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Fall 2019

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ELEISH VAN BREEMS | H O M E Furniture • Antiques • Lighting • Pillows • Tabletop • Accessories

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contents Fall 2019 | Volume 1, Issue 1



78 | Stay a While

94 | Work in Progress

110 | No Boundaries

Why move, when a little reworking means falling in love with the family home all over again?

Artist and designer Kerri Rosenthal helps a young couple build the home of their dreams, one room at a time.

A total makeover reveals the stunning estuary views a Connecticut house was always meant to have.

Text by Maria LaPiana Photography by Greg Premru Styling by Karin Lidbeck Brent

Text by Annie Sherman Photography by Nicole Stevens

Text by Meaghan O’Neill Photography by Michael Biondo

102 | In Living Color

118 | Blues that Sing

86 | Nesting Instinct Equal parts design savvy and love give a designer’s own home its charm. Text by Megan Fulweiler Photography by Eric Piasecki/OTTO

It’s a fresh, new look for a venerable old house on Providence’s historic Benefit Street. Text by Susan Kleinman Photography by Greg Premru

The watery hue is front and center in a beachfront home in New Hampshire. Text by Meaghan O’Neill Photography by Jared Kuzia

ON THE COVER: Architect Anne Cook Draudt and designer Rachel Reid brought a modern vibe to a classic colonial house in suburban Boston. Photograph by Greg Premru. To see more of this home, turn to page 78. 2019 | next   5

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contents Fall 2019 | Volume 1, Issue 1








15 | Find it Here

43 | Must­-See Places

66 | Beauty and Brains

Chic shops around New England to find the coolest home goods. By Marni Elyse Katz and Lynda Simonton MAKER CULTURE

24 | Local Flavor

Connecticut architects and designers share what makes their town the place to be. By Debra Judge Silber LIVING THE LIFE

By Courtney Goodrich

A wave of passionate New England makers is building a case for artisanal products crafted with care and a conscience. By Janice Randall Rohlf

54 | Entertaining at Home


58 | Raise the Bar

29 | High Traffic, High Design

High-performance, low-maintenance ideas for having a family-friendly home. By Debra Spark OUTDOOR SPACES

36 | Home Grown

Six ways to invite nature into your landscape. By Lynn Felici-Gallant

56 | Kitchen Confidence

Everyone gathers in the kitchen, so why not design it to be party central? Every party needs libations. Making your bar area extra creative only adds to the fun.

The best recommendations for lighting, home integration systems, and smart home gadgets from the area’s leading experts. By Erika Ayn Finch TR ANSFORMATIONS

72 | Not What You’d Spec

Here’s how clever designers turn a bland box into something special. By Debra Judge Silber LAST LOOK

128 | Bright Ideas

60 | Parlor Games

A fresh approach brings a sense of style to even the most mundane chores.

62 | Dining with the Pros


Take the party to the living room. There’s nothing better than gathering around the table.

64 | The Great Outdoors

8 | Message from the Editors 126 | Resources

A little fresh air can turn a party into something really special.

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b d bd

blanchard DESIGN STUDIO blanchard custom residential design

DESIGN STUDIO custom residential design


Chelsea Blanchard l Registered Architect l 599 East Broadway, Boston, MA 617.861.7733 l

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Holly Alderman Wallpapers and Fabrics

Exemplars of Rare 19th Century Panoramas: 8 Gardens on Silk

A historic Providence home gets a colorful new look (see page 102).

What’s next?

A Moveable Feast Print to Order Custom Art Assets Framed Art Diptychs & Triptychs Holly Alderman 617-733-5493 boutique

Fine digital printing by Wallquest Hamlen Collection LLC. Copyright ©2019 by Devens Hamlen, Boston. All rights reserved.

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New England is consistently recognized as one of the top places to live, work, and start a family. The current robust state of our region’s housing market and the unwavering appeal to put down roots has homeowners, trade professionals, and style and design aficionados alike asking: what’s “next” on the local homefront? With this special issue—with trend sections curated by Courtney Goodrich, in Boston, and Debra Judge Silber, in Connecticut—New England Home is proud to bring you the latest in architecture, interiors, and design resources to guide you in curating your own trend forecast. From cutting-edge high style to contemporary homesteading (chickens, anyone?), let this issue be your passport to 2020.

—The editors of New England Home Photo by Greg Premru

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Forward-thinking design from New England Home Editor-in-Chief Clinton Smith Senior Editor Paula M. Bodah


Creative Director Robert Lesser Departments and Copy Editor Lisa H. Speidel Art Director for Next Laura McFadden Associate and Online Editor Erika Ayn Finch Contributing Editors Stacy Kunstel Karin Lidbeck Brent Courtney Goodrich Debra Judge Silber Contributing Writers Megan Fulweiler, Lynn Felici- Gallant, Marni Elyse Katz, Susan Kleinman, Maria LaPiana, Meaghan O’Neill, Annie Sherman, Debra Spark, Lynda Simonton Contributing Photographers Trent Bell, Robert Benson, Tria Giovan, Sam Gray, John Gruen, Keller + Keller, Michael J. Lee, Richard Mandelkorn, Laura Moss, Michael Partenio, Greg Premru, Nat Rea, Eric Roth, Brian Vanden Brink, Jim Westphalen •

Subscriptions  To subscribe to New England Home ($19.95 for one year) or for customer service, call 800-765-1225 or visit our website,

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Forward-thinking design from New England Home Publisher Kathy Bush-Dutton Executive Sales Manager Jill Korff Sales Managers Roberta Thomas Mancuso Kim Sansoucy Robin Schubel Tess Woods Marketing Designer Jared Ainscough Production Manager Glenn Sadin

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Advertising Information To receive information about advertising in New England Home, please contact us at 800-609-5154, ext. 713, or Editorial and Advertising Office 530 Harrison Ave., Suite 302 Boston, MA 02118 617-938-3991, 800-609-5154 •

New England Home Magazine, LLC Managing Partners Adam Japko, Chris Legg Finance Manager Kiyomi DeBay Circulation Manager Kurt Coey Newsstand Manager Bob Moenster

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hot commodities

Find It Here

Chic shops around New England to unearth the coolest home goods by MARNI ELYSE KATZ AND LYNDA SIMONTON



Home Classics

1  Julie Baine of Pod has been sharing her refined aesthetic since 1998. The store’s current locale is in a leafy neighborhood between Harvard Square and Porter Square. Home delicacies like washed waffle-linen blankets, hand-thrown ceramics, and hand-dipped candles hail from places ranging from the Hudson River Valley to Maine to Tokyo to London. Cambridge, Mass., 2  Nearly twenty years old and still thriving, Nahcotta combines homewares from coveted brands such as Mud Australia, Chilewich, and Studio Arhoj with joysparking stationery and gifts. There’s also an art gallery known for its staging

of Enormous Tiny Art shows of original works measuring no more than ten by ten inches. Portsmouth, N.H., nahcotta. com

Fabric House

3  Tired of traveling to find fabrics, Rachel Ambrose set up Home Remedies in a historic factory building on the waterfront in 2010. Customers can choose from more than 200 fabric lines and watch everything happen in house, in full view, from reupholstery to cushion-making. Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams furniture and the like round out showroom offerings. Portland, Maine,


textile central

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hot commodities vintage meets new

Designer Taste

4  Designer Deirdre Cullen and prop house master Butch McCarthy stock 2MIX Interiors, a highceilinged corner shop in downtown Needham boasting jaunty red awnings, with the ingredients for sophisticated tableaus. The two provide design and staging services, drawing on their inventory of new and vintage furniture, accessories, and artwork. Needham, Mass.,


5  Furniture and objects with California cool intersect with a dose of the exotic at Found Design Studio + Shop, an airy space with white walls, pale wood shelving, and worn oriental carpets. The spare pottery, hand-blocked linens, and minimalist furniture that designer Stacey Clarimundo favors share space with vintage pieces that possess a similarly well-crafted sensibility. Essex, Mass., 6  Kalah Talancy conjures a blend of modern meets global adventure at Casita, which customers liken to an Etsy shop come to life. The clapboard building also houses KT2 Design Group, helmed by the designer and her architect husband, Kevin ten Brinke. In addition to accessories and vintage finds, there’s custom upholstery, furniture, and lighting. Sudbury, Mass.,


swept away 7  Allison Mattison, a well-traveled interior decorator with a background in fashion, channels Jonathan Adler and Tory Burch at Trellis Home. Local lovelies, including Jill Rosenwald’s handpainted pottery and Dunes and Duchess’s lacquered furniture and lights, mingle with foo dogs and oversize tassels in the globalinfused, preppy haven for furnishings and gifts. Hingham, Mass., 8  Recognizing that emerging American makers, many of them women, are producing the most innovative furniture, lighting, and textiles, financier-turned-designer Amanda Pratt opened Salon in a turn-ofthe-century storefront in Beacon


Hill last fall, complete with coffee bar. The edgy, yet elegant roster includes Bec Brittain, Eskayel, and Abigail Edwards, among others rarely (if ever) seen in the city. Boston,


lacquered lovely 8

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9/5/19 2:54 PM Milford & Stamford 203.882.1000

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hot commodities

Artful Ceramics


9  Ceramicists Jim Schatz and Peter Souza live and work in a mill building located in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence, where they established J Schatz Studio & Store in 2015. While the brand is best-known for bright and glossy egg-shaped bird feeders, colorful lamps and tableware also abound, as well as a newer collection with more of an earthy feel. Providence,

hello, birdies!

plants, trinkets, and more!

Plants Galore

10  Capitalizing on the craze for terrariums, followed by plant mania, Lyndsay Maver opened the Plant Shack in the longtime art colony of Rocky Neck, inviting her creative friends to stage pop-ups there with their wares. Maver stocks funky vessels and global trinkets amidst a jungle of succulents, cacti, and such, and dispenses advice for helping them thrive. Gloucester, Mass.,


One-of-a-Kind Gifts 11  Function and craftsmanship coalesce at One Mercantile, where an item’s beauty is as important as its origin story. Berkshire natives Abby Webster and Andy Pruhenski transformed an industrial aerie with arched windows, exposed brick walls, and original beams in 2013 to showcase small-batch objects made by their friends. They have adhered to their mission ever since. Great Barrington, Mass.,

12  Discovering an affinity for making furniture out of repurposed materials following a stint as a carpenter’s apprentice, Liz Karney opened Sticks & Bricks. The showroom and workshop, graced with plate-glass windows, paintedwood floorboards, and exposed brick walls, specializes in Karney-made pieces, along with vintage rugs and lighting and handcrafted accessories from local makers. Northampton, Mass.,

repurposed furniture


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Experience The Best Today’s discerning homeowners, interior designers, architects, and builders select Wolfers, New England’s premier lighting, automated shading, and complete smart home integration company, as their go-to resource. Experience the difference - from our selection of the most sought after lighting brands, such as Currey & Company, to the latest in LED technology. Our expert consultants will help bring your ideas to light.

Schedule a consultation today at or stop by our Waltham showroom. Look for our new showroom at the Boston Design Center. Coming this fall. 1339 Main Street | Waltham, MA 02451 | 781.890.5995

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Vintage finds

13  Created as an antidote to big-box-store sameness, Drew Clark’s Post Modern Home in Darien, Connecticut, mixes midcentury furniture, vintage finds, and modern art. You’ll find plenty of contemporary classics, such as Eero Saarinen’s Womb Chair and Arne Jacobsen coffee tables, but you’ll also find lesser-known pieces worth a second look. postmodern 14  Where else can reclaimed movie-theater seats coexist with vintage Indian Kadai firepits? Fortify yourself with some coffee, strap on your sneakers, and get ready to explore United House Wrecking’s 40,000-square-foot Stam-

glam restoration


sensational salvage

ford, Connecticut, showroom. You’ll easily get lost in this wonderland of salvaged building parts, vintage pieces, and quirky curiosities.

Treasure trove

15  Swoon owner Sue Appleton-Webster isn’t afraid to give tired furnishings a bit of a facelift. Her shop features glamorous vintage pieces often given new life with a coat of lacquer or fresh upholstery. Customized means one-of-a-kind, so there is always something new to explore when you stop by the shop in Westport, Connecticut's Sconset Square.



For the Epicurious


17  If you can’t find what you need at Cooks Nook in Wilton, Connecticut, you simply won’t find it! The store has an appealing warehouse feel and is stocked to the ceiling with every cooking necessity and fun-to-have culinary gadget you can imagine. 18  Home chefs will enjoy lingering in New Preston Kitchen Goods, a lovely shop housed in an 1850 building in the heart of this quaint Connecticut village. Proprietor Marty Rook, who was trained the Culinary Institute of America, has selected outstanding pieces for both cooking and entertaining, so you can shop with confidence.

16  High-profile designers and homeowners alike can be seen browsing the booths at the Fairfield County Antique and Design Center. The warehouse-like building in Norwalk, Connecticut, features more than twenty dealers showcasing a variety of period pieces; occasional pop-ups and sip-and-shops make browsing even more fun. fairfieldantiqueand

Lots to dish about!

A cook's paradise 18

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The Art of Inside

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hot commodities 19  Products at Consider the Cook in New Canaan, Connecticut, are sourced from all over the world. Portuguese pottery sits next to cookware from France and Italian linens, resulting in a delightful mix of wares for cooking and entertaining.


That Finishing Touch

breezy California style

20  Step into the world of beach-chic living celebrated by the Serena & Lily catalog at its flagship shop in Westport, Connecticut,. Here’s where you can sink into the sofa you’ve been eyeing, work with the in-house design team to pull together a room, or just wander the three floors to find new inspiration.



contemporary classic vibe

22  You may innocently pop into Beehive to grab a fun host gift or your go-to scented candle and find yourself leaving with a luxurious console for your dining room. The Fairfield, Connecticut, boutique manages to balance clever gift items with must-have furnishings in its expansive, light, and airy space.

buzz worthy 22

23  Stepping into The Flat is like visiting the apartment of an uber-stylish friend. You know, the one who seems to effortlessly mix design styles for magazine-worthy decor. This gem, located across from the Westport, Connecticut, train station, is the spot to find that just-right piece to elevate a room. 24  It’s hard to know what the greater draw is at Lattice House—the charming proprietor, Christopher Philip, or the delightful mix of new and vintage wares he’s assembled in his Southport, Connecticut, shop. Vintage barware, contemporary artwork, handcrafted one-of-a-kind pieces, and a never-ending parade of antique accessories all mix beautifully under Philip's keen eye.   n

21  Putnam Avenue is firmly established as Greenwich, Connecticut's shopping mecca due in part to Putnam & Mason, the perennially stylish shop owned by Robert Passal and Kim Alessi. Moody furnishings and accessories with an urban edge will give your home the aura of a sexy and sophisticated lounge.

Flat-out fabulous

24 23

Treat your tabletop

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New Lighting Now Available at Torrco!

Since 1917 • • 203.479.6935 Danbury • East Windsor •

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maker culture

Local Flavor

A wave of passionate New England makers is building a case for artisanal products crafted with care and a conscience. by JANICE RANDALL ROHLF

global meets local CHEQUESSETT CHOCOLATE In the Costa Rican jungle seven years ago, Katherine Reed and fellow traveler Josiah Mayo found something amazing. “A man in a very rustic open room was winnowing cacao beans with a blow dryer,” recalls Reed. “We emptied our backpacks and filled them up with beans.” Today, in Truro, Massachusetts, the two produce a line of twenty-two different bars using beans from South America and Africa. “I love the global-meets-local aspect of it,” she says.

small-batch butter PLOUGHGATE CREAMERY “I’ve been making things out of milk since I was fourteen,” says Marisa Mauro, laughing about a time in her life when she sought to leave the niche behind. Nowadays, the onetime cheesemaker has turned to crafting butter. With the help of Vermont Land Trust, Mauro purchased the Bragg Farm in Fayston,

Vermont, and set up Ploughgate Creamery there. (In a fitting coincidence, the Bragg family made hand-churned butter from the milk of their own cows.) Nutty and sweet, a block of Mauro’s smallbatch cultured creaminess has a touch of coarse sea salt that knocks it out of the barn.

one-of-a-kind AYUMI HORIE Perhaps in protest of the everyday dishes her Japanese-American family used for everything from sushi to apple pie, Ayumi Horie of Portland, Maine, makes one-of-akind functional pottery adorned mostly with drawings of animals. Over the years, Horie’s work has transitioned from earthenware to porcelain, but she now uses a slip inlay technique called Mishima, which creates extremely fine, intricate design work with hard, sharp edges.

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maker culture “ There’s a satisfaction you get from making something with your hands that you don’t get any other way.”—John Francis Welch, John Francis Designs UNTOLD BREWING The abundance of craft beers these days makes the mission of Untold Brewing all the more ambitious. “We want to brew beer that someone wants to buy a second time,” says Matt Elder, co-founder with Kyle Hansen of the two-year-old microbrewery in Scituate, Massachusetts.

AO GLASS Rich Arentzen and Tove Ohlander have seen their Burlington, Vermont, art glass studio, AO Glass, evolve into a premiere vendor of glass components in the lighting industry. To keep the creative fire in their bellies, the couple is circling back with their own products, among them etched glass bowls, votives, and tumblers.

hand-carved housewares JOHN FRANCIS DESIGNS John Francis Welch hand carves spoons, candleholders, housewares, and cutting and serving boards out of walnut, cherry, and maple at one of the country’s largest artists communities, Western Avenue Studios and Lofts in Lowell, Massachusetts. “I despise disposable goods of any sort,” says Welch. 26  next  | 2019

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“Plus, there’s a satisfaction you get from making something with your hands that you don’t get any other way.” Welch, an avid cook himself, provides his wares to food photographers, chefs, and stylists. Best of all, he says, is “being able to serve food that I made with tools that I made.”

organic pasta PASTAIO VIA CORTA At Pastaio Via Corta, in Gloucester, Massachusetts, Danielle Glantz is an artist whose medium is pasta—forty to seventy pounds a day made by hand using organic wheat flour and crafted into myriad shapes, including some rarely encountered outside of Italy. "I cook by feel, by heart, and with my soul," says Glantz.  n Photo top left by Wayne Chinnock

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friendly family


Architect Caleb Johnson’s budget-friendly, kitchen-centric design for the renovation of Bruce and Katie Snyder’s 1,600-square-foot house includes playful colors and an oversize island where the whole family can gather. —Caleb Johnson Studio, Portland, Maine,

High Traffic, High Design High-performance, low-maintenance ideas for a family-friendly home.  By DEBRA SPARK

Photograph by Trent Bell

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family friendly

Design Strategies

“ Almost all our projects are either kid-, grandkid-, or dog-friendly without looking like that was our main concern. My concepts are pretty basic: curves when possible, few glass elements, layers of pattern, especially in rugs. Always some leather mixed with velvets and indoor/ outdoor fabrics.” — Ana Donohue, Ana Donohue Interiors, Melrose, Mass., Donohue’s design features “pretty forgiving” pink grasscloth on the wall and materials that help mask stains, including animal prints, velvet, leather, and dark or colorful patterned rugs. For extra protection, Donohue had Fiber-Shield Industries spray non-toxic, stain-resistant product on all the fabrics.

Adaptability “ I have four little kids, so a lot of my energy goes into finding and managing things. Initial thoughts on familyfriendly design come down to storage, organization, and adaptability.” — Katie Flynn, Hisel Flynn Architects, Arlington, Mass.,

a walnut room divider with lots of storage For a home in Lexington’s Peacock Farm—a historic subdivision of modest midcentury modern homes built in the 1950s by architect William Pierce—Hisel Flynn Architects added a custom walnut room divider with built-in storage that houses family clutter and separates the existing living room from a new front entry that was created after a small addition.

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Photography top to bottom; Michael J Lee, Eric Roth

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family friendly


“ Clients often feel they need to choose between form and function, but you can have both! It really comes down to picking the appropriate fabrics and knowing where to use them for maximum wear and durability.” — Rachel Reider, Rachel Reider Interiors, Boston,

form meets function

For a house for a family with three boys, Reider used an indoor/outdoor rug from Restoration Hardware, covered the sofas with indoor/outdoor fabric from Perennials, and selected versatile furniture, including a two-piece coffee table. When Reider last visited, children were jumping from one piece of the coffee table to the other.


A summer porch was renovated to become an all-season space with plenty of seating. The Crypton upholstery fabric resists stains, while an easy-to-clean geometric wool rug hides dirt. In cool weather, gray faux fur throws ratchet up the cozy factor, says Graham.

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“ Paws and claws, markers and snacks, and spilled milk (or wine)…. No need to cry over it with leather. You can have any color you want, distressed or shiny, new or old. If we paint, it’s eggshell or satin, so it can be cleaned. I also love wallpaper with some kind of texture. Thibaut papers that are grasscloth or vinyl never let me down.” — Kacey Graham, Boehm Graham Interior Design, Bedford, N.H.,

Bella-Dura Photography top to bottom; Michael Partenio, Shelly Harrison

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Let the professionals at Moniques help you create your perfect kitchen or bath.

“There’s no place like home.” - Dorothy, The Wizard of Oz

Let the professionals at Moniques help you create your perfect kitchen or bath.


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family friendly

Creating Memories

“ The best part of designing for kids is you have the distinct honor of creating memories. Things don’t have to make sense to kids. You can be silly and do things you wouldn’t normally do because they are digging it.” — Krista Stokes, Krista Stokes Design, Kennebunkport, Maine,

away-fromhome fun Stokes designed kid-friendly spaces for away-from-home fun when she outfitted twelve cabins at Kennebunkport's Sandy Pines Campground. Curtains stand in for interior walls, delineating spaces and offering privacy for sleeping come nighttime.

Fun Factor

" What makes a project work for families is color and pattern. You want to have a palette you can really celebrate. We don’t necessarily try to have things too tightly composed. Static formality does not work for a lot of active families.” — Matt Simitis, Curl Simitis architecture + design, Melrose, Mass.,  n

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Simitis’s open-concept house for a family with three boys includes vibrant colors and multiple patterns. The Eames-like molded-plastic chairs and indoor/outdoor fabrics are relatively indestructible, while the banquette is long enough that pillows and throws can be pushed away from the direct activity of the table. Photography top to bottom; Erin Little, Michael J Lee

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Six ways to invite nature into your landscape  By LYNN FELICI-GALLANT

Don't call it a coop…when she decided to raise chickens, lifestyle blogger Lynzy Coughlin created a "chicken palace" in her Connecticut backyard (see page 40).

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Photograph courtesy Lynzy Coughlin

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We’re known by the fine We’re known by the fine company we keep. company we keep.

We’re known by the fine company we keep.

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home grown Moving from city to suburbs is an opportunity to connect with nature in ways only imagined amid concrete and the sound of car horns. But for those unaccustomed to dirt under their fingernails, a move to the country can be intimidating. Luckily, Connecticut is teeming with experts to help you reconnect with the wild side. Here are their suggestions.

backyard market

dedicated to reestablishing natural corridors along which pollinators can travel through developed neighborhoods. Now twenty-seven communities in Connecticut and New York are registered as “pollinator pathways.” You can add your landscape to the cause by creating your own pesticide-free flower garden. Simply planting a few native flowers “helps to reestablish pathways for pollinators to travel by building pollinator-friendly habitats and food sources for bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinating insects and wildlife,” organizers say.

GROW YOUR OWN As the saying goes, there’s only one thing that money can’t buy—true love and homegrown tomatoes. For those with a black thumb or little time to cultivate, Homefront Farmers has the answer. The firm builds, plants, and maintains fenced-in, raised-bed edible gardens, and provides hands-on education to help busy homeowners navigate their personal grow-your-own journey. “One of the best parts of growing your own food is having crops or varieties that aren’t available in stores,” says co-owner John Carlson. “Striped yellow tomatoes, purple carrots, ground cherries, and more make gardening an adventure.” Redding, Conn.,

"Bee“ part of nature

PROVIDE A PATH Insects are perhaps the most misunderstood of all living things, but they’re critical to our own survival. Making sure we have enough of them is the mission of Pollinator Pathways, a partnership of local conservationists

CREATE A BUZZ Beekeeping is “a fascinating, handson hobby that engages both the mind and body,” say the folks at Back Yard Beekeepers Association. The nonprofit organization offers classes on how to raise bees, and their “Wannabee” program acquaints kids of all ages with the hobby. “There is no better way to introduce children to nature’s wonders than through the gentle honeybee,” instructors say. Weston, Conn.,

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Warm up outdoor evenings circular and flowing with no front or back,” says Cooke. “It is carefully defined and inwardly focused, featuring garden vignettes within a larger, naturalistic landscape.” Songbirds sing backup in the adjacent, moss-lined forest floor by day, while fireflies illuminate the scene at night. Sherman, Conn., springlake

LIGHT A FIRE Nothing brings life to an outdoor gathering like a flickering fire, and Terrain offers a contemporary-styled collection of firepits, fire bowls, and chimineas in iron, steel, copper, and fiber-reinforced concrete. The lineup includes both wood-burning models (with coordinating log storage) and propane-fueled units (with matching covers to disguise the tank). Shooting stars and crickets are on the house. Westport, Conn.,

Putting some "chic" into "chicken"

FIND YOUR ZEN For those who prefer a quieter interaction with nature, Catharine Cooke and Ian Gribble of Spring Lake Garden Design have just the thing: a Zen garden based on the design principles of the Chinese cup garden. “This garden is

RAISE CHICKENS—WITH STYLE If you picture a chicken coop as a shabby shack made of leftover planks, you’re in the wrong state. Here, you might do as Connecticut lifestyle blogger Lynzy Coughlin did and build an Instagram-worthy home for your feathered friends. Coughlin worked with landscape architect Brian Murphy of Torrison Stone & Garden to create “a chicken palace” surrounded by a lush living area of native fieldstone and shade-tolerant plants. “It’s important to use plants that aren’t poisonous to chickens,” says Torrison showroom sales coordinator Kelly Eddinger, “so it helps to have a knowledgeable design team.” Durham, Conn.,  n

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The sky’s the limit Fairfield County, Connecticut, is a hub of contemporary high style, as evidenced by the private headquarters of Stamford-based, designed by South Norwalk’s Bienfield Architecture to simulate the inside of a jet fuselage. See other local businesses ready for take-off on the following pages.

Photo by Robert Benson

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Must-See Places

Connecticut architects and designers share what makes their town the place to be. By DEBRA JUDGE SILBER


Yoga meets life at Saraswati’s Yoga Joint, where classes like “Power Lunch,” “The Deep Chill,” and “Follow the Yogi” build physical strength and inner peace. Early risers can watch the neighborhood wake up during summertime yoga on the roof. As McNamara notes, “Yoga is a great way to set the tone for the day.”


Street food, street art

Based in an industrial building redesigned by SoNo architect Bruce Beinfield, SoNo 1420’s tasting room is as memorable as its hemp-infused spirits. “I’ve worked with Bruce quite a bit and admire what he’s done with SoNo 1420,” Calla says. The name references the 14-20 vote by which Connecticut rejected Prohibition in 1919.


You might point friends to El Segundo for its global street food and joyously graffitied corrugated walls, but McNamara adds one more plus: Its back patio is dog-friendly. “Yes,” she says. “I take my dog everywhere.” If you’re a human, she suggests the summer rolls, “refreshing on hot days.”


Calla McNamara, Calla Studio Designer Calla McNamara need only open the door of her Water Street studio to experience the thrum of Norwalk’s historic (and hip) SoNo district. Abounding in restaurants, shops, and vivacious nightlife, there’s not much this urban oasis doesn’t offer for our New England Home 2018 5 Under 40 award winner. “We enjoy being in the thick of it,” McNamara says. “SoNo has a young, fresh vibe. There’s always a new spot to check out.”


A short walk from McNamara’s studio, Galerie Sono offers 6,000 square feet of mainly one-ofa-kind works by contemporary artists. “We’re always looking for fresh takes on things, and we’ve incorporated a few of the artists they carry into our work recently,” says gallery owner Claude Villani.

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The “wow” never goes away. If you’d love a clean, modern look for your bathrooms, kitchen and beyond, visit a Bender showroom near you. Our showroom consultants will turn your vision into a work of art. No wonder the great craftsmen and women of Connecticut come to Bender to create their next masterpieces. It’s the “wow” that stays with you. Kitchen ideas & designs now available in our Hartford, Waterbury and New Haven locations. | 203.498.5182 decorative plumbing | kitchen & bath cabinetry | lighting | tile & stone Bender showrooms are open to all. If you would like to spend time with one of our sales associates, please call to make an appointment. © Bender Plumbing Supplies, Inc., 2019. All rights reserved.

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Burin remembers how awestruck she was as a child when she first glimpsed the white spire of the Greenfield Hill Congregational Church. The 1855 landmark is the home of the annual Dogwood Festival. “If you want to see the beauty of a quintessential New England town green, this is one place not to be missed,” she says.

Stage right

Modernist moment


“We are lucky to have this venue in town,” Burin says of Fairfield Theatre Company, the downtown nonprofit music and arts space where she and Paulo are supporting members (they favor the live music and comedy), and where Isabella and Sophia hone their stage presence at Maureen Hamill’s Summer Cabaret Workshop.


“New York is not the only spot to see inspirational architecture,” says Vicente. He especially admires the Jesuit Community Center at Fairfield University, and how the team at New Haven’s Gray Organschi Architecture integrated the contemporary structure into the rolling landscape.;


Paulo Vicente and Martina Burin, Vicente Burin Architects For Paulo Vicente and Martina Burin, Fairfield is more than the location of the architectural firm that Burin founded in 1999 and Vicente heads today—it’s also the place they and daughters Isabella and Sophia call home. With Vicente designing homes and Burin selling them (she’s now with Al Filippone Associates), the two know a prime location when they see it.

Artisanal bakery ISABELLA ET VINCENT

“Growing up having delicious bread available from the local Portuguese bakeries, Paulo is extremely particular about his bread!” says Burin. On this side of the pond, Isabelle et Vincent, located on the Post Road, is where he gets his fix for highquality loaves.

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“I bought my first David Yurman ring at Mitchells when I was just out of college,” Parent says referring to the classic clothier that has been dressing Fairfield County to the nines since 1958. “It’s a timeless piece I still wear all the time.” She also appreciates the store’s support for local charities such as Near & Far Aid and Pink Aid. mitchells.


Find yourself here

This nationally recognized nonprofit professional theater produces amazing work, Parent says. “I recently attended Man of La Mancha there with my father and it was terrific!” Westport Country Playhouse never disappoints.”


Parent grew up on the Aspetuck River next door to actor Paul Newman, who along with neighbor Lillian Poses donated this woodland managed by the Aspetuck Land Trust. The preserve holds sentimental value for Parent, who walked it as a child and now ambles its paths with her French bulldog, Ellie. “It’s a beautiful place and certainly worth the visit,” she says. “Ellie gives her stamp of approval, and so do I!”


Alexis Parent, Alexis Parent Interiors Alexis Parent grew up in Westport, where she discovered an interest in interior design at a young age. She worked for Westport Interiors while attending Staples High School, always knowing she would start her own firm. Now, after twenty years in the industry, she says she still finds tremendous inspiration in this coastal town and remains close to her roots.


The up-sizing of Eleish Van Breems and the return of Lillian August are big wins for Westport. “I grew up visiting Lillian August, and I’m so excited to have them back,” says the designer. “And Eleish Van Breems carries incredible Swedish antiques.”,

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A taste of home EDEN FARMS NURSERY

“I really love a good garden tomato,” Lyon admits, and he nabs the best ones at the farm stand at Eden Farms Nursery. The fresh vegetables, fruits, and jams bring back memories of rural North Carolina. “It really has a home vibe for me,” he says.


Living in Harbor Point, Lyon is minutes from the Stamford Waterside Design District, with showrooms that include Holly Hunt Off the Floor, Kravet, Stark, and others. It’s like having a little slice of the D&D building just around the corner, he says.

The Collective INSET: The Accessory Store


As expected, The Accessory Store stocks fabulous small items, but Lyon likes to use the shop for custom lighting—most recently, he gave new life to a client’s retro pendants. To spark inspiration, he recommends strolling the stalls at The Collective. “I love to go just to see how people are mixing things,” he says.,


William Lyon, William Lyon Designs North Carolina native William Lyon settled in Stamford’s Harbor Point neighborhood six years ago when he arrived to work at the new Lillian August Atelier in Greenwich. Since then, his slice of the city “has become even more of a younger hub,” he says. Expanding options for entertainment and shopping—from antiques to designer showrooms— make it easier than ever to resist hopping that train to New York.


“This is the place to grab a sweet treat!” says Lyon, who finds the Patisserie Salzburg’s location across the street from the boardwalk a perfect perch for yacht spotting. And, he adds, there’s nothing like a box of their goodies to brighten up a client meeting or say thank you for a special favor.

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Maritime meditation GREAT CAPTAIN ISLAND

Workweek got you frazzled? Hop the boat to Great Captain Island. “I totally decompress on the ferry ride,” says Gulotta. “The water and beach have always helped me relax, recharge, and meditate.”

Unique boutique PUTNAM & MASON

“Everything in this shop is terribly chic, from their vintage pieces (my favorite) to their new furnishings and home accessories,” Gulotta says of Putnam & Mason, the East Putnam Avenue atelier of designers Kim Alessi and Robert Passal. THE AVENUE


As one of the last working farms in Greenwich, Augustin’s Farm is Gulotta’s pick for fresh fruits and veggies. “They have beehives, too, so the honey is really fresh,” he says. 1332 King St., 203-532-9611

You can’t leave Greenwich without a visit to Greenwich Avenue: “Great high-end shopping, busy restaurants and sidewalk cafes, coffee shops, and local bars,” Gulotta notes. And don’t forget retail therapy: the designer’s go-tos include Vince, Rag and Bone, Rodd & Gun, and of course Hermès. When you’ve worked up an appetite, head to the fun French café Méli-Mélo, where “they make the best gluten-free crèpes and watermelon gazpacho in town.”, rag-bone. com,,,


Philip A. Gulotta Jr. A modernist at heart, Philip Gulotta considers himself fortunate to have found a contemporary house in tradition-loving Greenwich that “inspires me every day.” But the town’s classic style has had its influence, too, enticing him to apply his signature modern twist to traditional decor by mixing vintage with midcentury-modern styles.


The transformation of the 1928 art deco-style Connecticut Light and Power building into the modern offices of Granoff Architects is an inspiring lesson in putting a fabulous old building to a new purpose. “I think repurposing architecture is important,” Gulotta says.”  n

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Space is the breath of art. -Frank Lloyd Wright

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Cheers to You

There’s no doubt about it: it isn’t entertaining if you don’t offer a drink. A simple way to make that daytime refresher or happy-hour cocktail extra special, say the design pros, is to pay attention to the vessel you serve it in. Whether your style runs to a chunky vintage glass discovered on an antiques hunt, a quirky cup tucked in the back of your cabinet, or an heirloom piece passed down through generations, your party’s fun factor stems from that first meeting of liquid and lips.


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living the life

Designer Tips

Paula Accioly and Jenn O'Brien's expert kitchen ideas

hide appliances

soapstone can take the heat

Kitchen Confidence Everyone gathers in the kitchen, so why not design it to be party central?


ou won’t need to shoo guests from the kitchen if it’s built to let them keep you company while you prep. Paula Accioly, showroom manager at Boston’s Jewett Farms + Co., and interior designer Jenn O’Brien offer advice for creating a partyfriendly cooking space. “I always try to lay out a kitchen to fit an island,” says Accioly. It is that extra counter space that everyone needs.” At the end of the island that’s closest to the dining room or family room, install some refrigerator draw-

ers. “That way, guests don’t have to go to the center of the kitchen to grab a drink.” Think about soapstone countertops for the island, she recommends. “It’s easy maintenance, impervious to heat and cold, nonporous, and antibacterial.” Keeping clutter to a minimum is important, says Jenn O’Brien. “In an open living space, I like hiding appliances, so the kitchen feels more like an extension of the home. Having a separate pantry can make all the difference in the world. “I cook, and we love to entertain, so a

a separate pantry makes a difference double oven was necessary,” O’Brien says. “I placed it in the pantry, so I get the functionality I need without having to see such a large appliance from the living or dining room. —Jewett Farms + Co., Boston,; Jenn O’Brien Interiors, Topsfield, Mass.,

“ In order for it to be a party, there must be music at all times. Almost every gathering at our house ends in a dance party!”—Jenn O'Brien 56  next  | 2019

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living the life Sunrise Mountain

By Will Piquette of Alcove 1 ounce Laird’s Apple Brandy 1½ ounces apple cider ¾ ounce lemon juice ½ ounce chai tea syrup 1 dash angostura bitters splash of cava Combine all ingredients except cava with ice in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a flute and top with cava.

Raise the Bar

Every party needs libations. Making your bar area extra creative only adds to the fun.


nterior designer Dane Austin and Sarah Ohlson Saunders, Room & Board’s visual associate, share tips to make your bar area shine. Plus, a tasty signature cocktail recipe from principal bartender at Boston's Alcove, Will Piquette, won’t disappoint. “Creating a designated space in your home for a bar adds visual interest and ensures you’ll be ready to welcome guests at a moment’s notice,” says Ohlson Saunders. “A bar cart easily tucks into a corner of your living room; add a lamp and it can double as an end table next to a sofa.” A buffet cabinet in the dining room can be a great foundation for a bar. “Hang floating shelves above

to keep the space open and inviting and hold bottles and glassware. Then, finish the space with a tray to pull together smaller barware items.” A sleek custom bar Dane Austin recently designed with Poggenpohl is tucked into a client’s living room. “It’s an ideal place to situate the bar so your guests needn't travel far for a refill.” He glammed it up with gray satin lacquer cabinets, a countertop and backsplash of black natural stone embedded with fossils, a stainless-steel wine refrigerator, and a bi-fold upper cabinet that lifts with one touch for easy access to glassware. For a special mixed drink, try Piquette’s Sunrise Mountain

one bar cart, many uses (above), and don’t be afraid to “swap out your standard glasses for some mix-and-match quirky glassware from a local thrift shop or antique market,” Austin advises. “It’s fun, economical, environmentally friendly, and eliminates the need for wine IDs or nametags.” —Dane Austin Design, Boston,; Room & Board, Boston,; Alcove, Boston,

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Interior design trade insiders know that DesignSourceCT is THE PLACE to find it all - exclusive access to home furnishings from hundreds of premium sources in one beautiful showroom. If you desire a custom look, come discover our bespoke approach to design and let us help you create a unique look. Call today to learn about our extensive collection of designer-curated home furnishings. Better yet, come and look for yourself. You’ll be be inspired by all you see and transformed by what true quality feels like. 860.951.3145 1429 Park Street, Suite 100, Hartford, CT

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living the life

Designer Tips Mally Skok’s choices for effortless entertaining

drinks station with stemless wine glasses

Parlor Games

a big ottoman in the center

Take the party to the living room.


or interior designer Mally Skok, having lots of seating options is crucial to entertaining in the living room. Place extra chairs around the periphery and a big ottoman at the center. “Chairs look elegant framing a side table or on either side of an old chest and are so handy to pull into the room to create little conversation spaces,” she says. “I like to buy old chairs when I see them in vintage stores and when they are a little odd and at an excel-

lent price. Then I cover the seats in my current favorite fabric.” The ottoman can be a perch for conversation, she says, or “a place to set a couple of big books topped with a bucket of champagne nestled in crushed ice, or it can be used as a place for a big wooden tray filled with cheeses, dried figs and apricots, and little bowls of olives and nuts.” For heartier food, “I use large linen napkins to avoid spills, and stemless wine glasses that are less likely to tip over onto your

rug.” Skok’s favorite fork-friendly, easyto-eat-on-your-lap meal is “old-school lasagna with a bit of salad on the side and a hunk of crunchy bread to soak up the juices.” Then, since most people don’t like to feel waited on by their hosts, she stocks a drinks station with all the necessities. “Nothing looks more festive than chilled Prosecco, generous slices of orange, San Pellegrino, Aperol, and chunky glasses.” —Mally Skok Design, Lincoln, Mass.,

“ Keep the lights low with candles scattered around the room. It creates a cozy atmosphere.”—Mally Skok 60  next  | 2019

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Matthew R. Dougherty A R C H I TE C T, L L C NEW CANAAN, CT 06840 203.296.4669 MRDARCHITECT.COM

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Designer Tips KT2 Design Group's ideas for dining areas

create zones with area rugs

Dining with the Pros There’s nothing better than gathering around the table.


hether it’s hosting dinner parties or setting up a buffet, husband-andwife teams like interior designer Kalah Talancy and architect Kevin ten Brinke of KT2 Design Group and designers Kendra Amin-Dufton and Brad Dufton of Color Theory Boston know how to feed a crowd. “An open-concept living/dining space invites more effortless gatherings,” says Talancy. Make the open plan work by creating zones with area rugs or using

pieces of furniture as room dividers. If square footage is tight, use the dining spaces to serve multiple purposes throughout the day. Amin-Dutton and her husband suggest using durable materials so no one has to worry about the inevitable spill or drip. They recommend quartz composite for the tabletop, and indoor/outdoor fabrics for dining chairs. For holidays or large parties, feel free to get creative. Talancy and her husband swap rooms for Thanksgiving—their living room can fit the twenty people they

swap rooms for space host around one table, but since it’s also the best room for pre-dinner cocktails, they change furniture mid-party. “As the last of the hors d’oeuvres are served,” she says, sofas and lounge chairs are exchanged for the dining table and extra folding tables. “I keep everything in the wings, so we can quickly set the table with china, silver, and centerpieces. It is amazing how fast everything falls into place.” —KT2 Design Group, Sudbury, Mass.,; Color Theory Boston,

“ We always make sure one element is well executed. No time to cook? Then set a dynamite table to go with your takeout.”—KT2 Design Group 62  next  | 2019

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C Studio Design LLC | Tiffany Costanzo | Greenwich CT | 203-862-4059 | 203-822-4043 |

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living the life

Designer Tips Samantha Best’s ideas for fabulous outdoor spaces

personalize it with sculpture

The Great Outdoors

create shade

A little bit of fresh air can turn a party into something really special.


party with good weather is a great one, and Magma Design Group’s senior designer Samantha Best has ideas for making your outdoor space prime for entertaining alfresco. Best knows landscapes, and her design checklist can help you get your outdoor space ready for entertaining. First, is it personal? “Incorporate items that reflect who you are,” she says. “This can be pottery, statuary, salvaged materials, or a homemade garden accent.” Her favorite elements to implement are water features. “They provide soothing

sound and mesmerizing movement,” she says, and they “invite wildlife—from insects to birds to frogs—into our yards.” Next, do you have enough seating? “Retaining walls can act as a place to sit,” she says, “or wide steps can be used for overflow seating.” Do you have shade? “Nothing kills the vibe of wanting to be outside more than a full-sun patio on a hot day. Pergolas, shade cloths, umbrellas with moveable bases, and trees are all great options for creating shade.” Above all, Best says, remember that simply being outside is special for you and your guests. “Breezes that bring

water is soothing and mesmerizing a garden to life, sweet smells after a summer rain shower, great conversations around a firepit under the stars— these are experiences that create lasting memories.” —Magma Design Group, Rehoboth, Mass., magmadesigngroup. com  n

“ Salvaged stone—anything from pavers to hammock posts to steps— adds character and history to any project.”—Samantha Best 64  next  | 2019

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Save the Date! For the design event of the season. Thursday, November 7, 2019 For more info visit

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totally tech

Beauty and Brains

The best recommendations for lighting, speakers, smart home gadgets, and even outdoor grilling from the area’s leading experts. BY ERIKA AYN FINCH

let there be Netflix

all aglow FOLLOW THE LIGHT Finding yourself tired and reaching for more coffee at 2 p.m.? You might just have to adjust the lights. With new products from USAI Lighting uniquely linked to Savant’s control technology and app, the brightness, color, and intensity of your home lighting can be set to follow your natural circadian rhythms—bright during that mid-afternoon lull, for example, and soft and relaxed in the evening as you start to wind down. Lights include recess, pendant, and mounted styles, and the easy-to-use app allows precise management of timers, dimming, and color adjustment. So, skip the coffee. Systems Design & Integration, Needham, Mass. | CATCH THE RHYTHM If you are looking for concert-level sound outdoors from an unobtrusive source, Coastal Source’s 3-Way Ellipse Bollards are the way to go. The sleek speakers are built to withstand harsh weather conditions and are (mostly) buried underground. They also work with Coastal Source’s Plug+Play system, or they can be integrated into your home’s existing system. DC Home Systems, Portsmouth, N.H. |

MOVE OVER, ART Moving Art Lifts by Leon provide an elegant way to hide your TV. The silent lifts accommodate original art (use your own or browse Leon’s gallery), mirrors, and even sculptures to conceal TVs up to seventy inches wide. You choose whether you want the art to move up and down, left to right, or split in the center. The best part? The tracks are hidden behind the artwork: No unattractive metal rails. Systems Design & Integration

information hub INTO THE LOOKING GLASS Imagine walking into your bathroom in the morning and asking your reflection about the weather, the day’s news, or your schedule. The Smart Mirror from Séura turns your bathroom vanity into a smart home hub. You can send voice-totext messages, view your security cameras, open the garage, and adjust your lighting. Systems Design & Integration

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totally tech

picture perfect views

PUSH-BUTTON BUG BARRIER Mosquitoes ruining your porch party? Phantom Screens makes retractable motorized door and window screens you can control through a home automation system, phone app, or remote. The screen frames can be custom matched to your home’s trim color, or you can choose from one of the brand’s signature colors or wood-grain finishes. The new models are seamless up to eleven feet tall and feature silent, high-speed motors. Jon Duranko, Darien and Fairfield, Conn. | PRECISION GRILLING WiFIRE® technology on Traeger Grills’ new Pro Series enables you to control your grill’s temperature remotely through an app that will even remind you to baste your meat or change the temperature. The technology is a personal favorite of Tony Aitoro, president and CEO of Aitoro Appliance. "I can put a pork shoulder on the grill in the morning, go to work, and adjust the temperature throughout the day,” he says. Aitoro Appliance, Norwalk, Conn. |

control your grill remotely

SUDDENLY, SHADES Motorized shades from Crestron can be installed inside a wall so that when the shade is retracted, all you see are your picture-perfect views. (And when they’re down, precision color-matching ensures they’ll blend in perfectly with their surroundings.) The shades’ durable brushless motors are controlled via remote, smart device, or through Crestron’s advanced home control system. Smart Home and Theater Systems, Milford, Conn. | connecticuthome

recipes at your fingertips MICRO-MANAGEMENT GE’s Kitchen Hub is a twenty-seven-inch touchscreen and ventilation system designed to fit above your oven range, where it takes the place of a vent hood or microwave. From the hub, you can search for and store recipes, listen to music, vent your cooktop, manage your smart home, video chat with friends, or take photos of your culinary masterpieces while they’re still simmering and upload them directly to social media. Aitoro Appliance

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Specializing in Wildlife Exclusion and Pet Containment Fence Systems Our unique fences protect your property, trees, and plantings from damage caused by deer and other intrusive wildlife. It keeps both dogs and cats contained and wildlife out. Our fences have low visibility and are designed to blend into the landscape with minimal disruption to your property. We custom-design and install the ideal fence to meet your needs and requirements.

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totally tech

talk privately

JMKA | architects

YOUR INSIDE VOICE If you’re wary of sharing secrets with Alexa and find Siri too slow on the uptake, consider a more sophisticated brand of voice-activated personal assistant, suggests Jennifer LaBollita of InnerSpace Electronics. uses natural language processing to adapt quickly to spoken commands and controls an array of home devices, from entertainment systems and lights to security cameras and thermostats. Privacy-conscious homeowners will appreciate that the company is focused solely on smart-home integration. “They’re not interested in collecting your data,” LaBollita says. InnerSpace Electronics, Port Chester, N.Y. |


Westport/Greenwich • 203.222.1222


THESE WALLS DO TALK Audiophiles looking for superior sound without obtrusive equipment will appreciate Live-Wall Invisible Speakers. The radiating speakers are built into the sheetrock of your wall or ceiling, covered with a special compound, and painted as you would paint any other wall or ceiling. “They are perfect for a formal dining room or living room,” says Chris Barre, system design expert with Smart Home and Theater Systems. The speakers have a sound field wide enough to satisfy even the most discerning music lover. Smart Home and Theater Systems  n 70  next  | 2019

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781-893-8610 | | Massachusetts | Connecticut | Florida

Internationally Experienced Design

259-A Sound Beach Avenue | Old Greenwich, CT 203-890-9292 |

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Not What You’d Spec

Here’s how clever designers turn a bland box into something special. by DEBRA JUDGE SILBER

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from boring to bold


Home sellers like to present a blank canvas, but once the keys change hands, the paint cans come out. “Adding color to a room allows you to inject personal touches, depth, and mood,” says Greenwich, Connecticut, designer Andrea Sinkin, who uses color—especially in high-gloss—to embolden woodwork as well as walls. “It takes a beating and is easy to clean,” she says. In a recent project, she painted dark wood bookshelves bright blue and added blazing orange chairs to turn a former home office into a family-friendly library.

close in on them. “When you come from the city, your perspective on space is very skewed,” says Melissa Lindsay of New Canaan, Connecticut, based Pimlico. “It doesn’t take long for that perspective to shift.” Suddenly your delight at having a mudroom—any mudroom—is replaced with the realization that the space isn’t up to the task. Reconfiguring, and sometimes enlarging, such spaces to accommodate a new family’s needs is often Lindsay’s first job. While she’s at it, she likes to promote domestic tranquility (i.e. organization) with an oversized framed board for notes, celebratory photos, and other postings.



Homeowners moving from urban digs, where space is at a premium, often don’t realize that the seemingly cavernous spaces in suburban homes will eventually

“The easiest way to personalize a space and add a lot of soul is art,” says Greenwich, Connecticut, designer Lauren Cuneo. It’s also a great way to

art as inspiration get started—as some recent clients did. Days before hiring her, they purchased a painting by Atlanta artist Sally King Benedict (above) for their empty living room. Cuneo used it as inspiration, splashing its colors around the room. But don’t buy just any art, Cuneo cautions. “Buy what you love even if it means you have empty walls for a while.”

SOURCES Laura Cuneo, LC Home Interiors, Greenwich, Conn.,; Melissa Lindsay, Pimlico Interiors, New Canaan, Conn.,; Andrea Sinkin, Andrea Sinkin Design, Greenwich, Conn.,

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Portrait courtesy Sally King Benedict

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DIANE BURCZ | interiors

Shelly Harrison Photography

kitchens . baths . interior architecture

Boston and Provincetown, MA | | 510.735.7589

Weston, CT 06883 • (203) 227-7333 •

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transformations go bold on drapes




“Adding shiplap to a wall, a custom barn door to enclose a room (above), or applying a millwork design to a bare wall makes it yours,” says Sarah Weiland, owner of Tusk in Westport, Connecticut. Rowayton, Connecticut’s Elena Phillips sometimes incorporates bookcases (reclaimed wood adds a sense of time, she says) and pumps up moldings, which are often undersized or lacking in spec homes. “I love crown because it helps define the space,” says Phillips, who likes to paint trim a contrasting color for additional impact.


One way to add personality to a space without big alterations is bold window treatments, says Farmington, Connecticut-based Jeanne Barber. Their impermanence can be a plus: in one recent project, “The husband wanted to make sure we didn’t do anything too wild or personalized that would affect the value if they were to sell,” Barber says. “So, we kept the walls and ceiling neutral and went bold on the drapes. It’s something they can take with them if they move.” Barber used acrylic window hardware to focus attention on the fabric, not the hardware.

6 THINK DIFFERENTLY INSIDE THE BOX When clients told Fiona Leonard they wanted their house “to feel different from everyone else’s,” the Darien, Connecticut, designer immediately “started thinking of unique furniture layouts to make the home feel unexpected.” Channeling the couple’s fondness for intimate gatherings, she eschewed the traditional sofa, making a cluster of comfy chairs around an ottoman the focal point of the living room.

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Builders aim to light a space, not make a design statement, notes Weiland. She suggests swapping out fixtures in main living spaces first to set the tone for the house. “A great light can transform a space that feels like nothing special to something that reflects you,” she says. In the kitchen, Weiland recommends eye-catching island pendants, and in the dining room, splurging on a statement chandelier. After swapping out run-of-the-mill (read: bland) fixtures, Phillips turns her attention to the ubiquitous can light (“Swiss cheese on the ceiling,” she calls them) by substituting pendants wherever practical.  n

pendant perfection

SOURCES Jeanne Barber, Camden Grace, Farmington, Conn.,; Fiona Leonard, Fiona Leonard Interiors, Darien, Conn.,; Elena Phillips, Elena Phillips Interiors, Rowayton, Conn.,; Sarah Weiland, Tusk Home + Design, Westport, Conn.,

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Kitchen photo courtesy Hubbardton Forge

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Imagine a home thata works Imagine home for you. that works for you.


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FALL 2019

Cozy Chic

Charcoal gray is restful, rather than somber, when joined by bright white, and—just for fun—a dash of red. See “Stay a While” on page 78.

Photo by Greg Premru

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Stay a While

Why move, when a little reworking means falling in love with the family home all over again? Text by MARIA L A PIANA | Photos by GREG PREMRU | Styling by KARIN LIDBECK BRENT

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The dining area next to the kitchen reflects the home’s new modern vibe—from the live-edge table designed by Rachel Reid to the industrial-feeling modular fixture that hangs over it. FACING PAGE: The home’s iconic colonial facade stayed the same, while virtually everything was refreshed on the inside.

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CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: The living room is a vision in silvery grays, with judiciously placed splashes of marigold inspired by one of the owners’ prized paintings. A stunning John Pomp bronze credenza and hand-blown pendants star in the entryway. The owners love cooking together in their spacious—and gorgeous—new kitchen.

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t sounds like an episode of Love It or List It.

The couple had made their home in a classic colonial in suburban Boston for close to a decade. Their sons were getting older, the house was feeling cramped, and their tastes had evolved, so “it was time for a big upgrade,” says the wife. They started looking at other homes with better floor plans, more space, more natural light. It was tempting to move up, move on—and yet, they decided to stay. They laid out a wish list for architect Anne Draudt and designer Rachel Reid. At the top: the main-level common rooms (the kitchen, living room, and office) had to be expanded, be better connected, and open to the outdoors. “It’s not like the home was a warren of rooms,” says Reid, “but it was choppy. The ceilings were low, the kitchen was tiny, and it was dark.” It would be nice, too, if the renovation would allow them to rethink the upstairs space: the master bath, dressing room, and closet. Also high on the list: a more modern aesthetic. In the end, the remodeling added just 620 square feet, including a rebuilt sunroom on the first floor and the second-floor master bath, but the project also included a substantial renovation of most of the spaces along the back of the house. The result was transformative. The tiny, cramped kitchen (reworked with help from kitchen designer Meaghan Moynahan of Venegas and Company) became an open, modern marvel, the dated sunroom became a favorite family destination, and the master bath became a sanctuary. The renovation

PROJECT TEAM Architecture: Anne Cook Draudt, Draudt Design Architects Interior design: Rachel Reid, Reid Design Builder: Asher Nichols, Asher Nichols & Craftsmen Landscape design: Matthew Cunningham, Matthew Cunningham Landscape Design

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completely opened up the back of the house and quite literally changed the way the family uses the home. The homeowners love the spacious new kitchen, which now includes a casual dining area, because it allows them to cook together. Reid loves the way it looks, especially “the herringbone marble floor, the live-edge table, the light fixture—and the new relationship of the space to the outdoors.” While furnishing a modern home with a modern aesthetic is easy, it’s trickier in a small colonial. “Rachel knew how to adjust for scale, and she made smart decisions,” the wife says. Overall, the mood is modern and refined without being too precious, a feeling Reid evoked with a palette of muted silver, gray, and blue with dashes color.

ABOVE: A cozy room serves multiple purposes as office, library, and TV watching spot. RIGHT: The new sunroom strikes a midcentury-modern note. FACING PAGE: A son’s handsome bedroom takes the home’s gray theme in a darker direction.

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The homeowners have an extensive and well-curated collection of modern and post-modern art that had to be a centerpiece of the project, says Reid. “We incorporated it throughout, moving some pieces around.” A series of small works by Sol LeWitt found a home in the kitchen, while an intensely colorful painting remained in the living room, where it inspired the color choices. Reid repurposed a few pieces of furniture. “Although they were a bit traditional, we chose to keep the table, chairs, and light fixture in the dining room,” she explains. “We modernized and elevated the room by refinishing the table in a rich black lacquer and covering the walls in a shimmery grasscloth wallpaper.” A French Bergère chair stayed because of its sculptural appeal and for how nicely it

plays with eclectic new pieces, including a transitional Chesterfield tufted sofa and two wood-frame midcentury armchairs. Lighting provided opportunities for creativity and statement making. “We spent a long time on this process, wanting the lighting to be sculptural, functional pieces of art,” Reid says. Her favorite is the stunning Pick Up Stick Chandelier from Billy Cotton in the sunroom. Are the homeowners glad they decided to give their home some love rather than put it on the market? Absolutely. “We raised our boys here,” says the wife. “This will always be our family home.”  n

ABOVE: With a tufted headboard, plush bedding, and shades of cream and gold, the master bedroom is as luxurious as it is comfortable. FACING PAGE: A dressing room is a bright and practical addition to the enlarged master suite.

EDITOR’S NOTE For details about this home, see Resources.

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verall, the mood is modern and refined without being too precious.

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Nesting Instinct

Equal parts design savvy and love give a designer’s own home its charm.


Designer Leslie Dunn knew she could turn the forlorn house on Bell Island, a small neighborhood on the beachfront in Rowayton, Connecticut, into a pitch-perfect nest. Never mind the dark, nearly windowless rooms that underscored the home’s disregard for its fabulous setting. Her inner voice insisted she’d struck gold. And time has proven her right. Dunn, a California transplant, had long yearned to be near water. With the children grown, she and her husband could finally make the move. “Bell Island is magical,” she says. “We feel very blessed.”

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The revamped front porch sports a new teak floor and tiered teak railings. “This is a deliciously cool spot for enjoying evening cocktails,� interior designer Leslie Dunn says.

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A custom white pigment dye with an oil finish brightens the kitchen’s oak floor. FACING PAGE: The dining room illustrates Dunn’s passion for stripes; note the ceiling, rug, curtains, and even the mirror’s subtle detailing.

Blessed, too, is the three-story dwelling that began its life in the 1930s and along the way endured a fire. Working closely with architect Leonard Brandes, Dunn, an interior designer with a Norwalk, Connecticut-based practice, gutted the structure from top to bottom. The goal: to create an open floorplan, let in the light, and emphasize the long-overlooked views of Long Island Sound and the picturesque tidal estuary that lies just beyond the back patio. While the basic shape of the house remained intact, Brandes says, the layout is a different story. First-floor nonstructural walls came tumbling down and stabilizing steel beams went up, resulting in a smooth transition between the kitchen and the living and dining

rooms. Character-lending antique beams salvaged from a Pennsylvania tobacco barn conceal the utilitarian steel and define the spaces, while a legion of new windows ushers in glorious light. Gone is yesterday’s cramped galley. In its stead, Dunn, with the advice of designer Karen Berkemeyer, devised a stellar kitchen with a grand marbletopped island and black-painted custom cabinets. “Leslie and I have frequently collaborated,” Berkemeyer says. “I come from a technical background and she’s creative.” Creativity is certainly at play in the adjacent living room, where friends and family sip pre-dinner cocktails while conversing with the cook. Dunn imported an Egyptian limestone surround to elevate

The Goal

Create an open floorplan, let in the light, and emphasize the long-overlooked views of Long Island Sound.

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PROJECT TEAM Architecture: Leonard Brandes Architect Interior design: Leslie Dunn, Dunn Designs Kitchen design: Karen Berkemeyer Home Builder: S&W Building Remodeling

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The Mix

Marrying high-dollar elements with less costly finds makes the house “flip-flop casual and dog-ready.”

Twin bookcases add symmetry to the living room; their modern silhouettes also make a fun contrast to the rugged beams above.

the gas fireplace. A comfortable sofa and club chairs induce relaxation along with a coffee table that’s not averse to having someone—or everyone—put their feet up. In fact, Dunn designed the place with good times in mind. “Flip-flop casual and dog-ready” is how she describes today’s transformation. Not afraid to mix highdollar elements with less costly finds, she’s infused the house with twenty-firstcentury freshness. Peek, for example, into the tiny powder room. Dunn has cleverly parked a vanity she nabbed on sale and crowned with a glass bowl against a seductive blue Phillip Jeffries wallpaper. A blue wave washes across the dining room’s ceiling, too. “I didn’t want to go the all-beach theme, but I wanted to respect where we were,” Dunn says. Splashes of blue—in the linen draperies, club chairs, and rug—reference water without going overboard. Dunn gives the second-floor bedrooms a chic—not cutesy—nautical spin, as well. A guest who has never poked a toe into the sea would still love the cozy berth she labels “the boat room.” Clad in a deep-as-the-ocean azure wallpaper, the room sports a portrait of eighteenthcentury Captain Nicholas Biddle and a high-gloss beadboard ceiling that conjures thoughts of opulent yachts. The guestroom nearby takes a feminine approach with a softer palette. With striped walls hand-painted by Heidi Holzer Design and a framed nautilus above the bed, Dunn sets a mood as 2019 | next   91

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The antique portrait lending character to a cozy guest room belonged to Dunn’s mother. FACING PAGE: “It’s no bigger than a phone booth,” says Dunn, of her tiny, but polished, powder room.

restful as a day at the beach. The master suite was also enlarged and awarded a bounty of windows along with a generous bath. Collaborating with Berkemeyer, Dunn made sure the latter had plenty of storage (a must, she insists) and light for grooming. If they’re not on the refurbished front porch, the airy third floor, with its multiple seating areas, is where everybody congregates. Dunn and Brandes raised the roof on yesterday’s attic and added a balcony

for views of the water and, on clear days, Manhattan’s skyline. “So much love went into this house,” says Dunn. “Because it was my home, I was willing to take risks, and it all worked.” Indeed, the musty old house has disappeared, replaced by a charming haven where everyone is welcome, and no one wants to leave.  n

The Result

Dunn created a charming haven where everyone is welcome, and no one wants to leave.

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tktktktk and more tktktktktktk and more th of natutktktktkials, including walls of walnut and mosaic stone, quartzite kitchen counters, and a leather sofa and lounge tktktktktktktktktktktk and more

Kerri Rosenthal’s own wallpapers make an appearance throughout the home; this pattern, Top Down in a cheerful pink, dresses up the bedroom of the homeowners’ twin daughters.

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WORK IN PROGRESS Artist and designer Kerri Rosenthal helps a young Connecticut couple build the home of their dreams, one room at a time. Text by ANNIE SHERMAN | Photos by NICOLE STEVENS

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PROJECT TEAM Interior architecture and design: Kerri Rosenthal, Kerri Rosenthal Interiors

he lone sofa Michelle and Ari Pollack brought along when they moved from their 700-square-foot Manhattan apartment looked lost in the 5,000 or so square feet of their Westport house. Like many an independent-minded woman, Michelle decided to do her own decorating. She walked into Kerri Rosenthal Interiors in Westport, Connecticut, and selected wallpaper samples. “Then I stuck them up with painter’s tape in the bathroom and couldn’t make a decision,” she laments. “Is this one too funky? Does it work in this small space? Would I get sick of it in a couple months?”

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LEFT: By day, the study serves as Michelle Pollack’s office; come evening, the plush chairs and fireplace make it a cozy place for quiet conversation with husband Ari. ABOVE: Light bounces off the high-gloss paint on the entry’s walls. BELOW: Artist/designer Kerri Rosenthal.

In desperation she emailed Rosenthal. “She was this amazing positive force,” Michelle reports. “She said ‘go with this one,’ switched out two light fixtures, and transformed the bathroom into this cool little space.” As the couple lived in the house and determined how they would use each room, Michelle would call Rosenthal for the next design installment. They craved a light-filled home (this is the northeast, after all, where, as Rosenthal says, “It’s

Portrait of Rosenthal by Julia Dags

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ike all of Rosenthal’s wallcoverings and fabrics, the papers in the house are based on the designer’s own paintings.

cloudy nine months of the year. At least it feels that way.”). The designer obliged, painting most walls in a high-gloss white that reflects the light. The effect is breathtaking in spots, such as the two-story foyer where light bounces off every surface. An oversize Moooi globe pendant hangs above, looking as if the sun itself had floated indoors. Rosenthal is an artist as well as a designer, and an all-white house runs

counter to her nature. Given Michelle’s initial wallpaper choices—and the ultimate decision to go with Splat KR, a carefree paper from Rosenthal’s own collection with an abstract pattern in blue shot through with pink—she knew her client was up for some fun. Stripe on Stripe, with its irregular black and white stripes, lines the pantry walls. The nursery, where Michelle and Ari’s twin toddler daughters sleep, is outfitted in a cheerful pink-and-

Rosenthal enlivened the living room’s neutral backdrop with deep blue upholstery and graphic pillows. FACING PAGE: The powder room’s Splat KR wallpaper from Rosenthal’s collection sparked the home’s design scheme.

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iven Michelle’s choice of colorful wallpaper for the powder room, Rosenthal knew her client was up for some fun.

ABOVE: Color, as in a trio of paintings by Rosenthal, makes a bright foil for the kitchen’s graphic black and white. LEFT: Another Rosenthal paper lines the pantry walls. FACING PAGE, TOP: Sliding glass doors give

the open dining room a more intimate feel and add a design element to the hallway. FACING PAGE, BOTTOM: A custom picture ledge wall in the breakfast area displays cookbooks, photos, and objets d’art.

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white paper called Top Down. Like all of Rosenthal’s wallcoverings and fabrics, the papers in the Pollack house are based on the designer’s own abstract paintings. For the most part, the floorplan worked well, but the placement of the dining room didn’t feel right. “It was open to the hallway, almost like a movie set,” Rosenthal says. She installed hefty hardware across the wide opening and hung a pair of glass-paneled doors that slide apart for a barndoor effect, giving the room a sense of structure and lending design interest to the hall space. Day to day, family meals are more likely to be enjoyed in the dining nook Rosenthal tucked into the kitchen. Outfitted with a cushioned wicker bench for the girls and a duo of woven café chairs for Mom and Dad, it makes a more intimate, cozy setting. While the public spaces serve up a bright, energetic look and feel, Michelle’s office adopts a more sophisticated tone, with walls the color of storm clouds, diaphanous draperies, and oversize linen lounge chairs that beckon the event planner to relax once her to-do list is complete. This is her favorite spot in the house, she says, and it’s not just a work space for her. She and her husband often sit by the fireplace in the evening, sharing quiet conversation while the girls run in and out. “It has this calm feeling. I feel really good in there,” she says. “And I love that it’s a multipurpose space.” Next on the decorating agenda, now that the first floor is complete, is the second-floor master suite. Oh, and about that lonely sofa that made the trek from Manhattan? It’s now comfortably ensconced in a playroom, where the twins are given free rein to jump on it as much as they wish.  n EDITOR’S NOTE For more details about this home, see Resources. 2019 | next   101

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Dashes of bright green create a youthful, friendly vibe in the sitting area off of the new kitchen.

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In living It’s a fresh, new look for a venerable old house on Providence’s historic Benefit Street. Text by SUSAN KLEINMAN | Photos by GREG PREMRU

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amantha and David O’Neil have always loved old houses. The couple had been raising their three sons in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, in a home built in the 1920s as staff quarters for a nineteenth-century mansion. When they decided to move into Providence in 2018, David came to check out this house on historic Benefit Street, near Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design. He took one look at the place and texted Samantha to come see it right away. “It was really well built, with these awesome details,” Samantha says of the Greek Revival house built in the early 1860s and featured on the Rhode Island Historical Society’s walking tours. “It had these great high ceilings and the circular staircase. When you know something’s right, you just know. We put a bid in immediately.” Gorgeous as the house was, the O’Neils knew it would require some modifications, so they called upon architect Donald Powers (a longtime friend from East Greenwich) to reconfigure the space.

Large windows offer plenty of light, but preclude wraparound cabinetry, so window seats do double duty as extra storage space. FACING PAGE: Antiquedmirror cabinet fronts lend a vintage look with a twist.

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PROJECT TEAM Architecture: Donald Powers, Union Studio Interior design: Jocelyn Chiappone, Digs Design Company Builder: J2Construct

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“ When

you know something’s right, you just know,” says Samantha O’Neil about her Providence house. “We put a bid in immediately.”

LEFT: The homeowners fell in love with the three-story circular staircase at first sight. ABOVE: A plaque on the house identifies it as the the Christopher H. Drowne House, built 1862–1863. FACING PAGE: An antique chest and child’s chair in the foyer provide neutral counterparts to the bright colors beyond.

“A house of that era is typically going to have several clearly defined rooms with small doors into and out of those rooms,” says Powers. “The way most people like to live today is a much more flowing floor plan, where rooms communicate with each other more completely. So, the challenge is how to make a floor plan that flows while respecting the structure of the house.” Working together, Powers and interior designer Jocleyn Chiappone, who had decorated the O’Neils’s East Greenwich home, met that challenge by turning the old galley kitchen into a mudroom and powder room, creating a kitchen where the parlor once was, and rejiggering some second-floor bedroom and bathroom spaces. Then, with the new floorplan in place, Chiappone set about decorating the home in a sophisticated yet comfortable mix of colors and textures, rich in bright blues and greens. “We had a lot of blue in our old house, so Jocelyn knew that I would like that,” says Samantha, “but 106  next  | 2019

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the introduction of green here was new. It helped us create something that was sophisticated and good design, yet not have my husband and boys feel uncomfortable with anything too fussy. That’s a balancing act—an art, really—and Jocelyn got it exactly right.” To keep all the color from feeling overwhelming, Chiappone chose plenty of pieces in a quiet palette, including the sofas in the living area and den, and the gray cabinetry in the kitchen. “I knew there were going to be lots of cabinets,” she says, “and I wanted to do something neutral, but warmer than white.” That visual warmth is dialed up a few degrees by the cabinet fronts, fabricated of antiqued mirror rather than the more typical clear glass. “My clients thought I was kind of crazy when I suggested the mirrors,” the designer says, “but they came around, and they really love them.” The kitchen also includes a standalone oven set between two of the

home’s original windows—which historicpreservation laws precluded altering— and a forty-eight-inch-wide refrigerator (a necessity with three teenaged boys in the house) that had to be hoisted through a window because the nineteenth-century door openings weren’t wide enough to accommodate it. “Things like that always come up when you’re working on a house this old,” says Powers, “and you have to be ready to make changes as you go so that everything fits. The contractor, J2Construct, did a really great job of working with that jigsaw puzzle.” When the puzzle was complete, the pieces not only fit together structurally, but also created the perfect blend of old and new that the O’Neils had envisioned when they bought the house: a home that honors and respects the historical framework, while still being the perfect place to live with their boys.  n

CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE LEFT: In the mudroom, created where the old galley kitchen once stood, vivid cement tiles inspired the color scheme. The family room is a friendly riot of blue and green. The powder room is tiny, but with two different wallpapers on the walls and the ceiling, it packs a mighty design punch. A mix of prints in cobalt and sky enliven the master bedroom.

EDITOR’S NOTE For details about this home, see Resources.

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introduction of green is sophisticated but not fussy. “It’s a balancing act—an art, really—and Jocelyn got it exactly right,” O’Neil says.

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The main entry’s updated, large-scale glass panels and angled handrail draw the eye through the interior to the water beyond. FACING PAGE: A contemporary glass balustrade complements existing skylights in the revamped stairwell.

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NO BOUNDARIES A total makeover reveals the stunning estuary views a Connecticut house was always meant to have. Text by MEAGHAN O’NEILL | Photos by MICHAEL BIONDO

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PROJECT TEAM Architecture: Tom Murdough, Robert Potish, and Jenny Tjia, Murdough Design Builder: Kais Custom Builders

The architectural team added a clerestory and wrapped windows around the formal dining area, bringing the property’s views to the foreground. Throughout the house, aluminum-frame windows and doors were chosen for their quiet palette. Bocci pendant lights dangle delicately above the table.

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s transition zones between rivers and the open sea, estuaries are, by nature, ever-changing. This 1978 house perches on a lot overlooking Long Island Sound and has views that shift constantly and dramatically through daily tidal changes, sunrises, and sunsets, and from season to season. From inside the house, however, those mesmerizing vistas lay hidden, a casualty of dim rooms with low ceilings and under-sized windows with too many mullions. To remedy those faults, architect Tom Murdough took what he describes as the “contemporary coastal” dwelling down to its studs and started over. Inside, updated mechanicals and insulation created a more energy-efficient envelope. Outside, a new standing-seam, coated aluminum roof streamlines the structure’s silhouette. Exterior walls reclad with tongue-and-groove Western red cedar planks—without corner trim—hide drainage cavities and, says Murdough, “create a very taut, clean, and quiet” appearance. At the entry, he installed a new glass door and side panels that appear to cut into the building, and transformed the adjoining stoop into a bluestone patio with a modern steel handrail.

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The mass of the building remains the same, but Murdough’s changes make the interior feel much more spacious. He reorganized and enlarged windows and took away walls to open the floor plan at the ground level. “Since we couldn’t add, we subtracted,” he says. “This was very much a process of editing what was already there.” The kitchen, for example, enlarged and outfitted with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors along its south face, now boasts sight lines that continue out over the adjoining deck to the water beyond. Likewise, removing storage space in the entry elongated views through the kitchen. “Everything is meant to draw your eye either outside or to the interior’s sculptural details,” Murdough says. Such details include a massive Corten steel fireplace at one end of the kitchen, which also defines the formal living and dining areas (though the wife is a selfdescribed “reluctant entertainer” who prefers low-key gatherings). The original stone fireplace still stands at the other end of the kitchen, separating the break-

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: In a circulation area near the entry, porcelain tiles mimic the look of concrete, adding an industrial-chic vibe. The sleek kitchen features Caesarstone countertops, warm

walnut casework, and iconic Bertoia barstools. A dramatic fireplace surround and partition made from Corten steel separates the formal living and dining areas from the kitchen.

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ABOVE: The once-dim sitting room was transformed with floor-to-ceiling windows and doors. A steel pendant fireplace and an Eero Saarinen Womb chair add sculptural touches. LEFT: Views from the sitting room and deck offer infinite interest, regardless of the weather.

fast area from an informal sitting room. The new fireplace is a large-scale, structural element that enhances the minimalist, open-plan construct. Its raw materials also characterize the homeowners’ aesthetics—clean, midcentury modern, a touch industrial. Walnut casework and accents add warmth throughout, while bright-white plaster delivers a crisp backdrop. “It’s a very quiet palette,” says Murdough, “with the intention of highlighting the landscape.” While the kitchen sees its fair share of activity with after-school homework and casual meals, the family’s favorite space—and the one that underwent

the most dramatic transformation—is the informal sitting room. Previously capped with a dark wood ceiling and outfitted with small windows that all but eliminated the scenery, the reborn space now feels open and spacious, thanks to a floor-to-ceiling door and windows that wrap around three sides. “We call it the snow globe,” says the wife. “You see every raindrop and every snowflake from there.” The emphasis on sight lines and natural light carries deep into interior spaces, too. A frosted panel between kitchen and entry, for example, lets the homeowners control for privacy and filter daylight.

Nearby, the stairwell features its original skylights but was updated with a glass baluster. In the words of the French novelist Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” In this case, perfection lies as much in what Murdough removed as in what he introduced. While the property has always featured stunning views, they’ve finally been unveiled from inside the house, demolishing all barriers to land, sea, and sky.  n EDITOR’S NOTE For details about this home, see Resources. 2019 | next   117

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The watery hue is front and center in a beachfront home in New Hampshire. Text by MEAGHAN O’NEILL | Photos by JARED KUZIA

Interior designer Kristina Crestin in the thirdfloor dining area of the house she designed on Seabrook Beach. FACING PAGE: The dining room’s azure rug and artwork hint at the home’s beachfront location.

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PROJECT TEAM Architectural design: Lucy Gorham, Lucy Gorham Residential Design Interior design: Kristina Crestin, Kristina Crestin Design Builder: Ray Holmes, R.B. Holmes Custom Builders

or a house with an elevator, it is perhaps ironic that a staircase would be the backbone of the interior design. But at Tracy Byers and Bill Hurtado’s residence on Seabrook Beach in New Hampshire, it’s a soulful blue balustrade that brings everything—and everyone—together. “I will never forget the discussion about the staircase,” laughs Byers. “I went out on a limb,” says Kristina Crestin, about pitching her idea for the stair, which features a geometric X-design and is painted an audacious blue. Byers was sold, but her husband was not. “He said, ‘No way—you guys are crazy!’ ” Byers recalls. “Now, he holds it up as the reason you should always trust Kristina,” Byers adds with a laugh.

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CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Plush lounge chairs swivel to face the ocean or accommodate TV viewing; shibori-dyed pillows boost the coastal effect. The kitchen island’s heavy marble top is offset by translucent pendants and a pillowed-tile backsplash. Shiplap cabinetry wears Benjamin Moore’s Blue Suede Shoes and leather pulls.

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When the couple began construction on the house, which sits on a skinny slice of land facing the ocean, they knew they wanted a modern coastal vibe. But because the dunes beyond the property’s lawn stretch out roughly 100 yards, views are limited from the ground and second floors. Builder Ray Holmes and architectural designer Lucy Gorham turned out a reverse-living design that maximizes vistas by placing the open-plan kitchen, living, and dining areas on the top floor. (The elevator solves for issues like lugging groceries upstairs.) When Crestin joined the project, most of the building’s functionality had already been laid out, so she began by imagining interior elements that would reflect the family’s aesthetic—modern, crisp, and clean, but not overly summery. “We didn’t want a kitschy beach house,” says Byers, who envisioned herself hosting traditional holidays for their blended family of six, including one teenager still living at home. Crestin first turned her creative focus to the stairs and millwork throughout. In addition to the bold balustrade, she added board-and-batten to staircase walls. Riffing off the seaside motif, the designer also used shiplap for kitchen cabinets, kitchen and living area ceilings, and mudroom walls. The stair’s adventuresome hue—softer than navy, but not quite royal—is repeated on cabinetry in the kitchen, where a large island is topped with a weighty miteredmarble slab. To lighten up the space, the

LEFT, TOP TO BOTTOM: A seagrass rug and Maine Cottage fabrics invite casual luxury into the master suite. At the top of the stairwell, a chandelier made of bottles plays with the strong geometry of the

balustrade. Shiplap was installed vertically in the mudroom and spaced to accommodate oversized hooks. FACING PAGE: Exposed-bulb lighting with orange cording adds pizzazz to the third-floor powder room.

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A glass railing and Adirondack chairs on the second-floor deck offer long vistas across the dunes, connecting the coastal scenery with the palette of the interior decor.

designer left out upper cabinets in favor of open shelving, while vaulted ceilings also add loftiness. (The latter left little room for electrical wiring and HVAC ductwork, however, which Holmes cleverly hid in false beams and rafters.) Rustic stools and leather pulls warm up the space and connect it to the dining area, where a reclaimed-wood table sits under cage-like metal light fixtures. To understand Crestin’s inspiration for the interior palette—a mashup of briny blues, sea-grassy neutrals, and pops of orange—simply look out toward the dunes at dusk. Tones and textures create a captivating reflection of the view. The living area, for example, sports a woven rug the color of sunset, reclaimed wood tables, and shibori-dyed textiles. One floor down, the master suite’s plush seagrass rug and marine-hued drapes continue to pull the outdoors in. From the bedroom level, the omnipresent staircase descends to ground level, where a super-functional mudroom skips custom cabinetry in favor of rolling bins and oversized hooks that corral towels, sunscreen, and other necessities. A full bath ensures that salt and sand get washed off near the entry, while the remainder of the footprint is dedicated to a mother-in-law suite for Byers’s mom, who visits frequently. The top-down approach, which emphasizes both spectacular views and pragmatic programming, hits all the right notes for the family. “There’s nothing that we would change,” says Byers of the design. “For us, it’s the perfect a yearround house that happens to be on the beach.”  n EDITOR’S NOTE For details about this home, see Resources. 2019 | next   125

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resources A guide to the professionals, and select products, in this issue’s features

STAY A WHILE PAGES 78–85 Architecture: Anne Draudt, Draudt Design Architects, Stow, Mass., 978-461-2399, Interior design: Rachel Reid, Reid Design, Lexington, Mass., 781-771-0781, Kitchen design: Meaghan Moynahan, Venegas and Company, Boston, 617-439-8800, Builder: Asher Nichols, Asher Nichols & Craftsmen, Chestnut Hill, Mass., 617-417-0020, Page 79: Glassware from Simon Pearce,; pottery from Verde Floral Design, Page 80: Ceramic vases from Verde Floral Design. Page 81: Ceramic pieces on console from Verde Floral Design. Page 82: Ceramic pieces from Verde Floral Desgn.

NESTING INSTINCT PAGES 86–93 Architecture: Leonard Brandes Architect, Scarsdale, N.Y., 914-472-8421, brandesarchitect. com Interior design: Leslie Dunn, Dunn Designs, Norwalk, Conn., 203-939-1598, dunndesignsinc. com Builder: S&W Building Remodeling, Norwalk, Conn., 203-831-8300; Kitchen and bath design: Karen Berkemeyer, Karen Berkemeyer Home, Westport, Conn., 203-454-0032, Floor finishing: New England Custom Floors, Westport, Conn., 203-227-2819, newengland Landscape design: Jessica Livingston, Jessica

Livingston Landscape and Floral Design, Riverside, Conn., 203-561-0611 Audio/Video design/installation: Safe and Sound Systems, Milford, Conn., 888-299-1767, Lighting designer: Seaport Electric, Norwalk, Conn., 203-854-6639, Decorative painter: Heidi Holzer, Heidi Holzer Design, Redding, Conn., 203-544-9471, Upholstery/drapery workshop: Art Upholstery Studio, Briarcliff Manor, N.Y., 914-944-1551

WORK IN PROGRESS PAGES 94–101 Interior design: Kerri Rosenthal, Kerri Rosenthal Interiors, Westport, Conn., 203-557-6800,

IN LIVING COLOR PAGES 102–109 Architecture: Donald Powers, Union Studio, Providence, 401-272-4724, Interior design: Jocelyn Chiappone, Digs Design Studio, Newport, R.I., 401-848-9301, Builder: J2Construct, Middletown, R.I., 888-301-0076,

NO BOUNDARIES PAGES 110–117 Architecture and interior design: Tom Murdough, Robert Potish, and Jenny Tjia, Murdough Design, Concord, Mass., 978-341-4100, Builder: Kais Custom Builders, Norwalk, Conn., 203-857-4795, Interior Millwork and kitchen Cabinetry: Greenwich Fine Woodworking, Norwalk, Conn.,

203-987-0001, Landscape design: Artemis Landscape Architects, Sandy Hook, Conn., 203-683-1808, Landscape/hardscape/masonry contractor: Luppino Landscaping and Masonry, Mount Kisco, N.Y., 914-666-7028, Audio/Video design/installation: Performance AV & Security, Milford, Conn., 203-901-6555, Flooring: Carlisle Wide Plank Floors, Stoddard, N.H., 603-446-6105,

BLUES THAT SING PAGES 118–125 Architectural design: Lucy Gorham, Lucy Gorham Residential Design, Durham, N.H., 603-868-5848 Interior design: Kristina Crestin, Kristina Crestin Design, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass., 978-890-7186, Builder/interior millwork: R.B. Holmes Custom Builders, Greenland, N.H., 603-431-5787, Kitchen cabinetry: Advanced Custom Cabinets, Brentwood, N.H., 603-772-6211 Landscape design: Eastgate Garden Design, Topsfield, Mass., 978-887-3769 Hardscaping: W.T. LeRoyer Landscape & Design, Topsfield, Mass., 978-352-5521, Masonry: William F. Avery Masonry, South Berwick, Maine, 207-384-2582 Curtain fabricator: Willow Design, Marblehead, Mass., 781-718-1272

Next, Fall 2019 © 2019 by New England Home Magazine, LLC. All rights reserved. Permission to reprint or quote excerpts granted by written request only. Editorial and advertising office: New England Home Magazine, LLC, 530 Harrison Ave, Ste 302, Boston, MA 02118, 617‑938‑3991.

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Bright Idea

A Newburyport, Massachusetts, kitchen morphed from dark and cramped to bright and open, with space enough to take care of the laundry—in style. The mesh-paneled cabinet (replacing an imposing pantry closet) cleverly disguises a stacked washer and dryer. A tiny prep/laun128  next  | 2019

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dry sink tucks in beneath floating shelves anchored on an accent wall of custom-glazed tiles. And Benjamin Moore’s Polished Slate paint washes the whole scene with warmth.  n Holly Gagne Interior Design, Rowley, Mass.,; Applied Form + Space, Andover, Mass., Photography by Tamara Flanagan

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