Charlottesville HOME May/June 2015

Page 1






fresh SUMMER for

floral arrangements & outdoor furniture







MaY/JUNE 2015, vol. 2, No. 2

Closet Factory: the art of organization

PhOtO by JOhn MagOr PhOtOgraPhy

Closets | garages | home Offices | Entertainment Centers | Pantries Wall beds | Wall Units | Craft rooms | Laundry rooms | Mud rooms | Wine rooms This is The 5Th year ThaT CloseT FaCTory has parTiCipaTed in The she design house. Closet Factory has created a range of storage solutions: walk-in master closets to mud rooms, pantries, wine rooms, and laundry rooms. Senior designer, Peggy Woodall, has worked on the house each of the last 5 years.

Celebrating 15 years of serving Charlottesville & Richmond

$300 Off

Minimum purchase required. Call for details. New design contracts only. Cannot be combined with any other offer. Offer expires 6/30/15.

The MasTer CloseT Everyone’s dream is to walk into their master closet and walk out dressed, confident, and ready to face the world. But just as everybody’s closets are different—everybody’s needs are different. As I talk with a client, their needs will emerge: mix and match separates on double rods or lots of dresses; folded sweaters on easy to reach shelves or lots of delicates placed neatly in drawers; a few pairs of shoes and a couple of handbags or the kind of person who has never met a shoe she (or he!) didn’t love. This year’s closet is all about the accessories. This generously sized walk-in has plenty of space for hanging clothes and lots of drawers for the little things. And it also showcases the myriad ways to store and showcase your favorite shoes, boots, handbags, and scarves. CVilleHome 5/15


Call for free design consultation or visit us online at

Showroom: 8162-C Elm Drive, Mechanicsville, VA 23111

Enjoy your

view all day

In the top photo you are looking at the Blue Ridge Mountains through 3M™ Prestige 40 window tinting. By softening the glare just a little bit, adding our 3M™ window tinting to your current windows will give you more crisp high definition views.

Without Blinds

Sunlight emits harmful UV & Infrared rays into your home that destroys your hardwood floors, furniture, & artwork. In addition, these rays also cause serious harm to your skin and eyes. The sun also brings in excessive heat & glare, making your home inefficient & uncomfortable. Our 3M™ window tinting is a sun filter. We all use air & water filters in our homes for our health & quality of life. They keep allergens & chemicals out of the air we breathe & water we drink. If this is so important to us, then why aren’t we filtering the sun coming through our windows? Blinds, curtains, or lowE windows are not sun filters. They work well for night-time privacy, insulating, & interior design. 3M™ has invented a new line of window tinting that is the proper sun filter. They filter 99.9% of UV & 97% of infrared while allowing an ABUNDANT AMOUNT OF PURIFIED SUNLIGHT into your home. This new tinting is not dark, won’t bubble or fade, and will literally improve the quality of your views.

Reduce Fading

Installed locally by Clear View Window Tinting, they come with a lifetime warranty. Please call or visit our website to set up your free in home consultation.


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n editor ’ s note Like busy bees in a garden, this time of year gets everyone buzzing to enliven their homes with something new and fresh, and then invite friends over for the first party of the season! Capitalize on the perfect weather and outfit your outdoor entertaining spaces with attractive weather-resistant furnishings so you can comfortably spend your time outdoors. If you’ve been thinking about adding some extra curb appeal to your home, consider giving your front walkway a stylish makeover. Local experts weigh in on the best ways to do it. If springtime puts you in the mood to entertain, we’ve got the inspiration you’ve been seeking to host the loveliest of morning time parties—a beautiful brunch! We’ll also teach you how to add multisensory delights to your cut floral arrangements. It might be just the thing for your table’s centerpiece. We’re proud to support the Shelter for Help in Emergency’s Design House. Some of the talented and generous designers involved with this year’s project share what it’s like to be involved and why they do it year after year. Have you ever played the “six degrees of separation” game where you test the theory that all your connections lead back to the same source? Our connection with the Design House extends to two other terrific homes we have the pleasure of presenting: the personal home of designer Michelle Willis Adams (involved in five of the six Design House projects to date) and the story of Spotswood Lodge—the whirlwind project of Leslie and Dan Gregg of The Market at Grelen (also past Design House participants). It all comes back to “home” and we’re so happy to be a part of yours.

With kind regards,






Volume 2 I ssue 2 PUBLISHER


Laurel Feinman EDITOR

Meridith Ingram ART DIRECTOR


Rachel Beanland Mitzi Bible Lucy Cook Laurel Feinman Darrell Laurant Ingrid McCrary Ferrell Nexsen Rory Rhodes Deirdre Serio GRAPHIC ARTISTS

Tiffany Allen Edwana Coleman Helga Kaszewski PRODUCTION COORDINATOR

Beth Moore


Providing all the services you need to create and maintain a beautiful landscape... Native and Ornamental Plants & Trees Hardscaping & Landscaping Landscape Maintenance Large Tree Spade Services

15111 Yager Road, Somerset, VA

Nursery 540-672-5462; Tree Care 540-672-6655


Jenn Finazzo Virginia Hamrick Robert Radifera BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT


Susan Creasy Liz Houhoulis Janet Lampman Anne Marie Poore Pam Whorley SUBSCRIPTIONS

Charlottesville HOME is published bimonthly by West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. For an annual subscription, please send $20 and your name, address and telephone number to: Charlottesville HOME 3831 Old Forest Road Lynchburg, VA 24501 For advertising information please call (434) 386-5667 or To discuss coverage of an event relating to home or garden, please contact Charlottesville HOME at

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West Willow Publishing Group, LLC (434) 386-5667 Copyright 2015 by West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission from West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. All pictorial material reproduced in this magazine, whether in a produced ad or by itself, has been accepted on the condition that it is with the knowledge and prior consent of the photographer or the artist concerned. As such, West Willow Publishing Group, LLC is not responsible for any infringement of copyright or otherwise arising out of publication thereof. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. However, West Willow Publishing Group, LLC makes no warrant to the accuracy or reliability of this information. Opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ownership or management.


C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Southern Living Builder of the year 2014




434.244.5600 | SUMMITOFVA.COM



welcome home

306 East Main Street Charlottesville, VA 434.872.9053



2002 .

Now open in Charlottesville 2250 Old Ivy Road, Suite 5 434-529-6000 6

C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

contents Ch a r l ot t e s v ill e h o m e M ay /J u n e 2 0 15



10 32 48


features CHEE RY C O N S E RVAT O R I E S A N D S U N R O O M S

Rooms that bask in a sunny glow, year-round BY R o ry R h o d e s

A C lassically styled H ome

A limited color palette allows collectibles to shine BY Lau r e l F e i n m a n

The story of spotsw ood lodge

How one couple’s ingenuity transformed property into luxurious, homey retreat BY Lau r e l F e i n m a n

Cover photography by Jenn Finazzo at Spotswood Lodge. Floral arrangements by Briarwood.

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK Charlottesville HOME Magazine c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


Ch a r l ot t e s v ill e h o m e M ay /J u n e 2 0 15

departments 44








26 T ray C hic Unexpected uses for trays and other china cabinet items

22 Walk this Way Adding patterns, designs to your front walk

29 fresh arrangements Fragrant additions to traditional bouquets

18 Best in B runch Lovely late-morning parties

BY Darr e ll Lau r ant

BY F e rr e ll N e xs e n

58 T he Bright S pot O verhead How the ceiling can become a focal point

BY Lu cy C o o k

By I n g r i d Mc C r a ry

42 Smart A ppliances Everyday appliances go techno BY D e i r d r e S e r i o

BY M itz i B i ble

44 OUTDOOR FURNITURE New materials stylishly beat the heat BY M itz i B i ble


62 Surprise by D esign The joy of being a SHE Design House participant BY R ac h e l B ean lan d

66 A round To w n Piedmont Master Gardener plant sale Central Virginia’s “pick-your-own” farms


S pecial I nterest 6 6 Index of advertisers 8

62 C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


All About

Sunrooms Find your place in the sun By R o ry R h o d es 10

C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

With spring’s fair weather and longer days, creatures of all kinds emerge from their winter quiet to begin the business of a bustling season. Birds build nests, bees build hives, and perhaps, humans are thinking about building a little something too—a little extra light-filled room in which to stretch out year-round. A fourseason sunroom is a great way to add both space and sunlight to your home, and it can be used for a variety of purposes. Sunrooms have been around for several centuries in one form or another, and can trace their earliest beginnings from Renaissance Europe, where a newfound expertise in glass-making techniques allowed the creation of “orangeries.” These southfacing greenhouses featured wood-burning stoves and were used by the wealthy and fashionable to grow citrus trees in cold northern climates. The orangerie gradually evolved into the conservatory, a larger structure that also began as a way to grow exotic plants in Britain and northern Europe, but by the end of the 19th century had become an ornate, iron-framed edifice used by Victorians for social functions such as tea parties and receptions. Today, the terms sunroom, conservatory and solarium are often used interchangeably to describe a room made from at least 50 percent glass that is attached to the main house and accessed from inside the home. These spaces can be used for a variety of purposes, but all function as extra living space. The term “four-season sunroom” denotes a structure that is heated and cooled for year-round use. While you can certainly find lightweight pre-fabricated sunroom “kits” on the market, constructing a fully integrated sunroom can be achieved two ways: by enclosing an existing porch or deck, or by making a structural addition to your home. When adding a sunroom, the two most important considerations are location and desired use. If you’re starting from an existing porch, the location may well determine the usage. If, however, you’re starting from scratch, possibilities expand. c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


A Smart Addition

If you already have a deck or porch attached to your home that you’d like to turn into a sunroom, its dimensions and location on your property will help define its future use. For example, if it’s off the kitchen or dining room area, you could create a sunny breakfast nook, a roomy dining space, or an adjacent seating area. If it adjoins the living or family room, a sunroom might simply expand your existing space for family or entertaining. It could also be used to create a separate area for a library, a children’s playroom, or an office. If the deck is on the ground floor, it might make a charming greenhouse and potting room. In a more private location, the sunroom can be a personal retreat for crafting, reading, painting or simply relaxing. Keep in mind that while an existing porch provides the outline for your new sunroom, it will need to be rebuilt from the ground up in order to be structurally sound. When designing a sunroom from scratch, you’ll want to take into account your property’s footprint and features. 12

Besides choosing a location with adequate space, make sure it offers an attractive view of the garden, or privacy from neighboring homes. A sunroom brings the outside in by using expanses of glass, so be sure you like what you see. A large part of choosing the right location, and therefore the use, for your sunroom involves evaluating the sunlight. A sunroom with southern exposure will make the most of low winter sun, but might need some shade in the summer to be enjoyable. A sunroom on the eastern side of the house will provide morning sunlight that could make a cheerful breakfast nook, as long as the sun isn’t coming up right into your eyes. A western sunroom will capture afternoon rays, but could heat up quite a bit on a summer evening if there are no trees or shade features. A sunroom with northern exposure may be shaded or partly shaded for much of the day, which could either defeat the purpose, or work well in a hotter location. Generally, sunrooms on the southeastern quadrant of the house are most popular, as they capture morning

sun and avoid the heat of late-afternoon summer sun. If you’re working with an existing porch, you can manage the sun’s trajectory with both your building materials, and later decorative elements like shades and drapery. Don’t forget to take into account any deciduous or evergreen trees, because their shade will make a big difference to the end result. Building Materials, Creature Comforts

The materials you use (brick, siding, stone, etc.) will depend upon your home’s architecture and the look you want to achieve, but the glass must be tempered safety glass. Tempered glass is stronger than plain glass and, if broken, will crumble into small, smooth pebbles rather than shatter into dangerous shards. It’s used in automobiles and patio doors, and you’ll definitely want it here. You’ll also want insulated glass, which is double paned (sometimes triple paned) and usually filled with an inert gas such as argon to act as an additional buffer from outside temperatures. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

There are several glass coating options to be aware of. A “low-e” (for “emissivity”) coating uses a special metallic layer to filter UV and infrared rays. This prevents heat transfer without cutting down on light. A low-e coating helps block heat from entering in summer and escaping during winter, and also helps protect fabrics from fading. For a particularly sunny or exposed spot, tinted glazing might be helpful. With tinted glazing, glass is coated with a darker color, usually a neutral gray, brown, or bluegreen. These colors won’t alter the view from the inside, but will reduce brightness and visibility somewhat from the outside. Some sunrooms—especially those where plants are grown—have segmented glass roofs, made from either glazed safety glass or polycarbonate, a tough, transparent thermoplastic. Often, though, a traditional roof is installed, which provides insulation as well as more options for installing light fixtures for nighttime illumination. If you do choose a standard roof, skylights can be added to increase daylight. Some skylights are operative, meaning they can actually open

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434 .973 .3362 13

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to release heat. This is a great option to consider when planning for year-round use. Ceiling fans are another handy way to keep air circulating in warmer months. But of course, in a sunroom, it’s all about the windows. Windows that open to catch cross breezes will do much to make sunrooms pleasant in nice weather and reduce the need for supplemental climate control. Casement windows, which open on a side hinge, offer greater ventilation than sash windows, since 100 percent of the window area can be opened to the outside, versus only 50 percent with a sash window, where one window pane must slide over the other. Casements are also more weathertight than sash windows, because on a sash window the weatherstripping seal has to slide along with the window. In order to do this, the sash’s seal must be a bit loose. With a casement window, the weatherstripping is a stationery line, and the window can be sealed tightly when closed. Utilizing natural shade and breezes are great examples of passive cooling techniques for a sunroom, but during high summer, you may need air conditioning. Your builder may be able to extend your home’s existing duct work into the sunroom, as long as your system can handle the extra square footage. You might need additional duct fans, and you could even install a separate thermostat and valve system to control your sunroom’s temperature independently from the rest of the house if needed. By the same token, while sunny days will help warm up a chilly sunroom, a four-season space will need a little help in the heating department in order to be pleasant during Virginia winters. As with air conditioning, central heating can help you here if your current system will allow for it. Other heating options include installing a small gas wall heater, and radiant floor heating. Believe it or not, heated floors were invented by the ancient Romans in the form of a hypocaust, in which a wood-burning fire blew heated air beneath a raised marble floor. Today, most radiant floor heating uses electrical wires embedded beneath a conductive flooring surface such as stone, concrete or ceramic tile. It’s not the best choice for all flooring, however; wood tends to shrink and expand too much with temperature fluctuations, vinyl and laminate floors have temperature limitations due to adhesives and materials used, and carpet’s insulation blocks too much of the heat flow. Having a heated floor not only gives a luxuriant feel to your space, it’s also more efficient. With forced air heating, warm air (plus allergens and dust) rises to the ceiling, where it cools and then sinks again. With radiant heating, infrared waves transmit heat to objects instead of the air, which produces a more even warmth. This means that you can actually feel warmer at a lower temperature. Anyone who’s ever wondered why they’re shivering when the thermostat reads 72 degrees may want to investigate this option! All the Extras

1430 Rolkin Court, Suite 203 | Charlottesville, Virginia | 434-995-5418



Radiant floor heating is a feature that needs to be installed during construction. Depending on how you’re planning to use your sunroom, other elements may need to be built at this time too. Will your sunroom need plumbing? In a greenhouse, for example, you might like a potting table with a sink, or perhaps a floor drain and waterproof materials. A kitchen extension could need water lines for a sink or the ice-cube maker in a refrigerator. If it’s living space, what about built-in elements such as bookcases or a banquette? This is why it’s important to have C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

A sunroom that is an extension of an entertaining space might have a more formal feel than one designed to be a playroom or hobby nook. You could choose to make your sunroom a transitional space between indoors and outdoors, using indoor furniture that incorporates fabrics and colors echoing an outdoor palette.

a clear vision of how you’ll use your sunroom before you begin construction. Also, if your sunroom will lead directly to the outdoors, decide whether you prefer the streamlined, modern look of a sliding door, or the more formal, charming look of French doors. When construction is over, it’s time to decorate your new room. If sunrooms of old were outfitted with wicker Papasan chairs, today’s can be decorated to blend seamlessly with the rest of your interiors. The location and purpose of the room affect not only the way you use it, but also the style and tone of the furnishings. A sunroom that is an extension of an entertaining space might have a more formal feel than one designed to be a playroom or hobby nook. You could choose to make your sunroom a transitional space between indoors and outdoors, using indoor furniture that incorporates fabrics and colors echoing an outdoor palette. Adding a couple of potted plants is another great way to transition the space from inside to outside; one or two nice plants will do the trick without overpowering the space and detracting from the view. When outfitting your sunroom, don’t forget that sun exposure can fade furnishings and damage artwork. Glass coating and tinted glazing on windows help reduce this fading by blocking

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more UV rays, but you can also protect furnishings with other products. Awnings, shades, blinds, or louvered shutters will shield your décor, and have the added benefit of adjustable light and privacy options. Wood furnishings and floors can fade in varying degrees depending upon the transparency of the wood’s finish, its natural pigment and tannic acid, and how it was processed, so it’s probably best to steer clear of wood in an area that receives intense sunlight. Mahogany, oak, and walnut are particularly susceptible to fading. Rattan, and painted wood (latex paint blocks UV rays) are a couple of attractive furniture alternatives to consider. Or opt for teak, known for fading to an attractive silvery gray. Finally, rearrange furniture when possible so that any fading that does occur is consistent throughout the pieces. In recent years, outdoor fabrics have expanded to include a sophisticated array of designs and patterns. Use them for seating, throw pillows and curtains to provide fade-resistant style to your four-season sunroom. If you’re considering a fabric that is not specifically designed for outdoor use, check that the label indicates the material is “UV resistant.” If using indoor fabric for curtains, make sure they’re lined with a sun-resistant fabric. A Room with a View

Last but not least, once settled into your sunroom, make sure you like the scenery. While you can certainly adjust the privacy with tinted glass and window dressings, don’t forget about enlisting Mother Nature. A strategically placed hedge, specimen tree, or trellis with wisteria or a climbing rose will not only screen your sunroom but provide an appealing view. Potted plants, garden beds with multi-season interest, and even a water feature or outdoor fireplace will help bring the outside in, no matter what the time of year. For centuries, people have used sunrooms to make the most of available light. With modern amenities and efficient climate control options, we can now extend our living space to enjoy the sunshine throughout all four seasons. 16

C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Mechum Banks Contemporary Delights In AlbemArle COunty, VIrgInIA

n n n n

6,482+/- finished sq. ft. Gorgeous gardens Breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountain views Well sited on 8 private acres with gated entry

David Spence, Spence Photographics, LLC

This stylish, two-story contemporary home was designed by architects Richard Shank and Robert Gray and completed in 1992. It sits on eight beautifully landscaped acres on Mechums River, just a short distance from Charlottesville. This is a house that’s built for entertaining, indoors and out, with a stunning kitchen and terraces and decks to enjoy cocktails and dining. Extend the fun in the oversized game room, or on the tennis court. This spacious home is flooded with an abundance of natural light from numerous windows and skylights, allowing endless views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It has an inviting, open floor plan with soaring ceilings and quality craftsmanship throughout. The primary living areas and the master bedroom suite are on the first level, featuring multiple indoor garden areas with built-in drip irrigation. The living room contains a wet bar and a wood-burning fireplace and fans out from the two-story foyer, c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

to lead to the family hub—the dining room, kitchen, breakfast area and the family room, which has an additional fireplace. A built-in custom sound system with numerous speakers fills the first floor and outdoor patios with music. The home’s day-to-day areas are conveniently found on the first floor, too: a powder room, home office, mudroom outfitted with lockers and a large laundry room help make house-keeping tasks seem like less of a chore. The private master bedroom suite has built-in bookcases in the bedroom and hisand-her vanities and walk-in closets in the bathroom. The second level is open to five bedrooms and three full bathrooms. Meticulously maintained, this exceptional home would delight anyone. Thanks to the home’s many window-covered walls, Mother Nature’s “naturally curated art collection” will constantly offer fresh beauty to be admired in this stylish home.

503 Faulconer Drive Charlottesville, Virginia 22903 Stephen T. McLean Office: (434) 295-1131 Cell: (434) 981-1863 Offered at $1,895,000



Brunch best in

By Lu cy Co o k

In the spring there are plenty of occasions for brunch; Mother’s Day comes first to mind, but baby showers, wedding showers, graduations and birthdays are always fun to celebrate too. I love the idea of a springtime brunch with friends. In my mind, we look like we’re straight out of the pages of a magazine: impeccably dressed, beautiful flowers on a rustic wooden table in my manicured yard… and delicious food that appears out of nowhere!

Sounds good, doesn’t it? We can’t help with the outfits or the table, but we’ve got a great plan for a meal that is all but ready the night before! Our easy-does-it brunch menu includes homemade granola with Greek yogurt and berries, Praline Pull-Apart Rolls, a cheesy scrambled egg casserole, and a green salad of your choice. Hosting a brunch is like having any other party: Invite guests, plan a menu and execute the plan. The only hitch is that with other parties, you have time during the day to execute! Having brunch before noon is a lesson in planning and organization, but with a little of both, it’s easy to do. Besides having the food almost ready, it’s important to set the table and set out serving dishes and utensils for all the dishes the night before. Label each serving dish with the menu item it will hold, and set up the buffet, so you can get a look at the finished arrangement. Do the same with the bar, making sure the glasses are polished and your ice bucket is clean. In the morning, your list is simple. Preheat the oven for the casserole and the rolls. Assemble a green salad. Put the rolls in about 95 minutes before you expect your guests. Then 45 minutes later, put the scrambled egg casserole in. Set out the granola, fruit and yogurt, and then the ice and drinks. The casserole and rolls will still be in the oven when the guests arrive, but it will give you 20 minutes to serve drinks and get everyone settled. Get everyone moving toward the table, then remove the rolls and casserole from the oven…and you’ve got it! 18

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Praline Pull-Apart Rolls (serves 8-12) Always a big hit, this recipe is like delicious sticky rolls, but much faster, easier and done the night before. Unmold onto a cake pedestal; the finished product is so beautiful that it will be the centerpiece of the table! 1 cup sugar 4 teaspoons cinnamon (divided) 12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) butter, melted and cooled slightly 1 2-pound package frozen yeast roll dough (not to be confused with cooked rolls; we use Kroger-brand frozen yeast roll dough) 1 cup chopped pecans ¾ cup whipping cream ¾ cup brown sugar Mix sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon in a bowl. One at a time, dip rolls into butter, then coat in sugar. Layer them in a Bundt or tube pan. Sprinkle pecans on top. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let sit overnight in the refrigerator (at least 8 hours, and up to 18 hours). In the morning: Preheat oven to 325. Whip the cream in a stand mixer or with a hand-held mixer. Add the brown sugar and remaining 2 teaspoons cinnamon, and beat to combine. Pour over the top of the rolls. Put the pan on a foil-lined baking sheet (you’ll thank me later!). Bake for an hour. Let rest for 10 minutes, then unmold onto a plate, scraping out all the extra caramel on top of the rolls.

c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


Granola (makes about 14 cups) Feel free to substitute your favorite dried fruit. Let cool completely before stirring in order to get big clumps. 13 tablespoons butter, divided 1 cup honey ½ cup light corn syrup 1 cup apple cider or water 1 teaspoon cinnamon ARTESSO FAUCET

½ teaspoon salt 4 cups oatmeal (labeled old fashioned or rolled oats) ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes ½ cup pecan halves

Y O U R H O M E S AY S A L O T A B O U T Y O U . W E ’ R E H E R E TO L I S T E N .

½ cup whole almonds ¼ cup millet ¼ cup sesame seeds

Your home is a reflection of you. Ferguson’s product experts are here to listen to every detail of your vision, and we’ll work alongside you and your designer, builder or remodeler to bring it to life. Schedule a one-on-one consultation with us today. FERGUSON.COM/SHOWROOMS

Charlottesville (434) 817-1775

Harrisonburg: Forbes Crossing (540) 438-6400

©2015 Ferguson Enterprises, Inc.

2 0

¼ cup wheat germ 1 pound dried fruit of your choice (mix and match; I like raisins, cherries and cranberries) Preheat oven to 300. Grease a cookie sheet with 1 tablespoon butter. In a small saucepan, heat remaining butter, honey, corn syrup, water, cinnamon and salt. In a large bowl, combine oats, coconut, nuts, millet, sesame seeds and wheat germ (no fruit yet!). Pour the hot honey mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat completely. Spread the mixture on the prepared sheet and bake, stirring every 15-20 minutes for 45 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool. Add dried fruit and stir to combine. Serve with a generous dollop of Greek yogurt, some fresh berries and a drizzle of local honey. Granola can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one month. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Scrambled Egg Casserole (serves 8-12) I had a casserole like this at a friend’s house a long time ago, and I’ve worked to recreate it. It’s flexible—you can substitute sautéed peppers and onions for the spinach and roasted tomatoes, and bacon or sausage for the ham. 5 tablespoons butter 5 tablespoons flour 3 cups milk (warmed in the microwave or on top of the stove) 2 cups cheddar 18 eggs Salt and pepper 1 tablespoon butter 1 cup defrosted frozen, chopped spinach, drained well 6 plum tomatoes, cut in half, drizzled with olive oil and roasted at 400 for 35 minutes 1 cup diced ham 2 scallions, chopped

Butter a 9 x12 ovenproof casserole dish. In a medium saucepan, melt 5 tablespoons butter. Add the flour and whisk to combine. Cook over low heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the warm milk and whisk until smooth. Cook another 4-5 minutes, stirring, until thickened. Add cheese and stir to melt. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Season with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, melt the butter. When the butter is hot, add the eggs and reduce heat to medium. Scramble the eggs slowly, until barely cooked and still a little wet-looking. Mix in the cheese sauce, spinach, tomatoes and ham and stir gently, being careful not to overmix. Put in the prepared dish, cover with foil and refrigerate overnight. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 325. Bake, covered, for 20 minutes, then uncovered for another 10 minutes. Garnish casserole with chopped scallions and serve immediately.



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WALK THIS WAY Decorative Walkways Say “Welcome Home” By Da rr ell L au r a n t

Like the old gray mare, the old front walk is not what it used to be. More often than not these days, it isn’t even gray. Once an afterthought for most homeowners and contractors, the path to the front door has increasingly turned into something to be admired as well as trod upon. In and around Charlottesville, familiar narrow ribbons of gray or white concrete are giving way to multi-colored paving stones, bricks and interlocking tiles that welcome approaching visitors to a home. 22

C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Kenny Lowry, owner of Southern Grace in Madison, actually came to the business of decorative front walkways by way of the back door. Southern Grace, a retail destination specializing in all manner of home and garden décor, also provides landscape design and installation through Landscapes by Southern Grace. Though Lowry says he started out mostly by installing water features, his business grew to include hardscaping as more and more clients were requesting help beautifying other exterior areas of their homes—including designing and installing decorative walkways. Indeed, the emphasis on front walkways is going from mere foot traffic to curb appeal. “We’re seeing more of that,” says Paul Grubb of Allied Concrete in Charlottesville. “Generally, we find that people are looking at two different things—stained concrete or concrete pavers.” Like home-decorating customers armed with paint samples and fabric swatches, newly sophisticated sidewalk c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

shoppers now greet their local landscaper/ hardscaper with their own ideas of color and style. The colors in stamped concrete and concrete pavers come from dry pigments spread across the concrete and incorporated into it while it is still setting. Thus, the various hues are virtually fade resistant. This “new-age” sidewalk could feature large individual flagstones set against a backdrop of aggregate gravel. Or tiles. Or inlaid brick. Or slate. Or paving stones presented in a chevron, herringbone or parquet pattern. Perhaps the ultimate in eye-catching walkways, Lowry suggests, are those that actually have small lights buried beneath glass, so the sidewalk can be lit up at night. Whatever the style, decorative walkways can soften and enhance the landscape in ways nothing else can. Some homeowners like the look of a walkway that curves as it approaches the house, an effect that can be difficult to achieve with a single uninterrupted sheet of concrete. Others prefer a wider surface

than the standard 3 1/2 feet, allowing two people to walk up the sidewalk sideby-side. Stamped concrete, offering unique designs embossed into the surface, has come a long way in the past decade, and it is now possible to use concrete pavers that almost perfectly mimic brick or slate, but are less expensive. Installing such a walkway is not beyond the realm of possibility for do-ityourselfers, but professional landscapers advise caution, noting that it requires some level of expertise. Unlike laying down a kitchen or bathroom floor, anyone putting in a sidewalk must deal with tricky issues involving the amount of “fill” beneath the walkway and changes in gradation. An inside floor is close to perfectly level—a sidewalk, not so much. If the fill doesn’t adjust to how the ground is configured, you may wind up putting stress on a section of the walkway and causing it to buckle. 23

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Since paving stones obviously can’t be glued to the ground, they must be restrained by more subtle means, like paving sand in the joints and a taut edging that keeps the walkway firm by exerting opposing centrifugal force. Standard concrete, by contrast, remains in place simply by virtue of its own weight. “In most cases, you start with some 57 stone (a coarse crushed aggregate),” says Grubb, “then put rock dust over that. Then you set in the pavers, then you put something down in between the pavers. There are products out there now that not only hold your pavers in place, but keep plants from growing up between the cracks.” Some homeowners used to be a little nervous about putting down individual stones for a walkway, because of their tendency to become slippery when wet. But the new generation of pavers, Grubb says, have a rougher texture that provides more traction. Lowry, meanwhile, has discovered a product he calls “stone bond” that is water permeable. “It allows water to pass right through it,” he says, “and it can be mixed in either between the pavers or as a border.” And stone bond is stout enough, says Lowry, “that you can drive a car on it.” True, the one-of-a-kind nature of decorative sidewalks pushes up their price. From a labor standpoint alone, it is more timeconsuming to match and carefully insert pieces than to simply pump out the appropriate amount of concrete and level it. “The thing is,” Grubb says, “this is kind of a luxury item, and the people who buy them have decided it’s something they want to spend part of their discretionary income on.” However, walkways constructed with pavers, in particular, have proven more durable and easier to repair than the traditional continuous-piece concrete variety. “With pavers,” C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

says Grubb, “you can replace the paver that might be damaged with one just like it, and it won’t show.” Traditional one-unit sidewalks have little wiggle room to counter the inevitable expansion and contraction in summer heat and winter cold. This can result in cracks over time. “Pavers allow room for that, because they aren’t right up next to each other,” says Grubb. Another benefit is that many hardscaping companies offer anywhere from a 50-year to a lifetime warranty on walkways made of stone or concrete pavers. The cost currently varies from roughly $8-$10 per square foot for basic concrete pavers to $12-$18 for more elaborate designs. Brick, slate and flagstones are more expensive, up to $30 per square foot and beyond. But what if you have grown tired of your old walkway and would like to get fancy, but cringe at the thought of jackhammers in the front yard? Most of these same designs are available in concrete overlays that can be put down over the old surface. Grubb explains, “In those cases, you can just lay the pavers in loose, on top of the old concrete and put down a border that will keep them from moving around.” As time goes by, more and more innovations will find their way into the hardscaping field. With all these options, homeowners no longer have to settle for that boring gray perpendicular walk to the front door. The way has been paved for better, brighter paths.

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C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

by F err ell N e xs en

When I got married some years ago, a favorite gift at the time to give the bride and groom was a silver tray. They came in all shapes and sizes, and I received quite a collection. At the time, I was under-impressed and did not see the use in them, but my mother assured me there would come a time when I would love and use each and every one. Whom and what would I serve using these trays? All I could think of was teatime and white-gloved butlers when it came to trays. But oh how the tray has transformed! No longer just functional vehicles on which to pass canapĂŠs, or objects with designs and materials dominated by silver, trays have become an integral and fun part of decorating and home decor. They are likely to be discovered in most any home today. Whether they are on a coffee table, ottoman, vanity table, or console, they can make quite a statement. Trays are suitable to put on practically any surface, and are particularly advantageous for protecting marble or other surfaces prone to distress. Trays can corral objects and keep them orderly, and create a nice place of interest in any room. c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


Repurposing China in Inventive Ways

Ever the versatile piece, a traditional tray can be used in rather unique ways, or it can be devised and created from items never imagined. Take for instance your grandmother’s two- or three-tiered dessert tray that has forever found a home in your closet. It can make an excellent jewelry or perfume holder in your dressing room or bathroom, or you can display something interesting on it like a colorful collection of matchbooks or figurines. Don’t have a have a tiered dessert tray? Make your own using two or three china plates, some candlestick holders, and some good craft glue (experts recommend fast-drying epoxy). This is a great way to show off those antique plates you picked up at an estate sale or your great aunt’s china you thought you would never use or appreciate. And speaking of china, almost any piece can be used as a distinctive tray. After all, the definition of a tray is “a container used for carrying, holding, or displaying.“ For many, there is nothing more fun than hunting in an antique store, thrift store, or even your own basement for pretty plates, saucers, teacups, bowls and other porcelain pieces. The versatility of dishes can be amazing. Take a small plate or saucer and 2 8

add a nice bar of soap, and you have an elegant soap dish. Wrap in cellophane and tie with a lovely ribbon, and viola! You have the perfect hostess gift. Teacups in a drawer or on a shelf make a simple organizing system for holding anything from earrings to cotton balls to those pesky elastic hairbands. The key here is to start looking at china in a whole new light! Crafting Fun Trays From Everyday Objects

Of course, when in pursuit of the perfect tray, don’t bypass old picture frames. There are some unique old frames out there to be found, and they can be turned in to a stunning tray, sometimes with the simple addition of a piece of plywood and some paint. You can also add your personal signature to any tray by covering the bottom with some good-looking fabric, wine corks, beer bottle caps, concert ticket stubs, travel mementos, stencils…or just about anything! You can also take this jazz-it-up approach to old trays, revamping them for a new look. Another easy and useful DIY project is to create a to-go tray made from the top of a sturdy cardboard box covered with cute wrapping paper or fabric. This project is a clever way to deliver a meal or take a dish to a potluck supper.

Keep in mind that just about anything can be repurposed and used as a tray. You just need to view everyday objects with new eyes, and the possibilities become endless. Creating a Focal Point

And back to those silver trays… They can make a lovely and sophisticated backdrop for shelves when interspersed between books, porcelain figurines, picture frames, and other collectibles, or you can use a collection of trays in different shapes and sizes to fill the space and make a statement. Another option is to group silver trays together and hang them on the wall for an interesting and elegant look that creates a focal point in a room. After all these years, I have actually begun to use and enjoy all of my silver trays, whether in the bathroom as an elegant soap dish or to display perfume bottles, on a coffee table to hold our many remote controls and magazines, or as a backsplash for a bar. Looks like my mom was right after all! So next time you are in an antique or thrift store, an estate or yard sale, or even your own basement, get creative and let objects inspire you. You may find yourself with a whole new organizational system, a focal point for a room, or at the very least, a new conversation piece. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5


SPICE IT UP WITH HERBS Traditional floral arrangements with a twist By I n g r i d McCr a rY

When your mouth is watering from all the fresh flavors of summer, extend the sensory pleasure from table to tabletop by creating a uniquely fresh floral arrangement. Summer’s the time to enjoy these bountiful blooms, whether you’re creating arrangements for your next soiree or simply seeking to brighten your own coffee table. Select a few showy blooms and add a pinch of something unique by incorporating lush, fragrant herbs into your bouquet. Use what you have in your garden, or hit the grocery store and use ingredients from the flavorful dishes you’re planning to prepare anyway! Choose a few splashy summer flowers as the stars of your arrangement. Draw your inspiration from local varieties like geraniums, hydrangeas, dahlias, daisies, plumbago, coneflowers, salvia, iris, snapdragons, and, of course, roses. The Knockout varieties are colorful and prolific in our area and work well in summer arrangements. When arranging flowers in preparation for entertaining, set a color theme with your florals, such as matching those great new porch cushions, or using a riot of bright blooms to represent your child’s new college if you’re hosting a luncheon for a recent grad. If you don’t have exactly what you want in your own garden, borrow from a neighbor; you only need a few to make a big effect. Supplement the look with smaller flowers in a similar hue. c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


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The secret ingredient that sets your summertime arrangement apart from a plain vase of daises is this addition of herbs and flowering herbs. Typically valued for their healing properties and the flavor they impart to food, herbs also contribute their fragrance and limitless shades of green to add the element of surprise to your arrangements. Herbs are drought tolerant and low maintenance, love sun, and are compatible with indigenous gardens; there is no reason not to add a small plot or pot to your garden or patio. Consider an outdoor arrangement of flowers and herbs in your porch planters or window boxes to enjoy their fresh scent each time you enter or leave your home. If you think you can’t grow herbs, it’s only because you haven’t tried. Remember that many herbs are soft-stemmed, so use sharp, small clippers to harvest them. The Victorians turned flower giving into an art form, adding symbolism and meaning to the simple gift of a bloom. It can be a fun conversation starter to incorporate a bit of Victorian symbolism into your summer arrangements. For the bride to be:

ed roses (Knockout or Sweetheart) symbolize love, R congratulations, and joy ■ Ivy (from your beds or pots) represents wedded love and fidelity ■ Basil and basil flowers (white or lilac in color and very aromatic) signify best wishes ■

Try arranging these in several white cream pitchers or a set of stemless wine glasses that the bride can take home afterward. Cut long stems of ivy (the variegated variety works well) and allow it to trail casually out of the vessels and across your table. For the neighborhood block party:

Alstromeria (very inexpensive at your local grocer) and yellow roses signify friendship ■ Pineapple mint is a symbol of hospitality, welcome, and warmth of feeling ■ P ineapple sage blooms (fiery red in color and pineapple scented) symbolize hospitality and esteem ■

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The bright red of the sage blooms offsets the yellow and greens in this arrangement. The mints will lend a fabulous scent to a warm summer evening. These would be lovely in jelly jars or juice glasses from your cabinet and set at each place. A delight for the senses! A sprig for your iced tea, anyone? One word of caution, though: don’t add scarlet geraniums when entertaining the neighbors...they signify stupidity! That’s not the way to win friends. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

And for a graduation luncheon:

urple coneflowers (a very dependable perennial) P signify skill and capability ■ White dahlias symbolize gratitude to parents (for the proud moms and dads) ■ Coral bells (a spiky red perennial) represent challenge, scholarship, and hard work ■ Rosemary (a hearty herb with a pine-like fragrance) bolsters wisdom and strength of memory ■ Fennel (feathery, bronze foliage with yellow flowers) signifies strength and worthiness of praise ■

This bright and happy combination echoes the joy of the occasion. Arrange in any clear glass vases you have on hand, wrap each with a school-colored bandana and line them up down the center of your picnic table. If you have an abundance of clover in your yard (and who doesn’t?) scoop out small patches with your trowel and place on top of mini terracotta pots among your arrangements, sending your students off with good luck wishes for a great transition! No matter what occasion summer brings your way, make full use of your flower and herb garden to create a memorable event by incorporating herbs and their flowers into your tablescape. You’ll provide your loved ones with an interesting conversation piece and delight their senses with the sights and smells of summer.


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BY L au r el F ei n m a n P h ot o g r a p hy by V irg in i a H a m r i c k


C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

When Reid and Michelle Willis Adams bought their home in 1995 in what’s endearingly known by the locals as “azalea alley” near Rugby Road, they were a busy young couple with a one-yearold baby. Reid, a surgeon, had just finished his medical residency/fellowship and Michelle worked for the University of Virginia Alumni Association. They were excited to be new homeowners and went right to work completing lots of do-it-yourself projects to make their new home their own. Michelle recalls, “Every time the baby napped, I’d go paint something.” Her first painting project still greets visitors at the front door: a black geometric pattern she stenciled on the hardwood floors in the foyer, which gives the illusion of an area rug and runner. Other early painting projects include the boldly colored walls in the formal living room (a rich, warm red) and the dining room (a deep cobalt blue). Michelle explains that the living room’s red walls are a classic Chinese red, which she and Reid hand-lacquered with an umber glaze to give the walls an antiqued look. She says that you have to apply the glaze with a brush and work very slowly so air bubbles won’t form. In the c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

dining room, Michelle and Reid worked together on the handfinished painting technique called strié, in which a brush is dragged vertically along the wall from ceiling to floor before the paint dries. This gives the walls the subtle texture of a linen weave. Twenty years later, these projects still look terrific—one of the many benefits of making classic choices with your home décor. The home, like many in the neighborhood, was built in the early 1930s and only had one other owner in its history—a rarity for a home of this age. The Adams lived in the home as-is, save for a few little updates here and there, for many years. Six years ago, they completed their first major home renovation: the kitchen and family room addition, built by contractor Goodman B. Duke and designed by Michelle’s father, Stewart Willis, in conjunction with Charlottesville Architectural firm, Angel Applications. Kitchen Designer Karen Turner provided the design for the new kitchen and butler’s pantry. And last year, they completed a second major project: adding a twocar garage with a guest suite above it—connected to the house by a deck and walkway, designed by Charlottesville architect Russell Skinner, and built by custom builder Baird Snyder, Incorporated. When touring the Adams home, one of its most apparent qualities is a sense of connectedness from room to room. Michelle attributes this to the home’s consistent interior color palette. Michelle says that she “inherited” her colors of “Chinese red, cobalt blue and camel tan” from her mother, interior designer Evelyn Tyler Willis, who lives in Sperryville, Virginia. 33

Michelle and her mother (and grandmother before them) are collectors of Chinese porcelains and art, and these classic shades appear often in such objects. So when the young couple first began outfitting their new home, Michelle’s mother teased that she would happily share furniture and decorative items with them, but they would also need to adopt her paint colors so that everything could settle into the new home in Charlottesville with ease. Michelle says that her favorite thing about having a limited color palette is that she can pick up an item in one room and carry it to another, and it’ll never feel out of place. By using these same three tones in varying shades and repeating them in different ways throughout the house, Michelle says she actually has more options and versatility. She’s able to move things from room to room, or add new elements with ease because she doesn’t have to worry about coordinating with a complex set of colors. She says, “Each room maintains its own personality, but also makes so much sense when looked at as a whole. The thread that connects everything is the color palette.” In 1997, Michelle began studying interior design and helping her mother with clients’ projects; before long, she followed in her mother’s footsteps and became an interior designer herself. Michelle now owns an independent interior design business and primarily focuses on private residences, though she has also done work at UVA, including the Offices of Admission and several historic pavilions on the Lawn. 34

Michelle and Reid share an interest in what she calls “treasure hunting”—searching for antiques and interesting collectibles, especially if they have an Asian theme. She says, “We’re always going to auctions and estate sales, or we pick up things during travel or from family. It’s something we enjoy doing together.” One of the most interesting things they collect are antique grates—decorative metal or wooden frames and screens. Each radiator in their home has a unique custom-made box fitted with a different antique grate. Michelle says the collection has evolved and different carpenters have contributed their woodworking skills to this group of one-of-a-kind decorative radiator covers. Michelle says that she and Reid think that collections have the greatest effect when like-items are displayed together, but that they aren’t purists about it. She says, “I love designing tablescapes, so I’m constantly moving things around from spot to spot.” For the most part, the Imari porcelain collection, with its red and gold overglaze, is showcased in the living room against the backdrop of the Chinese red walls. The blue and white Canton ware is found in the elegant blue dining room, and a collection of English Flow Blue china is displayed in the bookcases in the open kitchen/ family room. With that first major renovation, the Adams greatly increased the size of their kitchen and family room. The old kitchen is now a butler’s pantry; their old family room now serves as a home office; and the new kitchen and family room is one large open space— C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

divided into three zones: the kitchen work area, a casual dining area and a cozy sitting area with a fireplace. In this large space, Michelle flipped the application of her signature color palette from what’s seen in the home’s more-formal front rooms. In the front rooms, bold red and blue take center stage and camel tones are merely a supporting player. But here, camel is the dominant color and is accented with lower-key variants of reds and blues. Michelle notes that there are at least eight different fabrics, featuring a mix of patterns and textures layered into the décor in the new kitchen and family room: three different damasks, a herringbone, a stripe, an ikat, a diamond, a floral on the drapery, tapestry patterns and chenille. Even the granite countertops in the kitchen get in on the game. Michelle says the trick for working with a neutral color like camel is in the layering. “Textures and patterns layered through paint, accessories and fabric are how you give life to a neutral color. Quiet patterns get treated as a solid, and textures add visual interest,” she says. Precision installed Quality stonework

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“Textures and patterns layered through paint, accessories and fabric are how you give life to a neutral color. Quiet patterns get treated as a solid, and textures add visual interest.” —Michele Willis Adams To accessorize the room, Michelle uses an eclectic mix of warm metals like brass, antique brass and iron. The overhead light fixtures by Visual Comfort are contemporary interpretations of traditional, historic fixtures. She says she is particularly drawn to contemporary accessories these days and has plans to add a few more contemporary touches to her décor. She has already included a modern brass and glass-topped coffee table. On the family room ceiling is a barelythere pale blue paint called Window Pane by Sherwin Williams. Michelle says she tested several shades of pale blue until she achieved the look she wanted and she always advises clients to do the same. She says that paint may be the easiest product to apply, but it can often be the trickiest to work with. “With fabric, what you see is what you get, but paint changes everywhere you put it—sometimes even within the same room, depending on the light. So it’s important to paint large swaths of a paint sample—at least two coats—and live with it for a few days before you paint the entire room.” Michelle’s savvy for recycling good ideas and “that, which is tried and true” is especially evident in the Adams’ new guest suite, completed last January. A longtime supporter of the Shelter for Help in Emergency (SHE), Michelle has participated in five of the six SHE Design House tours. Of her involvement, she says, “It’s fun for me to participate because it’s a chance to try new things and work in a way that’s out-of-the-ordinary for me. There’s no real client, so I do things to suit the property, rather than focusing on suiting a particular personality.” The designers involved with Design House contribute their own investment of time, materials, custom sewing and furnishings. Two years ago, because she knew she would soon be outfitting a guest suite at her own home, she 36

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requested to decorate “a bedroom” and was serendipitously granted the master bedroom suite at the Design House by the design committee. She confides, “Everything I did at the home in Farmington two years ago is now in our new guest suite.” (This year, Michelle’s SHE Design House project is the kitchen and family room—a space that connects with a breakfast room designed by Ellen Beard of Patina Antiques.) From the family room in the Adams’ main house, guests have only to step out and across the backyard’s elevated open deck to enter the new freestanding guest suite. This one-level entrance is just one of several “aging in place” features that the Adams incorporated into the design of the guest suite. Doorways are also scaled to be at least 3 feet wide and the walk-in shower features a curbless stall. Inside, the guest suite has a kitchenette, a dining set, a generous king-sized bed and a sitting area. Michelle’s classic color palette is used in the guest suite—seen in the bedding, drapery fabrics, paint colors and the bathroom’s stunning cobalt wallpaper. c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m



C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

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Outside, the new garage and guest suite is clad in Hardiplank cement siding and painted in Benjamin Moore’s Monroe Bisque, mixed at three-quarters strength, to coordinate with the exterior of the main house. The stark white trim around the windows and the Chippendale details on the deck railings “pop” against the camel paint on the siding. The furniture on the outdoor deck provides places for casual dining and lounging. The outdoor fabrics Michelle selected for the cushions are stylish and fun, chosen with the same design philosophy she employs inside her home: layering a damask, classic solids and stripes and even adding an animal print in neutral camel-based tones for a touch of whimsy. Another example of Michelle’s practical sense for repurposing can be found upstairs in her daughter’s bedroom and study lounge in the main house. Michelle says that for their upstairs bedrooms, she relaxed her stance on her trademark red/blue/ camel color palette, as she brought in two new colors that “complement, without competing.” The new colors she introduced are brown (just a darker version of a camel, really) and a plummy purple (which is, after all, made by mixing red with blue). These new colors were pulled from the patterns in the room’s fabrics, which were first seen at her second Design House experience—when she decorated a handsome library/sitting room at a home in Crozet. All this fortuitously came at a time when her daughter was ready to embrace a more mature look for her bedroom and upgrade her teenaged tie-dye decor. With a little ingenuity for resizing/rescaling the fabrics she had used in the Design House library project, Michelle was able C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

to reuse everything. The chocolate and ruby ikat-patterned London blinds were pared down and the excess fabric was used to make skirts for the twin-sized bed. Other fabric treatments used in the Design House were resized for use as a dressing table skirt, a new cushion for the window seat and extra throw pillows. Michelle and Reid are glad they made the additions to their home when they did, while their daughter was still living at home and able to enjoy the benefits of them, too. Now, she’s a third-year student at UVA and frequently brings her college friends over for home-cooked meals and club meetings. Michelle and Reid wouldn’t have it any other way. The Adams’ home is a classic example of the benefits of choosing a timeless look for your home. When you start with that classic foundation, it’s easy to make little updates to freshen up your look, through au courant motifs and accessories. Michelle says timeless choices are a commitment, but something you’ll love to live with for years to come.

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Our homes may not be as automated as The Jetsons, that childhood cartoon we remember from the 1960s (but set in 2064), but we’re getting closer with today’s “smart” technology. For years, consumers have enjoyed being able to set timers that automatically send their dishwashers, washing machines and ovens into motion at appointed times—making those homekeeping tasks occur at convenient times of day. But now, home appliances getting are even smarter.


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Some new appliances, such as refrigerators, washers, dryers and ovens, can be controlled with a touch-screen interface on the appliance, or from your smartphone. These built-in apps can send you alerts, notify you when the washer is finished, or send you status updates of your refrigerator’s water filter. LG, GE and Whirlpool are three companies in the forefront of the technology, with new ones being introduced all the time. One aspect of smart technology in the home that’s gaining ground is the ability to check on and control multiple appliances and devices from a smartphone, tablet or computer. With an app, users can control a variety of devices while sitting at home, or at the beach: lighting, heating and cooling, appliances, and locks. The apps can also send an alarm when the power goes out, the smoke or carbon monoxide alarm goes off, an intruder sets off a motion sensor in your home, or the hot-water heater springs a leak. Long the vision of science fiction and World’s Fairs, smart homes have not completely reached the level dreamed of in the 50s and 60s, but we’re getting closer to that goal all the time. At present, there is no single standard technology to allow smart appliances to “talk” to each c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

other, so the appliances in some smart homes will be hard wired, while others are able communicate wirelessly. These technologies also help make the smart house a “green” house that allows you to keep appliances, lights, and heating and cooling off during the day when no one is home. You can choose to run your dishwasher or washing machine during off-peak hours, generally at night, when electricity demand on the local power grid is light. Before you leave the office, you can set your home thermostat to slowly cool down as you head home so the temperature is comfortable when you arrive. You can turn the oven on to preheat while you’re still at the grocery store. When you pull into your driveway, you can pull out your phone to open your garage door, unlock the door to the house, and turn on the lights so you don’t have to fumble with a light switch when you have your hands full of groceries. Separate controls can replace your thermostat and can be installed to control overhead and occasional lighting or other home devices. From your easy chair, you can control your home theater system or control the volume of your favorite songs in each room of the house. Security measures may include magnetic contacts

that detect when a window or cabinet, like a gun safe or medicine cabinet, is opened; sensors for motion, smoke, carbon monoxide, and moisture (like a leaky pipe); window shades; automatic door locks; and cameras inside and outside the house. Individual modules can control separate devices such as table lamps, the coffee pot, and a crockpot. You can hire an expert to have home automation systems installed, or install them yourself. Prices for professional installation vary depending on whether you’re installing a system in a new home, or retrofitting an existing home with hidden wiring or wireless control. And it doesn’t take an engineering degree to control your home from your phone. Manufacturers have made sure that controlling their appliances by smartphone or tablet is easy by designing simple software to run the show. Designers and engineers of home appliances are constantly seeking new ways to help homeowners: refrigerators that scan food and send a shopping list to your phone; ovens that scan your food and offer recipe suggestions. Now, if they could just get the washing machine to load itself, and the trash to take itself to the curb, they may be onto something! 43


Take a Seat Outdoor furniture is more comfortable and durable than ever

By M i t z i B i bl e

Patios no longer have to play host to folding lawn chairs with polyester webbing or the heavy wrought-iron bistro ensembles of past generations. They have become an extra living room or dining room, a prime place to relax and entertain—with the added bonus of fresh air. And they can be outfitted with the same attention to style given to interiors. The new outdoor furnishings on the market today, with the ability to withstand the elements and provide just as much comfort as our indoor pieces, are no doubt driving this trend. Patricia Meté, manager of Better Living Furniture in Charlottesville, says “chat groups” are the buzz for outdoor furniture in 2015. These “deep seating” pieces— chairs, sofas, loveseats, and sectionals with thick, plush cushions made of durable, easy-to-clean fabrics—impersonate the style of indoor areas and entice family and friends to spend more time lounging outdoors. Though retailers carry complete collections that include everything from sofas to rockers to chaise lounges, and every shape of table to match, manufacturers are making it easier to customize arrangements to meet individual needs. “Ideal dining and seating will be dictated by the size of your space,” Meté says. “Concessions often have to be made with limited geography. A tiny spot may only accept a bistro table for two accompanied by a glider swing or stationary bench. With a large yard, literally the sky is the limit. This can be overwhelming, and I advise starting with pieces that will allow you to bring in additions later on. This will get you past the ‘need’ to fill all the space at once.” 4 4

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While there are numerous choices of frames, finishes and fabrics, the style you choose should easily flow with your home’s décor, making a smooth transition from the inside to the outside. This requires commitment to a color theme. “Take a look at the exterior style and colors of your house, and then think about your current landscaping: what are your favorite flowers and colors? Select dining and seating that will complement the style of your home and use fabric (cushions, umbrellas) and flowers to carry the color theme,” Meté suggests. “I prefer fabrics in solid or mild prints, and I let the plants do the rest.” She recommends adding pieces of local pottery—even very large plant containers—to bring out your style. While the look is important, durability is a must. For outdoor spaces with no cover, choose practical wrought-iron or aluminum frames with easy-to-remove cushions. These hardy products now come with new powder-coating finishes that help protect against dents, dings and scratches, and will resist rusting. For the natural look plus durability, choose teak hardwood furniture. This is the popular medium for park benches and pieces in other public areas, but many options exist for residential backyard seating and dining. While these products may be more expensive, they are built to stand the test of time and are not likely to need replacement for many years. Outdoor (or “all-weather”) wicker and rattan are also popular options. The woven frames coated with a synthetic material are ultra durable but still maintain the integrity of that traditional wicker and rattan look. Although they have come a long way from your grandmother’s white front-porch sets that often required paint jobs, products made of this material are still best placed in covered areas to extend their use. Newer “green” options, such as “plastic lumber,” use raw materials mostly derived from post-consumer bottle waste, such as milk and detergent bottles. This product requires no waterproofing, painting, staining or similar maintenance when used outdoors. Another benefit for choosing teak, all-weather wicker or plastic lumber is that these materials do not get hot to the touch when the sun bears down. Once the frame is chosen, the cushioning is the next decision to make. Talk to any furniture dealer or interior designer and the product that will be mentioned most is Sunbrella. The fabric is manufactured for outdoor use, and has been used for awnings, umbrellas, and other marine applications for several years. It is water and mildew resistant and won’t fade. It can be easily cleaned and requires minimal seasonal maintenance. The brand also makes Sunbrella Rain, a completely waterproof version of the legendary upholstery fabric. It is available in solids, stripes, and prints of all hues and designs. Like any investment, proper care will keep all your outdoor furniture looking its best. “Common sense is the best protection you can give your furnishings,” Meté says. While wrought-iron, aluminum and teak products can be left outside year-round, Meté advises covers or indoor storage for wicker, rattan, and seating with straps or slings. While waterproof slipcovers are available, it is best to bring all cushions indoors for the winter to maintain their beauty. She recommends a spray-on protection wax for wrought iron, which can be purchased at most local hardware stores. It is inexpensive and produces great results. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Once you have the main pieces and care instructions, you may choose to accessorize your space. Add a firepit table and you have a “destination magnet,” Meté says. Or toss in a stylish heavy-duty rug (look for one made from polypropylene). Today’s outdoor rugs provide the look of natural rug fibers but resist mold, mildew and fading, and can be vacuumed and even washed down with a garden hose. In the end, designers agree that creating a living space outside your four walls is about taking a cue from nature and preserving the greatness of the Great Outdoors. “When furnishing an outdoor space, my advice is to have fun,” Meté says. “Nothing is out of style as long as it is functional and fits the environment. Adirondack chairs will always be with us. So will the garden bench, the tire swing, the hammock, and the bird house. Let your desire for relaxation along with appreciation of the natural surroundings influence your decisions.”

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CREATIVITY, INGENUITY, PLUCK and PAINT Key elements transform and unify a home BY L au r el F ei n m a n P h ot o g r a p hy by J e nn F in a z zo , F l o r a l d e si g n by B r i a r wo o d

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P h ot o p rov i d e d by Le sli e Gre g g


eslie and Dan Gregg weren’t looking for a new project to tackle, but one found them anyway. Leslie is the creative force behind The Market at Grelen (a retail store, casual cafe and specialevents venue) that she co-owns with her husband Dan Gregg and business partner, Zeke Galvin, of Grelen Nursery (a tree farm, nursery and landscaping/ hardscaping business) in Orange County. “We never intended to own a rental property, but last fall a friend mentioned to Dan that a former B&B located a few miles down the road was on the market, so Dan went to check it out,” she says. Within 24 hours, Dan had taken Leslie to see it and they made an offer. Their decision wasn’t completely random; Leslie says that some of their wedding clients had confided that they struggled to find lodging for their guests. She says, “There’s so much happening in Orange County, so many fun things going on, that on busy weekends, every hotel, inn and B&B in the area is completely booked.” Their proximity to Woodberry Forest, James Madison’s Montpelier, 5 0

Barboursville Vineyards and UVA makes it a bustling place—especially in the spring and fall. The Greggs wasted no time and got right to work on the 8-bedroom, 7-bathroom guest retreat now known as Spotswood Lodge. The property, set on 11 acres, comprises a rambling old farmhouse (original parts of which date back to the 1700s) and a guest cottage. When the Greggs purchased the property, everything was in solid condition, but they saw opportunities to improve the flow and give it a new look inside. And… the best thing is, they were able to accomplish it without having to undergo a gut-it-all redo. Going With the Flow

The first thing Leslie and Dan did was to improve the overall flow of the house. “All those add-ons through the years had made it very choppy inside. Our goal was to streamline everything. We closed in unnecessary doors and windows, took out old wood-burning stoves, opened up walls.”

Leslie says she and Dan tried to visualize themselves as guests to help determine how best to renovate and rework the floor plan of the house. “Most of our choices were made by coming from the mindset of how we would want to use the house to hang out with our friends. So when we looked at Spotswood through that lens, a plan started to form—a game table would be great here, this would be the best spot for a dining room, the TV should go here.” Once the construction was complete, Leslie’s attention soon turned to outfitting and decorating Spotswood Lodge. “I love the creative challenge of redoing a home, but I needed to be super-mindful of my budget. I had to set priorities and be willing to use a little pluck and ingenuity to make it all come together.” Leslie says she tried to incorporate the kinds of things that are important to her when she goes on vacation: a stylish, yet relaxing atmosphere; lush bed linens and comfortable beds; great water pressure and nice bath fixtures; and a nice mix of vibrant conversation areas and quiet places to relax. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Practical Paint

To create that stylish and relaxing atmosphere, Leslie turned to paint. “Gallons upon gallons upon gallons of paint,” she says. Leslie says that part of her formula to unify all the spaces in both the main house and the cottage was to choose a simple color palette and repeat it throughout the house in a variety of ways: white, tan, black and robin’s egg blue. All the walls are painted in Benjamin Moore’s White Dove, except for the two largest bedroom suites, which are painted in Benjamin Moore’s Yarmouth Blue. Those linen white and pale blue tones couple with tans and blacks in every room through accessories, furniture, artwork and fabrics. Leslie says white goes old or new, modern or cottage, shabby or chic, which is why she chose it to be the predominant “color” in the freshened-up farmhouse. “White paint hides a multitude of aesthetic sins: rooms appear bigger, boundaries blur. White even hides blemishes and softens fine lines (of architecture, that is),” she jokes. Leslie’s use of white has created a serene, homogenous space that feels fresh and contemporary—quite a feat for a cobbledtogether historic home that’s over 200 years old. Leslie says white’s neutral backdrop has allowed her to add personality to the house through its accessories, furnishings and décor.

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On the exterior of the home, Leslie once again turned to paint to upgrade the look of Spotswood Lodge. Just as it did inside, the outside had a piecedtogether appearance, with a mix of wood, plaster and brick. Now, everything’s been painted in a buttery yellow color and has a harmonious look. Leslie selected the soft, pale yellow for the exterior of the house and cottage because, she says, “I wanted it to be such a subtle shade of yellow that it would almost appear white when the sunlight shines upon it.” New landscaping completes the exterior and gives it a polished appearance. Leslie jokes, “Dan and Zeke left the interiors to me and they, of course, had lots of opinions about the landscaping. We make a great team!” Adding Flair

In the bathrooms and kitchens, the Greggs replaced faucets, appliances and hardware, and updated the plumbing and lighting—but kept the cabinetry and porcelain fixtures. “We made updates and improvements in ways that made a difference, and we managed to stay within our budget,” she says. Leslie added interest to the linoleum floors in these rooms by painting them in whimsical patterns that mimic vintage marble tile floors. Leslie muses, “I think it’s important to be creative and not take it too seriously. It’s just paint, it’s not permanent. You really can’t mess it up.” Leslie had fun furnishing the house and the cottage with fun and funky refurbished antiques; some came from her own home, but many more were found in local shops. “I found so many great things at Circa, Leftover Luxuries, Patina and Shabby Love. I took a lot of items to Pigment and had them painted, and Cathy Mares did some upholstery work for us, too. Everything here has had another life before, and each item brings its unique character to the mix.” 52

P h ot o gr a p hy by Ju d y B row n


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The furnishings in the cottage play on its meadow-side location and bring the outdoors in to the sun-filled main room. Here, a bamboo outdoor patio set—another great thrift-shop find— outfits the living room and kitchenette. Leslie had the set painted a glossy black and had cushions made featuring a blue-gray outdoor fabric and finished out with a black and white zebra trim. Easy-care glass-topped tables and a glass-shelved étagère complete the set. To uphold the old-fashioned sleeping porch vibe in the cottage, Leslie painted the floors that same “porch and floor gray” you’d expect to see on a porch floor of a home of this era. The cottage once had two stairwells leading upstairs to the bedrooms. To gain space for a laundry room and a king-sized bed in one of the upstairs bedrooms, the Greggs took out the stairway located behind the kitchenette. After the painters had finished their job and rolled up their drop cloths, Leslie was left with the blank canvas upon which she could place all the finishing touches that make the house and cottage feel like home. “I’ve tried to create one focal point in every room. In a bedroom, it might be an architectural detail we added. In the main social room, it’s the blue-green sectional sofa and love seat. In the dining room, it’s the painted antique table.” Mixed among the vintage furnishings and decorative touches are contemporary light fixtures and sconces, which she purchased locally through Timberlake Lighting. Leslie says she made selections that had a contemporary vibe but weren’t too much of a departure from what you’d expect in an historic home. “For me, the new lighting is the icing on the cake—the thing that 56

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adds the luxurious finishing touch, especially in the bathrooms.” Still, of all the clever updates made at Spotswood Lodge, Leslie credits “white paint” as being the most transformative element. Leslie says she and Dan hope Spotswood Lodge will be a place where families and best friends come to relax and have fun. “I like to think about entire bridal parties of best friends, or families with cousins and kids, coming here for a long weekend. I like to imagine all the laughter that will happen here,” she says. When the opportunity to own Spotswood Lodge knocked, the Greggs are happy they listened and opened the door to the possibility. As any homeowner can attest, it takes a team of special people to help create a dream home. Everyone needs that list of go-to folks who just make everything better. For Leslie and Dan, those partners in refurbishing Spotswood Lodge have been Lance Clore (contractor), Charles Talley (electrician), Webber Painting (interior and exterior painting) and Grelen Nursery (landscaping). To make Spotswood Lodge shine, they used G & T Window Cleaning and Specialty Housekeeping. To add all the lovely finishing touches, they called upon Cathy Mares Upholstery, Circa, Laurie Holladay Interiors, Leftover Luxuries, The Market at Grelen, Painted at Poplar Haven, Patina Antiques, etc., Pigment, Shabby Love and Timberlake Lighting.

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Look Up

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We spend hours sorting through paint swatches for our walls, and then more hours choosing the best flooring. But what about our ceilings? Are there just as many options for this additional “wall”? From choosing a complementary paint color, to adding texture effects, to exploring alternative coverings, you may find that the view above could become your favorite view of all. Color it Up

One of the quickest, easiest, and most budget-friendly ways to liven up a room is to paint the ceiling. Isn’t it ironic that many of us settle for plain white ceilings throughout our house, while we will go to all lengths to find the right color for our walls? The fact is that the ceiling color can add that perfect finishing touch to your room. Experts usually recommend staying within the hues of your wall color for your ceiling, using slightly darker shades for smaller rooms or slightly lighter for larger rooms. Lighter, neutral shades can make a ceiling appear higher, while darker shades can make a room feel cozier. A room with all-white walls and light-colored flooring could benefit from a more vibrant color for the ceiling. If you have a particular ceiling fan or light fixture you’d like to draw focus to, consider painting the ceiling red, gray, or chocolate brown. The idea is for the eye to be able to make a smooth transition from the floor to ceiling, no matter the shades. Sometimes experimenting with a new finish on a plain white ceiling is all you need to give your room a new look. Although many paint manufacturers offer ultra-flat ceiling paint (which will reflect light and hide imperfections, and c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

is specially formulated for less splatter), consider a high-gloss coat to shine things up. In a bathroom, for instance, a glossy white ceiling can create a mirror effect and make the whole room seem bigger and brighter. In a young girl’s bedroom, consider using a “glitter effect” topcoat for the ceiling (made by many of the top paint brands) to bring sparkle and magic into her world. Paint that comes in metallic finishes can also fit your fancy in other rooms; add a high-gloss glaze over it, and your dining room ceiling could shine like the silver on the table below. Brush it Up

A textured ceiling can add a bit of personality to a room, but it can also cover imperfections, stains and cracks. Popcorn ceilings were popular a few decades ago (and if you own an older home, odds are you may have this style in many of your rooms), but there are more painting techniques that can add character to a room. You can “sponge,” “smoosh,” “stomp,” “stipple,” or “strié” your ceiling for a dramatic effect. That’s a lot of silly sounding “s” words, but these techniques each call for rolling a rag or other material on the paint, or using a glaze with different brushes

and different strokes. Of course, these effects take even more care when you’re doing them overhead. Cover the floor and all furniture with drop cloths, and wear protective eyewear. While you could climb a ladder to sponge or stipple in small areas at a time, you can also use special rollers with your feet firmly planted on the ground. For a great strie effect, try using a whisk broom. There are also paints that will add immediate texture to a wall, as they are infused with small, sandy particles that can create a three-dimensional effect; no need for a special spray gun or sponge to create the look of plaster or stucco. These paints come in an assortment of colors. Cover It Up

There are plenty of solutions for ceiling treatments that don’t come in a can. Create a one-of-a-kind design by using wallpaper, tiles, or even fabric coverings. Your home may not be the Sistine Chapel, but adding masterpieces to the ceiling will instantly cause your guests to look up in awe. One way of bringing art to the top is using wallpaper. Browsing wallpaper is like going to an art gallery; there are so many patterns and murals, with some just screaming to end up on a ceiling. Think baby blue sky with clouds for a nursery, florals for a sunroom, a sophisticated geometric to highlight a chandelier in the dining room…the options are endless. Wallpaper can be as easy to install on the ceiling as it is on the wall, although it is usually a twoperson job. 59

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If you have a drop (suspended) ceiling, a fun project could be decorating the panels one by one for a whole new look, especially if you harbor some artistic talent yourself. You can remove the panels, decorate them the way you like, then place them back (no straining your neck looking upward for so long!). Try painting the panels with textured paint or metallic finishes, or use two different colors for a checkerboard effect. Consider using wallpaper or fabric and your options expand even more. (Create a tufted look with fabric by stapling a fabric square in the center and covering the staple with a button, tucking the fabric loosely around the back.) Even the most upscale ceiling designs can be achieved by using creative coverings, such as tin tiles and leafing with precious metals. Ornate tin tiles, offered in nickel, bronze, and copper, among other metals, can give your rooms an OldWorld style. Tiles are relatively low in cost and affix easily to the existing ceiling either by adhesives or by nails, which are built into the design. Pair tin ceiling tiles with coordinating backsplashes and you could change the whole look of your kitchen or dining room. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Gilding your ceiling with any of a number of precious metal-looking leafing products can also create a luxury look. Leafing comes on rolls (called ribbon leafing) and can be applied fairly quickly. For a more contemporary look, choose wood ceiling planks, which also fall into the easy-toinstall category. Ceiling products like WoodTrac by Sauder ( can be mounted onto an existing suspended ceiling grid or directly to the wall. Clips attach to the grid or the ceiling itself and molding is slid on. The ceiling planks fit easily into grooves in the molding. Wood finishes range from bamboo to oak to cherry, so you can coordinate with your furnishings and flooring for a cohesive, natural look. For ceilings with exposed beams, experiment with different stains and paint. Or for those without, add some rustic faux beams. For a contemporary, sleek look, attach metal beams to the ceiling and paint them the same color as the ceiling, or even a contrasting color. As with any home project, make your ceilings reflect your style. Don’t be afraid of giving your ceiling a new look. We spend more time than you think looking up at our ceilings—as we lie in bed, do curl-ups, or daydream on the couch. Raising this oft-forgotten space to the top of your list will surely take your room’s design to new heights.

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Designs That Deliver SHE Design House 2015 Showcases Talent, Raises Funds

By R ach el B e a n l a n d P h ot o g r a p hy by Ro b e r t Ra d i fe r a f ro m p rev i o u s D e si g n H o u se s

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T h i s ye a r ’s S h e l t e r fo r H e l p i n E m e r g e n c y D e s i g n H o us e i s l o c a t e d a t 810 Fr ays R i d g e R o a d i n E a rl ysv il l e .


t’s hard to imagine Charlottesville residents can’t hear the squeals of interior designers across town when the staff at Shelter for Help in Emergencies (SHE) calls to tell them they’ve got a room in the upcoming Design House. “It’s like Christmas when they call us about the house,” says Sheilah Michaels, who owns Sheilah Michaels Design Studio and was assigned the Design House’s living room this year. SHE provides crisis, counseling and advocacy services to women and children who are the victims of domestic violence, and the Design House is the organization’s biggest annual fundraiser. Each designer is assigned a room to decorate from top to bottom, and in less than two months, an empty house becomes a showplace. Last year, more than 1,500 people toured the Design House over the course of three weeks, raising $73,000 for SHE’s domestic violence prevention programs. SHE may be the Design House’s official beneficiary but its designers argue—quite passionately—that they get just as much out of the experience as the 30-year-old nonprofit does. c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

Telling People Who They Are

Designers foot the bill for redoing their rooms—securing trades and loans where they can. The commitment can be costly, in terms of both time and money. In return, SHE features each designer on its website and in the literature guests receive when they tour the house. Most designers distribute their own flyers and business cards as well. Michaels had owned a design business in Denver and was eager to go out on her own again when she moved to Charlottesville. She knew participating in the Design House would be the perfect way to get the word out. “That first year, I was amazed by how many people came through and how much they loved talking with the designers,” says Michaels, who opened Sheilah Michaels Design Studio in 2013. Designers like Michaels can opt to staff their rooms— answering questions about their design inspiration, contractors and sources. The face-to-face time with would-be clients can ultimately lead to referrals but it also helps give visitors a crash course in interior design. 63

Designers are assigned their rooms about two months before the Design House opens to the public. They’ve got less than two weeks to turn around design boards and submit them to SHE’s Design Committee for approval before the house goes into “production.” Will Chambers is the creative director at uFab, a fabric store that specializes in custom drapery and upholstery with locations in Charlottesville and Richmond. “Every year when we do a design house, we always bring in new clients, new customers,” says Chambers, whose team at uFab went all out on a master bedroom and bath for this year’s Design House. “Everyone knows we sell fabric, but they’ll walk into a room and say, ‘I didn’t know you did custom headboards or custom furniture’. The Design House shows people what we do—and what we do best.” Meeting Vendors and Contractors

Designers are the first to admit that they live and die by the strength of their relationships with contractors and vendors. To transform a room from a concept on a design board into a three-dimensional space requires a slew of talented and willing tradesmen. For a “soft” room like a bedroom or living room, designers call on painters, seamstresses, upholsterers, carpenters and furniture retailers. If it’s a bathroom or kitchen design on the board, they can count on adding plumbers, electricians, tile installers and counter fabricators to their speed dial. “It was so hard my first year,” says Michaels. “I was doing a family room, and I needed something like seven pieces of furniture. I had to run around and make all these new connections.” Vendors will often loan out pieces, hoping that Design House guests spot something they like and inquire about where they can buy it. In some cases, they can even buy the item directly from the Design House at the conclusion of the event. Likewise, contractors can sometimes be convinced to donate their time in exchange for being listed as one of the designer’s preferred resources. “The first time I brought my contractors in, they didn’t know what Design House was,” says Amy Smith, who owns Organized Design and is designing a bedroom for the Design House. “I explained what it is and why we’re doing it. Now they get it.” Designers are assigned their rooms about two months before the Design House opens to the public. They’ve got less than two weeks to turn around design boards and submit them to SHE’s Design Committee for approval before the house goes into “production.” During the first phase of production, contractors work on a tight schedule to get all the dirty jobs—anything that kicks up dust and emits paint fumes—out of the way. In the second phase, the house is cleaned from top to bottom and designers begin installing furniture, window treatments and other décor. Even with the best-laid plans, it’s always a mad dash to get the rooms finished before the opening night party. Working in a house that’s chock-full of contractors has its perks. “When you start your design business, finding contractors is the biggest challenge,” says Smith. “I met one of the painters [at the Design House] my first year, and we’re practically business partners now.” 64

C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

THE 2015 DESIGN TEAM INTERIOR DESIGNERS Troy Deacon, Interiors by Moyanne Front Entr y & Mudro om

Sheilah Michaels, Sheilah Michaels Design Studio Foyer & Li v ing Ro om

Andrea Gibson, Gibson Design Group, Inc. Study

Ellen Beard, Patina Antiques B re a k fa s t Ro om

Michelle Willis Adams, Michelle Willis Adams, LLC Fa mily Ro om & K itchen

Moyanne Harding, Interiors by Moyanne D ining Ro om

Networking with Other Designers

It’s critical for designers to stay up to date on industry trends. They do it by reading the latest trade publications, visiting trade shows and expos, and making the drive to Richmond to attend meetings of the International Furniture and Design Association. Because of the town’s size, networking opportunities in Charlottesville are more ad-hoc. A few designers will meet up for lunch or they’ll run into each other shopping for fabric or accessories. Once a year, it’s the Design House that brings Charlottesville’s designers together. “I did other design houses before I moved here,” says Michaels, “and the designers were hanging sheets over the doorways to their rooms so no one would run off with their ideas. I’ve seen people refuse to share their sources. You don’t see that here. Everyone really helps one another out.” Since designers don’t directly collaborate on their rooms, they’re always awed when the Design House comes together so beautifully. “For some reason, the house always ends up with a great flow from room to room,” says Chambers. “It’s just kind of a happy accident each year.” Designers attribute the Design House’s collegial atmosphere in part to the town they call home. Charlottesville is a fraction the size of New York or D.C., but there are lots of prospective clients with whom to work. Each designer has a different aesthetic and there’s a sense that the right client will naturally gravitate to the right designer. “It’s a small town and we all have something in common. We’re all working to raise as much money as we can for the shelter,” says Michaels. All photos are from previous Design House tours. This year’s Shelter for Help in Emergency Design House is located at 810 Frays Ridge Road in Earlysville. The SHE Design House will be open for touring every day except Tuesdays from May 2 to 17. Information about how to purchase tickets and a schedule of daily events/hours can be found online at c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m

Will Chambers, Ufab M a s ter B e dro om & B athro om

Peggy Woodall, Closet Factory M a s ter D re s sing Ro om

Amy Smith, Organized Design Gue s t S uite

Jill Tebbenkamp, Petit Bebe Nur ser y

Scarlett Snead, Ann Arden Home Furnishings M e dia Ro om

Nina Crawford, MSS Designs De signer Wor k ro om + Jack /Jill B athro om

Jennifer Kovaleski, Orange Chair Design B e dro om & B athro om

EXTERIOR DESIGNERS Natalie Rosa, Natalie Rosa Interiors Covere d ba lcony

Heather Williams, Williams Front L a ndsc a ping

Ami Smith, Embellish Interiors Vera nda h

Tim Reese, Bella Terra Re a r Ter race 65



Piedmont Master Gardener Plant Sale


The Piedmont Master Gardener Association will host its annual Spring Plant Sale at Ix Complex, 2nd Street Southeast in Downtown Charlottesville, on Saturday, May 2. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., rain or shine. Throughout the morning, Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer all your gardening questions. Master Gardeners are a group of volunteer educators for the Virginia Cooperative Extension Service who have completed 50 hours of classroom training plus 50 internship hours. For more information about the Spring Plant Sale or to learn how to become a Master Gardener yourself, visit www. Farm-Fresh Delights

Visit area pick-your-own farms The time is ripe to pick fruits and veggies at area farms. Each month brings a different delight and availability will vary by location, so it’s best to call the farm before you go. Be prepared: dress in clothes/closed-toe shoes you won’t worry about staining, and wear a wide-brimmed hat to help protect you from the sun. It’s convenient to have wipes or small towels on hand, and to take containers for picking/carrying the fruit home. When you arrive at the farm, remind your group that it’s important to walk within the rows (to avoid stepping on/ over plants) and teach pickers how to identify fruit that’s ripe for picking. If you don't know, ask the farm hands (they can also tell you where the field has been picked out so you don’t waste time in those areas). Health codes usually prohibit pets in the fields, so leave Fido home on this outing. Most farms prefer cash, so swing by the bank on your way out of town. What’s ripe in May and June? Typically, in Central Virginia, asparagus season ends in May, then beans, blackberries, cucumbers, herbs, raspberries and strawberries come into season. • A.M. FOG: 9264 Critzer’s Shop Road, Afton. Phone: (540) 456-7100. • Carter Mountain Orchard: 1435 Carters Mountain Trail, Charlottesville. Phone: (434) 977-1833. • Chiles Peach Orchard and Farm Market: 1351 Greenwood Road, Crozet. Phone: (434) 823-1583. • Gold Hill Blueberry Farm: 12290 Daffodil Lane, Unionville. Phone: (540) 222-7374. • Grelen Nursery: 15111 Yager Road, Somerset. Phone: (540) 672-5462. • Henley’s Orchard: 2192 Holly Hill Farm, Crozet. Phone: (434) 823-7848. • Inn on Poplar Hill: 278 Caroline Street, Orange. Phone: (540) 672-6840. • Liberty Mills Farm: 9166 Liberty Mills Road, Somerset. Phone: (434) 882-6293. • Miller Farms Market: 12101 Orange Plank Road, Locust Grove. Phone: (540) 972-2680. • Spring Valley Orchard: 3526 Spring Valley Road, Afton. Phone: (434) 960-9443. • The Berry Patch: 3035 Pevine Hollow, Free Union. Phone: (434) 963-0659.







Acme Stove & Fireplace Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Airflow. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Albemarle Countertop Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Allied Concrete Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Artisan Construction, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Bank of the James. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Blue Ridge Builders Supply. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68 Brown Automotive Group. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Carpet Plus. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Centra Medical Group, Plastic Surgery Center/Healthy Skin Center. . . . . . . . . . . 53 Charlottesville Sanitary Supply. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Circa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Clearview Window Tinting. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Cory Spencer Partners, LLC.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Closet Factory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Craig Builders. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Custom Structures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Fabrics Unlimited. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Grand Home Furnishings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Grelen Nursery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 La Linea Bella!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Martha Jefferson Orthopaedics and Spine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 McLean Faulconer, Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Michelle Willis Adams, LLC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Mona Lisa Pasta. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 Mr. Electric. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Our Lady of Peace. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 SariSand Tile. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Scott Weiss Architect . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Shelter for Help in Emergency Design House 2015 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Southern Air. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Southern Grace. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Specialized Insurance Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Spectrum Stone Designs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Summit Custom Homes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 The Little Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 u-fab . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 Virginia Commonwealth Games. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 W. Douglas Gilpin Jr. FAIA, Architect . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Waynesboro Nurseries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Window Depot USA of Richmond and Charlottesville. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

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C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

Because peace on earth... begins at home!

May 2 - May 17

Saturday | Sunday | Monday | Friday — 10am to 4pm Wednesday | Thursday — 10am to 7pm | Closed to the public on Tuesdays

810 Frays Ridge Road eaRlySville, viRGiNia 22936

Design House features over 25 local designers and their artists and suppliers. Lectures, Special Events, Design House Café and Boutique. Also available for private and corporate events.

admission Price $20 one-time visit | $45 multiple visits Parking is available at the Design House. Signs indicating parking locations will be posted as you approach Design House.


For detailed information and tickets visit Tickets available at the door starting May 2. Proceeds support the services and programs of the Shelter for Help in Emergency.

Hunter Smith Family Foundation c h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m


t n i a P d r a o b k l a h C Apply

How to

Hi, I’m Steve with Blue Ridge Builders Supply. Here are some tips on how to apply Benjamin Moore’s Chalkboard Paint®.

Tape off the wall area or surface you wish to paint. Choose any Benjamin Moore color. For darker colors, I recommend a gray primer.

Shake paint can well before use. Apply evenly on roller and away you go. Paint at least 2 coats with a 4 hour drying time each.

After the last coat, wait 72 hours to cure. Then season surface, covering entire area with chalk.

That’s it...

Wipe it down. Now it looks like a chalkboard...

Crozet 434.823.1387 Visit

Charlottesville 434.964.1701 6 8

So come on by, speak with us, and we’ll help you out on your next project!

See Steve’s full video on youtube, search “Blue Ridge Builders Supply: Decorate with Chalkboard Paint”. C h a r l o t t e s v i l l e h o m e M a y /J u n e 2 0 1 5

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