Adding a dash of re­fined Scan­di­na­vian style to this hol­i­day house re­sulted in a serene space for fam­ily time


This New York City-based fam­ily’s week­ender in the Hamp­tons is packed with de­signer cred

Drawn in by the ro­man­ti­cally long drive­way, An­drea Safirstein and her hus­band Adam found this Hamp­tons prop­erty nearly four years ago. “We fell in love with the pri­vacy and the beau­ti­ful back­yard that backs up to pro­tected land and hik­ing trails,” says An­drea, a pro­fes­sor of psy­chol­ogy at New York’s Columbia Univer­sity. “The back­yard has so many di er­ent birds, hy­drangea bushes and beech trees.”

The orig­i­nal home’s sur­rounds ticked all the boxes, set in a pic­turesque street in Ama­gansett, one of the small beach towns that make up the Hamp­tons. How­ever, the in­te­ri­ors left a lot to be de­sired – built in 1992, the two-bed­der didn’t suit the needs of their young fam­ily, even as a hol­i­day home away from the city.

“The mas­ter bed­room up­stairs had a den and a huge mas­ter bath­room – that was the whole floor,” says An­drea, who, with her hus­band Adam, a doctor, has three chil­dren – daugh­ters Is­abel, 16; and Piper, 13; and son Ja­phy, 9. “We needed three bed­rooms up­stairs, and an ex­tra bath­room for the kids. Now my son has his own room and my girls share a bunk room – they love shar­ing it. We live in New York City, so we don’t mind smaller spaces. They’ve never known any di er­ent!”

An­drea and Adam found Jes­sica Hel­ger­son of Jes­sica Hel­ger­son In­te­rior De­sign (JHID) on­line after see­ing Jes­sica’s own house and be­ing in­spired by its de­sign. Although she’s based on the other side of the US in Ore­gon, Jes­sica was in New York at the time they con­tacted her. She met the cou­ple and im­me­di­ately wanted the job. “After hear­ing An­drea’s aes­thetic as­pi­ra­tions, I wanted to pour my de­sign en­ergy into rad­i­cally trans­form­ing the home,” says Jes­sica.

Part­ner­ing with New York firm TBD Ar­chi­tec­ture + De­sign Stu­dio, Jes­sica and Chelsie Lee, JHID’s se­nior de­signer, came up with a plan for the home. “Nearly ev­ery room shifted,” says Jes­sica. “We moved the kitchen to the site of a screened porch, adding space to the foot­print. We opened up the stair­case and added two bed­rooms and one bath­room. Then we added two rooms with built-in so­fas for read­ing and re­lax­ing.” Says Chelsie: “We wanted this home to re­flect our stylish clients and be­come a back­drop to their week­end vis­its, where they like to spend time as a fam­ily.”

Re­tain­ing the best of the orig­i­nal house, the oak floors were bleached and Jes­sica added wooden planks and beams to the ceil­ings. “The palette is very re­strained – pale wood, whitepainted wood, hand­made white tiles, mar­ble and brass,” she says. To com­ple­ment this pared-back colour scheme, Jes­sica se­lected nat­u­ral tones for the in­te­rior, with the in­clu­sion of warm leather

ac­cents for the liv­ing ar­eas and bed­rooms, raw-wood fur­ni­ture and nubby wools for floor­cov­er­ings. “We were in­spired by An­drea and Adam’s taste when se­lect­ing the fur­ni­ture, light­ing and art,” she says. “It’s a mix of trendier mod­ern pieces and time­less Scan­di­na­vian pieces.”

Many home­own­ers find it di cult to let a pro­fes­sional as­sume the style and de­sign di­rec­tion of their home, but An­drea and Adam were grate­ful to hand over that re­spon­si­bil­ity. “Adam and I are doc­tors, so there isn’t much de­sign in­spi­ra­tion in our work en­vi­ron­ments! As long as the space didn’t re­sem­ble a wait­ing room, we were happy,” says An­drea.

She couldn’t be hap­pier with the re­sult, ei­ther. “There are so many parts I love that it’s hard to pick a favourite,” says An­drea. “I love the big din­ing ta­ble, the kitchen is­land, the cus­tom so­fas and the bunk beds in the girls’ room. I also love the Hans J Weg­ner ‘Cir­cle’ chair in the liv­ing room, and the small Galvin Broth­ers stool in the sunroom. I could go on and on!”

The exterior was also re­vi­talised. “It re­ceived mi­nor changes, such as new win­dows, a new por­tico and front porch, and new paint,” says Jes­sica. Adds An­drea: “It dra­mat­i­cally changed the look. We also had one area of the gar­den pro­fes­sion­ally land­scaped and I spent hours prun­ing and weed­ing and plant­ing the rest.”

And so a tired old Hamp­tons girl has be­come the hol­i­day home of An­drea and Adam’s dreams. “To us, home is where you can go and al­ways be safe and loved and hide from the rest of the world,” says An­drea. “The en­vi­ron­ment a ects our mood, and if we love the look of where we are, we are much hap­pier peo­ple.” For more of Jes­sica’s work, visit jhin­te­ri­orde­sign.com. To see other projects by TBD Ar­chi­tec­ture + De­sign Stu­dio, visit tb­d­de­sign­stu­dio.com.

EXTERIOR (left) An all-white paint job, new win­dows and a new front porch have done won­ders for home­own­ers An­drea and Adam’s get­away. LIV­ING AREA Raked ceil­ings open up the space, cre­at­ing an airy, breezy feel. The Jar­dan ‘ Wil­fred’ sofa and ‘Alby’ ot­toman are paired with the sculp­tural Hans J Weg­ner ‘PP130 Cir­cle’ chair, ‘PP120’ stool and ‘CH28’ arm­chairs for PP Møbler (try Cult) for a Scandi-meets-mid- cen­tury vibe.

KITCHEN (below) “We like the vis­i­bil­ity the cus­tom high ta­ble gives, rather than a mas­sive is­land bench that loats in the room,” says Chelsie Lee, se­nior de­signer for Jes­sica Hel­ger­son In­te­rior De­sign (JHID). It’s sur­rounded by Pinch ‘Imo’ bar stools (try Spence & Lyda). SUNROOM (op­po­site) An­drea loves the ‘(Per­fectly) Im­per­fect’ stool with a sin­gle turned leg by UK de­sign­ers Galvin Broth­ers, while cus­tom built-in so­fas by JHID al­low plenty of space for the fam­ily to re­lax.

KITCHEN (above left) The rus­tic look comes through in sim­ple painted cab­i­netry with a mar­ble bench­top, bleached oak loors and a sub­way-tiled wall, o set by a Ber­taz­zoni cooker and range­hood. EN­TRY (above) The spa­cious en­try fea­tures a tim­ber-and-leather ar­moire de­signed by JHID. DIN­ING AREA (op­po­site) The up­dated home fea­tures open-plan fam­ily liv­ing at its best, with a ta­ble and bench from the UK’s An­other Coun­try (try Luke Fur­ni­ture) and Sibast ‘No 8’ chairs (try Hub Fur­ni­ture), presided over by an Ap­pa­ra­tus Stu­dio ‘Trapeze 10’ chan­de­lier (try Cri­te­ria Col­lec­tion).

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