on open shelves (left), interior designer Mimi Walsh placed items
such as bowls and antique glassware (top). English bowling pins, or
“skittles,” and a painting of Walsh’s son when he was young are on
another shelf (above). “There are so many details to appreciate,” says
show house cochair Pam Berutti. For example, the banquette (below)
and cabinetry (left), built by Northborough, Massachusetts,
carpenter Arthur Duffy, have a curved relief designed to mimic the
archway. Urns filled with boxwoods and artichokes face the window.
converted into multiple units long after Allen had used it as the home of the
earliest coeducational school in the country as well as a stop on the Underground Railroad.
The room was gutted, giving Walsh, whose firm Mimi Walsh Interiors
is in Duxbury, Massachusetts, a blank slate. “It was this tiny space,” she
says, but her goal was to add visual layers and lots of details to create a last-
ing impression. “I love weird and interesting — things out of the ordinary,”
says Walsh. But, she adds, “this being my first show house, I really wanted
it to appeal to everyone.”
At one end of the room, a banquette surrounds an old iron plant stand
Walsh found and turned into a terrarium table with plants under glass.
Brown-and-white Thibaut wallpaper above the banquette’s
tall wainscoting coordinates with curtains, throw pillows, and
porcelain floor tiles. “It’s kind of a lot going on,” says Walsh
of the layered patterns, “but it seems to work.”
At the other end, where there is a small sink and an
under-counter refrigerator, zinc panels that Walsh distressed and pati-
naed with Annie Sloan dark wax are installed behind open shelves filled
with dishware and curiosities.
“People loved that space,” says Berutti about the kitchenette. “It was
such a gem. Most people weren’t expecting to see a little kitchen there. Mimi
did so much in that small space. Everything was spot on.”