Easthampton, Massachusetts. Strands of hemp were placed across the concrete as the finish set, giving it a veined appearance. Also on the first floor is her husband’s large yet cozy
study. The ground floor holds guest bedrooms, a bath, and a massive library.
“During the workweek, I go to my office—which is in Gordon Hall at UMass, [a build-
ing Sigrid] designed and is also amazing,” says Robert, who is co-director of the university’s
economics department. “Later in the evening, on opportunities when I have a long night
to read something, I will be in our library, surrounded by all the great thoughts of many
writers, while also listening to the crickets and coyotes.”
For many, a sprawling bedroom and master bath is a must. However, for this couple,
public living spaces trumped private. The smallest rooms are the master bedroom and
adjoining bath, which are perched like a crow’s nest on the third floor. “It’s strikingly beau-
tiful and original, yet equally it is respectful of the natural setting,” says Robert.
The house is super-insulated, one of many eco-minded choices. Sigrid created the
deep recesses for the overhead lighting in the living room to show off the thickness of the
roof; each geometric recess is painted a dark gray that contrasts with the cedar ceiling. The
architect also incorporated sustainable elements such as bamboo flooring and radiant heating, and has a long-term plan to add photovoltaic panels to the exterior of the building.
“What can I say? It really is a wonderful house that my wife created,”
says Robert. “Just sitting in the living room and looking out at our view of the
field and hills is frequently, and literally, breathtaking. It’s impossible to take
this for granted—even though I live in it every day.”
the slate patio is a favorite spot for summertime lounging.
Here, Robert and Sigrid enjoy the view to the wooded hills.
The rear of the house (above) shows the third-floor master
bedroom to the far right, with the ground-floor enclosed
porch to the left. Above it, an open deck with a sheet-glass
railing is accessed via the living room.