New England Home RISE 2020

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Stylish City Living from New England Home

Points of View

New Directions in Design

The Lush Life A Private Garden in the Sky


• Inspiring Interiors • Expert Advice • Chic Shops

Spring 2020

Display until June 25, 2020

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D o C om e by, m y de a r . Dr a m atic . Scin til l ating . En ticing . Petrified Wood.

Cumar is New England’s preeminent source and fabricator of the finest marble, granite, limestone, and exotic stones. 617.389.7818 |

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Kartell Shop in Shop Boston exclusively at

10 Saint James Avenue, Boston | 617-580-3443 | Kartell Shop in Shop Boston - Exclusively at Il DĂŠcor

10 Saint James Avenue Boston MA 02116 617-580-3443 -

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Please call us at 617-236-2286 to arrange a consultation | 224 Clarendon Street, Boston

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contents Spring 2020 | Issue 2




42  |  In the Details Twenty-nine floors above the Back Bay bustle, Paula Daher fashions an elegant, idea-rich residence.


50  |  Camera Ready Designer Patrick Planeta creates a South End condo that’s ready for its close-up.


9  |  Local Flavor

32  |  Pied-à-Terre Perfection

Four top designers reveal what’s so special about their stomping grounds.

A Cambridge duplex gets an elegant overhaul with a side of collegiate cool.

18  |  Things We Love

36  |  Pay Per View

A designer achieves easy, breezy, and effortless with a pared-down palette in her own South End home.

Chic, stylish barstools, and everything you need to throw a memorable party.

Three sensational urban properties on the market now.

66  |  Fresh Aerie

22  |  Urban Legends

38  |  Above and Beyond

Three Boston-area shops that cater to city living put down roots in new locations.

In the heart of Boston, naturally.

30  |  Welcome to the Jungle Indoor trees are having a moment. Here are the best ones for city living.

58  |  Neutral Ground

Empty nesters find the perfect perch in a modern Seaport District condo.

76  |  Last Look Boston’s Harbor Towers are a commanding presence on the waterfront.


6 | Editor’s Note 74 | Resources Cover photo by Nat Rea 2020 | rise   5

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welcome TM

Stylish City Living from New England Home

Vertical living isn’t a new phenomenon, but the number of new high-rise developments sprouting up across New England certainly is. At New England Home’s headquarters in Boston’s South End, we see it firsthand. Surrounded by building cranes and construction crews, we see the signs (and hear the sounds) of growth. As a result, cool coffee shops and stylish boutiques have brought a new pulse to the neighborhood. The energy is palpable. Even in New England communities where residential buildings might not be as tall as what we’re seeing from our windows, new live/work communities feature many of the same traits of urban living, such as denser development, walkable neighborhoods, communal spaces, and the integration of shopping and dining so that homeowners are less reliant on their cars. As the ways that New Englanders live, work, and play continue to evolve, here’s hoping the homes, shops, and tastemakers in this issue inspire you—whether you’re thirty stories up in the clouds, or closer to terra firma.


Editor-in-Chief Clinton Smith

Publisher Kathy Bush-Dutton

Senior Editor Paula M. Bodah

Executive Sales Manager Jill Korff

Creative Director Robert Lesser Departments and Copy Editor Lisa H. Speidel Associate and Online Editor Erika Ayn Finch Contributing Editors Karin Lidbeck Brent Stacy Kunstel Contributing Writers Regina Cole, Bob Curley, Julie Dugdale, Megan Fulweiler, Robert Kiener, Maria LaPiana, Tovah Martin, Erin Marvin, Nathaniel Reade, Debra Spark 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 TTT

Subscriptions  To subscribe to New England Home ($19.95 for one year) or for customer service, call 800765-1225 or visit our website, Editorial and Advertising Office 530 Harrison Ave., Suite 302 Boston, MA 02118 617-938-3991, 800-609-5154

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Sales Managers Roberta Thomas Mancuso Kim Sansoucy Tess Woods Marketing Designer Jared Ainscough Production Manager Glenn Sadin Sales & Marketing Coordinator Emily E. Ediger TTT

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 TTT

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

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535 Albany Street Boston, MA 02118 617-350-7883

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watch neighborhood


Margaritas: shaken, not stirred

The bar is often three-deep at Temazcal in Boston’s Seaport District. See page 10.

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neighborhood watch

Local Flavor

Four top designers reveal what’s so special about their stomping grounds. BY LISA H. SPEIDEL Row 34 EAT From gulf shrimp to Maine lobster, Row 34 is the best place to spend a workday lunch or an evening on the town. Their seafood tower takes me back home to Louisiana every time! Old Boston meets worldly flavors with the lobster guacamole at Temazcal. It’s worth the extra calories—maybe just order one less margarita (though those are to die for, too!). The view of Boston Harbor’s not bad either.,

SHOP Fifteen-plus diverse vendors from across the region come together to offer a unique mix of antique and vintage pieces at the Market Stalls in the Boston Design Center. I’ve had the best luck with tabletop finds! China, glasses, tea cups, and serving pieces are just some of the many things you’ll unearth here. Boston Button Factory (an homage to the Boston Button Co., which dissolved in 1872) is a unique place to discover a distinctive piece of Fort Point/ Seaport history. Part event space, part gallery, the BBF sells a series of buttons as wall art, jewelry, and clothing accessories. bostondesign. com/market-stalls, bostonbutton

BROWSE Located in the Envoy Hotel, the Fort Point Arts Community Gallery is a great place to catch local Fort Point/Seaport artists’ work as well as live performances. The gallery is managed by a group that has worked hard to highlight the vibrant art culture in this part of the city for more than thirty years.

BDC Market Stalls

treasure hunt

The Seaport, Boston

Eric Haydel, Eric Haydel Design, Designer and showroom owner Eric Haydel was drawn to the Seaport because it combines the best of Boston with the best of his home state, Louisiana. “Working near the water lets me know I’m never far from my roots,” says the president of the board of Friends of Fort Point Channel.

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VISIT This new iteration of the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum (it reopened in 2012) is better than the original, with professional actors, interactive exhibits, holograms that guide the tours, and even the opportunity to throw tea into the harbor. Now more than ever, it’s important for history to come alive. BDC market stalls photograph by Jeffrey Katz

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Photo: Michael Lefebvre






(617) 445-3135

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neighborhood watch

JFC for the win! EAT The city’s food scene is so hip that sometimes the timeless, consistently good restaurants, like Back Bay Grill, get forgotten. It’s excellent, from service to wine list to food. The dishes at Minato, a Japanese izakaya, are refined, the atmosphere is cozy, the staff friendly, and everything on the menu is super fresh and local. Don’t leave without trying the JFC (Japanese Fried Chicken)—my favorite fried chicken ever., Portland Architectural Salvage SHOP Gifts, upholstery, fine linens, furnishings, and a designer’s workroom, Home Remedies is one-stop shopping at its finest. A great place to bring my clients to browse. From lighting and antique doors to endless architectural elements, Portland Architectural Salvage is my go-to for when I’m looking for something that I had no idea I needed. I’m not much of a lingerie girl, but Aristelle has such a pretty selection it’s hard to resist. The pajamas are what usually keep my attention, but they specialize in helping women find their perfect undergarments and celebrating women of all shapes and sizes.,,

Portland, Maine

Tyler Karu, Tyler Karu Design + Interiors, With parents who worked in real estate development and residential design, Tyler Karu has the industry in her blood. And likewise, Portland. The designer returned home to pursue her passion and discovered “a city on the verge of a complete revitalization.” In this spirit, she is known (among other things) for her talents breathing new life into once-neglected homes.

RECHARGE The grapefruit kombucha at Root Wild Kombucha is as delicious as it gets. I grab a growler full once a week on my way home from work.

STAY The Mercury is a B&B we designed and are now renovating. Guests are greeted by metallic lobster wallpaper and friendly innkeepers. The owners also have a sustainable philosophy, so you can feel good about your stay while enjoying the cool aesthetics. VISIT I love the galleries at the Maine College of Art, especially the Institute of Contemporary Art. My work is often inspired by contemporary art, so I am grateful to have a resource to see an eclectic mix of emerging as well as established artists.

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Utopia Large Double Bath Sconce Kelly Wearstler

Light New England | 50 Terminal St. | Building 2 - Unit #524 Boston, MA 02129 | 617.286.7181

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neighborhood watch

WALK Apart from it being an incredibly calm place to visit, Mt. Auburn Cemetery was the first gardenlike cemetery in America. From inside its walls, there are amazing views of the city, and the yearround foliage is really well done.

GrayMist Studio & Shop

Island time RECHARGE Hi-Rise Bread Co. has really great coffee for that afternoon pick-me-up, and the Earl Gray tea cookies are fantastic.

SHOP As a Cambridge shop owner myself, I love supporting all the local brick-and-mortar stores. A few favorites just in our neighborhood: European Country Antiques (period finds from England, France, and Ireland), Reside (twentieth-century modern furniture and decorative arts), and GrayMist Studio & Shop (a Nantucket basket studio and gift shop inspired by the island). ecountry,,

DRINK A neighborhood institution, Green Street has been around forever. My husband and I like to sit at the bar, chat with the bartenders, and watch them make cocktails (be sure to try the Parisian Orchid!).

European Country Antiques

Cambridge, Massachusetts Emily Pinney, Pinney Designs,

Building on some two decades of experience in residential interior design, Emily Pinney opened a home decor shop, SYD + SAM, in the same building as her studio in 2015. “There’s a real sense of community in Cambridge,” she says, “and having a storefront adds to that community feeling because we get to know our neighbors.”

LISTEN TO LIVE MUSIC Intimate and authentic, TOAD has live music every night that runs the gamut from Bluegrass to alt rock to funk, and there’s never a cover.

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JUSTIN ANFUSO Photo by Shelly harriSon

Waltham, ma | (781) 975-1809 |

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neighborhood watch

good clean fun

WALK Walk across Memorial Bridge at sunset. Look up the river in one direction for a blazing sunset and, if it’s the right time of year, the other direction for a fabulous moon rise.

consignment chic

SHOP There are tons of interesting small boutiques in town. Locally owned Portsmouth Soap Company just opened and stocks handmade organic soaps containing regionally sourced materials. We have many beautiful clothing stores, but my go-to is the consignment store Wear House. The owner has an impeccable eye. I picked up a great pair of vintage Fendi sunglasses and shop here first for gently used cashmere. Hazel is another favorite for high-end, interesting, and beautiful clothes. ports, wearhouseportsmouth. com, hazelportsmouth.comy

EAT In the summer, the deck at Martingale Wharf can’t be beat. My favorite end-of-day gathering place is Row 34. An icy Tito’s martini paired with regional oysters and French fries easily washes away any issues faced during the workweek., RECHARGE You won’t find a sweeter cafe than the Elephantine Bakery. The coffee and baked goods are delicious, and the owners did an amazing job on the interior with wallpaper by Kelly Wearstler and Scalamandré.

Portsmouth, New Hampshire Lisa Teague, Upcoast Design,

A trained painter, artist, and designer, Lisa Teague is known for her deft use of color to set the tone of an interior. Drawn to the vibrancy and small scale of Portsmouth, Teague says, “the coastal landscape informs my designs, and I’m constantly inspired by the interesting people I meet while going about my daily work.”

BE ENTERTAINED Take in live music or a movie at our beautiful, historic Music Hall. Here you can catch NHPR’s Writers on a New England Stage or the Telluride by the Sea film festival, among many other must-see performances.

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(781) 793-0700 |



Don’t replace, restore. Residential and Commercial Stone Restoration

Our trained craftspeople can completely revive and restore your marble and natural stone.

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things we love

Bar None

Who says utilitarian counter seating can't be both stylish and chic?


Tristan Klismos bar stool, $3,411 | Interlude Home, Trumbull, Conn., Masters counter stool by Kartell, $510 | Design Within Reach, Cambridge, Mass., Stamford and Westport, Conn.,

Darcy hide counter stool, $3,096 | Interlude Home

pretty in pink (also available in gray)

Estelle counter stool, $849 | Circle Furniture, various locations throughout Massachusetts,

Aida bar stool, $1,180 | Roche Bobois, Boston and Natick, Mass., Saint Tropez stool by Calligaris Italy, $438 | Il Décor, Boston, modernfurniture

Magda Couture bar stool by Cattelan Italia, $1,519.60 | Il Décor

Caron bar stool by Leolux, $1,095 and $1,195 | Divine Design Center, Boston,

Mini counter stool, $299 | Room & Board, Boston,

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Cold Outside... Warm Inside New in Electric, the Toasty Comfort of Runtal Radiators Can Now Be Enjoyed by All!

Wall Panels

Towel Radiators


has long been world-renowned as the premium manufacturer of Euro-style radiators for hot water and steam heating systems. We are pleased to introduce a Runtal Electric line that includes Wall Panel, Towel Radiator and Baseboard designs. Suitable for both retro-fit and new construction, Runtal Electric products provide a very efficient and comfortable radiant heat. They are an excellent source of primary or supplemental heat and a problem-solver for areas needing additional heat. They are attractive (available in over 100 colors), durable, quiet and easy to install. To view Runtal’s complete line of heating products, please visit our showroom in Haverhill, MA; M, T, W, F 9-5, TH 9-8 or by appointment and online at:

Our Showroom is located at: 187 Neck Road • Ward Hill, MA • 01835 (Haverhill) Tel: 1-800-526-2621

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things we love Everything you need to throw a party that your friends won’t stop talking about.

Oversize matchbox sleeve, $395 | AERIN,

Paradigm low table, $10,750 | Stefan Rurak Studio, Brooklyn, N.Y.,

Liora drink table, $1,464 | Interlude Home, Trumbull, Conn.,

Spritz: Italy's Most Iconic Aperitivo Cocktail, with Recipes, $18.99 | Casita, Sudbury, Mass.,

Shagreen coaster, set of four, $295 | AERIN

Organic walnut cocktail stirrers by Hawkins New York, $18 | Found Design Studio, Essex, Mass.,

MetroChic bread plate by Barry Goralnick for Villeroy & Boch, $59 | Bloomingdale’s,

Landscape firebox by HearthCabinet, $12,500– $13,600 | HearthCabinet, New York City,

Trophy bottle opener by Craighill, $95 | Room 68, Provincetown, Mass.,

Pearl placemat in navy by Kim Seybert, $91 each | various locations throughout New England, Darts by Fredericks and Mae, $132 | 22 Milk Street, Portland, Maine,

Roland bar cart by Worlds Away, $897 | Hudson Interior Designs, Boston,

Three-piece condiment set by Chrissy Teigen, $65 | Macy’s, Pepper mill, 8 inches, $90 | Slate, Burlington, Vt., Beach Rose napkin, four-pack, $48 | Linda Cabot Design, Boston Design Center,

Be My Guest decoupage tray, $135 | Hudson Interior Designs

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shop visit

Urban Legends

Three Boston-area shops that cater to city living put down roots in new locations. BY ERIKA AYN FINCH

Inside Modern Relik, you can create your own flower arrangement or get help from the onsite design experts.

Modern Relik As if we needed any more evidence that the adjacent Ink Block and SoWa neighborhoods in Boston’s South End are the place to be, Modern Relik, a Waltham spot for designers in the know, opened up a 6,000-square-foot showroom on Harrison Avenue at the end of last year. (It happened right about the same time shakshuka-king Tatte Bakery & Café opened its own Harrison Avenue location. Enough said.) 22  rise  | 2020

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Photography by Michael J. Lee

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Modern Luxury Lighting

Come, see, admire, aspire & acquire. Exclusively at

N EENAS BOSTON 617-859-1700

BROOKLINE 617-232-1900

WELLESLEY 781-235-4510

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shop visit

"We all need a little beauty in our life." –Meg Kimball

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: The shop's collection of design books doubles as a library that shoppers can access for inspiration; creative director John Dransfield and owner Meg Kimball; Mod Espresso, located inside the shop, serves up La Colombe coffee and locally made treats; the boutique is much larger than it appears from its Harrison Avenue store front.

Shop owner and interior designer Meg Kimball provides shoppers with a complete experience— and the obligatory Instagram wall, this one featuring a rainbow display of coffee-table design books. Whether you’re looking for an accent pillow by famed designer and Modern Relik creative director John Dransfield, a made-in-California sofa, or a piece of vintage art, you’ll want to first stop at the coffee counter and fuel up with a La Colombe espresso and locally made croissant.

From there, it’s a matter of exploring every nook, cranny, and corridor, taking time to smell candles featuring the shop’s proprietary scents. Modern Relik also offers its own interior design services toward the back of the shop. (Insider’s tip: make sure you peek inside the boutique’s large white credenza. In it, you will find a treasure trove of linens, napkin rings, and other tabletop accessories that you can’t live without.) Before you leave, take a few moments to peruse Modern Relik’s flower shop. Kimball and Dransfield have forgone cookie-cutter bouquets in favor of the sculptural shapes found in orchids, succulents, and even cherry blossom branches. Arrange the flowers yourself or let the design team create a bouquet for you using vessels made from natural materials. The containers are so pretty you’ll find yourself returning to the boutique for refills. As Kimball says, “We all need a little beauty in our life.”

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True luxury: circadian lighting for wellness.

Lighting Control Automated Shades State-of-the-Art Electronics

Architect: Randall Kipp Builder: The Allen Group Photographer: Maxwell MacKenzie

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AVD Experience Center Westwood, MA 617-965-4600

Interior Design: Leslie Fine Interiors Builder: FBN Construction

Landscape Architecture Interior Design Design + Build Boston | Washington, DC | 800.834.6654

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shop visit

Lekker Home When Natalie van Dijk was searching for a larger space for Lekker Home, a Washington Avenue South End staple since 2003, she was concerned she’d have to leave the neighborhood that had become a second home to her and her co-owner husband, Curt Carpenter. But as luck would have it, she stumbled upon a 10,000-square-foot space with a storied past very much in line with the Lekker Home brand. The Wareham Street location was built in 1863 as a woodworking shop before becoming a furniture company in the 1920s. The building’s history was too good for a design showroom to pass up, and Lekker Home moved to its new digs in July of last year. Lekker Home is still your go-to for modern design, especially midcentury-modern and Euro-

ABOVE: Lekker Home's endless windows mean plenty of natural light to shop for furniture and accessories. RIGHT: Nordic-style shelving offers urban dwellers sleek and chic storage options that are ideal for small spaces.

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Above photo by Omar Rawlings; all others by Samara Vise.

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CLOCKWISE FROM RIGHT: A communal kitchen is used by Lekker Home staff and trade clients alike; the former furniture factory's old brick walls make a striking backdrop for gift items like candles and bath products; if you think Danish design is all form and no warm, these living room vignettes will quickly change your mind.

For more bar stools, turn to page 20

"We aren't trying to sell our clients on a particular item, but rather educate them about a maker and a design." –Natalie van Dijk

pean makers who are difficult to find elsewhere (Ferm Living, we’re talking about you). But you can also shop for gift items like candles and bath products and conversation pieces such as gold chopsticks, colorful Chilewich placemats, Blu Dot lamps, and an &Tradition sheepskin chair that van Dijk calls “the chair of the year.” It’s all set off in a space with brick walls, wood-beam ceilings, and more windows than van Dijk has had time to count. Despite its penchant for Nordic design, the shop never feels severe. On the contrary, the soft colors and textures, adorned dining tables, and cozy bedroom vignettes give it a comfortable accessibility one might not expect from northern European design. Condo and townhouse dwellers will appreciate the furniture’s scale, while suburbanites will make the drive for brands they aren’t likely to find elsewhere (most of Lekker’s furniture brands have been around for a hundred years or more). “We aren’t trying to sell our clients on a particular item, but rather educate them about a maker and a design,” says van Dijk. “You won’t find any knockoffs here.” 2020 | rise   27

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shop visit Good Walking into Good on Charles Street is like walking into your jewelry box—if all of your jewels were gold, silver, and diamonds. The teeny tiny space has a neutral palette that’s completely devoid of color unless you count the jars of organic honey and a few pretty scarves. If owner Paul Niski has his way, those scarves will soon be shades of white, gray, black, and taupe, too. And just like a well-curated jewelry collection, vintage items intermingle with new pieces so seamlessly that unless Niski is there to point them out, you might miss them. Niski, a New York transplant, opened Good on Charles Street in 2001. In the past nineteen years, the lifestyle boutique has hopped around Charles Street and Beacon Hill. It even had a brief

CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: A peek inside Good reveals a neutral array of carefully curated home and fashion accessories—those doormats and baskets are made with shiny new lobster rope; the wood bowls are crafted from fallen trees in Western Massachusetts; Good, located at 98 Charles Street, has had several homes on Charles Street and Beacon Hill since it opened in 2001.

Upcycled bowls from Spencer Peterman

summer romance with Rockport, Maine. Most recently, there were two versions of Good: the home accessories store was on Myrtle Street while the clothing shop was on Charles. Niski combined the two into the Charles location last October, which means delicate jewelry and handcrafted leather handbags exist side by side with vintage Vermont-made Bennington Pottery and cotton baskets that resemble hand-thrown pottery. Vases that date back to the midcentury mix with plates from Maine ceramicist Meghan Flynn of cult-restaurant The

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CLOCKWISE FROM RIGHT: Vintage exists side by side with new; Niski has a personal relationship with most of his purveyors, including local makers of honey, sea salt, maple sugar, and flavored ghee (the tiny copper spoons you see here are hand-hammered); match holders make great hostess gifts, and these are crafted from Maine beach rocks; Good's home accessories change each season, but the neutral color palette stays the same, offering a calm respite from the hustle and bustle of Charles Street.

"They want to buy less, buy better, and buy heirloom." –Paul Niski Made in Maine

Lost Kitchen fame. The majority of the items in the shop are made in New England or have ties to our region; Niski has face-to-face relationships with the makers, prompting them to create capsule collections for the boutique that you won’t find anywhere else—not even online. Over the years, Good has

made its home in spaces both large and small, but Niski says he’s come to the conclusion that smaller is better. “You communicate differently in a small shop,” he says. “It’s more personal. And I think that’s what shoppers are looking for today. They want to buy less, buy better, and buy heirloom.”   r 2020 | rise   29

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tree talk

Welcome to the Jungle Indoor trees are having a moment. Here are the best ones for city living. BY ERIKA AYN FINCH

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1. For the First-Time Plant Parent

The dracaena cane is the tree for you, say Virginia Orlando, co-owner of Seed to Stem in Worcester, Massachusetts, and Jordan Ford, co-owner of Jordan's Jungle in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. The trees tolerate low light, provide interesting tufts of leaves in various hues, and can reach brave heights. “They are slow growing,” says Ford, “so they won’t outgrow their space for five or six years.”


2. For the Flower Child

Exotic hibiscus plants can be pruned into trees, says Ford. Seek out trees where three separate plants have been braided together, which will yield three different colors of blooms. Your flowering beauty will require a lot of light, but growing your hibiscus indoors as opposed to outdoors means you won’t have to combat pests.

3. For the Influencer

We’re here to report that one tree still reigns supreme on Instagram: the fiddle-leaf fig. Ford credits tidying-guru Marie Kondo for the tree’s popularity, but they aren’t for everyone. “They tend to be finicky when you move them around, and humidity is key,” says Ford. “Spray your tree with water or get a humidifier.”

4. For the Gourmet

“Citrus trees are gaining in popularity,” says Ford. “You can purchase grafted trees, which are self-pollinating and will provide fruit.” If you love to cook, this means you can grow exotic citrus such as Meyer lemons, ponderosa lemons, and tangerines that aren’t readily available at the neighborhood bodega.

5. For the Urban Dweller with North-Facing Windows

Just because your condo doesn’t let in much light doesn’t mean you have to give up yourdreams of living in a jungle. Consider vines such as philodendron or pothos that have been trained to grow up a trunk or totem. Seed to Stem stocks vines that are already eight feet tall.

When life gives you lemons...

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Location, location, location! PRETTY POTS Take it to the next level with these six statement-makers suited for the great indoors. 6. For the Trendsetter

“The Bengal fig—or ficus Audrey—is the new fiddle-leaf,” says Orlando. “The leaves are smaller, and they are hardier than a fiddle-leaf. And just like the fiddle-leaf, they can get very large.” The biggest issue when it comes to caring for tropical plants like ficuses is overwatering. If your tree receives a lot of light, it needs more water. Less light equals less water. Physically touch the soil or use a water meter for best results.

White Lion Pot, $299 | Garden Glory,


Domani Milos, $700 and $1,200 | Winston Flowers, various locations in Mass. and Conn.,

Rattan Cylinder Basket Planter, $198 | Terrain, Westport, Conn.,

TREE TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS • The key to a healthy tree is researching where it originates in order to know what type of light it wants and how much water it needs. • Dust your tree’s leaves regularly so they can work to the best of their abilities. • Trees do an excellent job of cleaning the air, something all city dwellers can use. Trees also have a big presence, which can make you feel like you’re outdoors, even when you aren’t. “We have a giant fig in the shop that people will actually go sit under,” says Orlando.

Krater Drum Planter, $880 | JANUS et Cie, Boston,

• Love the look of braided trunks like those found on money trees? Shop for a tree that’s already braided. It’s a process that happens when the tree is small. Your local tree expert will be able to teach you how to braid the tree as it grows in height. • For light-loving trees, place them in a window where they can see the sky to ensure they are receiving enough light. South-facing windows are best. • Still having a hard time pleasing your new family member? Take photos and send them to the shop where your tree was purchased so they can help diagnose its needs. “The more you live with plants and trees, the easier it becomes to intuit what they need,” says Orlando.  r Jordan’s Jungle, Pawtucket, R.I., Seed to Stem, Worcester, Mass.,

Fiber Concrete Flare Urn, $198 and $498 | Terrain

Domani Bilbao, $900 and $1,200 | Winston Flowers

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Pied-à-Terre Perfection

A Cambridge duplex gets an elegant overhaul with a side of collegiate cool. TEXT BY JULIE DUGDALE

A mix of styles, from art deco to midcentury to coastal chic, makes for a sophisticated lounge space grounded by a youthful touch of fun in the neon wall sign.

Lighting it up with custom neon

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t’s a college student’s dream: an ultra-hip but sophisticated crash pad to escape the chaos of campus life. Moreover, it’s a major convenience for parents: having a lovely home away from home for visiting the out-of-state college kid. So, for one couple with children attending Harvard and M.I.T., finding this 3,000-square-foot, two-bedroom Cambridge, Massachusetts, unit— half of a duplex overlooking the Charles River in Harvard Square— was a coup. Except for one thing: a dated, closed-off layout and heavyhanded design scheme in need of a top-to-bottom makeover. Having previously renovated a unit in the same complex, designer Kristin Paton made a natural choice for a quick turnaround

between the summer purchase and the holidays. “It was a real rabbit hole of tiny little rooms,” Paton says. “We gutted it, opened it up, and expanded it. It’s meant to be easy and fun. A hangout place where the kids can come with their friends.” The biggest change, she says, was knocking out the wall between the living room and the stairs, and replacing the tunnel-like staircase. The new stairway is a glass-andmetal stunner, crafted by Modern Metal Solutions, that features floating steps backlit by LED bulbs. While the lower level skews more cocktails-and-entertaining, with its velvet Chesterfield sofa and playful Hickory Chair stools, Paton kept the vibe laid-back and young-adult-friendly with custom-

TOP: A segmented layout was scrapped to create an airy, open floor plan with hardwoods, a fresh blue-gray-natural palette, and whimsical light fixtures. BOTTOM: A custom Ping-Pong table, set against Rivets wallpaper from Phillip Jeffries, plays to both sophisticated tastes and college-kid interests.

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An artsy nod to collegiate sensibilities

made neon wall lettering whose message, “Home is where the mat is,” is a nod to the couple’s son who wrestles at Harvard. The kitchen, formerly a shadowy box of a room, now begs for dinner party prep with an open layout and a fresh blue-and-white color scheme that speaks to the unit’s riverside location. The second level holds a show-stopping Ping-Pong table that keeps the playful streak going, while in the family room a Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams sectional is lounge-worthy without sacrificing style. “There’s a real mix of furnishings; we kept it mod, fun, and young,” Paton says. The design team and their clients placed the major emphasis on quality construction, Paton says, rather than on over-the-top furnishings. “The bones were really upgraded, but it’s a low-maintenance house. Nothing is too precious.” Translation: cool enough for college kids, pretty enough for parents, and easy enough for everybody.  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see Resources.

ABOVE: The stunning staircase of glass and metal rises to a casual family room that includes a dining nook and built-in bar. The Harvard logo was commissioned from artist Jennifer Lashbrook. RIGHT: A pillowy sectional sofa by the newly installed fireplace makes the family room the perfect kick-back-and-relax zone.

Architect & interior design: Kristin Paton, Kristin Paton Interiors Builder: Sea-Dar Construction Interior millwork: Furniture Design Services Landscape design: ZEN Associates

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Terraces on each level were designed by ZEN Associates with lowmaintenance plants and furnishings in a quiet, natural palette.

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on the market

Pay Per View

What you see is what you get—but the best vistas come at a premium. BY MARIA L A PIANA


s if we needed any more evidence that Boston is a city with swoon-worthy views— from its charming neighborhoods and bustling seacoast to sweeping vistas across the Charles River. A pretty panorama is always pleasing, often breathtaking; in real estate, they call it money in the bank. “While many variables figure into the pricing of a luxury residence in Boston, there are established expectations based on views,” says Jason Gell, president of the Boston chapter of the National Association of Realtors. All things being equal, “If there are two comparable units in, say, the Ritz-Carlton or the Millennium Tower, the one with the view is going to command a premium,” says Gell, a broker with Keller Williams in Brookline. It’s that simple—but why are we willing to pay more for the privilege of looking out and down on our surroundings? Urban planning experts say it’s because we associate things that are higher up with power and importance (think a CEO’s top-floor office). Also, high-rise apartments with views offer more privacy and control over one’s living experience; not many people can peer into your windows if you live on the 100th floor. A nice view is inherently pleasing; it makes a place feel light, bright, expansive…expensive. Which brings us to supply and demand: there are only so many view-enhanced homes on the market at any give time, so they will almost always be priced accordingly. So, what’s a view really worth? Most real estate agents say it’s hard

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As listing agent for this three-level Back Bay Boston penthouse, Patti Donovan knows how visceral a beautiful vista can be. “This is a brownstone, so it’s a very different experience from a high-rise,” she says. “There’s direct elevator access, so when you step out and look in either direction, you see vivid views—the city in the front, and the river in the back. It’s breathtaking to take in.” Contact: Listed by Patti Donovan and Diane Keliher, Keliher Real Estate, Boston, 617-267-0100, MLS: 72455258

to quantify. Anecdotally, depending on the market (and those other variables), an exceptional view might increase the price of a condo by as much as 40 to 50 percent, while a less-pleasant view could decrease it by about 25 percent or more. But it’s not an exact science, says Patti Donovan of Keliher Real Estate in Boston. “It has to do with how a view impacts the interior space, whether it’s guaranteed to be unobstructed in the future—and most importantly, how prospective buyers feel when they walk

in, and look out,” she says. “When you get to a particular luxury price point, it’s about lifestyle—and negative space,” says Gell. He explains: “Furnishings should never feel like they’re crowded into a home.” Wide views will make any residence look and feel grander than it is, he adds, “so a corner unit with floor-to-ceiling windows on a high floor is about as good as it gets.” Here are three exceptional city properties with views that are easy to love.  r Best of Both Worlds photos by Briggs Johnson

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Common rooms and away spaces abound in this open-plan penthouse with floor-to-ceiling windows that frame sweeping views of the skyline and waterfront. Versatility is the name of the game, according to listing agent George Sarkis. The space is designed to suit any lifestyle—whether you prefer frequent entertaining or just kicking back in the comfort of your own home.


Contact: Listed by George Sarkis, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, Boston, 781-603-8702, MLS: 72604320



Here’s one way to describe this boutique-building penthouse: two floors, an open plan, sleek finishes, and a cool, contemporary vibe. Add views and you have an extraordinary space that evokes both a sense of serenity (the Rose Kennedy Greenway, the harbor, and beyond) and one of excitement (a snapshot of the city with shopping, dining, and nightlife). Says listing agent Julie Sagan, “It really is the best of both!” Contact: Listed by Julie Sagan, Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty, Swampscott, Mass., 781-608-4159, MLS: 72527599


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Outdoor Spaces

Above and Beyond In the heart of Boston, naturally.


BY TOVAH MARTIN ifteen floors above a city that never pauses, let alone sleeps, the rooftop terrace of this Millennium Place home could be a seriously pulsating experience—but it’s not. Instead, the homeowners open the door to a high-rise backyard, complete with seating areas, a hot tub, and even succulent “lawns.” Most rooftop gardens segment space to create a cocoon within their frenetic surroundings. Peter White of ZEN Associates took a totally different approach. This garden embraces its view, framing the metropolis in layers of greenery. White took a space often buffeted by wind To contrast the sharp angles of the planters and steel edging corralling the groundcover sedum “lawn,” ZEN Associates custom designed an oval stainless-steel spa. 2020 | rise   39

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Outdoor Spaces

ABOVE: Sturdy fencing topped by a guardrail almost slips out of sight behind a series of fiberglass planters in varying sizes and two shades of putty holding conifers, perennials, hellebores, and sun-tolerant ferns. RIGHT: From the comfy four-season sitting room, the evergreens form a vista to frame the skyline.

and subjected to piercing sun and tamed it, creating a living experience that coaxes the homeowners outdoors. Stark was an understatement for the rooftop scene when the clients called on ZEN. The homeowners were making a 180-degree shift from a suburban farmhouse to the unabashedly modern penthouse apartment. Eager to embrace the urban experience but unwilling to leave fresh air out of the equation, they asked for ambience. White went many steps further to deliver a cohesive design linked by a circuit of sleek stone walkways. In lieu of lawn, sedums are corralled within strong geometric edging. An oval-shaped soaking spa softens the lines. Overhead lighting gives the urban garden levity and creates a handshake with the city rather than slipping into the shadows. Overhangs shield spaces from the beating sun. And layers of planters in various strong geometric shapes and sizes nurture bold statement plants all top-dressed in stone for anchoring purposes while being quenched by a discrete irrigation system. The result is so much more than just a backdrop; it’s a magnetic scene that draws the homeowners

Soft, curvaceous furniture complements the sharp lines outside outside whenever weather permits. Birds come and hit the high notes. Grandkids splash in the tub. And yes, Boston drivers periodically blast their horns below. But no one dwells on the urban babble. In this ecosystem above it all, serenity with a view is only natural.  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see


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The lacquered table in the intimate dining area is enlivened with a chrome base. Not to be outdone, the banquette sports bronze detailing. FACING PAGE: Designer Paula Daher’s skill for choosing unique accessories is evident throughout; atop an ebony chest leading the way to the great room resides a paper lamp similar in shape to a nautilus. Daher drew on memories of her Moroccan travels when designing the handsome screen.

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stylish cityinliving the


Twenty-nine floors above the Back Bay bustle, Paula Daher fashions an elegant, idea-rich residence. Text by MEGAN FULWEILER  | Photography by MICHAEL J. LEE

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Interior design: Paula Daher, Daher Interior Design Builder: Suffolk Construction Interior millwork: Woodmeister Master Builders

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The great room encompasses several different activity areas and a wealth of textures, such as the layered cowhide rugs beneath the coffee table at the room’s center, the high-gloss lacquer on the doors of the wet bar, and the nubby bouclé Pierre Frey fabric on the chairs around the corner cocktail table. The vibrant painting above the bar is by Peruvian artist Maria Cecilia Fernandez De Arrospide.

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Daher designed the fireplace’s marble surround and the screens on either side. Stepping up their profile, the three-part screens were wallpapered and then painted. The palette throughout is a sophisticated gray and white with the occasional spark of gold or emerald green.

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lenty of projects

are blessed with dream clients. But what if your clients were just that: only a dream? When Paula Daher was recruited to devise a model unit for Boston’s One Dalton Four Seasons Residences, she had to conjure the fictious couple who would occupy such a spectacular high-rise home. The unending city vistas were reason enough for anyone to desire the place, and in addition, the open layout allowed living, dining, and kitchen spaces to meld into one heavenly great room. Having owners to bounce ideas around with might have added something to the outcome, although it’s difficult to see how. Years of far-ranging travel have enhanced Daher’s eye for the sorts of colors and textures the condo needed to reach perfection. “The clients I envisioned wanted their home to be warm and comfortable but with a contemporary vibe,” she explains. Being worldly themselves, Daher reasoned, the couple’s “art, accessories, and furnishings would reflect their joie de vivre.” Indeed, global influences are evident the minute you cross the threshold and venture down the entry hall. Dark Moroccan-inspired screens and a luscious midcentury Murano glass light fixture, for instance, usher you into the home’s heart. Against a backdrop of soft gray and white, sophisticated colors like emerald green, mint, and black become jewel-like. There’s gold, too, to add a hint of shimmer and heighten the drama. A tufted velvet sofa anchors the great room’s main sitting area with its stone2020 | rise   47

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Daher added wall panels with bronze inserts to give the bedroom more interest. FACING PAGE: The den’s wallpaper is a Kirkby Design from Romo. Once again, Daher shows her talents for blending: the cubes are marble, the desk is leather-topped, and the arresting green chair wears a cotton/linen blend from Kelly Wearstler.

faced hearth, which Daher has cleverly flanked with architectural-like screens. But the designer also created a coveted destination by the bowed floor-to-ceiling window. A three-piece walnut puzzle table and four occasional chairs invite morning coffee takers and evening wine drinkers to sit and savor the skyscraper’s scenery. Should a passing cloud graze the sill, no one would be surprised. Just steps away, a bookcase of wood and metal provides a stage for good reads and keepsakes. The striking piece also gives weight to the airy room and helps define the dining area. Rather than a grandiose table that would, as Daher says, “monopolize space,” a petite lacquered table perches in front of a green banquette that practically seduces you to stretch out and spend the day. Two bedrooms were an option, but Daher’s make-believe clients converted one room into a den clad in a graphic wallpaper. The paper’s pattern is contemporary, but its flocked surface harks back to the damask papers in vogue decades ago, Daher points out. An old painting claims a spot above the linen-covered sofa. “I love mixing antique and modern elements,” she says. “It makes a home come to life.” In the same marry-and-merge spirit, the master bedroom sports a tailored walnut bed with a velvet-covered headboard. The contemporary sconces by

“I LOVE MIXING ANTIQUE AND MODERN ELEMENTS,” SAYS PAULA DAHER. “IT MAKES A HOME COME TO LIFE.” George Nelson add a sculptural touch. And the custom nightstands hold treasures like antique books with goldlettered spines and small Moroccan lanterns. The last, no doubt, to evoke nighttime reveries for Daher’s fairytale couple of romantic trips taken—and those yet to be had.  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see Resources.

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camera ready

Designer Patrick Planeta creates a South End condo that’s ready for its close-up. Text by BOB CURLEY  Photography by JOSHUA M C HUGH

Natural light spills through floor-to-ceiling windows onto midcentury furnishings set on a silky teardrop rug. The rounded lines of the chairs, cocktail table, and rug soften the home’s predominantly linear design.

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A tubular LED light from Luke Lamp Co.—twisted into shape by the designer and client—coils above the reflective surface of a Flexform Zefiro table and De Padova chairs clad in Spinneybeck leather. FACING PAGE: On the dining area wall, the owners’ original photos of Ellis Island are displayed on inlaid art hangers.

ioneering photographer Alfred Stieglitz said, “Wherever there is light, one can photograph,” and much the same can be said for interior design, which demands subtle interplay between light, color, textures, and patterns. For designer Patrick Planeta, enlivening a highrise South End condo unit meant taking a photographer’s nightmare—an enclosed space with a single wall of windows admitting intense natural light—and using angles, mirrors, windows, and a little artificial illumination to disburse precious lumens throughout the home, including a bedroom with the merest aperture to the outside world.

Sharpening Planeta’s focus even further: his clients were a pair of professional photographers acutely aware of the “quality and sense of light,” he says. “We needed a palette to collect light and have it bounce around the place.” The project began with the modest goal of lightening up the dark floors in the 1,850-squarefoot home, but as Planeta got underway, he says, “We realized they had a great space, so let’s make it greater.” The owners, armed with inspiration from a visit to the Boffi Soho kitchen showroom in Manhattan, moved from, “ ‘Let’s do a few things’ to ‘you have us really jazzed, and let’s see where we can go with it,’ ” 2020 | rise   53

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The absence of obstructions, such as pendant lights or a vent hood, means outside light can penetrate deep into the kitchen. Minimalist tap-operated lights hang almost invisibly above the custom Boffi kitchen island. Like the collected works elsewhere in the home, the framed prints on the shelf get moved or swapped occasionally, offering fresh looks for repeat guests.

Architectural and interior design: Patrick Planeta, Planeta Design Group

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Planeta recalls. The new Boffi kitchen was opened up to the living room with its midcentury furnishings, each space defined by tray ceilings subtly accented with LED lighting. A powerful recessed range vent over the redesigned kitchen island eliminated the need for a hood and made room for the sleek, touch-operated light fixtures that dangle above the stovetop. Signature pieces are used sparingly but to good effect, like a coiled rope light fixture over the dining room table that provides a quirky contrast to the home’s otherwise

linear design. Open-legged chairs arrayed on wide-planked oak floors are arrayed around the high-gloss dining room table. Raw plaster walls, commonly found in galleries, were chosen both to stand as a neutral background for displaying the owners’ photography and because the surface tends to absorb and “glow” with available light rather than reflect it, Planeta explains. Linear hangers built into the walls make it easy for the owners to move and hang their ever-changing collection of art—including a prominent pair of oversize prints of their

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A light-colored Luce chair and Frette linens on the bed, along with a glass wall that admits sunlight from the living room, brighten the master bedroom. The mitered Ann Sacks marble headboard shimmers like a waterfall. FACING PAGE: The view from the master bath includes a wall-size photo of a marsh.

ANGLES, MIRRORS, WINDOWS, AND A LITTLE ARTIFICIAL ILLUMINATION DISBURSE PRECIOUS LUMENS THROUGHOUT THE HOME. own photos of the derelict hospital on Ellis Island. “The hangers are like a graphite line around the apartment, almost like a horizon,” says Planeta, helping to break up the monotony of the blank surface and draw the eye to the works on display. To bring light into the master bedroom, Planeta replaced a wall with a large window of reflective glass. Moveable alpaca drapes, roll-down Lutron shades, and sliding wood doors all provide privacy.

A wall-size photo of a marsh emerges playfully from behind a set of closets, echoing the condo’s eyecatching views of the Charles River. “From a photographer’s perspective, the home’s design is very vivid and the play of contrasts is very strong,” Planeta says. For the delighted homeowners, the place is simply picture perfect.  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see


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Artwork by homeowner and designer Katie Frazier’s sister-in-law, Christina Jervey, and custom throw pillows add touches of subtle pattern to the living room. FACING PAGE: In the den, black leather sling chairs and sculptural floor lamps by Aerin for Visual Comfort provide symmetry, while the ottoman and cocktail tables soften the arrangement.

neutral ground A designer achieves easy, breezy, and effortless with a pared-down palette in her own South End home. Text by MARNI ELYSE KATZ | Photography by SARAH WINCHESTER

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s a designer, color and pattern are a big part of Katie Frazier’s everyday life. To counteract the visual chaos of the swatches and samples that surround her in the studio, never mind the whirlwind of activity and accoutrements that accompany life with two small children, Frazier favors a home that is calm, composed, and consistent. “I want to live in a serene space where I can escape from the constant stimulation,” she says. Her prescription for establishing a peaceful urban habitat in her airy 3,800-square-foot sublet starts with a neutral color palette. It’s a choice, she says, that surprises friends and clients, but has always been her personal preference. Don’t expect a monochromatic scheme in non-child-friendly beige. Frazier’s design is more bold than bland, with grounding black elements that run through the light-filled, single-level penthouse of this converted South End church. The choice of black was driven by the black sofa that the couple brought from their former loft. Since its scale was too small for the living room, it’s ensconced in the den, smack in front of a tall, pointy church window. That, in turn, spawned the black leather sling chairs, which Frazier had her eye on for years, as well as the textural black wool rug in the living room. “I always wanted to do a dramatic black sisal rug,” Frazier says. “This one feels like sisal, but isn’t, so the kids can spill on it.”

Vintage MR chairs by Mies van der Rohe surround the polished marble dining table. “The chairs already have wear and tear, so I don’t worry about the kids ruining them,” Frazier says. FACING PAGE: Frazier and her husband spend evenings around the gas fireplace in the den. The painting is by SoWa-based artist Brittney Ciccone, who is also a close friend.

Interior design: Katie Frazier, Katie Frazier Interiors

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As a foil to the black, Frazier took cues from the gray, taupe, and cream veining of the living room’s Bardiglio marble fireplace surround. While the den is a grownups-only getaway, the living room is family central. As such, it’s more relaxed, with softer silhouettes and a paler palette. Sofas are upholstered in cool gray performance linen, and off-white pillowy chairs resemble clouds. Frazier pulls these shades into the master bedroom, where the overall scheme is lighter still. Except for those skinny slashes of black. “I don’t want every room to feel the same, but I love consistency,” Frazier says. “All the spaces are tied together.” Frazier also loves symmetry, which in her home reads as modern and relaxed rather than rigid. Chairs, lamps, pillows, and pictures come in pairs, though not everywhere. Sometimes it’s sets of three. The arrangements create a reassuring rhythm. “I find symmetry very calming,” she says. “A balanced environment helps you feel balanced inside.” When Frazier uses color, she does so with purpose. She explains that using a colorful piece—or a trio of pieces as she did in the playroom—is more impactful against a neutral backdrop. “It jumps out and allows

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The nursery’s rug is joyful without seeming childish, and an Eames lounge chair makes for a sophisticated reading spot. Frazier says, “The room is happy but consistent with the rest of the house with its modern feel.” FACING PAGE: Pops of peppy color punctuate the playroom. The modular sofa by Nugget can be configured into forts. The trio of prints are by London photographer Karin Berndl through ArtStar.

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All the artwork is meaningful. For the master bedroom, Frazier framed a poem her husband wrote in celebration of their first wedding anniversary. The ink blot figure is another piece by Brittney Ciccone. FACING PAGE: The terrace, which opens off the living room and overlooks the city, is a summertime haven. “It’s our tiny backyard,” Frazier says.

you to focus on it without distraction,” she says. Despite the literal bursts of color in the playroom, the space is also quite orderly. “Even when there is a toy explosion, it feels grounded,” she says.

“That feeling of overstimulation is so true for our kids, too. This is their own little oasis.”  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see Resources.

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Designer Dee Elms crafted sophisticated scenes and sightlines at every turn in the ninth-floor condominium overlooking Boston Harbor. The dining room features a banquette of her design and a Branching Burst chandelier by Lindsey Adelman. FACING PAGE: The entryway extends a dramatic welcome with its midcentury bench and a large abstract painting.

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fresh aerie

Empty nesters find the perfect perch in a modern Seaport District condo. Text by MARIA LAPIANA | Photography by MICHAEL J. LEE

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The open living and dining area offers a lot of flexible seating options that are great for entertaining. The space is large enough to accommodate a show-stopping back-to-back sofa and a versatile coffee table that provides storage and surface area in equal measure.

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t was going to be the couple’s pied-à-terre, a toe-dip into city living, a test to see if they liked the empty-nester lifestyle. Who knew that the condo in a luxury highrise overlooking Boston Harbor would, in no time at all, feel so completely, inexorably like home? After raising their family in coastal Marblehead, Massachusetts, Judi and Joey Karas decided, a little hesitantly, to give city life a try. “We knew the building, and we knew what we wanted,” says Joey. “Our family home was beautiful—I think you’d call it French Country—but we wanted

Interior design: Dee Elms, Elms Interior Design Builder: Sleeping Dog Properties

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A white kitchen has been jazzed up considerably by the backsplash of custom smoky mirrored glass tiles. FACING PAGE: An alcove was transformed into a cozy office with the addition of steel-and-glass doors.


something different: a modern, sophisticated place that felt to us like ‘new’ Boston.” They had every confidence that Dee Elms could make it happen, as did she. “We met and walked through the space,” remembers the Boston designer. “It was plain, but they were excited to put a stamp on it. They asked, ‘How can you help us make this our home?’ ” Judi and Joey were starting fresh, so it was a soup-to-nuts proposition, the designer explains. They told her they wanted a polished look with a vibe inspired by industrial design, with touches of glam. Then they gave her carte blanche. There wasn’t a lot they were able to do structurally to the three-bedroom, 2,100-square-foot condo, so Elms let the furnishings do the talking, defining spaces throughout. She found a practical solution to the dilemma of opposing views (the TV and the harbor) in the open living/dining room space, designing a two-sided sofa with one straightrun side that overlooks the goings-on outdoors, and one (with a chaise) that faces the TV. “We love how good Dee is with space, and how she made everything fit perfectly and yet feel flexible,” says Joey. A tufted banquette makes the most of the dining area, along with a marbletopped table on a metal base; surrounding the table are four eye-catching threelegged chairs. The backsplash in the adjacent kitchen has special meaning for the Karases. Designed by Elms, the subway-style tiles are made of diamond wire glass and fabricated by craftsmen at Joey’s architectural glass company, Karas & Karas, in South Boston. A small room off the main living area 2020 | rise   71

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became an intriguing office space with an Elms-designed metal and glass multipane door that looks as though it was reclaimed from an old factory. Smart storage solutions include built-ins and the installation of a Murphy bed in the guest room/den, a welcome feature for the couple’s grown daughter who enjoys staying over. The palette is neutral and serene, especially in the master bedroom. Elms chose textures and finishes that feel cohesive and restful: wood wall panels, a custom headboard, a silk rug, and crisp bedding. Shots of color along with subtle and not-so-subtle industrial touches give the apartment movement and energy. Showstopping light fixtures add glimmer and shine. Elms describes the overall look as “fun, upbeat, and a little bit rock-and-roll.” Joey says, “It’s exactly what Judi and I were hoping for.”  r EDITOR’S NOTE: For details about this home, see Resources.

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A restful palette and rich textures, including silk wallcovering by Phillip Jeffries, give the master bedroom its serene aura. Elms designed the platform bed and the nightstands, as well as the upholstered wall behind the bed.

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resources A guide to the professionals in this issue’s featured homes

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Architectural and interior design: Kristin

Paton, Kristin Paton Interiors, Cambridge, Mass., 617-491-9000, kristinpatoninteriors. com Builder: Sea-Dar Construction, Boston, 617-423-0870, Interior millwork: Furniture Design Services, Peabody, Mass., 978-531-3250, furniture Landscape design: ZEN Associates, Woburn, Mass., 800-834-6654, Staircase builder: Chris Aubrey, Modern Metal Solutions, Hudson, N.H., 603-4023022,


Landscape design: ZEN Associates, Woburn,

Mass., 800-834-6654,


Interior design: Paula Daher, Daher Interior

Design, Boston, 617-236-0355, Builder: Suffolk Construction, Boston, 617-445-3500, Interior millwork: Woodmeister Master Builders, Holden, Mass., 800-221-0075,


Architectural and interior design: Patrick

Planeta, Planeta Design Group, Boston, 617-956-0805,


Interior design: Katie Frazier, Katie Frazier Interiors, Boston, 719-339-5730, PHOTOGRAPHY: GREG PREMRU INTERIOR DESIGN: JILL NAJNIGIER


Interior design: Dee Elms, Elms Interior Design, Boston, 617-451-1555, Builder: Sleeping Dog Properties, Boston, 617-576-6100,

Rise, Spring 2020 © 2020 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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Dynamic Duo

Boston’s Harbor Towers weren’t always so wellloved as they are now. Designed by the legendary architect Henry N. Cobb of I.M. Pei & Partners, the two forty-story towers—still the city’s tallest residential buildings—were built in 1971 as affordable rental housing. Not everyone was fond of their Brutalist style, and in those days, the 76  rise  | 2020

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surrounding neighborhood was essentially an industrial wasteland. The 1980s revitalization of the waterfront changed the buildings’ fortunes. Fifty years later, the twin towers hold luxury condominiums coveted for their magnificent views of the harbor and downtown Boston. r —Paula M. Bodah Wikimedia Commons

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2/14/20 10:26 AM | 617-333-6800 Architect: Hacin & Associates Designer: Jama Samek Interiors Artwork Consultant: Jacqui Becker Photographer: Trent Bell

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