A patterned coverlet in the master bedroom evokes mussels that wash up on the beach.
The penny-round tile in the master bath is the gray-blue of the ocean on a cloudy day.
Exposed beams installed atop the insulated walls make the structure look like an old-time beach house.
The outdoor furniture is pale in tone and unadorned, to blend in with the sand and beach grasses.
The living room coffee table was custom made from a fallen Martha’s Vineyard tree. Bursts of hot pink add vibrancy to the color palette, and exposed beams draw attention to the fourteen-foot ceilings.
Spring-fastened stools at the kitchen island allow diners to bob gently, evoking the feeling of the waves beyond these walls.
Driftwood accents, sea blues, and local artwork bring the beachfront vibe indoors.
Interior designer Mary Rentschler chose a dining-area chandelier that, while substantial in feeling, is made of thin wire so as not to block views of the water.
Marine-inspired accessories remind occupants of the office not to ignore the call of the sun and sea for too long.
Simple, white-painted furniture in the second-floor guest bedroom comports with the owners’ desire for cottage decor in this space.
The 1860 Boston brownstone was converted back to a single-family home.
Wallpaper with an ikat-inspired design picks up the diamond-shaped details of the reproduction vanity in the first-floor powder room.
More than a place to sleep, the master bedroom is designed with comfort for the whole family in mind.
Decorative beams, a stone fireplace, and a sliding barn door give the living room a rustic feel.
The kitchen is rich with texture, including smooth Calacatta marble countertops, an imposing bronze range hood, and heavily checked hemlock ceiling beams.
A long front porch with a metal roof links the home’s two imposing gambrel-shaped gables.
Subtle textures in the grasscloth wallcovering, tufted upholstery, and a reclaimed wood fireplace make the dining room comfy, not fussy.
A reproduction of a vintage bronze tub sits atop painted wooden tiles in a first-floor bath.
An outdoor dining room is located just steps from the pool and hot tub.
Sheltered under the back porch, a living and dining area allows the family to gather outside for much of the summer.
Below the second-floor master suite balcony, the pool, hot tub, and sitting and dining spaces converge for a multifunctional entertaining area.
A barn holds two parking bays, a recreation room, and a fitness center, while at the same time creating an elegant entrance experience to the property. Its charming gatehouse look reinforces the French estate feel the homeowner requested.
Lounge chairs help keep the living room as comfortable as it is elegant.
Beaded white wallpaper in the powder room shimmers gently at night.
With no kids or pets in residence, the homeowners embraced this pale, custom-designed rug by J.D. Staron. Photographs by Jim Nickelson add a graphic punch, and gold coffee tables gleam at the center of it all.
Heather Kahler from Downsview Kitchens of Boston brightened up the kitchen, which had been moodier in its previous incarnation.
A guest room used by the couple’s adult daughter when she visits boasts a custom Phillip Jeffries wallpaper embellished with a white embossed design.
Fauteuils from the homeowners’ prior home flank the painted limestone fireplace.
Surrounded by chairs and banquette seating, the kitchen table offers a spot for casual dining.
The condo’s beautiful crown moldings seduced the homeowners on first viewing; modern white-leather dining chairs keep the dining space from feeling too rococo.
A paper sculpture by Matthew Shlian hangs above a console by Holly Hunt, one of many gilded pieces throughout the home.
The marble floor and wrought-iron banister already in place helped inspire the “Paris apartment” feel of the redesign. Designer Starr Daniels painted the stair steps black and added an animal-print runner for a chic, modern look.
The designer’s comprehensive approach extended to the placement of the owner’s Nantucket baskets and boxes on the living room’s étagère.
Waterworks, in Westport, was the source of the contemporary furnishings in the spacious master bath builder Chris Washington carved out of the original master bedroom.
The serene master bedroom is a study in quiet neutrals and soft textures.
Waterworks, in Westport, was the source of the contemporary furnishings in the spacious master bath builder Chris Washington carved out of the original master bedroom.
The Josephine sofa from J. Robert Scott makes the living room a favorite spot for snuggling up with a book on a sunny afternoon.
The kitchen was truly in move-in condition; the only additions were the pots and pans and a pair of Holly Hunt crescent stools.
A few large, simple furnishings, including sofas in muted colors, help scale the great room down to human size, but the custom Holly Hunt chandelier bespeaks rustic grandeur.
A modest shingled exterior belies the home’s light-filled interior spaces. High-peaked rooflines hint at the multiple vaulted ceilings inside.
Typical of the home, the dining room blends the owner’s collected possessions—table, chairs, and artwork—with new lighting, rug, and wallcovering.
The house presents a classic, simple Georgian facade in keeping with its New Canaan location.
The large pool, a tennis court, access to a neighborhood pond, and a big yard for playing attracted the couple, who have three children. An expansive rear porch offers plenty of space for warm-weather entertaining.
Iconic Eames walnut stools are part of the room’s playful mix of patterns and textures.
The homeowner designed the Chippendale-style headboard for the master bedroom.
Traces of paint purposely left on the hefty beams speak to the home’s age and its long line of inhabitants. Down-filled cushions make the antique French sofa as comfortable as it is chic.
She also designed the main bathroom’s generous marble-topped vanity, crafted by cabinetmaker David Bowen.
New and old blend in this backyard view of the home: the original 1826 section of the house is in the middle, flanked by the 1916 addition to the right and the new family room to the left, where a carriage house once stood.
Cathedral ceilings and skylights let the light pour into the family room, a gathering space with a quiet nook for reading up in the loft
Tamara Kalin’s favorite color makes a bold appearance on pillows, throws, and accent pieces in the couple’s bedroom.
A balcony was closed in to create the master suite’s chic sitting area.
In the bath, a large soaking tub stands before double windows peering over the gardens.
The living room’s sofas, custom designed by interior designer Gilles Clement, get extra visual interest with built-in shelves at their backs.
The pendulous chandelier is suspended by a cascade of chains. Unfinished ceiling beams are a nod to the home’s Colonial heritage, while the black-and-white palette and graphic fabrics are a modern touch
Serena & Lily bar stools surround a marble-topped kitchen island; the owners acquired the vintage, orange-lacquered lunch box on a trip to Myanmar.
Appliances are concealed within a wooden enclosure designed to resemble an old ice box; like much of the interior millwork, it was built by Michael Smith.
A reclaimed nineteenth-century door opens onto the foyer, construction of which required the removal of an old fireplace and the relocation of a staircase.
The cocktail room’s gold paint and drapes brighten the substantial leather furniture and deep teal shelves.
The comfortable everyday dining area just off the kitchen has sunny backyard views on two sides.
The cheerful upstairs office, with walls painted in dramatic Charlotte’s Locks from Farrow & Ball, is functional and fun: the owners run their winery from here when they’re not in California.
A new tin-roofed wraparound veranda, eyebrow windows, and authentic gaslights from Bevolo of New Orleans add character to the historic home on a hilltop in Wilton.
Interior designer Jenn Sanborn chose to keep the entryway’s existing wallpaper, then introduced vintage pieces both to add a layer of interest and to offer a preview of the home’s casual English country vibe.
In the master bedroom, a luxuriously upholstered bed and geometric grasscloth wallcovering replaced a spartan four-poster and bland painted walls.
The master bedroom’s fireplace, like the others in the house, was converted from gas to wood burning.
Wainscoting of Italian tile adorns the niche that holds the new freestanding tub.
A soffit was extended to provide the great room’s new barrel ceiling a place to land. It also allowed the designer to inch the sofa forward by placing a thin table behind it.
Wall paneling cures multiple ills in the great room by giving the small firebox more presence while minimizing the impact of the television.
A fresh finish was all the perimeter cabinets needed.
The island, however, was enlarged and reborn in the image of a European range.
A built-in wet bar adds versatility to the breakfast nook.
An antique hall rack hits a traditional note in the entryway.
Stripping, painting, and reupholstering the dining room chairs lent the beautiful but staid mahogany dining set a whole new look.
The antique pool table, turned chair, and Scottish tartan rug reference a country manor, but the purple walls, upholstery, and mantelpiece disrupt any presumptions.
The sitting room got new life as a billiards room.
The kitchen’s marble surfaces sport a leathered finish, which translates to less maintenance.
In the generously scaled master bedroom, the designer confidently mixed a modern chevron wallcovering with the bold chinois drapes, and created a link between an old house and a modern mood with the graphic custom rug. The chairs add classic style and a pop of plum.
Rich wood paneling gives the living room its cozy feel. The homeowners had used the vast felt rug in their New York City apartment but, amazingly, it was a perfect fit here as well.
The kitchen was a complete redo. Custom cabinets were painted to brighten the space and provide contrast for the dark floor finish.
The family room was previously used as a sunroom, and the homeowners admit they initially had no idea what to do with it. Rivoli suggested the transformation, and her clients love it.
The classic home on a tight urban site was fully fenced and comfortable in its surroundings, with a “nice enclosed, landscaped feel,” says architect Robert Adams, but previous renovations hadn’t been kind to it, so he set about restoring its original beauty.
An unusually wide and long entry was at once “very grand, and a challenge,” says interior designer Kristen Rivoli. The wood trim was painted to make the space more inviting, and a linen-texture wallpaper was installed. Rivoli chose not to fill the space with an entry table, to keep views intact.
A prized woodcut by Jim Dine was given a place of honor.
A bump-out in the kitchen makes the perfect spot for a sheltered family hangout. The banquette makes the most of the compact space, and the chairs and table lend a modern note.
The dining room, with its graphic rug and X-based table, is an example of what the designer calls “casual, urban chic.”
A slew of Williams Sonoma pillows in a host of summery blue tones raises the living room’s comfort level, while a glass top enhances the dining table’s practicality. Leather-bound books and an antique copper boiler add to the hearth’s charm. The handsome rug pulling it all together is from Ballard Designs.
To create a lighter atmosphere for the living room, designer Patricia Lapierre removed the doors that once enclosed the lowest part of the shelving and brought in beachy accessories. She also embellished a small upholstered chair with nailhead trim, upping its character tenfold.
A bar tray holds entertaining essentials at the ready.
A sisal rug defines the sunroom’s dining area. Cheery curtains make a colorful frame for the view.
To update the existing outdoor furniture collection, Lapierre had the pieces repainted and outfitted with new pillows and umbrellas.
The master bedroom’s dream–inducing horse photos, bed linens, and reading lamp are from Ralph Lauren. Fresh bouquets throughout the cottage keep the rooms connected to the outdoors.
An ever-growing collection of copper cookware brings Old World luster to the freshly painted kitchen.
Walls painted Benjamin Moore’s Bunny Gray soften the guest bedroom. To introduce a note of texture, the standing lamp wears a burlap shade. “Small rooms can be cozy,” says Lapierre.
In the living room, accessories from Ralph Lauren Home lend an antique chest fresh personality.
Less than two decades old, this classically designed colonial home in New Canaan offers no hint of the redesign from the front.
Kitchen designer Donna Venegas and interior designer Jennifer Palumbo collaborated on the kitchen, where subtle color gives classic elements a fresh look.
Architect Lyman Goff worked closely with the clients to design a moderately proportioned Shingle-style home.
Sandberg wallpaper from Stark graces a guest bath.
A sunny screened-in porch is cooled by Cape Cod breezes and scattered with comfy chairs atop a Stark area rug.
In the guest quarters, a custom-built table and vintage Klismos chairs upholstered with Stark leather cozy up to one of the Otis house’s original fireplaces.
The master bedroom sits in a quiet corner of the addition with views out to the backyard.
A midcentury sideboard forms a stylistic bridge between the living room with its contemporary furniture and the dining room with its traditional Windsor chairs.
The open kitchen features a Thermador Pro Series gas range and hood and granite countertops.
Reclaimed bullseye windows were used in the entry hall’s transoms.
An upstairs guest room in the original house sports bright primary colors.
The original house, which holds guest quarters, is connected to the barn-style addition by the Royal Barry Wills-inspired entrance hallway.
The dining area features a dining table from Restoration Hardware and Windsor chairs from D.R. Dimes.
A soaking tub nestles between shiplap walls in the master bath.
Beams from an eighteenth-century New Hampshire barn frame the view from the living room to the backyard.
The star of the terraced backyard is the swimming pool with its natural rock diving platform. J.P. Zigante Landscaping kept plantings simple with lavender and grasses that dance in the wind.
Wide porches, two balconies, and a roof walk allow open-air views of Nantucket Harbor to the north.
At one end of the infinity pool, a cabana features an enclosed bar area, bathroom, and changing room.
In the master bedroom, a tailored approach lends structure to the powder-blue easy chair, custom headboard, and bed skirt. French doors swing open for a view of the harbor.
The living room gets a nice punch of color from the oversized painting by Ben Georgia above the fireplace.
The red-cedar roof and white cedar shingle siding, traditional for the area, are allowed to weather naturally.
Brightly patterned fabric by China Seas pops against the neutral surroundings of the main staircase. The J.D. Staron runner is one of Morgan’s favorites. “I just love the simplicity of it, and the way the striped borders give it definition.”
Above the table, the outline of a polished nickel chandelier from Circa Lighting brings to mind a sailboat’s rigging and the motion of waves.
In the basement bunkroom, striped bedding and nautical details add up to a space made for grandchildren.
Blues and whites predominate in the living room. “We just kept it beautiful, simple, and inviting,” says designer Lynn Morgan.
Adjacent to the kitchen, the family room is outfitted for comfort with an oversized sectional and a hefty leather ottoman large enough to rest an extended family of feet. Durable fabrics are key to keeping the beach house relaxed and user-friendly, says Morgan.
Chairs upholstered in a Jane Churchill print liven up the white milk-paint dining table from Circa Antiques.
A deft mix of antiques and contemporary pieces fosters a charming cottage ambience. “The wife and I had a wonderful time sourcing pieces,” says interior designer Linda Banks. “Many of them are from local sources.” Holding court in the living room, the old cherry coffee table has a waxed finish reminiscent of a boat’s deck.
The generous deck wraps around the house and is accessible to the living room and the guest bedroom.
The king-size bed in the guest room is from Leonard’s in Seekonk, Massachusetts. “Should the owners ever want one-floor living, this room is like a secondary master suite,” Banks says.
Versatile x-benches slide out of the way when not needed, while an oat straw and wood Orkney chair lends texture.
The guest room’s washstand was made in England.
The living room’s vintage black barley twist writing table was among the first purchases made for the home.
The petite bibliothéque features a range of comforts including an enticing window seat for soaking up the views.
The eye-catching painting is by local artist Allen Whiting, who was inspired by the Norton Point Breach, a breach in the barrier beach connecting Edgartown with Chappaquiddick. The wife scored the captain’s chairs at a charity flea market in Manhattan, and Banks designed the weathered oak refectory table crafted by furniture maker Mike Elkins of Elkins and Company in Boothbay, Maine.
The daughter’s bedroom boasts a headboard covered in a textured fabric that looks like crewel work.
In compliance with the owner’s wishes, the rejuvenated house looks like it has always been there. “We wanted to maintain the home’s modest scale but also make it function the way people like to live today,” explains architect Patrick Ahearn.
The sophisticated walnut dining room table sports a hand-planed top and rustic carved bases—a fetching contrast to the hearth’s edited frame. The living room’s vintage black barley twist writing table was among the first purchases made for the home.
The breakfast area is open to the kitchen and living room, which allows family members to engage in different activities and still be together; the framed commemorative scarf is a memento of one of the numerous Newport to Bermuda races the husband has sailed.
Gold flame honeysuckle climbs the pergola, overlooking the perennial garden’s mix of lavender, salvia, Rozanne geraniums, Bluebonnet, and Asiatic lilies.
The home’s classic shingled exterior looks much the same, post renovation, with the addition of a multitude of new window boxes filled with pink geraniums.
Higgins and her client laid out the garden like a parterre, with four flower beds surrounding a bird bath.
Kevin Baker Stonework is responsible for the hardscaping, including the stone terrace on the water side of the house, where the homeowners’ pup, Chewie, enjoys the view.
Original exterior details, such as the cornerstones, were replicated in the new parts of the house.
An antique folk art horse and an old rooster weathervane add character to the family room. A fish-themed mosaic floor and a porthole window give the master bath nautical flair.
A fish-themed mosaic floor and a porthole window give the master bath nautical flair.
A soft palette of peach and gray enhances a guest bedroom, where Badger, Helen Higgins’s faithful Jack Russell Terrier, stops for a rest. The pastel palette, reproduction cane bed, and brick-lined fireplace augment the space’s romantic ambience.
A white wash lends subtle color to the master bedroom’s paneled walls.
A twentieth-century Rockport School painting marks the entrance to the pantry.
An antique fish weathervane decorates the kitchen’s custom hood.
Custom shades from Blanche P. Field finesse the powder room sconces.
Louis XIII wing chairs and a leather-upholstered ottoman help create a comfortable fireside oasis in the great room.
An assortment of plant-filled pots dress up the front door.
A crushed-clamshell drive lined with boxwood leads to the new porte-cochère. The home’s top-to-bottom update blends modern features and character-infusing details, such as high-efficiency windows made with hand-blown glass. “A typical summer house has become a four-season home,” says interior designer Helen Higgins.
In the master bath, a nineteenth-century French gilt-bronze and crystal chandelier adds a bit of whimsy to the sleek marble and polished-nickel fixtures. An original wooden beam highlights the expanse of new windows.
A guest room offers a dramatic juxtapositioning of antique Edwardian beds, a Georgian bachelor’s chest, and a massive iron chandelier.
The large, circular window is the centerpiece of a sitting area off the kitchen, where French bergère chairs mingle
with a wingback settee and an array of patterned throw pillows.
Glass star chandeliers illuminate
the long kitchen island, which offers seating
for informal meals.
A weighty chandelier and German ostrich lithograph add drama to the dining
area, where modern, slipcovered chairs surround an antique pine French Canadian farmhouse table.
In the first-floor powder room
the original beadboard ceiling contrasts nicely with a vintage mirror and modern sconces.
In the Americana room, splashes of red, white, and blue complement Deyber’s collection
of patriotic objects, including a portrait of George Washington and a trio of carved eagles.
The linen-covered chairs and sofa strike just the right balance of comfort and elegance.
Shagreen-clad nightstands, Frette bedding, a Murano glass chandelier, and a silver-gilt canopy bed give the master bedroom its sense of luxury.
A generous swath of pale marble guarantees a pristine look for the owner’s bath.
A cozy guest room is outfitted with furniture from a local shop. “We did a lot of shopping,” says Quinn with a chuckle.
Quinn carries the water’s color into the pool house with a graphic rug and pillows from Colony Rug Company.
JANUS et Cie’s Amalfi collection lounges lend style to the pool.
The new lattice-framed pergola leads to the dairy room.
An oxidized crane stands nearby.
The landscape offers a variety of intimate spaces.
A mirrored bar and Louis Vuitton trunk
make an elegant pair in the dining room. The trunk holds throws, so it’s also functional,” the designer notes.
A cowhide rug brings texture to the loft.
The living room’s high ceilings hold photosensitive panels that are blue by day and rose-colored at night.
Designer Karen Quinn discovered the striking fire screen on 1stdibs.
Inside, a barn-board wall and a stone floor evoke the home’s farm past.
Landscape designer Jeff Stevens and interior designer Karen Quinn turned what was once a dairy room into an inviting entry space. Urns of geraniums and a crisp hedge of Winter Gem boxwood provide the initial welcome.
A quilted upholstered headboard creates a colorful focal point.
The second-floor landing has become a gallery for the art Nancy and Joe didn’t previously have the wall space to collect.
Nancy’s father, a B-17 pilot in World War II, left her the two Toulouse-Lautrec prints that now hang in the master bedroom. She chose a color scheme to complement them.
The kitchen has a view through the entryway into the dining room; Tony, the couple’s Wheaten Terrier, keeps a watchful eye from his spot in the hall.
High ceilings give the kitchen an airy feel and make room for plenty of cabinetry.
Nancy’s favorite wall color, Farrow & Ball’s Dix Blue, was the starting point for the home’s palette of blues and whites. The dining room’s pristine white walls get a warm boost from the antique chestnut that replaced the pine floors.
The staircase leads to the new second floor and connects the main part of the house to Nancy’s office and a guest suite.
Nancy displays her favorite antique dishware on the living room’s bookshelves and coffee table.
The prevailing theme is blue and white in a variety of patterns and textures.
Creamware pitchers decorate the coffee table.
A seat for everyone was the goal in the living room, where a pair of John Duckworth photographs stands in for views.
Designer Nancy Serafini and her husband, Joe, turned their one-story, three-bedroom cottage on a quiet Nantucket street into a spacious—but still charming—house with plenty of room for their grown children and a passel of grandchildren.
In the master bedroom, burlap-clad X benches from Safavieh flank the cane bed.
The large room also holds a sitting area with a settee dressed in Lulu DK fabric and a pair of fanciful swan side tables from Serena & Lily.
Bamboo pieces enliven the dining room’s pine dresser, which doubles as a bar
French doors lead from the living room to the dining room where a warm blend of colors creates a welcoming atmosphere, especially in the evening, the designer explains.
The kitchen table, grounded by a classic checkerboard floor, is surrounded with chairs from Crate & Barrel and Serena & Lily.
Paintings by local artists Daphne Chapin (top) and Pat Pratt speak to the surroundings and the owners’ lifestyle, which includes boating whenever possible.
Rylee favors tall lamps like the antique duo bookending the living room sofa. Leather ottomans add texture to the scene, and cozy touches such as a monogrammed blanket from Maine’s Swans Island Company help enrich the room’s stay-awhile appeal.
Happily, the 1920 retreat’s classic shingled exterior had been rejuvenated by the previous owners when Rylee and family arrived.
To boost the ambience in the personality-filled porch along the front of the house, homeowner and designer Leslie Rylee paired the swing (devised with help from Kay Sloan, a friend whom the designer labels “jack of all trades, seamstress, and facilitator extraordinaire”) with old-time treasures like antique lamps and an end table decorated with wooden spools.
A guest bedroom is a perfect illustration of De Bastiani’s goal of “creating a scheme incorporating traditional silhouettes without feeling like your grandmother’s house—a youthful traditional, if you will.”
The master bath’s floor, shower walls, and tub surround are an amalgam of different cuts and shapes from the same slab of marble, adding yet another layer of interest.
In the powder room just off the kitchen, a deep, vibrant blue on the mirror, sconces, and vanity is a nice variation from the muted blue tones throughout the rest of the home. A framed
vintage subway sign announces the couple’s Boston roots.
The blue of the family room’s slim-lined TV console is nicely reiterated in the custom-framed botanical prints hugging the edges of the tall, vaulted ceiling.
Classic Shaker-style cabinets, honed black granite countertops, and a Moroccan-tile backsplash give the kitchen—a joint effort of De Bastiani and Judith Whalen of Roomscapes—its casual sophistication.
A low-hung globe-lamped chandelier and a two-pedestal table of oak that seats up to ten people serve up drama and intimacy in the dining room. The living and dining rooms are united by twin custom-designed hand-knotted area rugs.
Natural and organic elements—such as an orchid plant that sits in a hollowed-out stone—make the space more modern, livable, and unfussy.
The library’s midcentury-style table lamp, modern artwork, and tribal touches confirm that De Bastiani is
a skilled mixer. “Designers don’t stick to just one style anymore,”
he opines. “It looks way too calculated.”
The designer insists pieces like the living room sofa and chair be as comfortable as they are good -looking.
The living room’s custom sofa, coffee table, wool area rug, and built-in shelving espouse the
Arts and Crafts era’s dual emphasis on superior craftsmanship and clever use of space.
The entry’s dark-wood bench, simple hanging lantern, and traditional bronze-toned wall sconces are a purposeful nod to the home’s traditional Craftsman-style exterior.
The sunroom features back-to-back sofas that provide a view of the television from one side and an astounding backyard view from