they arrive. Allowing them to enjoy every minute of their short stay enables them to get the most out of their property.
STRESS-FREE HOME OWNERSHIP Pleasant Acres is Sunapee’s awardwinning property management company for lake homes and high-end estates. Owner Matt McClay says, “We have impeccable references.” The range of services includes: 24/7 access Alarm on-call Pre-arrival preparations Subcontractor oversight House checks Airport shuttle Errands and chores Vendor access To-do lists Lawn care Landscaping Snow removal
We do this for most of our clients each spring. We have had clients whose pipes have burst in extreme cold, ruining parts of the house. We had the issue dealt with, repairs made, and the house back together before they arrived. RELATIONSHIPS BUILT ON TRUST They even get the boat ready? Sure thing! “We handle all the little things one often doesn’t realize go along with owning a boat,” Matt says. “We coordinate and organize all the needs of the boat and its accessories, such as trailer storage. We can fuel, clean, take boats in and out of the water, handle dock permitting, and get a lift or a canopy over a lift installed. We have even helped select many boats to ensure that our clients get the right boat for their needs. We also handle vehicle maintenance, cleaning, storage, and other things such as snowmobiles. There is a lot that goes into maintaining a lake/ski life at a second home, and we can take the burden away from owners so they can maximize the enjoyment of their limited time here. “We’ve gained most of our clients through word of mouth,” he says. “People don’t hire someone to manage their home from the yellow pages. It is a relationship built on trust. Usually this starts with a friend recommending us or them seeing us caring for a neighbor’s house. We have one client who has set us up with caring for five of his friends’ houses on Lake Sunapee. That feels good!” Matt adds, “We still have our first client, who owns a second home in Sunapee. He’s been with us for 15 years.” tw
Pleasant Acres 844 Route 11 Sunapee, NH (603) 526-2482 www.pleasantacresnh.com www.uppervalleyimage.com •
BY MIKE MORIN
107 Trescott Road, Hanover, NH $999,000
PUTTING THEIR EXPERTISE AT EVERY CLIENT’S DISPOSAL
Coldwell Banker Lifestyles
From left to right: Joe Burns, Partner Ned Redpath, Former Owner Stefan Timbrell, Partner and Principal Broker
Coldwell Banker Lifestyles 370 Main Street New London, NH (603) 525-7124 www.cblifestylesre.com
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Many members of the Coldwell Banker Lifestyles staff are fulltime realtors. How does that benefit your customers? The majority of our agents are full time. Working here requires great skill. There are few states where urban centers, college towns, rural outposts, and resorts are separated by only a few miles. Our clients can be affluent vacation-home buyers, moveup buyers, first-time sellers, job transferees, first-time buyers, and everyone in between. Our agents benefit greatly from having the Coldwell Banker Lifestyle operations, marketing, and leadership teams at their disposal, and being with Coldwell Banker provides resources and exposure few in our market can offer.
What do you take into account when pricing a seller’s property? We have access to an incredible tablet app called CBx that allows our agents to walk sellers through the suggested price of a home as we take into consideration recent comparison sales, home amenities, and information culled from “big data.” It’s a transparent process. Nationally we remain a sellers’ market, with 37 percent of all homes selling in the first month. This number will vary based on the location and style of a home. How do you assist a seller in making sure his or her home shows its best assets? We strive to showcase livability to a potential buyer. Recent data show that move-in ready homes are most attractive to shoppers.
Modern amenities and simple upgrades can make a difference, and Coldwell Banker has a Smart Home Staging Kit available where sellers can utilize this technology to enable their home to stand out. How does a thriving economy and workforce affect the real estate market, both pro and con? A good economy matters, and we have recovered from the recession. Real estate research firm CoreLogic recently reported that nearly 94 percent of all US homes with a mortgage have positive equity. The buyers are out there. We may see the number of homes for sale increase to meet that demand. So, many have waited for this price recovery before they put their home on the market. tw
CREATORS & DREAM MAKERS
outdoor living Landscape architects and designers work with homeowners to enhance their property and its value as well as their enjoyment of it. From water features to stonework and patios, these professionals bring art, science, and technology together to create beautiful and enduring outside spaces.
Unique Outdoor Spaces THINK LANDFORMS FOR INNOVATIVE LANDSCAPE DESIGN
A rock garden using stones found on the site contributes to this low maintenance, easygoing natural look, which is highlighted by pink sedum and white hydrangea blooms.
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he landscape business has evolved in many ways since Peter Schiess first launched
his landscape architecture company, Landforms, in Bow in 1990, but one thing is constant. “There’s something to be said for curb appeal,” Peter says. “It’s the first impression people get of your house, and we try hard to make that a nice impression.”
BY KATHERINE P. COX PHOTOS COURTESY OF LANDFORMS
Right: A wandering native stone walkway leads to Lake Sunapee. Opposite: Stairways donâ€™t always have to be straight, as seen in this beautiful curving walkway with steps made of cut granite.
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The landscape business has grown to encompass far more than the front of the house, however, as homeowners increasingly spend more of their leisure and entertaining time outside and are spending more money on making the outdoors as inviting and sophisticated as their indoor spaces. For Peter, who earned a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from the College of Environmental Science and Forestry at the State University of New York, Syracuse, the process of working with homeowners is similar to that of building or renovating a home with an architect or interior designer.
Tailoring Landscape to the Way We Live The architecture, design, and construction of outdoor spaces is unique to each home, and Peter tries to learn as much about his clients, their lifestyles, and their aspirations for the property as he can. What do they want? Do they have children and grandchildren? Are they outdoor people? Gardeners? Like to grill? Are they casual folks or more formal? How do they like to entertain? “I try to figure out how their family lives so I can make the landscape work for them,” Peter says. New houses offer a lot of opportunity for really creative, fun designs, he says. For the best outcome, he likes
This page: Peter and his team turned a damp lower area of this property into a pond with a waterfall and a fountain, making the area both visually interesting and functional. Inset: Iris adds a splash of color at the waterâ€™s edge. Left: At the house, a small wisteria-covered arbor shades the pedestrian entrance to the garage. Opposite: A stone wall with waterfall is an extension of the cut granite stone used for the veneer of the house. Shown is the beginning of a stream that flows into a big pond.
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“Where are the views? There’s a reason people bought the land. What makes them excited? What’s the key feature? Views? Lake? Mountains?” Exposure to light must also be considered. to be part of the whole team that is designing and building the house from the very beginning, working with the architect, builder, and engineer. He can advise on the best place to locate the house, determine the right fit on the property, consider the orientation and views, and plan a driveway that is more than just a straight line and encompasses interesting curves and views. When siting a house, he asks, “Where are the views? There’s a reason people bought the land. What makes them excited? What’s the key feature? Views? Lake? Mountains?”
Exposure to light must also be considered. Then he and his clients must think about the “hardscape,” what Peter calls the backbone of the entire project—stone walls, which he says are an integral part of many landscape projects, especially on terrain that is steep or has slopes; patios, which might include fire pits or outdoor kitchens; water features, pools, and tennis courts. Planting is the last part, he says. Peter selects plants based on what will grow best in a certain space, clients’ preferences, and type of growth, height, and seasonal color, developing www.uppervalleyimage.com •
a palette that will provide color throughout the seasons. Everything changes over time, he says, and he tells clients, “Picture it 15 years down the road. That’s a very important piece.” He also says less is more and prefers to use native plants and natural stone. His style, he says, “is very informal, very organic, curvilinear. I hardly ever do straight lines.” The process for existing homes is pretty much the same. “If the house is poorly sited, you just have to work around it.” Bottom line: “You want the outdoor space integrated with the indoor space.” Outdoor Living Takes Off In the last 26 years, Peter says, his projects have gotten bigger. “People are investing more money in landscaping,” he says, and the trend toward outdoor living continues to grow. “It has definitely taken on a new life. People are using outdoor spaces more than they used to, and it’s what drives them to want big patios and fire pits. Patios are not just patios anymore. The patio is the outdoor living room.” In some cases, patios are outdoor kitchens as well, with people going beyond the grill to installing outdoor cooking areas. Fire pits are a huge trend, he says, extending the season into autumn and drawing people outside. Fountains, streams, and waterfalls are increasingly popular too. A large part of Landforms’ business is lakefront properties, both new homes and older, existing houses that are being renovated and remodeled. Lakefront properties require special building and landscaping permits and are subject to complex regulations, on both the state and local levels. In 1994, the New Hampshire Shoreland Water Quality Protection Act was adopted, protecting all land located within 250 feet of public waters. In addition to providing professional design and construction services, Peter helps clients navigate the complex state environmental laws and local regulations that govern work on lakes and other bodies of water in New Hampshire. Lakefront lots can often be complicated but also offer creative challenges that appeal to Peter. He says the landscape should “draw you to the featured piece, a little at a time. It’s a lot more interesting to see a peek of the lake.” Peter says he always likes the design part of a project but especially loves the construction part of his business. Figuring out the logistics and coming up with a solution to a difficult site is challenging but a lot of fun. “I love seeing the final product,” he says. So do his clients. tw
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“People are using outdoor spaces more than they used to, and it’s what drives them to want big patios and fire pits. Patios are not just patios anymore. The patio is the outdoor living room.”
Detail Currey penda the isla
Left: A large patio with a comfortable seating area and large fire pit makes a great place to enjoy views of Lake Sunapee. Below left: This patio functions nicely as a dining area. Below: A small dining area is set up under an arbor.
Landforms 97 Dow Road Bow, NH (603) 228-2858 www.landformsltd.com
Spotlight • All Decked Out
PHOTOS COURTESY OF OW LEE
create a room
OUTDOORS MAKE THE MOST OF LEISURE TIME
“Fire pits remain popular,” says Judy Evans Sleeper of All Decked Out, “and there are many options. Go for a wood-burning one if you are going to use it on the lawn or on a patio; otherwise, there are many gas options. There is no better way to gather family and friends as well as to extend the season.” Judy continues, “Teak is still our fastest growing category. Round, oval, and rectangular tables with built-in butterfly leaves extend the table without the need to remove the umbrella. Sofas, lounge chairs, and sectionals
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with thick, luxurious, care-free allweather cushions are very popular.” As for new materials, “Marine-grade polymer is an up-and-coming category,” Judy reports. “It is a high-quality, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that is becoming popular for its ease, durability, and eco-friendly composition.” Dining furniture, Adirondack chairs, and deep seating are available. “We have sold Jensen Leisure’s lines in the past and are bringing it in again this year, as we are impressed with their designs,” says Judy. “Also, people are getting more familiar
with ipe. We are seeing many more ipe decks. Jensen uses 100 percent heartwood ipe that is certified by the Rainforest Alliance as 100 percent FSC Pure, guaranteeing that it comes from well-managed forests. Its characteristics are similar to teak. Jensen offers a wide range of traditional and modern designs in dining groups and deep seating.” tw All Decked Out Route 4 Quechee, VT (802) 296-6714 www.alldeckedoutcasual.com
“Whether you have a ﬁ re pit, ﬁ re table, or a ﬁ replace, that’s where everyone likes to gather.”—Judy Evans Sleeper, All Decked Out
Opposite: Rectangular fire table from OW Lee works perfectly with the company’s Marquette sofa patio set. Top: Palisades lounge set by OW Lee. Left: OW Lee Classico patio sectional set with chat-height fire pit.
Relax in Your Outdoor Living Space MB PRO LANDSCAPE DESIGN EXPANDING HORIZONS Business owner Michael Burns took some time out of his busy schedule to answer some landscaping questions. What common mistakes do people make when considering a landscape specialist? They don’t do their research thoroughly enough about the contractor they’re going to hire. What are their capabilities and their experience? You can find out a lot by seeing the quality of their work, so ask for some addresses and go take a look at the properties before you hire someone. Explain how the customer can see the project on paper first with your CAD and 3D renderings? It’s difficult for some customers to visualize what a project can look like. They don’t do it every day. We offer a complete
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Top: MB Pro designed this landscape with a lit natural stone sitting wall and gas fire pit and a paver patio. Right: An entertainment area features a local stone fireplace, countertop area, and sitting wall as well as a pizza oven with stucco finish.
Left: This natural stone fireplace incorporates an antique wood mantel that matches the post-andbeam interior structure. Below (three photos): MB Pro designed and installed this sports court/entertainment area.
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walk-through with the customer to see what their desires and needs are. I’ll get measurements and put a plan down on paper. I can also do it in 3D so they can see what the project will actually look like. This is a great time saver. They can say, yes, they like that, or they can change it, so it allows us to have some flexibility and give them exactly what they want with no surprises. Talk about the importance of working with the customer’s budget. A lot of times what people want and what they can afford are two different things. The nice thing about the design with the CAD programming is that we can break it all down for the customer. Maybe they can’t afford to do everything one year. Sometimes we put it on a two-to five-year plan, and working inside the budget, we can eliminate some things that they don’t necessarily need. It might surprise some people that you do fireplaces and chimneys. The industry is starting to go toward doing the outside rooms. Whether it’s a fire pit or an outdoor fireplace with gas or wood, it’s nice for homeowners to just go outdoors in the evening, have a couple people over, grill something for dinner, or try out their new pizza oven. It gives them a chance to be outside enjoying the outdoors with family and friends versus always having to be inside. We can do fireplaces with electricity so they can have power for cooking, and we can do a sink on the side so they can clean their chicken and wash their hands, bowls, and cooking utensils. tw
MB Pro Landscape Design 24 Algonquin Road Enfield, NH (603) 252-6963 www.mbprolandscapedesign.com
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BY THERON PECK, CHIPPERS TURF DIVISION MANAGER
Organic Lawn Care CHIPPERS WE’RE ALL ABOUT YOUR LIFE OUTSIDE The use of professionally delivered natural/organic lawn care programs continues to gain popularity with consumers demanding less impact on the environment, their family, and their pets. The increased demand for natural/organic alternatives has fueled the development and release of newer and safer products that can deliver results not attainable in the past. This good news does not simply end with implementing new “tonics” to improve turf health, but rather a fresh mind-set as to what a healthy lawn system really is and the notion that perhaps not having that perfectly mani-
cured lawn is okay. Furthermore, education and stepping away from decades of conventional “spray it and go” programs continue to challenge and indeed reshape the industry of professional lawn care. IMPROVING LAWN HEALTH Today’s modern lawn care health program focuses on resolving underlying issues, such as soil quality/biohealth, organic matter, and turf varieties present in the lawn. Additional considerations are how the lawn is used and the microclimate present, such as exposure to
Beautiful lawns while protecting our waterways are possible with natural/organic lawn care products.
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wind or deep shade. Only by addressing the cause of poor turf health and what is deficient can we truly address the underlying problems. This change in mind-set is a vastly different approach from simply treating visible symptoms such as poor density, color, weak roots, insects, and disease issues, to name just a few. DEALING WITH WEEDS While spraying for weeds is still a viable rescue tool to reduce an unwanted plant in a lawn, so too is creating a habitat that is more favorable to turf. This includes reducing compaction through aeration, adding more vigorous grasses via overseeding, adding compost tea, and utilizing organic/ natural fertilizers and calcium-based lime. Correcting soil deficiencies through organic and natural actions will address underlying problems, leading to a healthier lawn. There are new products that can address crabgrass, broadleaf weeds (even tough ones like ground ivy and violets), ticks, grubs, and disease issues. Although these natural/organic materials are not magic wands compared to conventional lawn care, they do provide great value when combined with proper mowing, aeration, and overseeding. As more homes are built by rivers and lakes, the need for natural/organic lawn care will only continue to increase due to imposed restrictions, and rightly so. And as communities and schools adopt more eco- and child-friendly products, natural/organic lawn programs will continue to be more than just a trend. tw
Chippers 1241 Pomfret Road Woodstock, VT (603) 448-4800 (802) 457-5100 (866) 683-6222 www.chippersinc.com www.uppervalleyimage.com â€˘
From left: A vintage lilac bush and repurposed foundation stones anchor this arborvitae privacy hedge. Mowing is a big part of Sean’s business. Sugar maple trees planted along a driveway create a classic landscape. Some jobs call for the heavy equipment. A typical backyard lawn was replaced with a wildflower meadow, which is attractive to wildlife and pollinators.
Landscaping Done Right SEAN’S LAWN N’ GARDEN SERVICES FINDING YOUR TRUE “HOMESCAPE” Business owner Sean Norton talked to us about landscaping trends and the services he offers. What services does your company offer? I provide landscaping and grounds maintenance services custom tailored to each client’s needs, including garden design, garden and landscape installations, gardening services, plus landscape edits and a curb-appeal service. In addition, I provide a full range of grounds maintenance services. These include lawn mowing and related lawn care, spring and fall cleanups, winter plant protection, mulching, fertilizing, and pruning. How have landscaping trends changed in the 10 years you’ve been in business? For residential clients, I am doing more of what I call “homescaping” rather than landscaping. That is the word I use to describe creating a landscape that reflects my client’s individual style and desire to live more sustainably. Folks are moving away from standard-issue 124 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
Sean’s Lawn Services address information to go here
foundation shrubs and climate-unfriendly garden design. For commercial clients, I am editing their landscaping to include more native plants and to reduce water usage. Landscape trends are having to adapt rapidly to climate change. I have always been a proponent of locally gown and sourced plants, plus plants that attract pollinators, along with the use of native and indigenous plants. This is becoming very popular as people discover the benefits of “growing local.” People are moving toward sustainable landscapes with a natural, more informal style that is in harmony with our beautiful Upper Valley. I recently replaced a “traditional” back lawn with a wildflower meadow. The homeowner now has a beautiful, minimal-care back yard full of pollinator-attracting plants and flowers. The meadow provides a lovely transition from house to woods! In the Upper Valley, we are experiencing shorter winters with less snow, which means our plants and shrubs are not getting the proper natural insulation and protection that a
winter with deep snow provides. It is more important than ever to protect plants from winter damage by covering up fruit-bearing plants and evergreens. Salt protection is also important for those plants near roads, sidewalks, and walkways. What are a few common mistakes homeowners make regarding lawn care? Cutting the grass too short! I like to mow at a height of 3.25 inches every week until around mid July. For my lawn care clients, I usually switch to about every 10 to 14 days in between cuts. With a well-planned mowing schedule, the lawn is less apt to get scorched and burned out as the summer heats up. Another common mistake is fertilizing at the wrong time. Fall and spring are the best times to fertilize your lawn. tw Sean’s Lawn N’ Garden Services 72 Judd Road Thetford Center, VT (802) 299-0882
Take Time to Relax DECK DOCK HOME & GARDEN MAKING OUTDOOR AREAS SHINE Since 2000, Deck Dock Home & Garden has provided the Lakes Region with top-quality outdoor furniture and home goodsâ€”everything from local art to cushioned sofas and club chairs for the porch, patio, deck, or dock. Working with family-owned American companies, Deck Dock stocks extremely well-made outdoor furnishings ready to try and buy. With decades of design experience, partners Sally Bourdon and Lynne Wardlaw and their staff can guide you through an array of materials and color choices for the perfect solution. The big news at Deck Dock is fire tables. They are the perfect complement to any patio and seating arrangement. Everyone loves the idea of taking the chill off with no fuss, no smoke, and minimal risk to homes, decks, or little fingers. Most tables are granite (in a variety of shapes and colors) with a metal base enclosing a standard 20-pound grill tank. The propane is diffused through safety glass, which heats up enough for comfort without making the granite hot. 126 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h â€˘
Fire tables are big news for decks and patios. Inset: Round granite fire table by Firetainment.
Deck Dockâ€™s array of outdoor furniture and accessories paired with design excellence and a friendly staff adds up to an easy shopping experience. Come and explore the old horse barn and find local art, home and garden accessories, outdoor dishware, and more. tw Deck Dock Home & Garden 81 Edgemont Road, Route 103B Sunapee, NH (603) 763-3266 deckdock.com www.uppervalleyimage.com â€˘
Growing in Style THE CARRIAGE SHED PROVIDING HIGH-QUALITY SOLUTIONS We spoke to Jen Sinclair at The Carriage Shed about her family’s business and current trends they’re noticing. How can you take a customer’s concept and make it reality? For a shed, there are some standard features. When I first started in the business, it was a basic cookie-cutter kind of thing. You want double doors, two windows, and maybe some upgrades. Now, the sky’s the limit. You can do any kind of siding you want, whatever kind of windows, 128 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
and there’s a ton of different door styles. We still have our standard styles as well, so if you want to go for the more economical, you can do that. Our vendors have been able to step forward, and we’re able to compete with the big-box stores that also sell sheds. As a traditional building style, do materials ever change or get better while staying true to design and building standards? Some people want white pine board and batten, cedar shake, and cedar clapboard. We can do
Opposite: 36’ x 24’ High Country horse barn with lean-to and red cedar board and batten siding. Top: 12’ x 16’ New England cape with SmartSide clapboards and shed dormer package. Above: 10’ x 18’ Quaker shed in Duratemp siding with Heritage doors and windows.
that. Then there’s the other side of the coin where they want low maintenance, vinyl, or Duratemp siding, which you rarely if ever have to paint. SmartSide clapboard is a green product. Every year there’s something new to try for siding. If a customer wants a certain look, style, or siding, we can get it for them. www.uppervalleyimage.com •
Talk about the unique qualities of Amish-crafted structures. The structures feature high craftsmanship and high-grade materials. We deal only with the best vendors in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. We’ve had the business 14 years this summer, and we’ve been dealing with those vendors from the beginning. They’re great to work with. My father Robert, who owns the company, was in construction and worked in concrete forever before he bought this business. It’s a great fit for him. He’s been able to come up with different ideas and styles, helping our vendors go from just simple sheds, which most of our vendors offered in the beginning, to the larger structures that we now carry, such as the homes, barns, and garages. What is a certified home? A certified home has to meet the same codes as a site-built home. Each certified home comes with a set of stamped plans. During construction, each home is inspected to make sure it is meeting all of the codes required by your state and town. tw The Carriage Shed 1195 VA Cutoff Road White River Junction, VT (800) 441-6057 www.carriageshed.com
12’ x 26’ White River garage with enclosed lean-to.
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BY MIKE MORIN
GROWING A STRONG COMMUNITY
Mascoma Savings Bank Richard Kozlowski Vice President Residential Mortgage Lending Manager
Why is having an excellent credit score important for a lender to secure the best rate you offer? The credit score plays an important part and is indicative of what your credit history is. So, whether or not you’re going to be able to get the loan is going to be partially based on that credit score. If it’s low, there are probably some other things in your credit past that are going to haunt you. One of the things that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae did, going back to 2009 or ’10 right after the financial crisis, was to create loan level pricing adjustments. Basically, what they do is take the various components of risk and add either fees or a higher interest rate based on those parameters. If somebody has a low score, they’re going to be subject to either a higher interest rate or additional fees. What can a borrower do to shore up his or her credit rating months before making a mortgage application? One of the things I would suggest is that everyone get a copy of their credit report, free once a year. And I would recommend that people do that for two reasons. One, if there’s an error on your report, or if there was any inkling of possible identity theft or people apply-
243 Sykes Mountain Avenue White River Junction, VT (802) 280-4920 richard.kozlowski@ mascomabank.com www.mascomabank.com 132 i m a g e t r e n d w a t c h •
ing for credit in your name, you will find that out. If you have one of those things like LifeLoc or All Clear ID that monitor your credit, they would announce to you, “Hey, somebody just applied for a Visa card in the name of Rich Kozlowski.” If you don’t have one of those, you’re not necessarily going to know. One of the things about pulling your credit once a year is you could catch potential fraud that is coming down the pike. This would be your opportunity to go back to them (a creditor) and say, “This is an error.” Get it cleared up before you start looking to buy your home or car. Ever-changing mortgage rates are still half of what they were in 2000. Is this still a good time to commit to buying a home, considering favorable prevailing loan rates? Rates are really low right now. The 30year fixed-rate mortgage last year was in the mid-three range. After the election, rates kind of moved up to the four range, the low-four range since November. No one is really predicting a major increase. When I bought my first house in 1990, the prevailing 30-year mortgage rate was 9 percent. So, historically, four is great. That would tell me that it’s a good time to buy a home. tw
BY MIKE MORIN
MEETING THEIR NEIGHBORS’ NEEDS
Sugar River Bank
Terri Crate Vice President Senior Retail Loan Officer NMLS #419840
10 North Main Street Newport, NH (603) 863-3000 NMLS #419770 www.sugarriverbank.com
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How do you simplify the sometimes daunting process of navigating the loan application process for a new borrower? We offer several options for new borrowers, and we tailor the application process to meet the needs of those borrowers. At Sugar River Bank, we offer the convenience of applying online for those tech-savvy or extremely busy borrowers. We are also more than happy to take an application over the phone. However, many of our applications are still completed in a face-to-face meeting with one of our local, experienced mortgage loan originators. We are available to meet with our borrowers at their convenience, whether that is in the evening or on weekends. We understand that the mortgage loan process can be daunting, so we strive to make the experience as easy as possible. We take pride in assisting our borrowers through the entire mortgage process and providing answers and guidance to all their questions. SRB has many mortgage products. How do you match the right loan to a borrower’s needs and financial standing? Our trained and experienced mortgage loan originators start by listening to borrowers and their needs. We then ask questions to learn about the borrower’s personal situation and financial plans, not only for today but for the future as well. We also look very closely at the customer’s credit history, income, and assets. Our loan experts are then able to provide our customers with the options and mortgage products that best meet their needs and financial situation.
What options are available to first-time homebuyers with limited funds? Sugar River Bank participates in the Federal Home Loan Bank’s Equity Builder Grant Program that provides down payment and/ or closing cost assistance for qualified borrowers and eligible properties. Through the New Hampshire Housing Financing Authority and Rural Development Program, we also offer various programs specifically geared toward first-time homebuyers. In addition, we offer conventional and portfolio loans that are guaranteed by private mortgage insurance companies for those borrowers who don’t have the necessary down payment. As a local community bank, we take pride in assisting first-time homebuyers and doing whatever we can to help make home ownership possible. How does volunteering in your community help you understand the needs of your customers? As locally based financial professionals, our employees take great pride in volunteering in our communities. Our customers appreciate that we are committed to giving back at a personal level, and in return, many of them respond by supporting the bank. By volunteering, we have a true connection with many local individuals who offer great insight into the needs and wants of community members. By interacting with both customers and non-customers, we gain better knowledge about what is important to them and what struggles they may be facing. tw
advertisers index ARC Mechanical 36 Alice Williams Interiors Back cover All Decked Out 119 American Plate Glass 69 Barre Tile 96 Belletetes 101 Bensonwood Construction 8 Bethel Mills 31 Biron’s Flooring 96 Blanc & Bailey Construction 48 Blodgett’s Sash & Door 68 Boynton Construction 48 Cabinetry Concepts & Surface Solutions Inside front cover Carpet King & Tile 79 Carroll Concrete 131 Chippers 130 Coldwell Banker Lifestyles 105 Colonial Woodworking 31 Cota & Cota 97 Creative Lighting Designs & Décor 100 Crown Point Cabinetry 9 db Landscaping 120 Davis Alterations & Building 55 Davis Frame Co. 20 Deck Dock Home & Garden 126 Eastern Propane & Oil 6 Ennis Construction, Inc. 1
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Estes & Gallup 47 FloorCraft 96 Four Seasons/Sotheby’s International Realty 81 Frank Anzalone Associates 3 GR Porter & Sons 42 GeoBarns 2 Gilberte Interiors 7 Gracehill Construction 57 Hanover True Value 125 Henderson’s Tree & Garden Services 127 Home Comfort Warehouse 99 Illuminations by Barre Electric 99 Jack Rossi Landscape Architecture 120 Jancewicz & Son 37 Jeff Wilmot Painting & Wallpapering, Inc. 93 Landforms Inside back cover Landshapes 123 LaValley Building Supply 70 & 106 Lawn Master of Vermont 127 LindeMac Real Estate 51 Loewen Window Center of Vermont and New Hampshire 68 Longacres Nursery Center 129 Love’s Beddding & Furniture 88 MB Pro Landscape Design 121 Mascoma Savings Bank 133 McGray & Nichols 13
Mellish Construction 57 Northcape Design Build 15 Oakes Brothers 61 Old Hampshire Designs 11 Perry’s Oil Service 62 Pleasant Acres 10 Pompanoosuc Mills 5 Randall T. Mudge & Associates Architects 47 Richard Electric 123 Riverlight Builders 36 Rodd Roofing 43 Sean’s Lawn N’ Garden Services 131 Shaker Hill Granite Company 59 Shepard Interior Selections 79 Snow Building Construction 49 Snyder Donegan Real Estate Group 65 Springfield Fence 136 Sugar River Bank 135 Sugar River Kitchens, Bath & Flooring 62 Talbot Builders 30 The Carriage Shed 130 Timeless Kitchen Design 63 Twin State Garage Door 68 United Construction 30 Valley Floors 95 Vermod 42 Yankee Barn Homes 4
Read about Northcape Design Build, Pompanoosuc Mills, Frank Anzalone Associates and more in the 2017 edition of Trend Watch Magazine.