WINDOWS OF OPPORTUNITY
An architect creates an island escape where the design is full of character, the vibe is laidback and the ocean views are spectacular.
An architect creates an island escape with a laid- back vibe and spectacular ocean views
cottage, which he shares with his wife, Jenna, their five grown children and their beloved Yorkshire terrier, Chloe, he was cognizant of listening to himself. “I had to project myself onto a screen, so to speak,” Jim says. What he saw was inspiration from the past, present and future: spending childhood days at his parents’ cottage in Ontario; enjoying time with his Keats Island neighbours (when this lot came on the market, he was specially invited to join the close-knit enclave of six properties); and creating a place for hosting business get-togethers, as well as relaxing with a good book. “If you compile notions of past experiences and future desires, you get a backdrop you can respond to,” he says.
It’s a creative process that, after six months of construction, resulted in a modern 1,200-square-foot structure that’s striking – obviously the home of an architect – but simple and not overbearing. “I didn’t want it to be an example of cold austere modern architecture. It had to have warmth and comfort built into it,” he says.
Working with Jim to inject character was Jack Brown, Formwerks’s director of interior design. “We wanted a rustic cabin feel,” says Jack, “with nothing too polished or city-like.”
Achieving that rustic-chic balance meant combining an uncomplicated open floor plan, clean lines and a minimalistic sensibility with character-filled elements like shiplap wall panelling, exposed ceiling beams, wide-plank hardwood floors and salvaged windows and doors. “I was renovating a client’s 100year-old house in Vancouver and all these doors and windows were coming out. So I thought I’d repurpose them and refresh their existing offbeat colours – buttery yellow and turquoise,” says Jim. (Serendipidously, Jim’s contractor also offered a set of old leaded glass windows in the same buttery hue that were used for the kitchen cabinetry.)
The bright colour scheme keeps things fresh and relaxed, while layers of soft elements and textiles add to the coziness. An eclectic mix of accents – a comfy sectional from a past project, artwork found at flea markets and colourful quilts picked up while on vacation – lends a laid-back vibe. But, perhaps most importantly, those elements reflect Jim and his family, who are interesting, relaxed and well-travelled. “It was really important to capture who they are,” says Jack. Mission accomplished.
Vertical cedar siding emulates a weathered look. “We wanted the cottage to look like it had been there for a long time, even though it’s brand new,” says Jim.
With a table that comfortably seats 10, the dining room of this Hamptons, N.Y., summer home plays host to both elegant dinner parties and casual family meals. DESIGN, Chango & Co., chango.co; WALLPAPER, Phillip Jeffries; DINING TABLE, RH; DINING CHAIRS, Chango & Co.; PENDANT LIGHTS, Circa Lighting; custom RUG, Sacco Carpet; PRINT, Barloga Studios.
Nestled next to the front door, a Windsor bench is the perfect place to rest beach bags or kick off flip-flops. Wooden dot hooks look Scandi-chic even when bare. Decorator’s White CC-20 WALL PAINT (throughout), Benjamin Moore; BENCH, Wayfair.ca; HOOKS, CB2.