An American Country Classic
With four homes already under their belts, these homeowners had a substantial wish list of features they would build into their next home. When this very special parcel of land became available back in 1989 in the Town of Summit, they jumped all over it. We had seen the property a couple of times, an old farm lot mixed with trees, meadows and wetlands, and immediately fell in love with it, they said.
The couple set about designing their ultimate dream a classic American Country home with just a hint of New England-ease. As the two worked out the details of what had been on their minds for years, they sketched out their ideas on pieces of paper and passed them along to their architect. My husband loves beautiful woodwork, she said, and also has a great eye for detail. He incorporated six-inch baseboards throughout the home and either chair-rail or wainscoting in almost every room. The unique detailing really adds to the personality and charm of the home.
The home is set well back off the road, invisible from any passers-by, and sits on the crest of a knoll overlooking a pond and woodlands, offering an unusual amount of privacy. They settled on naming the property Deerfield Farm for the regular visitors that pass through the acreage.
The first design decision was to make the home one-and-one-half stories and to add dormers and window seats in all the bedrooms for a cozy effect. Throughout the home there is an abundance of windows to take in the gorgeous views, including full banks of windows in both the kitchen and family room. Also included on that original wish list were large bathrooms, tons of closet space and an easy-flowing layout that would make it comfortable to entertain friends and family.
They wanted a lot of garage space too, so the plan called for a three-and-one-half-car attached garage and an additional two-car detached garage connected by a porte-cochere. Naturally, the idea behind the drive-through concept of the porte-cochere was to make it easier for guests or family coming in to be protected from the rain or snow. The detached garage could also serve as a separate in-law quarters, home office or even another bedroom. It is not currently being used that way, but it has been prepped with heating, air and plumbing if someone was interested in a simple conversion.
Upon completion in 1991, it was abundantly clear that this couples careful planning allowed their dream to come true. The 5,200-square-foot home, with a combined redwood and split fieldstone exterior, offers an expansive ground level with a foyer, living room, family room, garden room, kitchen with separate dining room and a laundry room. The second floor features two separate wings, one with the master suite and two guest bedrooms, and the other wing with a huge game room complete with an old-fashioned cage-style bar area, another full bath and a large art studio.
Among some of the other appealing features are the nine masonry fireplaces ten with the outside patio fireplace; raised panel walls throughout; custom six-paneled one and one-half inch thick doors; double crown moldings and double-wide baseboards throughout; custom made period lighting fixtures; solid brass hinges; custom vanities and cabinetry with either wood or marble countertops; and generous closets with real wood shelving.
The floors are a warm, wide-plank yellow pine stained in a medium tone, except for the back foyer and the laundry room which have handsome green-blue slate floors. We wanted the back foyer to be just as inviting as the front, they said, because we use it all the time and our guests use it as well when they enter through the porte-cochere. Every room, including the garden room, has old-fashioned hand-pressed plaster walls. This type of plaster finish lends itself to a very warm and mellow feel, not the stark and smooth look youll find in most homes.
The gathering place in this home, as in most, is the custom designed kitchen and dining area. The space is highly functional, with a wet bar linking the kitchen with the family room, an over-abundance of cabinetry, two walk-in pantries, a wine chiller and a white-Italian granite center island. Theres also a Sub-Zero refrigerator with two additional refrigerator drawers under the wine chiller, a Wolf professional gas range, Italian pot filler and a custom sink with backsplash.
The couples design also incorporated an herb cupboard, apothecary drawers, a plate-drying rack and an over-the-sink cupboard with a front of both glass and raised paneling. In addition to being functional, the kitchen and dining area is elegantly beautiful as well. Among the accouterments youll find a ceiling with hand-hewn pine beams, a brick fireplace, raised panel wainscot, built-in corner china cabinets and a cozy wood floor. There is a back staircase off the kitchen that leads directly to the second floor bedrooms as well. We love to be able to walk directly from the bedrooms into the warm kitchen, they said.
On the opposite side of the wet bar is the 420-square-foot great room. It features more hand-hewn ceiling beams, an expanse of windows, two sets of French doors opening out to the back yard and pocket doors leading into the study. The handsome stone fireplace has a brick hearth and raised panel woodwork. It is also graced with andirons and a fender fashioned of black wrought iron and brass with a deer design on the fireback.
Moving to the bedroom wing on the second level, one of the guest bedrooms really carries out the country classic theme to perfection. The eggshell walls are handsomely offset with a federal blue trim a color echoed in some of the furnishings, including tone-on-tone damask covered settee, a leather chair and ottoman and a rag rug in tones of federal blue, russet and off-white. The mahogany four-poster bed displays an eggshell matelasse coverlet. At the foot of the bed is an antique Pennsylvania Dutch chest, complimented by a cherry chest of drawers. Guests can enjoy the rooms fireplace or relax in the free-standing soaking tub in the adjoining bath. The two guest bedrooms each have private baths with dual sink vanities, a fireplace, beamed ceilings and walk-in closets. The spacious master bedroom boasts two window seats, wainscoting, his and her walk-in closets and an adjacent sitting room with its own fireplace and a private door to the porch. The master bath has a cast iron whirlpool tub with Carrara marble surround and matching his and her vanities. It also has a standing tile and marble shower stall and a private water closet room.
The opposite wing of the second floor is primarily devoted to fun the 17x24-foot game room features a caged bar and a nine-foot pool table with leather pockets squarely underneath the four-sided mansard style roof. The split-fieldstone fireplace, flanked by indigo-colored reproduction Martha Washington chairs, is dominated by a large overhead beam that reads Deerfield Farm. The owners spotted the beam at a farm one day, asked to buy it, and took it to a woodcarver who inscribed the name. Adjacent to this youll find another full bath and the finished art studio.
There are many other features included like the private garden room, a powder room off the kitchen, handmade chandeliers and wall sconces throughout, a huge patio with bluestone brick, a second inlaid brick patio with free-standing fireplace, a fenced-in garden area, dual zone heating and cooling, a private staircase from the garage to the 12-course basement and much more.
With all of these priceless amenities its the simple things that have always made this home most enjoyable for the owners. While they do enjoy their occasional entertaining, they are most comfortable with a sit-down dinner and a private walk through their path-filled acreage (there are twenty-nine acres included with the home and another fifty acres of protected conservancy land directly behind). The wetlands, they say, are chock full of waterfowl and the meadows abound with seasonal wildflowers and birds. The landscaping directly around the home is meticulous but simple, just the way they like it.
Are you looking for a classic American Country estate within close proximity of shopping, restaurants and good schools? The owners would confirm that a special property like this only becomes available once in a lifetime.