RU­RAL RO­MANCE

Tra­di­tional crafts­man­ship and per­sonal de­signs honor a vin­tage dairy farm.

Country Sampler's Prairie Style - - Contents - WRIT­TEN BY Kristin Joyce. PHO­TOGRAPHED BY Mark Lohman. STYLED BY Fifi O’neill.

Tra­di­tional crafts­man­ship and per­sonal de­signs honor a vin­tage dairy farm.

Ellen Allen’s living room wel­comes vis­i­tors with a vivid con­trast in tex­tures—re­fur­bished

post-and-beam barn boards, ex­posed brick and flag­stone, a white­washed an­tique hearth, and a ca­sual sisal rug. A mod­ern acrylic cof­fee ta­ble dis­plays fresh flow­ers along with fa­vorite de­sign

books. The blue Kan­tha quilt draped over a clas­sic 1950s sofa

was hand-printed in In­dia.

Ellen Allen es­tab­lished a sec­ond home. Her 2,400-square-foot week­end retreat of­fers the per­fect coun­tri­fied con­trast to the sprawl­ing es­tates and vin­tage Colo­nials of this de­sir­able Con­necti­cut re­gion that orig­i­nates from Amer­i­can Rev­o­lu­tion­ary times.

Ellen was in­stantly se­duced eight years ago when she dis­cov­ered this pic­turesque land­scape and one par­tic­u­larly beau­ti­ful, an­tique post-and-beam (circa 1745) dairy farm­house skirt­ing the patch­work hills and an­tique cap­i­tal of Wood­bury.

Although she loved her New York City life, Ellen longed for a “coun­try fix.” “This project be­came my play­thing. I knew I could re-cre­ate my dream of a retreat,” states the designer, who com­mutes as of­ten as pos­si­ble from her Clin­ton dis­trict pied-à-terre.

A mas­ter mul­ti­tasker, Ellen over­sees not one but two en­ti­ties as head of Transat­lantic De­sign Com­pany (cre­ator of hand­made area rugs for over 20 years) and chief ex­ec­u­tive for her fam­ily’s orig­i­nal vin­tage fab­ric firm. This level of cre­ative ex­pe­ri­ence speaks vol­umes com­bined with an eye for eclec­tic de­sign.

Ellen has taken ad­van­tage of her home’s

Agri­cul­ture has al­ways played an im­por­tant role in the re­fined yet ru­ral Litch­field hills where

Ellen cu­rates an­tique books dur­ing her global trav­els. The man­tel show­cases her par­tic­u­lar pas­sion for first-edi­tion chil­dren’s ti­tles. TOP RIGHT: The quirky green glass “sa­cred cow” pa­per­weights were mar­ket trea­sures found on a trip to In­dia. BOT­TOM RIGHT: Brass can­dle­sticks, a sil­ver teapot and a Chi­nese Can­ton teacup are among Ellen’s fa­vorite items.

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