Sneak Peeks: New Hampshire Revival

October 31, 2013

By Maria LaPiana

First impressions have been known to make or break a job, a relationship—and the perfect abode. Granted, it’s not easy to look beyond surface imperfections, but sometimes, just sometimes … it can result in something unexpectedly wonderful.

Scott Bell and Frank McBournie will attest to it. The couple had been looking in New Hampshire’s Lakes Region for a house to refurbish and make their own. Bell, a principal at Theo & Isabella Design Group, in Sudbury, Massachusetts, is something of a visionary, but he and McBournie agreed that the asphalt-shingle sided house with the awkward additions (that had narrowly escaped ruin when its barn burned down) wasn’t it. Not at first glance, anyway. But once the men stepped inside, all bets were off.

“The lines and proportions were perfect,” says Bell. And so the hard, but immensely rewarding, work of rehabilitating the old house began. Today, the home is a smartly furnished haven whose interiors were designed around three themes: modified country for the kitchen and family room, studied formality for the parlor and dining room, and a 1940s camp style for the guest quarters. The transformation story is told in words and lovely photos in the January/February issue of New England Home.