Text by Rebecca Rochat & Hannah Vanbiber | Photography by Med Dement
Like any piece of fine craftsmanship, the details of this home were carefully planned and pieced together long before the first nail was struck. The homeowners collaborated with architect Josh Cooper of JCC Design Studio for a year before Dexter White Construction broke ground.
“The typical challenges for most residential projects are fulfilling client expectations, conforming to a realistic budget, and creating a truly unique home,” says Cooper. “The unique challenge with this home was carefully working the design into a fairly complex building site.”
Situated in a beautiful mountainous setting right along the Tennessee River, the architectural challenge was to create a structurally sound space on uneven topography that also flowed naturally with the surroundings and included a wide range of amenities. Cooper integrated natural materials into the design, such as stone, timber and wood finishes, which created cohesion with the natural setting.
Creating a framework that beautifully mastered the natural challenges, Cooper set the stage for the building expertise of Dexter White Construction to make the plan a reality.
Laura Hertle of Ana Woodworks worked closely with the homeowners to settle on an interior design, especially for the home’s heart—the kitchen.
“The owner came armed with a folder of pictures the first time we met. From a designer’s standpoint, people don’t realize how much that helps,” says Hertle. “It gives you a feel for the client’s personality. They may show you a lot of things they don’t think really fit together, but you can see a common thread and design accordingly.”
“We literally sat on the floor together going through paint samples and flooring samples and plans,” says the homeowner, who said she wanted an open but comfortable plan. The home’s overall décor and style is “rustic, but sophisticated” with an English influence most noticeable in the knotty alder arched doors throughout the house and the black walnut floors with their deep colors of reds and rich browns.
In a bold styling decision, Hertle kept upper cabinetry out of the kitchen, which creates a continuous visual aesthetic. Dishes are kept in cabinetry below eyelevel in the island, and food items are housed in a pantry off from the kitchen with cabinetry by Ana Woodworks. Contrasting colors and textures of wood are layered throughout the kitchen, from the pine ceiling beams to the black walnut floor and antique furniture pieces. In a nod to French style, two wicker baskets turned upside down are used as shades for lighting over the island. The island base, made of knotty alder, was custom-built by Ana Woodworks to have the look and feel of a weathered piece of antique furniture, while a bar area nearby provides additional storage. The dining area is furnished with a trestle table with splayed legs—an antique French work table bought from the C. Martin Collection.
Cooper designed a stone wall with a double-sided fireplace to separate the kitchen from the expansive living room. Through a stone archway with brick trim, the ceiling soars upward in the living room and front entry. The back wall is all windows; adjacent to it the fireplace wall is completely stone with the central fireplace and built-in shelving on either side.
The black walnut floors stretch from the kitchen through the living room and into the master bedroom, which also has a vast feel anchored by the arched floor-to-ceiling window. The window, with views of the river through the trees, has a custom-made cornice by Dexter White Construction, built to hide a blackout shade.
Arched double doors, architecturally designed to mirror the arches throughout the house, open opposite the window to a library off the master bedroom. The cathedral pine ceiling was custom-made by Dexter White Construction. Cherry shelves, built by Ana Woodworks, flank a desk placed in front of an arched window.
Architect: Josh Cooper, JCC Design Studio | Builder: Dexter White, Dexter White Construction
Interior Designer: Laura Hertle, Ana Woodworks
Lighting: Quality Lighting Center
Countertops: Stone Source, Inc.
Cabinetry: Ana Woodworks
Range: FiveStar | Piano: Crutcher Pianos
Antique Furniture: C. Martin Collection