A Storied Space
The designer carefully selected the furniture with an eye toward livability. “I wanted all of the furniture to have an aged look to it, like it had been collected over the years, but I stayed away from too many antiques for the main pieces; instead I chose to focus on comfort,” she says. Many of the smaller chairs and accessories are authentic antiques that add to the Old English charm of the home, and each custom furniture piece is enhanced with beautiful details, such as the playful tassels trimming the Jacobean-inspired dining room chairs from Ebanista. “I chose fabrics with strong texture, playful, aged colors, and exciting trim details,” Oliver adds.
Because entertaining is central to the homeowners' lives, Oliver designed all the spaces with guests in mind. Together with architect Jon Gunson and contractor Rick Emarine, she tailored each space, including primitive details that could be from the 19th-century, but are updated for entertaining large groups of friends in the 21st century. The great room features a working fireplace where simple fare can be prepared, while several seating areas provide ample space for large groups. “Creating separate, intimate spaces makes every niche useful and cozy,” Oliver explains. The dining room was built long and narrow, reminiscent of an Old English pub and complete with a pub-inspired table by Macrae that seats 14. In the kitchen, a large island anchors the space, while an 18th-century French walnut vaisselier houses a collection of antique toile plates used extensively for the parties the family hosts. As with every detail in the home, nothing is too precious for everyday use.
A view of the river dominates the master bedroom, and intimate seating arrangements keep it cozy. The custom four-poster bed houses a hidden, pop-up television that doesn't detract from the aged look of the interior. The master suite also houses an alder-paneled library upholstered with a mix of beautiful patterns and textures. “Mixing patterns can be very interesting and comforting if the proportions are considered and blended correctly,” Oliver explains. Even the books were selected not just for reading enjoyment, but also for aesthetic appeal—once again proving even the smallest detail brings life to this mountain home.
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