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FOR QUESTIONS CALL: Kollette Greene 214-891-2947

From the first toast to the final bite, relish every moment and meal.

Cooking. Refrigeration. Dishwashing. Manhattan • 150 East 58th Street, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10155 Roslyn Heights • 170 Mineola Avenue, Roslyn Heights, NY 11577 Pine Brook • 25 Riverside Drive, Pine Brook, NJ 07058


features a hamptons vibe | 42 Purchasing a Far Hills home they’d been eyeing for years, a family trades Mediterranean style for a seashore feel.

island of culinary delights | 46

One key feature helps an Allendale kitchen become more attractive, more efficient and more fun.

mountain marvel | 50 A Wyckoff family of skiers wanted to expand their vacation retreat—and still make the most of its breathtaking views.

a living room comes to life | 56

Recipe for success in one Franklin Lakes redo: Take the space everyone’s been avoiding and make it the star.

spacious, but oh-so cozy | 62

Building a new home, a young family had goals that appeared to conflict—until a great designer stepped in.

the river rules

Equally suited for reverie or revelry, this waterfront Brielle custom construction offers year-round appeal as a family’s forever home.




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ON THE COVER: Designer Danielle Palmadessa turns a mishmash of a living room into lounging and entertaining central for a Franklin Lakes family. Photo by Mike Van Tassell.


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W I N T E R 2 02 0

contents 42

departments memo | 8

top choices | 80

Even during a pandemic, your home should be one of your first thoughts.

With the right tools to tend to the flames, you can spark conversation and keep company cozy.

the guide | 11 What’s up, what’s new and what to do.

finishing touch | 84

real estate | 16

A textured wall is but one way to achieve a little drama.

A fireplace in the master bedroom or sitting room is a nice luxury, but why settle when you can buy a new home with a fireplace in the space you’d least expect?

56 50

material world | 20 Say so long to your grandmother’s traditional oak, walnut and mahogany furniture and accessories.

hot stuff | 22 Geometric shapes add interest and elegance to your living room.

fine art | 24 Why use just one when multiple materials can make any piece stand out?


vintage finds | 26 Reflect on the beauty of these glass antiques—from close or afar.


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trend report | 28 It’s polite to come into the fold with pieces that add dimension to any room.


Tracy Pearce Interior Design | www.PearceInteriorDesign.com

Web www.richardfhallcustomhomes.com

Phone 732.223.1211

Ever since he was ten years old, Richard Hall wanted to build the largest and best homes on the Jersey Shore. After graduating from high school and starting his own business, he’s done just that. Today, Richard F. Hall Custom Homes is known as the highest quality builder in Jersey Shore’s waterfront area. “I’m most proud of our customer satisfaction, with over 150 highly customized homes we’ve built,” says Hall. “I have a relentless desire to give our customers the highest quality workmanship, service and satisfaction which can only be achieved with over 40 years of experience.” The company has expanded into new offices at 400 Union Avenue in Brielle. “Feel free to stop by our office,” adds Hall. “Let us earn your trust to become your builder of choice.”

Fax 732.223.1811

Email info@richardfhallcustomhomes.com


Editor in Chief RITA GUARNA

a fine house

I can’t mention the pandemic anymore. It’s in the news, in our minds, in the air every day. To anyone who thinks home design is a luxury in this unsettling, unprecedented moment in our lives, I’d say that now it’s more important than ever. It shouldn’t be a second thought, but a first. I’m reminded of the chorus from the 1970s song “Our House” by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. You know it: It opens with “Our house is a very, very, very fine house.” It’s not that difficult to make our home fine. And it makes sense. Why not set a beautiful table when we’re worried about going to a restaurant or get the newest hi-tech TV for a home theater when going to the movies remains verboten? Now too is the time to paint a room a new color, buy luxurious sheets for your bed and a comfy couch for your clan to gather. And now is definitely the time to renovate a rec room, as I recently did, or redo a bathroom or other

Creative Director STEPHEN M. VITARBO Senior associate editor DARIUS AMOS

Lifestyle editor HALEY LONGMAN

space in your home, like the families featured in our winter issue. An Allendale husband and wife, for instance, focused their attention on the outdated kitchen of their 1970s-style home. With the help of Wyckoffbased designer Sharon Sherman, the couple got the improvements they wanted to rekindle their love of cooking. Turn to “Island of Culinary Delights” on page 46 to see and read about the project. Then there’s a Franklin Lakes family that finally tackled the one room in the house containing everything they no longer wanted: the living room. Danielle Palmadessa, a designer from the same town, stepped in to transform the underused area into a modern, multifunctional space that they now love. The story is in “A Living Room Comes to Life” beginning on page 56. Sometimes renovating one room isn’t enough— and you take on the entire house. When a family of four finally moved into the Far Hills home of their dreams, they asked Watchung’s Pam Cooper to give it a seashore style without the use of nautical blues or shells. Turn to “A Hamptons Vibe” on page 42 to see Cooper’s work in the dining, family and living rooms. We’re told the renovations to the rest of the home, including the master bedroom, are ongoing. We can’t wait to see the finished product. One day, hopefully soon, we’ll look back on this time and be happy that we made improvements to our homes—improvements that will bring enjoyment for years to come. Now more than ever we need our house to serve us well. We need it to be a “very, very, very fine house.”


MARKETING, DIGITAL & OPERATIONS director of marketing & digital media NIGEL EDELSHAIN

production director SUSAN WINDRUM Advertising Services director JACQUELYNN FISCHER

circulation manager KATHY WENZLER graphic designer, ad services VIOLETA MULAJ production Art associate CHRIS FERRANTE Accounting KASIE CARLETON, STEVEN RESNICK, KATIE TORRE communications manager CATHERINE ROSARIO executive assistant PENNY GLASS BOAG PUBLISHED BY Chairman CARROLL V. DOWDEN President & CEO MARK DOWDEN Senior Vice Presidents SHAE MARCUS, CARL OLSEN Vice Presidents NIGEL EDELSHAIN, THOMAS FLANNERY, RITA GUARNA, STEVEN RESNICK, DIANE VOJCANIN NJ HOME magazine is published by Wainscot Media, 1 Maynard Drive, Park Ridge, NJ 07656. Copyright © 2020 by Wainscot Media, LLC. All rights reserved. Editorial Contributions: Write to Editor, NJ HOME, 1 Maynard Drive, Park Ridge, NJ 07656; telephone 201.782.5730; email rita.guarna@wainscotmedia.com. The magazine is not responsible for the return or loss

Rita Guarna Editor in Chief editor@wainscotmedia.com

of unsolicited submissions. Subscription Services: To inquire about a subscription, to change an address or to purchase a back issue or a reprint of an article, please write to NJ HOME, Circulation Department, 1 Maynard Drive, Park Ridge, NJ 07656; telephone 201.573.5541; email kathy.wenzler@wainscotmedia.com. Advertising Inquiries: Contact Thomas Flannery at


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201.571.2252 or thomas.flannery@wainscotmedia.com.

Diane Durocher Interiors Sophisticated - Elegant - Timeless

Diane Durocher Interiors is an award winning design firm that specializes in creating beautiful interiors customized to reflect the individual needs and unique style of each client. Diane Durocher, ASID, IIDA, CAPS, CID P: 201.825.3832 E: diane@dianedurocherinteriors.com

ID# 21ID00023200 Ramsey, New Jersey www.dianedurocherinteriors.com

the guide




Looking for a new home accessory that’s funghi-fun and Instagram-approved? Try the mushroom lamp, a light fixture in the shape of the beloved veggie that’s both stylistically modern and psychedelically vintage. This nightstand accessory will make your bedroom feel like a cozy woodland, or it can cap off an eclectic hallway console. Basically, mushroom lamps are charming, and that’s just what your space might need right now.

Kara Mann is known throughout the interior design world for combining formal elements with unexpected materiality and architecture—she’s been described as “the sparkplug of the design world.” Fitting then that she would team up with CB2, Crate & Barrel’s sister store, on a new line of home products. The Kara Mann Collection features more than 70 new items that combine the designer’s cool style with CB2’s eclectic aesthetic. So imagine rugs, bedding, lighting and décor in a variety of elevated materials—from silk and slubbed sateen to sprayed concrete and tonal swirl resin. The best part: The pieces range from $29 to $2,000, hitting just about every price point in between.



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Not ready for commitment? Rentable furniture is becoming a major trend. One of the first to launch in this arena is New Yorkbased Conjure, which rents trendy furniture to savvy shoppers in the tri-state area for three to 12 months at a time. The brand’s demographic is primarily millennials (which could explain why its selection features lots of Instagram-friendly pieces), but anyone who likes the mid-century vibe will find congenial items here. (And, bonus, you won’t have to worry about storing furniture or fitting it into a new room if you move.) And as with a car lease, there’s a provision by which if you like your rental pieces you can buy them outright or trade them in for similar items at the end of the borrowing term.

the guide


You don’t have to be one who goes against the grain to embrace the unusual yet modern style of a hanging fireplace. Also known as a floating fireplace, this indoor feature is suspended from either a ceiling or wall—a fresh take on the traditional built-in brick or stone fixtures. Most are sculpted in unique designs that exude a contemporary vibe. But they not only look cool; hanging fireplaces are practical too. They take up less space than old-fashioned fireplaces, and the majority are designed to consume gas, which makes them cleaner and more efficient than the wood-burning variety. Fireplace specialists such as The Fireplace Place in Fairfield can assist customers in all things floating fireplace, from FAQ to installation.




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Do you have a cruise booked any time soon? If the answer is no, as we suspect, make room for furniture that can at least make you feel like you’re sailing the Mediterranean. Parisian design studio Pierre Frey’s newest collection, Verso, pays homage to its founder, René Prou, a renowned 20th century designer who was famous partly for his vintage travel aesthetic. The reimagined collection, in partnership with Beirut-based design duo David Raffoul and Nicolas Moussallem (David/Nicolas), pays homage to the transatlantic ocean liners of the era, featuring modular pieces such as bookshelves, tables, sofas and chairs best suited for compact spaces (though not quite as compact as cruise-ship cabins!). They’re vintage in that they could’ve worked in sophisticated rooms in the ’30s, but will still have relevance decades from now.

We could all use a little bit of calm after this helluva year: What if one swipe of paint could begin it? Sherwin-Williams has revealed its official 2021 Color of the Year and it’s “Urbane Bronze,” a soothing, neutral tone that’s inspired by nature and can help create your own personal inhome retreat. “Urbane Bronze is a comforting color, drawing from nature for a feeling of relaxation and serenity,” says Sue Wadden, the company’s director of color marketing. The tone pairs nicely with wooden accents, woven textiles and other natural finishes and works on an accent wall or to cover a whole room. Calmness, commence.

These days, furniture designers strive to make things that show not just style, but also sustainability. One way is by creating collections—or individual pieces—made from reused and recycled materials, and such a creation is the Vela chair by Italian brand Calligaris. The sleek, modern piece is made from eco-friendly fabric, bioplastic and a household plastic called polypropylene that is 40 percent recycled material. Another option is the N02 Recycle chair from Nendo for Fritz Hansen, which melds Danish and Japanese design aesthetics via materials such as polypropylene, recycled steel (the base) and aluminum (the swivel stands). We also love the Sage Collection from British brand Benchmark, which features office desks, chairs and benches from sustainable materials such as wood, wool, felt and cork. Benchmark even recently instituted a “take-back scheme” in which customers can return these pieces to the company when they’re no longer needed so they can be refurbished or donated.

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the guide


Opposing trends are afoot this season: Some people hunkering down for cold weather, others making a quarantine-inspired move for more spacious living. Not sure if entering the housing market this winter is for you? Consider New Jersey Realtors’ real estate stats from last November while you’re thinking about a move—or just staying put:


The number of single-family homes that closed in November 2019, down 3.6 percent from the previous year.


New listings of single-family homes in November 2019, down 11.4 percent from the year before.


Median sales price of a singlefamily home in November 2019, a 7.1 percent increase over 2018 statistics.


Average sales price of single-family homes in November 2019, up 4.9 percent from the previous year.



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Average days properties had been on the market in November 2019, down 2.9 percent from 2018. Source: New Jersey Realtors


Her work is easily recognizable, but make no mistake: Award-winning interior designer Marie Flanigan ensures that each project reflects the unique character of her clients. In her new book, The Beauty of Home (Gibbs Smith, $40.50), Flanigan offers readers a tour of her workbook and the nine elements that define her interiors, from architecture and composition to illumination to surprise. Similarly, Matthew Patrick Smyth follows his own creative path, recalling personal travels around the world that inspire designs for New York City apartments, New England waterfront cottages and Florida coastal homes. Through a Designer’s Eye (The Monacelli Press, $39.49) looks at Smyth’s experiences while examining five components that go into each of his projects. Decorating isn’t just about putting pieces together to create the perfect living space. In author and party designer Guendalina Litta’s Dream Makers: Bespoke Celebrations (Rizzoli, $85), design and décor mean planning the magical moments for her clients. The tome features colorful photography and a behind-thescenes look at the details Litta puts into each of her clients’ celebrations, from the deliberate strokes of her calligraphers to the steady hands of her painters.

PUMPED-UP PAISLEY There’s paisley, and then there’s paisley fit for royalty. The latter is the inspiration behind luxury fabrics company de Le Cuona’s new pattern aptly titled Victoria Paisley, after the former Queen of England’s drawing room. The standard prettiness of paisley gets a regal twist in this textile that’s made of cotton and wool and features intricate designs of both the teardrop-shaped pattern and majestic castles. Victoria Paisley comes in five different, all-neutral color combinations to complement any space.


Art need not just hang on the wall. Kelly Behun’s collaboration with Hudson Valley Lighting brings sculpture and beauty to the bedside table, a shelving unit, a tabletop—or anywhere else a room could use a little illumination. The 30-piece collection of table lamps, sconces and pendants is primarily a blackand-white palette made of marble, alabaster, enamel and other tactile materials. “I think lighting should be able to hold its own in a room, looking just as beautiful switched off as it does on,” Behun has said. Brass accents add a modern flair to these punchy and unique pieces that will light up any room—in more ways than one!



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real estate

a hot commodity


| NJHome

A fireplace in the master bedroom or sitting room is a nice luxury, but why settle when you can buy a new home with a fireplace in the space you’d least expect?

750 BUTTERNUT DR., FRANKLIN LAKES $1,995,000, 6 bed, 7 bath, 8,300 sq. ft. Traditional elegance meets modern living in this luxurious center-hall colonial in one of Bergen County’s most desirable towns. Get your zen on and warm up by the fire in your yoga studio, just off the main family room behind a set of French doors. Or, you can entertain a crowd with plenty of social distance to spare in the heated pool, indoor basketball court and the open-concept lower level, which includes a gourmet kitchen and a bright, airy sunroom that beckons to be used all year round. CONTACT: MAGGIE SHERMAN D’AQUILA, COMPASS NEW JERSEY, 917.715.5055

// IT’S TIME TO GET ORGANIZED sh e lving & rack s • c a bin et s • ove rh ea d storag e • f lo oring





real estate 45 DRYDEN RD., BASKING RIDGE $1,150,000, 6 bed, 5 bath, 4,397 sq. ft. Bask in the beauty of this spacious Basking Ridge home located on a tranquil, tree-lined cul-de-sac. The custom gas fireplace in the breakfast area of the open-concept, state-of-the-art and sundrenched kitchen adds both literal and figurative warmth to the most trafficked space of the house. An en suite home office with generous work space (and another fireplace in the living room) rounds out the first floor; five large bedrooms plus an expansive master suite make the upper level a retreat in and of itself too. CONTACT: MARIE YOUNG, COLDWELL BANKER REALTY, 908.938.2525

211 DOUGLASS AVE., BERNARDSVILLE $6,950,000, 5 bed, 9 bath, 11,088 sq. ft. You control the temperature in this home office that is equipped with its very own working fireplace—one of six throughout the property—and double doors overlooking 22 acres of manicured grounds. The home itself was built in 1999 and renovated in 2015 and is inspired by a European countryside manor, with its three-bedroom cottage and a two-story carriage house in addition to the extravagant main estate. A mahogany bar, media room, billiards room, card room and 40-foot pool further add to this gem’s unrivaled amenities.


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117 PEQUEST RD., ANDOVER $1,250,000, 5 bed, 6 bath, 6,965 sq. ft. The lucky new owners of this impressive, one-of-a-kind home will have 7 acres, six bathrooms and five bedrooms to call their own. Cozy up by the fire with a book in the library featuring custom built-ins, a recessed ceiling and panoramic views of the mountains. End your day with your pick of vino from the 2,500-bottle custom wine cellar, a dip in the hot tub and/or some friendly competition in the game room. CONTACT: HEIDI DELAHANTY, RE/MAX PLATINUM GROUP, 973.726.5700

Countertops • Fireplace Surrounds • Vanities • Bars • Outdoor Kitchens


material world

Enjoy the sea every time you turn on the Egee floor lamp, which features ethically sourced driftwood from Normandy. Available at jalanmiami.com.

No two Kazu Dragon tree sculptures by Arteriors are alike—the organic nature of the driftwood guarantees you’ll have a one-of-a-kind piece of art. Available at perigold.com.

Showcase nature and artisan craftsmanship with the Currey & Company driftwood chandelier. The wood is unfinished, allowing gazers to appreciate the natural state. Available at Capitol Lighting, multiple locations.

wild wood

The Cassandra wood candle holder with hewn detailing secures six votive candles and adds a rustic vibe to any décor. Available at Ashley HomeStore, multiple locations.


Transform your room into a magical forest by adding Welland Industries’ root end. Each is made of reclaimed cedar. Available at houzz.com.


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Made of reclaimed teak root, the openbottom bunching cube by Global Direct can be used in a variety of ways: ottoman, end table, box planter and more. Available at Lowe’s, multiple locations.

If only your firewood stack looked as neat as Litton Lane’s teak wood stump sculpture. Standing 2 feet tall, the piece is perfect for any tabletop or mantel. Available at The Home Depot, multiple locations.

yourSTYLE GPS something for everyone.

1.800.CALL GPS | shopgps.com Schedule your design consultation Bayonne | Bergenfield | Eatontown | Edison | Flemington | Green Brook Hawthorne | Lakewood | Matawan | Morris Plains | Orange | Paramus For additional locations please visit our website.

hot stuff

You can’t go wrong with the right angles of Gus Modern’s Element rug, made of 100 percent New Zealand wool. Available at lumens.com.

The Jacques stacking side table— with its square shape and Greek key design—is the perfect accent whichever way you turn it. Available at ebanista.com

Put a new slant on your novels and volumes by stacking them in the Byram Brandie geometric bookcase by Foundry Select. Available at wayfair.com.

Thanks to a sturdy, triangular glass top, you’ll get a good glimpse of the shapely base of Fine Mod Imports’ Tribeca coffee table. Available at Macy’s, multiple locations.

fine figures

With its unique Scandinavian design, Norpel Furniture’s hollow geometric chair will be the seat everyone wants to take when they enter your home. Available at norpelfurniture. com.


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Vivid dreams are in store when you rest on this Maharam checker pillow by Alexander Girard. Available at maharam.com.

Your guests will be fixated on the geometric gold channeling of this 68-inch server from Bassett Mirror’s Thoroughly Modern Collection. Available at luxedecor.com.

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fine art

Los Angeles street artist Amy Smith used wood panel to create “Nothing Stopping Me” and employed a neon artist to give it a contemporary (and functional) “pop” finish. Available at 1stdibs.com.

Dressed in a gown and head wrap made with layers of gold leaf, turquoise and umber paint, the subject of “Holiness” represents women of the Renaissance and modern art, says artist Scott Dykema. Available at 1stdibs.com.

mixed up


Want to add a conversation starter to your room? Hop to it by adding the wood and glass jackrabbit by Seattle-based sculptor Michael Alm. Find out more at michaelalm.com.

London-based artist Louise McNaught combined bright colors with majestic animals of Celtic mythology, such as deer, to create ethereal images. Find out more at louisemcnaught.com.

William Finlayson Jr. must’ve had an illuminating incident that led to his “Aha Moment,” made of acrylic and neon. Available at 1stdibs.com.


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Like every woman, Lawrence Feir’s welded steel “Ophilia” is one of a kind. A small door in her mid-section opens to reveal a quartz crystal. Find out more at lawrencefeir.com.

A student of popart and culture, American artist Paul Rousso recreated The New York Times’ Arts & Leisure section using mixed media and polystyrene. Available at 1stdibs.com.

Inspired by Egyptian hieroglyphs and graffiti, Ricky Hunt used thread, mixed media and wood panel to forge “Brigitte In The Sun 3.” The string-art piece stands 4 feet tall and is nearly 4 feet wide. Available at 1stdibs.com.

vintage finds

The light-scattering properties of the Mille Nuits candlestick’s Baccarat crystal add elegance and illumination to any room. Available at Bloomingdale’s, multiple locations.

You don’t need flowers to accentuate the style of the Lötz Candia Papillon vase by Loetz Glass. Made of clear glass in Austria circa 1898, it’s elegant on its own. Available at pamono.com.

When affixed to your ceiling, this large-scale, 12-light Murano glass chandelier from the 1940s will draw all eyes upward. Available at legacyantiques.com.



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On its own or filled with goodies, this set of French glass candy jars creates quite a display. Available at 1stdibs.com.

Dinner guests will always stay for dessert when it’s served in these 1930s Steuben glass-stemmed sherbet goblets and saucers. Available at 1stdibs.com.

When lit, the orange acrylic blossoms on the round Austrian mirror by Emil Stejnar for Rupert Nikoll, circa 1960s, come to life. Available at 1stdibs.com.

With a light citrine color, this Steuben glass bowl from the early 20th century will sparkle as your table’s centerpiece. Available at 1stdibs.com.



973.929.2080 L O C A L FA M I LY OW N E D AND OPERATED SINCE 1965



trend report

Wrapped in luxurious ivory leather atop a white oak base, the Colette pouf by Global Views has a leg up on other ottomans. Available at globalviews.com. With soft velvet upholstery and pleated sides and back, this Guyou accent arm chair will add sophisticated style to any space. Available at amazon.com.

pleats and thank you

Thanks to the Krysta pleated lamp shade, the clean lines of this Baccarat crystal lamp run from top to bottom. Available at Neiman Marcus, multiple locations.


This pleated piece by Emissary can solve seating and serving dilemmas—use it as an eye-catching stool or table. Available at burkedecor.com.


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What’s on the inside doesn’t always matter most, as the textured doors of the Annella low cabinet by Mr. Brown London provide plenty of visual appeal. Available at franceandson.com.

Sure, the pleated pillow by Surya is a good spot to rest your head, but its chic and contemporary design is best left uncovered. Available at Lowe’s, multiple locations.

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Natural Stone & Quartz

Architectural Design by RS Mannino Architects + Builders


winter 2020

“I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it.” —William Shakespeare

the river rules Equally suited for reverie or revelry, this waterfront Brielle custom construction offers year-round appeal as a family’s forever home.


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Text by Nayda Rondon Design by Tracy Pearce Photography by Patricia Burke

With a clear sight line to the beautiful water views, the airy entry foyer of this Brielle home offers a preview of its Nantucket feel with its stained ceiling, black iron lanterns and many wood elements. The shiplap and trim are painted in Benjamin Moore White Dove, the walls in Benjamin Moore Stone White. The client’s own salvaged console table marries perfectly with the woven mirror above, which, along with the area rug and other decorative accents, was sourced from the Tracy Pearce Interior Design Furniture Showroom. The floors—engineered European white oak custom-treated with a mix of two stain colors and top-coated with a satin sheen—are featured throughout the entire house to enhance the sense of expansive continuity.


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Celebrated as a “boaters’ town,” Brielle enjoys miles of waterfront along the Manasquan River. Imagine cool river breezes, the soothing sounds of water lapping against a wooden deck, the multihued magnificence of a setting sun slowly disappearing behind waves of seagrass swaying in the wind. The appeal of the serenity and beauty of the area’s waterside life proved irresistible for an outdoors-loving family. “There is something peaceful about always having the river in your side view when you are doing something,” the homeowner explains. “Whether you’re sitting outside to read, watching a sports game or cooking dinner, it is always in view.” The homeowners, young professionals with a love of water sports, found a riverfront property with killer scenery. But the existing house on the lot—a small circa 1970s Cape Cod—fell short of what they envisioned for their primary residence. That didn’t deter them, however. The river vista and the privacy afforded by its location on a small dead-end street in a residential area of high-end homes won out. They’d tear down and rebuild from scratch to create a home that satisfied all of their expectations. Apart from expansive water views, the clients’ other objective was a design that exuded New England character with a touch of Southern charm, and featured modern functionality, comfort, lots of custom touches and an environmentally sustainable aesthetic. To help them realize the ambitious project, the homeowners—relying on rave referrals and impressive work portfolios—enlisted their dream team. Rice and Brown Architects in Sea Girt and the Brielle-based Richard F. Hall Custom Homes took care of the architectural and construction aspects, while designer Tracy Pearce of Point Pleasant Beach-based Tracy Pearce Interior Design

This page: In the delightful kitchen, the library-style ladder and rail system add a novel touch that’s as charming as it is convenient for easy access to all those hard-to-reach storage spaces. The custom-made cabinets—painted in Benjamin Moore Buxton Blue—were designed by Tracy Pearce Interior Design and fabricated by New Horizons Custom Interiors. The glass-front hanging cabinets— achieved by leaving the cabinets backless to expose the wall of 3-inch-by-6-inch glossy white ceramic subway tiles—add to the casual, open feel. Opposite page, top: The spacious kitchen features two islands—one for food prep, the other for serving and seating. The prep station is a butcher-block island with a sink, a wood base painted in Sherwin-Williams Graphite and a top made of end-grain maple. “The end grains of the wood absorb the impact of the knife when cutting, and it’s easy to maintain,” interior designer Tracy Pearce explains. The seating island is topped with Zeal White Satin, an attractive quartz material that’s extremely durable and nonabsorbent and never has to be sealed, making it perfect for high-traffic spaces such as a kitchen. Opposite page, bottom: The hearth-arched gas pizza oven was another must-have for the homeowners. “They enjoy cooking with fresh ingredients,” says Pearce. “Pizzas can be rolled out and ingredients chopped on the butcher-block island before sliding in the oven, which makes 12-inch pizzas in three to five minutes. It’s a great way to include family and friends in the cooking process.”


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tackled all other facets of the interior and exterior. “Our homes are strictly custom from beginning to end, one-of-a-kind, using the latest advancements in materials as well as Old World methods of installation,” says Richard Hall of Richard F. Hall Custom Homes. “This home is a prime example of both.” “This home is different, but very appropriate for its location,” says Chris Rice of Rice and Brown Architects. “It’s a touch of the Low Country with a Nantucket shingle flair.”Adds his partner, Dustin Brown, “It’s classic, thoughtful and stylish.” The project, which took 18 months from start to finish, was completed in March 2019. From the beautiful architecture designed to showcase the river views to the master carpentry to the interior finishing touches, no detail was overlooked. “Being on the water, the home had to be constructed to hold up against wave action from possible storms,” Hall says. “The design was aesthetically pleasing and allowed the river views to be optimized.” The result is a stunning two-and-a-half story shingle-style home with 6,500 square feet of living space and a two-car detached garage. It boasts six bedrooms and six-and-a-half baths. The finished basement, which also includes one of the bedrooms and a full bathroom, features a gym and a rec room. The openair decks on each floor and a large waterside covered porch—complete with a dining area, a fireplace and a grill area equipped with a Big Green Egg brand sink and beverage fridge—embrace the outdoor life; the long private dock running out over the river leads straight to a multitude of water activities. “We enjoy stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking on the river and look forward to learning to sail,” says the homeowner.

This page: Located off the kitchen, the living room exudes calming coziness. The muted hues of the furniture and accessories and the white walls allow the brick archways to become the room’s focal feature, while the reclaimed beam mantle imparts Old World character to this new-construction home. Understated decorative details complete the look. “We love adding coco-beaded accessories, lighting or mirrors to a white wall for texture and depth to keep it organic without color,” says Pearce. Opposite page: Brick features recur on every floor, and the basement’s full bathroom is no exception. The wood countertop with a copper sink is suspended off the brick wall, which continues into the shower to surround houseguests in inviting comfort.


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The New England state of mind is evident. “The interior doors and exterior window color were inspired by a trip to Nantucket,” the lady of the house notes. “We really love the look of the blue windows and the gray shake siding.” Signs of Southern sensibilities contribute to the Old World charm. “Our favorite feature is the brick wall with archways from the kitchen to the living room,” the homeowner says of this graceful nod to classic Low Country architecture. Aspects of both Southern and New England styles are seamlessly integrated throughout the exterior and interior spaces, fostering a cohesive sense of character and continuity. “The builder and I worked together to add large-scale moldings, beams and shiplap trim throughout the home,” says Pearce. For instance, the same salvaged wood mantle is matched above the outdoor and indoor living room fireplaces; the exterior bricks are repeated in multiple locations throughout the home. For the interior decorating, the homeowners worked closely with Pearce and her team. “They came to our showroom, where we sourced everything from furniture and furniture fabrics to window treatments, lighting and accessories,” says the designer, noting that all furniture, window treatments, lighting and area rugs are from the Tracy Pearce Interior Design Furniture Showroom. The tiles are from Downtown Tile in Belmar, and the kitchen and bath cabinetry are from New Horizons Custom Interiors in Farmingdale. Most selections were kept light and neutral. The organic furniture pieces, most upholstered in light-colored performance fabric, were chosen with an eye for functionality and entertaining. In pale


This page: In the master bathroom, the large-scale porcelain-pattern tiles provide a refreshing perk that offsets the clean simplicity of the classic white tub; the 24-inch-by-24inch parquet barnwood-style porcelain floor tiles create additional visual interest. A reclaimed beam over the tub area imparts an organic design element, while the his-and-hers custom vanities with overhead lighting imbue balance and harmonious cohabitation for equal-but-separate personal space. All tiles are sourced from Downtown Tile, and the Tracy Pearce-designed vanities were custom-made by New Horizons Custom Interiors. Opposite page: Rising to the style occasion, the herringbone pattern on the staircase risers perfectly complements the shiplap walls.

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palettes, they offer an understated backdrop that allows the scenery and architectural features to take center stage. Attention was given to marrying style with practicality. The teak furniture, as elegant as it is durable, and easy-to-wash, weather-resistant Sunbrella fabrics help keep the outdoor entertainment spaces hassle-free so there’s more time for leisure and less for high-maintenance worries. To add interest, Pearce interspersed layers of organic textures and spurts of patterns and colors. For the tiles in the first-floor powder room and mudroom, she went with real concrete in star and cross patterns. “We wanted both texture and color on the floors. The tiles continue from the mudroom and are pulled into both the powder room and pantry spaces,” she notes. The visual standout is the kitchen, which Pearce describes as “the true heart and soul of the house.” When the client requested a blue kitchen, the designer obliged with a modern farmhousestyle, open-concept design inspired by former Dancing with the Stars judge Julianne Hough’s kitchen. The blue-and-white color scheme is interspersed with wood elements and accent lighting. The bold blue color stands out in pleasing contrast to the interior black window trim and neutral tones found throughout most of the home. Other special wow factors include a brick pizza oven, two islands and a library-style ladder and rail system. From the natural vistas afforded in nearly every room to the soothing indoor-outdoor living spaces, it’s clear that each detail optimizes the clients’ vision, and for this they couldn’t be happier. “We thoroughly enjoyed working with our architects, builders, subcontractors and interior design team to complete our forever home,” the homeowners say. “Working with such a great team and seeing everything come together was rewarding,” says Pearce, “but coming back and seeing the clients actually live comfortably in their beautiful new

This page: Conveniently located outside a bunkroom sleeping area, this third-floor attic sitting room gives off a relaxed, homey vibe. The two oversized club chairs, circular foot rests and French doors opening out to a breezy balcony invite lounging. Opposite page, top: At the rear of the home, small sitting areas on all three floors allow family and friends to take in the rolling river and swaying seagrass. Spanning the entire length of the house, the first-floor-covered porch is a social gathering hot spot with separate dining, grilling and seating areas. Opposite page, bottom: Off to one side of the back porch, the outdoor seating area—a family favorite—offers sturdy sofas, a wood-burning fireplace and a flat-screen TV mounted over the mantle. “The owners love spending time here because they can watch sports on the TV while also enjoying the cool, crisp air and the water views,” the designer says.


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a hamptons vibe

Purchasing a Far Hills home they’d been eyeing for years, a family trades Mediterranean style for a seashore feel. Text by Donna Rolando Design by Pam Cooper Photography by Vic Wahby


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For homeowner Jill, it’s difficult to pick a feature she likes best in each room of this redesigned Far Hills home, as there are such intricacies to designer Pam Cooper’s scheme. The family room scores points with its “fireplace focal point with the wooden cutouts and shimmer king tile, the mix of creams, gold and reflective accents.” Says Jill: “We moved into a house that had a lot of dark colors and disconnected spaces. We wanted a more open and flowing feel. Even though the house is spread out, we wanted to feel as if every room was connected and unique at the same time. That kind of describes our family too, so it fits our lifestyle well.”


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It was more than just small talk among workmates at a dinner party in Far Hills. The host’s French Normandy manor home had captivated this family so much that they offered to buy it—if the owner ever returned to New Zealand. When that happened four years ago, a private sale kicked off an extensive design project. “It’s funny that she would mention that at a dinner party,” says the homeowners’ designer, Pam Cooper, owner of the eponymous Watchung-based design firm. “And, lo and behold...” But buying the manor was no whimsical flight, says the homeowner, Jill, who formerly lived “around the corner” in Basking Ridge with her husband and two school-aged kids. “We loved this house [in Far Hills] because the grounds look like a park, the layout gives everyone private spaces while still having open space for entertaining and the unique architecture.” Jill knew it would take a skilled designer to shed the home’s dark traditional motif and bring out its Hamptons style, with a seashore mood that didn’t depend on blues. “Pam was the only designer that I was confident could realize our new vision of whites and brights, while integrating the things we couldn’t part with and incorporating one of my favorite colors, red.” Cooper saw this 2018 reno as a jump from the luxurious Mediterranean-style home she had created for the family in Basking Ridge and wondered if her clients could leave their comfort zone after 15 years. Jill says, “We were ready for change.” The heart of the home is the family room, where, Cooper says, “I did architectural squares above the fireplace to give it an updated feel.” Judbar Construction took on the enlarged custom fireplace. For an organic yet revamped look, Cooper started with neutral elements like the white Elite Leather sectional, and then added different textures and patterns “to give it some life.” One of the dining room’s outstanding features is custom shelving with a rolling library ladder running across it and three middle sections in different colors of brushed copper-penny round metallic tile from The Tile Shop. The open living room is distinguished by 20-foot-tall planked barrel ceilings, Cooper’s redesign of what was just a flat ceiling. “The plank boards gave it beautiful dimension,” she says of another job by Judbar. Cooper went all out with the fireplace, taking it from the floor to the ceiling with a wraparound wood mantel and stone-effect porcelain tile. Here’s where Jill got to see some of her red, with floral and Sherrill plaid chairs Cooper picked out for their previous home. “We made it work by having everything light and natural and red as an accent color,” Cooper says. A trio of starburst chandeliers by Hudson Valley Lighting add glamour and majesty, Cooper says, and give off “an otherworldly glow” when illuminated. Design work is expected to continue on this mansion with the master bedroom, which goes to show that party conversation can start some very big dreams.

This page: Jill’s favorite feature in the dining room just might be the metallic copper-penny tiles in the custom shelving, a clever accompaniment to a cherrywood farmhouse table with hand-carved chairs and chandeliers in gold material by Hudson Valley Lighting. Opposite page: “In the living room, I love the lights and the soaring wood ceiling complemented by the cozy shag rug and the red color pops on the neutral background,” says Jill. Yes, she got to keep the red floral and plaid chairs from her previous Basking Ridge home to ease the departure from her comfort zone of design.


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island of culinary delights One key feature helps an Allendale kitchen become more attractive, more efficient and more fun.


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Text by Darius Amos Design by Sharon Sherman Photography by Mike Van Tassel


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Interior designer Sharon Sherman and her Allendale clients reimagined an outdated kitchen, swapping out the old U-shaped layout for a center island topped with a Najran brown counter from Stone Surfaces. Custom cabinets, drawers and a range hood by Sherman’s Thyme & Place Design and installed by Veenstra & Sons of North Haledon, as well as stainless-steel appliances by Sub Zero and Sharp, personalize the space. They’ve rekindled the homeowners’ passion for cooking.


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This page: Sherman gave the couple several specialized organizing and storage solutions, including a pull-out pantry, a built-in recycling cabinet and an electronics charging station. A recessed area above the range top, made with iridescent glass tiles, is the perfect nook for easy-access ingredients and cooking tools. Opposite page: Bright pendant lights from Hudson Valley Lighting above the custom dining table and center island illuminate food prep and eating surfaces.

kitchen,” the designer says. “The island provides both storage and work surface in a comfortable work pattern and gives the impression of a larger space without increasing the kitchen footprint.” Sherman stained the island and custom wood hood deep taupe/gray and finished the “subtle latte” cabinets, also specially made, with a glaze to accent the door details. The hues hit the right note with the homeowners, who requested little use of white, the color of their former kitchen. “The countertops are a white ground with veins of grey taupe and green, which perfectly complement the cabinets and the backsplash tile,” Sherman notes. An engineered wood floor in the same color family connects the kitchen to the adjacent 14-foot-by-14-foot dining area. There are four custom chairs and an expandable oval custom table by Abner Henry—fine for an intimate dinner for two, yet with plenty of room for when the kids visit. Gayle Lerch considers the finished product her “dream kitchen.” It even netted Sherman a New Jersey American Society of Interior Designers Award in fall 2020. “It’s beautiful and functional,” Lerch says. “I love it!”


With their grown children now moved out of the house, an Allendale couple knew the time was right to make their home more conducive to their lifestyle. Moreover, their 1970s center hall colonial was showing its age, and most of the improvements made over the decades were either temporary fixes or DIY projects. For the husband and wife who enjoy cooking, an updated kitchen was first on the menu, and they turned to a friend—who happened to be an interior designer—for help. “They wanted a new and improved kitchen designed for a cook, one that not only was functional but would beautifully integrate into the design style of the home,” says Sharon Sherman of Wyckoff-based Thyme & Place Design. She had befriended the homeowners, Gayle and Mark Lerch, through local tennis clubs and mutual acquaintances. The four-decades-old floor plan was first to hit the chopping block, and with it went failing appliances, inaccessible storage and an old drop ceiling. Sherman reconfigured the kitchen, replacing a peninsula with a large center island for food prep, serving and light dining. “That was the key in the transformation from an outdated room to an outstanding reimagined

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mountain marvel

A Wyckoff family of skiers wanted to expand their vacation retreat— and still make the most of its breathtaking views.


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Text by Donna Rolando Design by RCQ Designs Photography by Peter Rymwid

Bidding adieu to the slopes for the day is not such a heartbreak when hot chocolate awaits before a crackling fire at your own Catskills mountain retreat. With all the ambience of a ski lodge, a Wyckoff family’s getaway includes this great room with a fieldstone fireplace, a melted-candle-look chandelier, massive iron-strapped beams and comfortable seating by Sanford Furniture in earth-toned fabric and leather. This renovation was designed to sleep 15, because the only thing better than a “ski on, ski off” retreat is the good times there with friends.


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For a Wyckoff family of six, skiing is a passion meant to be shared. Therefore, the redesign of their Catskills vacation home needed to lodge a small army of snow aficionados, besides shedding an outdated chateau image. And while nearly doubling its space, the reno couldn’t lose that spectacular mountain view. Initially, the retreat lacked curb appeal and looked small inside and out, recalls Rina Capodieci-Quinn, owner of Ramsey-based RCQ Design. The plan was to gut the entire house and “give it a feeling of grandness,” she says. “We opened up a lot of ceilings. The entire main portion of the house is two-story living.” RCQ’s mission: see to it that architectural plans for the renovation/addition said “vacation” through and through for this couple, their four children and friends. A spiral staircase, extending from the boot room (think skis) to the loft, inspired the home’s design with its railing featuring a twisted iron base, tree-branch-like tips, a bronze handrail and spalted maple posts (that is, posts of a maple that has been dried to preserve the picturesque lines and streaks that reflect fungal discoloration). Working closely with custom ironmaker Spademan Fabrication, Capodieci-Quinn designed a life-sized sample and presented it to the client in a “ta-da!” moment. “I knew it was such a major element…and we ran from there,” she says. One of the most stunning details can be found in the great room, where a ski-lodge-caliber fireplace is made of hefty chunks of local fieldstone because, as senior designer Amanda Arditti says, “It was important for us to stay with the region the home was in.” An outsized wood mantel is both rustic and sturdy enough to carry the stones’ weight, says Capodieci-Quinn. Within the warmth of the fireplace, the custom chess table—paired with two wing chairs of mohair and embossed leather—is more than a conversation piece. “The client loves to play chess with his family,” explains Arditti. Completing the look is a mix of fabrics and leather on the two Stanford sofas over an abstract (not contemporary) rug, all in earth tones, as well

This page, top right: The iron railing with its branch-like and spalted maple features was the starting point for an open floor plan born for entertaining. This page, bottom: There’s always room for one more with banquette seating at the Woodland Furniture alderwood table, as well as the concrete island in the foreground (Spademan Fabrication/JM Lifestyles). The butterfly joints seem to link two wooden slabs, but that’s the magic of this illusion. Opposite page: Keeping with this mountain home’s rustic spirit is an exposed brick backsplash in the kitchen with hexagon stove-area accent. A bar high-top counter, with granite in topaz, black and beige, beckons guests to pull up a leather stool and sip chardonnay under stainless-steel pendants. Bonus: The stained cherry cabinetry lets the homeowner stylishly display dishes.


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as an immense iron chandelier with the effect of melted candles from Fine Art Handcrafted Lighting. The main floor boasts several eating areas to feed the whole gang. An atypical island arrangement designed to maximize seating includes chestnut leather stools at bar high-top counters in granite—durable but far from blah, with topaz and hints of black and beige. Stained-cherry, black-glazed cabinets (Signature Kitchens) round out the look. “We used brick and hexagon tile as a focal point behind the stove,” says Capodieci-Quinn of the decorative shelving. “It brings your eye through the kitchen. It’s like a fireplace with a mantel on top of it.” Embracing their mission to highlight the scenery, the team designed a rotunda next to the kitchen with “stunning views you can see for miles,” she adds. There’s no TV in this custom, earth-toned seating area. Who needs it with a semicircle of windows climbing clear to the loft celebrating the mountain vista? Contributing to the home’s rustic vibe are the floors throughout (Hoffman Floor & Home/DuChateau) in engineered hardwood with knots and imperfections, just like the real thing. And, best of all, there’s radiant heat. Scrabble, anyone? On the comfy lower level, RCQ created the perfect spot to snack and play board games, with a concrete tabletop (it looks like inset stone) and spalted maple banquette seating. The upholstery by Alan Schatzberg & Associates is as cheery as they come, made from a Dhurrie rug runner and large, bronze hammered nailheads. And because every invigorating day of skiing should end in a peaceful night’s slumber, there are sleeping accommodations for 15, including bunk and trundle bedding by Hitchcock Builders, general contractor. Though they lost a ski season during the remodeling, the family decided it was worth the wait. Recalls Capodieci-Quinn: “Their words for me were that I nailed it.”


This page, top right: A real testament to teamwork is the concrete table by JM Lifestyles with banquette seating designed by Rina Capodieci-Quinn of RCQ Design and fabricated by Spademan. The bright upholstery by Alan Schatzberg & Associates marries a Dhurrie rug and big bronze hammered nailheads. Another highlight: Hammerton’s wildernessthemed ceiling lamp. This page, bottom: To sleep a small army took some imaginative design, as seen with these bunk beds, offering a full bottom mattress and a hidden trundle bed by Hitchcock Builders. An artist painted the base and a map of ski trails visible from the bottom bunk—the stuff dreams are made of. Opposite page: You might get bored with the board games this entertainment/family room is meant for, but you’ll never tire of the design. And that’s due to creative combos such as the grasscloth and stained pine on the walls, the leather seating with chenille cushions and the wood-slab end table with iron base.

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a living room comes to life Recipe for success in one Franklin Lakes redo: Take the space everyone’s been avoiding and make it the star.


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Text by Haley Longman Design by Danielle Palmadessa Photography by Mike Van Tassell Danielle Palmadessa of DRP Interiors updated her Franklin Lakes clients’ mishmash of a living room into a hightrafficked one used for lounging and entertaining. “We transformed their quality of life,” she says of this project. “It’s really dramatic, and they’re very happy.”


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Admit it: As a homeowner, you have that one spot in your house that just does not incite joy, whether it’s a garage stuffed to the gills with 10 years’ worth of junk or an extra sitting area that merely collects dust. That was the case for a Franklin Lakes family, who had moved into their brick colonial 15 years ago when their kids were babies. Now, as their not-so-little-ones moved through adolescence, the family wanted a home that fulfilled their evolving needs. And high on the priority list was redoing one room in particular that had potential, but contained lots of “stuff ” they no longer wanted. It was actually the living room, but it had a nickname too. “It was called ‘the No-Go Room,’” says designer Danielle Palmadessa, principal designer of DRP Interiors in Franklin Lakes. “Everything in that room was old and outdated.” So the designer’s first order of business was to brighten this underused area and transform it into a modern, multifunctional space that the family would actually want to spend time in. She was inspired by the art collector dad’s modern pieces by Keith Haring that were scattered “in the foyer, the bedroom and throughout the house,” Palmadessa says, so she united them all on one wall here. She opted for black as the room’s neutral, and brought in walnut accents “because I love the warm and cool,” she says. The homeowner loves orange, so red and orange were incorporated into the design as pops of color. This living room contains many different zones, and much thought was put into the floor plan. Palmadessa’s team removed a fireplace to allow for more seating—a custom 12-foot gray velvet sofa by Modshop was positioned in front of a trio of windows to play on length and drama. The multiple hexagonal coffee tables by Modloft can be repositioned, enabling guests to walk a pathway to the custom bar by Anthony W. Calandriello & Co., which is tricked out with under-counter LED lighting and a quartz countertop. Another part of the room is devoted to musical paraphernalia, such as a guitar and a new piano, to

This page: Coffered ceilings were installed in the living room to both illuminate via recessed lighting and make the room appear larger. A modern fixture and floor lamp, both by Arteriors, brighten up the space even more. Opposite page: Banquette seating behind the custom dining room table by Anthony W. Calandriello & Co. is flanked by matching chests, sconces and a mirror to create symmetry. “I think a dining room should feel cozy and warm,” says the designer.


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foster the youngest son’s burgeoning musical talent. “He does performances there for the family, and they entertain with the bar,” says Palmadessa, “so now it’s a great room that gets used for so many reasons.” The team also beautified the dining room, where metallic grasscloth wall coverings, wainscoting and dark gray-blue trim add to the home’s dramatic, contemporary flair. The windows in this room are off-centered, so the design team created balance by adding an extra seating spot behind the main dining table. “Instead of a buffet we did this beautiful banquette, a nook where you can take a break from dinner, have some wine and lounge,” says the designer. “I like to create another area to sit in where you don’t have to leave the room.” Not that you would want to, of course. Meanwhile, the basement is the ultimate “getaway” thanks so its “organic modern vibe” inspired by California, where the client used to take business trips before the pandemic. It previously functioned as a toddlers’ playroom and now does double duty as both an extension of the homeowner’s office and a hangout space for the teens and their pals. “The client told me he ends up doing many of his business calls on this sectional now,” Palmadessa says of the Bernhardt sofa. “He loves it down there.” This “bright, light and happy” space is bursting with joy, sure, but it also has tons of texture via the soft shades of indigo blue, rattan lanterns and a shiplap feature wall behind the flat-screen TV. There is also a high-top table for game-playing and eating, a custom kitchenette by CNC Cabinetry and a newly added full bathroom with a French-door shower, “because he needed a place for his guests to use after swimming in the indoor pool—and he wanted a place to shower the dogs!” And as for the No-Go Room that started it all? “They call it the ‘Go Room’ now,” Palmadessa says with a laugh. “They spend a lot of time in there.”

This page: The fabrics chosen for all the upholstery in the basement are Crypton, the ottoman is a faux leather and the carpet is stain-resistant for ultimate durability. Opposite page, top: The design team created “multifunctional spaces” in the basement, including a sitting area, a kitchenette and a high-top table for playing games and/or eating. Opposite page, bottom: Two walls, including this small one beneath the stairs, were painted blue to stand out against the crisp whites and creams. A round rattan mirror by Regina Andrew fits right in with the beachy California vibe.


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spacious, but oh-so cozy Building a new home, a young family had goals that appeared to conflict— until a great designer stepped in.


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Text by Leslie Garisto Pfaff Design by AJ Margulis Photography by Tom Grimes

The family room is a comfortable blend of classic and on-trend pieces. The traditional velvet wing chairs complement the more contemporary white sofas (both from TCS) and a custom two-tiered glass coffee table. The custom fireplace, with its classic white mantel and sleek black-granite surround, also melds old and new.


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It’s a familiar story: With three young children, the McLaughlin family was outgrowing their old house and wanted a place they could stretch out in. But, bucking the trend toward maximum square footage, they didn’t want to stretch too far—except when it came to the view. None of the houses they saw, however, fit all of their criteria. So, rather than renovate, they decided to start from scratch. They found a large piece of property that offered a stunning vista of woods, meadows and a large pond on the New Jersey–Pennsylvania border and set about building the perfect family home: large enough for comfort, but not so large that they’d lose the sense of coziness they’d loved in their old home. Stacey McLaughlin admits they wouldn’t have achieved the ideal blend of space and comfort but for the discerning eye of their designer, AJ Margulis. They hired her just after the house had been framed in, and she immediately set about correcting what she saw as flaws in the original plan. She tightened up openings between several areas on the main floor—notably, from the foyer into both the kitchen and the dining area, and between the kitchen and the family room—and trimmed them up to make them feel more like individual “rooms.” Pure open-concept spaces, says Margulis, “don’t feel as comfortable as people think they’re going to—you need to pace the eye.” Warmth was a top priority for the family, who added a golden retriever puppy into the mix right after they moved in. Margulis achieved it with a palette that’s bright and light with pops of inviting colors such as amber—which she used on two inviting wing chairs in the family room—and various

This page: Although the designer delineated each “room” on the main floor with trimmed openings, she maintained a sense of flow from the foyer through the kitchen to the family room. The clear glass pendant over the kitchen table, from Circa Lighting, allows the eye to travel unobstructed through the space. Opposite: The large island is the kitchen’s anchor, offering seating, storage and prep space. To add heft, the designer chose a thickedged countertop. Initially, the homeowner wanted a Calacatta marble top, but for easier maintenance she and the designer opted for quartzite, which is light and clean like Calacatta but much tougher. Pale blue stools from Sylvie and Mira TriDot and rounded pendants from Urban Electric soften the space.


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shades of blue, including pale blue cotton on the kitchen stools and a deeper blue on family-room throw pillows that enliven a pair of white woven-blend sofas. The room, says Margulis, “incorporates a lot of color while still feeling pretty-elegant, without being stuffy-elegant.” There’s nothing at all stuffy about the house, in which traditional pieces sit comfortably alongside contemporary accents. McLaughlin admits her tendency to go for trendier pieces was one the designer reined in, warning that they might not stand the test of time. She’d been smitten with navy blue cabinets, for example, but Margulis said white would be more practical and certainly more lasting in terms of style. “It’s been three years,” McLaughlin says, “and I know I won’t get tired of those cabinets. If I’d done color, I could imagine wanting to fix that later on.” She calls Margulis’ taste “timeless” and believes it suits the house perfectly. A mix of timeless and on-trend is evident in McLaughlin’s office, which happens to be her favorite space in the house. A strikingly modern desk from Julian Chichester, with playful gold legs and a white vellum desktop, feels entirely at home sharing the room with a vintage mirror and garden stool and a pale blue Parsons chair. A wall of built-ins adds warmth and also controls clutter. “I love to put things behind closed doors,” says the homeowner. Her office is one of the few rooms on the main floor to have an actual doorway, but the French doors leading into the room are often open— except when McLaughlin, who works for a nonprofit, needs peace and quiet. The other first-floor room with a door is the guest room that’s often occupied by McLaughlin’s

This page: Stacey McLaughlin’s office is an oasis of calm. Custom built-ins created by the Amish cabinetry firm Hensel Road Woodworks help minimize clutter, and a blue and white palette—including the quatrefoil wallpaper from Lee Jofa and the window treatment in peacock from Schumacher’s Brighton Pavilion line— makes the room feel both fresh and relaxed. Opposite: The main-floor guest room is airy and restful. The Lee Jofa Roman shade and matching pillows provide subtle interest, and the silk and wool rug from Beatrice & Martin is invitingly soft underfoot.


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mother, who lives in Texas but was around to consult with the designer for much of the build. “We weren’t exactly channeling Texas,” says Margulis, “but the room is a little bit light and airy, a little bit modern.” With an upholstered bed, a pale wool-and-silk rug that’s soft underfoot and a paleprinted Roman shade, it’s the essence of restfulness. A room with a similarly restful feel is the upstairs master bathroom—though that wasn’t the case initially. With its pale finishes, the overlarge room might have ended up feeling too cold, so the designer placed the spacious shower around a corner. Now, when you look into the room, you see just the vanity and the tub, whereas before, says Margulis, “it felt like you were going into a ballroom. Now there’s a little more privacy.” She installed a window seat next to the shower, which adds a note of comfort and convenience—“it’s a nice place to put down your towels and your robe,” Margulis says. Conversely, the kitchen was one of the few rooms in the house that didn’t feel quite large enough. So, the designer added extra storage in the hall and a second refrigerator in the mudroom. The kitchen incorporates a space for informal dining that’s surrounded by windows looking out on the patio and the backyard. Like the rest of the house, the area is large but not too large, the perfect place to gather as a family, catch up on the day and take in the expansive view that drew them to the property in the first place.

This page: An arresting tile inlay on the floor and traditional square-raised cabinetry help make the large master bathroom feel more intimate. Opposite: In keeping with the need to warm up the large space, the designer tucked the shower around a corner. The window seat, with extra storage underneath, adds a comfortable touch to an area where tile predominates.


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80 Morristown Road, Bernardsville (Bernardsville Centre) 908.766.5450, Hibernatebedding.com

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Photos By: LuxQue Media

www.dervodevelopers.com Phone: 201.410.7344 info@dervodevelopers.com Dervo.Developers For more information on available homes, contact Dervo Developers. Cliffside Park, NJ

It’s more than a house — it’s a community, a neighborhood, a place to plant your roots. When you’re ready to settle down, but aren’t willing to settle, put your trust in a New Jersey Realtor® to guide you home.


Design Consultants Residential & Corporate Interiors

Welcome Home to An Open Floor Plan That Truly Makes Sense...

As an interior designer, I understand form, function, and interpretation of my client – so when it came to building and designing my own home – I was as obsessive as ever about getting it totally right.

Our floor plan is open, yet still gives one a sense of intimacy. I love angles and used them to expand the boxes people typically live in to create flow from one area to another. Our large windows keep us in tune with nature and bring the outside in. It is current in lifestyle but will never be dated. A mixture of elements – reclaimed Asian stone for the foyer floor, various ceiling details and heights, amazing lighting, eclectic furnishings, accessories and art – speak to the serenity, charm and warmth of my designs. My combined passion and talent has provided many clients with inviting and well thought out environments which have become my signature. My design aesthetic inspires any space... from estates to individual spaces to the most exclusive Manhattan “Pied-à-Terre”.

gwhiting@designconsultantsnj.com • Tel: 908-781-2092 www.designconsultantsnj.com


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LUXURY KITCHENS & BATHS TOWN & COUNTRY KITCHEN AND BATH As a design team with a specialization in kitchen, bathrooms, and hard surfaces we know the importance of creating spaces that need to be as functional as they are beautiful. We believe that great design often comes when multiple perspectives combine, which is why we love collaborating on projects with fellow Interior Designers. Interior Designer, Mary Fran Brassard of Brassard Designs was hired by her long-time clients to design their new construction home in Spring Lake. When it came time to focus on the kitchen and second floor wet bar, she brought us in to design the areas and ensure that all the selections and technical details would work in the spaces. Continuing the vision for transitional lines and a soft color palette, we used Rutt Handcrafted Cabinetry in white paint for the kitchen perimeter with a stained quarter sawn oak for the center island to blend seamlessly with the floor finish. We selected a modified shaker style door with clean lines and sleek brass hardware. Brassard continued the brass accents with the lighting and barstools. This kitchen is a great example of what can happen when you have professionals, focused on their strengths, working together. Please visit tckbdesigns.com or call at 732.345.1441.

PMI In recent years, more new natural stones have been brought to the marketplace than ever before, providing consumers with endless design possibilities. Natural quartzite, marble, granite, soapstone, limestone, travertine, slate, onyx – there is no shortage of options. It’s easy maintenance, durability, sustainability, unique color choices and patterns truly solidify natural stone as a transformative element in today’s interiors. Unsure of what type of natural stone would be most suitable for your project? Consult with a member of our friendly and experienced sales team and you will find that we have the expertise to guide you in selecting the ideal stone slab for your project. Visit any of our three locations in New Jersey or New York to see what makes PMI a premier destination for surface material or visit us online at pmirock.com


LUXURY KITCHENS & BATHS GPS SHOWROOMS GPS Showrooms aren’t just a place to find kitchen and bath innovations—they’re a place to envision your next home design. From faucets and sinks to showers, cabinets and countertops, your inspiration is our mission. And because we’re also a major supplier, delivering the details to contractors throughout the East Coast since 1910, our in-house experts can help with even the most challenging projects. Whether you’re casually browsing or searching for something specific, stop by your local GPS showroom for a truly remarkable experience encompassing thoughtful design, top brands, and impeccable customer service. Showrooms: Bayonne ∙ Bergenfield ∙ Edison ∙ Flemington ∙ Green Brook ∙ Hawthorne ∙ Lakewood ∙ Matawan ∙ Morris Plains ∙ Orange Kohler Signature Stores: Eatontown ∙ Paramus Please visit shopgps.com or call 1.800.CALLGPS.

ADVANTAGE CONTRACTING For 25 years, our goal has remained the same... to provide our customers with an exceptional product and service every time! We are committed, now and in the future, to ensure our reputation as the best general contractors in New Jersey, serving Bergen, Essex, Passaic and Morris counties. Working with Advantage Contracting means you only have to make one call when you need work done in your home. We are contractors who can do it all. Our team of architects, design specialists and remodeling contractors will take the time needed to ensure that you get the home of your dreams.   Our company’s success is measured by our clients’ satisfaction! Contact us today to get started on your home improvement job! Please call 973.832.0077 or visit us online at advantagecontracting.com.


LUXURY KITCHENS & BATHS RS MANNINO ARCHITECTS + BUILDERS Create your dream kitchen and home renovation with design inspiration from RS Mannino, an architect-led design-build firm founded by Rosario S. Mannino, AIA. The firm specializes in distinctive new home building and whole-home remodeling, luxury residences and custom kitchen and bath projects. Their new Mannino Cabinetry collection offers a wide range of styles, custom finishes and functionality. Renowned for quality craftsmanship and meticulous attention to detail, RS Mannino creates transformations that endure. We offer tailored solutions by seamlessly integrating design and construction management services, providing a cohesive design-build experience. Our knowledge of historical architecture also makes us well-qualified for historic restoration projects. The results are beautiful timeless spaces for busy families who enjoy entertaining. Please visit rsmannino.com or call us at 201.677.3373.

RENO’S APPLIANCE Shopping for an appliance can be an overwhelming experience, given the enormous amount of online information. The “family” team at Reno’s Appliance helps each customer through this process with knowledgeable sales professionals familiar with all brands and manufacturers. Reno’s Appliance even has as an on-site Corporate Chef who provides tasty treats to sample while shopping and is available to demonstrate a variety of appliances. Founded in 1951 by Reno Cioletti, Reno’s has grown to a 14,000 square foot designer showroom, serving the tri-state area, and offering a full range of appliances. Reno’s three sons continue the family tradition, always dedicated to offering new and improved service, highlighting customer satisfaction and creating a unique shopping experience at every visit. Please visit renosappliance.com or call 973.247.1860.


LUXURY KITCHENS & BATHS BEDROCK GRANITE Bedrock Granite is a one-stop shop for your most important home design needs. For over 30 years, our family-owned business—now in its third generation— has built long-standing relationships with awardwinning designers, dealers and builders, all working together to ensure every detail is considered to create the look you envision. Bedrock Granite sources its natural stone, quartz and porcelain slabs from various wholesalers in the tri-state area. Our expert craftsmen produce elegant, clean and exact results that withstand the test of time. Visit our showroom to browse our wide selection of granite, marble, quartz and other natural stones for your kitchen, bathroom, fireplace, office or outdoor space. Our highly skilled staff will provide exceptional customer service and assist you throughout the entire process, from selecting the perfect stone all the way through installation. As Monmouth County’s most experienced stone specialists, we mastermind the details that turn your dream project into reality. Please visit bedrockgranite.com or call 732.741.0010.

WOODHAVEN KITCHEN AND DESIGN CENTERS Whether you are remodeling your kitchen or having one built from scratch, Woodhaven is equipped with expert designers, and the finest selection of cabinetry, countertops, and flooring to give you the kitchen of your dreams. Our kitchen design team listens closely to your vision, and learns how you and your family ‘work’ to create a functional and elegant layout that complements your lifestyle and unique tastes. A successful kitchen design and installation needs to be meticulously planned. That’s why Woodhaven provides expert planning consultations with our professional designers, free site measurements, detailed final design presentation and estimates, on-site delivery by our fleet of trucks, and installation by our in-house team. Need some inspiration? Explore one of Woodhaven’s four showrooms across Ocean and Monmouth Counties with more than 10,000 square feet of display space, featuring the latest in cabinetry, countertops and flooring. Please visit woodhavenlumber.com or call 1.800.213.3330 for more information.

Work with one of our in-house design professionals

Custom cabinetry for every room in your home

Available direct, nationwide

Handcrafted in New Hampshire

www.crown-point.com 800-999-4994

top choices

fire it up


| NJHome

With the right tools to tend to the flames, you can spark conversation and keep company cozy. See our picks on the following page.

closets | garages | home offices |entertainment centers wall units | wall beds | pantries | craft rooms laundry rooms | mud rooms | wine rooms





top choices

Fall in love with the heart-shaped handles of Uniflame’s fivepiece wrought iron tool set in a pewter finish. Available at The Home Depot, multiple locations.

Rest assured that though the rack of The Iron Shoppe’s South Fork fireplace set looks like a tree, it’s indeed made of wrought iron and available in four finishes. Available at houzz.com.

Made of durable steel in an antique black finish, the Pleasant Hearth Harper four-piece tool set with log holder keeps everything you need for your fire within reach. Available at The Home Depot, multiple locations.



Brushed steel handles, matte black finish and an architecturally designed rack give this five-piece set a modern look that pairs with any fireplace. Available at wayfair.com.

Your attention will waver between the flames and the gorgeous silhouette of the Dowell five-piece tool kit by Willa Arlo Interiors. Available at wayfair.com.

The three-tool Enclume sling rack is made of hammered steel and holds three cubic feet of wood and kindling. No more outdoor log piles for you! Available at Bed, Bath & Beyond, multiple locations.

Curated by Mimi & Hill, our shop is filled with an ever-changing collection of inspired finds and design elements to layer into your home or give as the perfect gift.


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Specializing in Custom Fireplace Screens and Glass Enclosures for Over Thirty Years. 49 Summit Ave., Summit, NJ 07901

908.273.3273 | info@summitfireplacecentre.com

finishing t ouch

if walls could talk… You say your room is missing something, but you’re not sure just what? Think about adding texture. You could layer on textiles, hang wallpaper, roll out rugs and/or accessorize with throw pillows. But there are also elegant architectural ways to introduce this element of excitement, whether that means adding crown molding, installing ceiling beams or building a wainscoting accent wall like the one seen here. When done well, a textured accent wall creates a focal point in the room while also adding depth and dimension, two imperative cornerstones of good interior design. Case in point: This flatpanel plywood option, even before it gets its layer of bold green paint, livens up this entryway without taking up valuable square footage. It is also the ideal way to put a modern spin on an old-school design component; wainscoting’s original purpose was to insulate homes better before central heat was a thing. If you’re a homeowner who’s on the handy side, you may be able to install the wainscoting yourself with some materials purchased at a local hardware store (and some instructional help from YouTube). Or, you can hire an experienced pro like the experts at Trim Team NJ, based in Howell. Either way, this previously inconspicuous surface will be a “wallflower” no more.


| NJHome

Some of them would ask for a little drama. A textured surface is one way to achieve it.

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Crown Select by

A whole new line of custom built inset cabinetry with the impeccable Crown Point fit and finish. Handcrafted in New Hampshire and available direct, nationwide

Beautifully designed and engineered to be budget friendly www.crownselect.com 603 • 542 • 3399

Available only from Crown Point Cabinetry

Landscape Design


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NJ Home Winter 2020  

NJ Home Winter 2020