Designer Snapshot: Classic Beauty

December 18, 2013

By Paula M. Bodah

Courtesy of the Danvers Historical Society

Glen Magna Farms in Danvers, Massachusetts, began as twenty-acre property with one house purchased in 1812 by Joseph Peabody, a wealthy shipping merchant. For more than 144 years, his family would enjoy summering there as the estate grew to more than 330 acres. Near the end of the nineteenth century, Joseph’s granddaughter Ellen Peabody Endicott undertook a renovation of the main house that expanded it, updated it, and turned it into its current elegant, classic, Colonial-Revival form. Endicott Mansion and the surrounding property are owned today by the Danvers Historical Society, which held a Designers Holiday Show House Fundraiser at the home to celebrate their fifty years of care and stewardship of the magnificent estate. A host of the area’s best designers came together to dress up the house for visitors from December 1 to 15. In case you missed it, here’s a look at just a few of the lovely rooms.

Michael Carter, of Carter and Company in Boston has been especially fond of classically inspired design all his life, so being a part of the designer show house at Endicott Mansion was a special treat. In designing the Empire Room, Carter and Company used period furnishings that are original to the house, including the slipper chair, the light fixture, the desk, and the bed. A Landry & Arcari rug, Farrow & Ball wallpaper, curtains of fabric from RM Coco and Schumacher lace add to the sumptuous feel.

The Peabody Parlor, named for Joseph Peabody, who bought Glen Magna Farms in 1814, is a lovely example of the simple elegance of the Federal style. “One cannot help but appreciate the parlor’s balanced proportions, the symmetry of its cornices…and the antique fireplace/stove,” wrote William Ralph, of William Ralph Fine Antiques and Interiors, in the show house program. As he set about freshening up the space, Ralph incorporated furnishings and accessories appropriate to the period, and added his own fresh, bright look with C2 wall color, Brunschwig & Fils curtain fabric, and a vivid, but classic, rug from Landry and Arcari.

Inspired by the carved fireplace with Egyptian motifs that was introduced into the house in the 1930s, designer Donna Terry of Boston Design and Interiors gave the Drawing Room an Art Deco feel. The discovery of King Tutankhamen’s tomb in the early 1920s and provoked a new interest in things Egyptian, an interest that found expression in the Art Deco style. Donna’s interpretation of the style uses bold pieces of furniture upholstered in luxurious silks and velvets, and exotic artwork and decorative objects.