the large kitchen island (top), which features a bar sink, two built-in refrigerators, and a dishwasher, is perfect for these homeowners who
love to entertain. A gently curving hallway (bottom) with exposed
ductwork leads to the children’s “office,” where an interior window
overlooks the great room.
The architectural style is a cool fusion that reflects the clients’
international, outdoorsy outlook. The husband was born and raised
in Switzerland, and he and his wife travel several times a year to
Europe and Asia on business. With slightly curved rooflines and a
clean, spare design, their house — inside and out — has a sophisticated, Euro-meets-Asia vibe.
This sensibility is most evident in the great room, which feels a
bit like a Japanese temple, with much wood, many windows, strong
horizontal lines, and a Zen-like ambience imparted by the vastness
of the space. A Buddha reclines on an unobtrusive mantel, and the
chimney soars 20-plus feet to a vaulted fir ceiling. On each side
of the fireplace, a wall of windows reaches to the peaked roofline.
“The horizontal beams and ceiling panels shoot right through the
windows,” says Grutchfield, “which allows for a powerful visual
connection between indoors and out.” The western wall consists
entirely of floor-to-ceiling sliding doors that open to a narrow covered deck and screened porch.
At the northern end of the great room, the airy, open kitchen
is delineated by a substantial work island topped with a heavy soapstone counter. “This is a very convivial house,” says Truex Cullins
interior designer Cecilia Redmond. “Our clients love to entertain,
and everyone ends up gathered around the island,” which offers
tons of counter space and is outfitted with a bar sink, two small
refrigerators (one for soda and beer, the other for wine), and a dishwasher (one of two in the kitchen). Nearby, a walk-in pantry “took
the pressure off the kitchen so we didn’t need as many wall cabinets,” says Redmond.
“We spend 80 percent of our time in the kitchen and living
room,” the owner says of her family, which includes two children.
“The kids do their homework and play in front of the fire; it’s very
relaxed and casual. It’s a great space for being together.”
Upstairs, a hallway with curving walls and industrial-looking
exposed ductwork leads to the children’s “office,” a cozy room with
two matching desks and laptop computers as well as an interior window that looks down into the great room. The owner notes: “
Everyone has their own private space in our house, yet we have as few
rooms as possible. The rooms are bigger and more spacious.”
Brightly painted kids’ bedrooms sit side by side, connected by
a distinctly child-sized 3-foot-high “crawl-through” door. Each bedroom has a wide window seat — as big as a twin bed, with a thick
cushion on top (awesome for sleepovers). From another set of windows, the rooms have a view of the hillside and carriage house. “This
house is fun and functional,” says the owner. “We live
for more a casual lifestyle, and the house reflects that.”
details, Grutchfield is pleased to hear that. “As an archi-
see resources tect,” he says, “the goal is to imbue the house with the
spirit and intentions of the client.” Adds Redmond:
“You sweat and think about every little detail during the planning
and building phase. You think endlessly, ‘How will they use that?
How will this work?’ It’s gratifying to return and see a family using
their home exactly as we had all hoped and intended.”