November 25, 2022

How Eric Smith Designed a Connecticut Home That’s Every Nature Lover’s Dream

When commissioned to decorate a quaint oasis in Greenwich, Connecticut, designer Eric Smith turned to a mix of old and new. He reworked the furniture belonging to the owner and made the new rooms even more comfortable in a Frank Lloyd Wright-like dwelling set in the middle of a picturesque forest.

Explore the entire abode — which may or may not make you feel ready to move into the woods — below.


The Office/Kitchenette

Durston Saylor

For the home study, “choosing furniture started with the owner’s Sam Maloof desk chairs that he bought years ago and loved,” Smith reveals. “We took that inspiration and had the rest of the furniture custom made.”

porchuckrdwritersstudio

Durston Saylor

Side chairs: Sam Maloof carpenter. Desk: Personalized. Splashback: Tim Mahoney of Mahoney Woodworks. Side table: Shades of light.


The gallery

library

Durston Saylor

When designing the home gallery, the goal “was to create a constructed expression of an artist’s creative process, from start to finish,” says Smith. This process began with “sliding down a massive oak portal, then through a daylight-lit Poets Gallery, passing through the collection of 1,700 volumes of poetry that offer inspiration and precedent.”

Then, says the designer, you’ll walk through “the 30-inch-thick stone walls, [where] we really have the impression of leaving the structure, [then go] through the portal to the three-sided, full-height glass Writer’s Room, [which is] suspended above the descending ravine. The poet’s office is located in the center of the 180 degree view, [and] the forest surrounds you halfway up the trees.” Here, “the view and space provide reflection and solace for the creative work to begin,” Smith adds.


Outside

Outside

Durston Saylor

For the exterior of the house, the owner “requested a place in the woods for his art,” Smith divulges. “The story was to be of discovering and restoring the relic of a stone barn and setting up a driftwood-lined studio within it.”

Here, adds the designer, “the materials are simple, stone, wood and glass”. Smith made sure to incorporate “shades and strategically placed glass panels”, as well as wood that “never visibly touches the stone walls, floors, walls or ceiling”.

Outside

Durston Saylor


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