Brooks & Falotico

A Historic Work in Progress

This soon-to-be-elegant home is in Edgartown on Martha’s Vineyard and was originally built in the late 1700s as a traditional Federal style home. We’re in the process of renovating and restoring the structure, which is filled with history.

According to local legend, Frederick Warren, a merchant from London, married his wife, Caroline Osborn, in 1855. This house belonged to her father. The Osborns hit a rough patch, as did a lot of Martha’s Vineyard families when shipping declined in the late 1800s. Reluctant to let go of her childhood home and armed with her husband’s wealth, Caroline was able to keep and renovate the home.

Today, her Victorian-inspired additions are a little worse for the wear. The current owners have tasked us with restoring and modernizing the home.

The exterior desperately needed work, and the owners wanted the house to be more in-line with the other homes on this very historic street. We mean that literally, as the whole house was picked up and moved closer to the street and angled to fit in better with its neighbors.

We went through an extensive review process that addressed every detail of the exterior to ensure it was historically accurate, down to the type of glass in the windows. The town required us to keep the front portico addition, which Caroline added in the late 1800s.

Stay tuned (and follow us on Instagram) for updates as we finish this historic renovation!

9 Stairs That Are All in the Details

A beautiful stair creates continuity in a home, visually tying different spaces together and using design details to reflect the rest of the home’s style. These stunning stairs, ranging from modern to traditional, do just that.

This spiral stair features cerused oak treads and handrail and iron railings. It’s a transitional look with warm, traditional materials used in a modern way. (The home’s master bathroom, which won an Innovation in Design Award, similarly mixes classic and contemporary elements.)

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For this New Canaan home’s interiors, the client wanted a totally fresh, modern look — the stair’s floating wood treads and metal railings accomplish just that, plus it’s indestructible enough for the family’s five kids.

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This fun stair to a basement game area is an exciting departure for us, creatively, with unexpected under-lit glass treads and elegant grasscloth walls.

Here’s an entry that is fresh and bright with traditional elements: a wood stair and flush board wainscoting.

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This is a traditional, always-elegant curved stair with simple tapered wood balusters and curvy newel posts.

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These beaded straight balusters and custom “harp” baluster were inspired by country Swedish design.

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This New Canaan home is unusual in that the main level is one floor up (from the top floor, they have views of Manhattan!), so the stair and entry are important design features. With custom balusters and newels inspired by a McKim, Mead, and White stair, they are an elegant transition from the entry into to the formal area of the home.

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Another country Swedish-inspired harp design, this stair’s light colors complement the summery palette in this renovated vacation home on Shelter Island.

A Built-For-Fun Field House (on the Cover of CTC&G!)

This family-friendly, built-for-fun field house sits on a stretch of land down the hill from the client’s main home, a Georgian Colonial. The structure is a departure from the traditional style of the house; instead, it boasts the clean lines and massive windows of a modern farmhouse.

The field house — which includes a squash court, bowling alley, basketball court, batting cage, and plenty of space to entertain—was on the cover of Connecticut Cottages and Gardens’ April issue! You can read the full article here, and see some of the stunning photos below.

Huge, garage-style doors open so that the fun can spill out onto the rest of the property.

Cathedral ceilings and an open floorplan allow a glimpse of the basketball court.

A full bar and bowling alley make for next-level game nights.

The bowling alley includes two full lanes, emblazoned with the clients’ favorite team logo.

The massive doors on either side of the batting cage open up fully (see them in action here!).

The bedroom is sleepover-ready.

The living room, complete with a ping pong table, opens onto a fully equipped outdoor entertaining space.

A full kitchen, adjacent to the outdoor grill and dining table, makes summer barbecues a breeze.

From outdoor entertaining in the summer to bowling parties in winter to epic sleepovers, the field house is an all-family, all-season structure the client will enjoy for years to come.

Sun-Soaked Spaces

During this not-quite-warm time of year, when we’re all craving sunshine, there’s nothing better than a light-filled sun room for weekend entertaining, afternoon coffee, or a catnap. We’ve rounded up a few of the best sunny spaces we’ve created for clients.

Often, the sun rooms in our projects are directly adjacent to a formal living room. They offer a bright place for daytime entertaining or a daily quiet getaway for afternoon tea.

Ideally, a sun room is an addition to the south-facing side of a home. For this property, we capitalized on the sun room’s orientation and location within the beautiful landscape and added an adjacent covered porch. French doors with decorative transoms are a classic Brooks & Falotico sun room feature.

We designed these two rooms with glass ceilings to maximize light. The effect mimics a greenhouse, so tropical plants can thrive year-round.

This sun room’s focal point is its beautiful limestone fireplace, which keeps the space cozy year-round.

The decorative lattice detailing above this room’s tall windows is inspired by country Swedish design.

This client wanted their sun room to be a multi-functional entertaining space. The wine bar offers a perfect place for pre-dinner appetizers and wine tasting when it’s too chilly to be outside, and the adjacent sitting area, with its chic studded leather fireplace wall, is ideal for post-dinner drinks.

A Belgian Farmhouse in New Canaan

This modern, European style farmhouse sits at the end of a cul-de-sac close to the center of New Canaan. Space was limited (due, in part, to restrictive wetlands on the edge of the property) and the client—a family of five—wanted large, open spaces in their home. We got creative in designing the home vertically.

Dramatic roof pitches and tall glass openings accentuate the home’s height. The exterior is primarily fieldstone and stucco, with bronze-painted steel windows, and the main entrance features a two-story stone arch infilled with steel and glass.

The dreamy, open kitchen includes Miele appliances, a stainless steel farmhouse sink and reclaimed white oak beams.

The great room includes a light-filled dining area and living room, where we designed opposing fireplaces and echoed the kitchen’s reclaimed white oak beams. The space opens into the kitchen, pool and bar.

The pool is on the south side of the house to take advantage of the sun and the view over the adjacent brook and woods. The terrace also has a hot tub, seating area and fireplace for (almost) year-round outdoor entertaining.

The soothing master bedroom features a cathedral ceiling, fireplace and reclaimed white oak beams. It opens onto a south-facing stone terrace, which overlooks the pool.

Like the master bedroom, the (lucky) kids’ room opens onto a south-facing terrace.

The basement features a wine cellar and tasting area, as well as a screening room with several rows of comfortable, better-than-theater seats.

The dramatic stair tower opens from the basement all the way up to the attic, visually connecting the open first floor with the bedrooms above. The stairs float in front of large windows, allowing light to stream into the entire house.

All photos by Jane Beiles; interiors by Lynn Morgan.

Baths for Every Style

A great bath mimics the style, materials and colors of the rest of the home. These are a few of our favorites, from traditional (Georgian details) to transitional (classic-Nantucket-meets-modern), to modern (spa-like limestone).

Traditional details and materials are in keeping with the rest of this Connecticut coastal. With spectacular water views, it wouldn’t be hard to find your center in this Zen setting.

This master bath combines the subdued colors and materials of Swedish-inspired interiors and traditional Georgian detailing.

This master bath is part of a full master suite renovation. The homeowners tasked us with making it restrained, but not cold, resulting in a modern, spa-like oasis. The Normandy gray limestone creates a calming backdrop for the sculptural tub and matching vanities. (P.S. This bathroom won Connecticut Cottages and Gardens’ 2014 Innovation in Design Award for Best Bath!)

The bold stone tile pattern, modern details, plumbing and hardware update this kid’s bath for a large family.

These two baths are both found in vacation homes. A beautiful Nantucket summer getaway (left) has a master bath that features extra wide vanities with waterfall countertops made of back-painted blue glass. We used clean, minimal transitional details here and throughout the home, honoring Nantucket’s history while bringing the property into the 21st century. The Shelter Island home (right) has monochromatic materials and pared-down details, which create a soothing, “Calgon-take-me-away” atmosphere. (If you’re too young to get that reference, see here.

Elegant Home of the Month: A Country House Renovation


This project, like many of our projects, evolved during early planning as design opportunities naturally presented themselves. With our clients, we first considered tearing the existing house down because of site area restrictions. Just when we began planning for all new construction, the adjacent property became available and our clients immediately purchased it. With this additional space, we were able to develop a plan that maintained a large part of the existing house, while adding on the remaining items from the client’s wish list. This change in direction also made it clear that we should flip the direction of the house–the driveway approach and new front of the house should be where the former rear of the house was and vice versa.


The new first floor includes a dramatic new entry hall and traditional front-to-back hall design, so that the original front door could become the back terrace door. The entry hall connects the main living area with the new outdoor entertaining area.




The first floor addition also gave the home a spacious family room, a fantastic, functional mud room and a new three-car garage and porte cochere. The porte cochere makes a statement on the front elevation and connects with the front porch, while allowing the garage doors to face the back yard instead of the front. Because the driveway extends into the backyard, it provides a private play area for bike-riding, skating and basketball. This addition gave the home a much needed new basement (the original house had none) as well as new second floor bedrooms and a play room.


An outdoor entertaining area was high on the client’s wish list. The new outdoor fireplace and stone terrace connect with the existing pool. It has become a favorite part of their new home.

5 Billiard Rooms for a Rainy Summer Day

Summer is for swimming, gardening, and marshmallow roasting—but unpredictable rain can ruin even the best-laid, warm-weather plans. Our solution to beating the rainy day blues: beautiful, multi-functional billiard rooms designed for everything from kids’ sleepovers to grown-up tournaments (drinks included).

This billiard room has classic detailing and finishes that give it a timeless feel. You would never know that it was the home’s original garage! The floors are Belgian Bluestone set in a herringbone pattern, and the paneled walls and arched French doors are hickory.

The billiard area is on the third floor of Louise Brooks’ home, which makes for interesting ceiling lines and great views of the sound. The built-in bench, wall hooks for cues, and beadboard wainscoting with nautical rope, are some of the details that make the space special. It is part of a multi-functional room and has seating for gaming or TV-watching on a large screen TV. It also has a fabulous nautical inspired bar. Louise has three grown children who love to hang out here when they visit.

This space was designed with the client’s young family in mind. The basement renovation included a string of rooms for the whole family to use, including an exercise space, a spa bath and a large bar area. The billiard room has a built-in bench and bunk beds, which can be tucked away behind folding doors. The client wanted a more modern aesthetic in the basement, as a departure from the very traditional exterior of the home.

You can see through the open doors that this home has great views of the Connecticut coast. The pool terrace leads into the lower level billiard room, which features a cerused oak bench, limestone fireplace and floor, and pieces from the owner’s amazing modern art collection.

This Connecticut billiard room is part of a series of fun rainy day rooms. You can see the game area beyond, with its limestone fireplace. The open bar area has everything the client needs to throw a large party, often centered around viewing sports in the adjacent home theater. The detailing and finishes harken to the family’s Texas roots, with its hickory beams and millwork, Texas limestone walls, and rustic floor finish. Unique details include the built-in cue and ball rack on the left and a 4-inch deep chair rail for setting down your drink between shots.

A Historic Home on Martha’s Vineyard

We’ve just started the exciting process of renovating and restoring this historic home on North Water Street in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard. After buying the 18th-century mansion, our client tasked us with its restoration. The first order of business: to move the house into a better position among the other historic structures on the street (pictured below). We will make additions to the side and back of the home, and will restore the existing facade to maintain its architectural history. We’re so thrilled to have the opportunity to repair the home to its former elegance.

Watch a video of the move and stay tuned for updates on Instagram.

Porches, Patios and Pergolas

Just like that, as if overnight, it’s 70 and sunny in Connecticut! Dust off your outdoor furniture, pour some rosé, and get in the mood for summer with a few of our favorite porches.

This home is situated on a sloping piece of land, so the porch is elevated, providing sweeping views of the Long Island Sound.

This beautiful outdoor space is part of the waterfront home pictured above. We often use pergolas, like the one shown here, to tie an exterior space to the rest of the home in a visually interesting way. Sometimes we break a tall facade to help give a sense of scale at the terrace level.

In this lakeside home, large French doors connect the interior living spaces to the porch. The limestone floor adds rustic warmth to the porch and distinguishes it from the bluestone patio.

We love that the lattice between the posts in the photo on the right allows potted summer plants to climb up to the pergola above (and we wouldn’t mind sitting around that fireplace in the background either).

Pergolas are excellent for creating a sense of space and scale. Sometimes we need to work around zoning codes that restrict the amount of roof area a home may have for its lot. Pergolas usually don’t count as “roof area,” so we use them to define a porch space without using up our allotted square footage.

A versatile, elegant pergola creates an outdoor oasis ideal for reading in the sun, a long summer nap, or sunset cocktails with a view of the Sound.

Celebrate Spring

Spring is (almost) here! Nothing will get you in the spring mindset like opening all the windows and potting fresh greenery or flowers. A potting room, perhaps more than any other room in the house, needs to marry function (oversized sink for mess-free potting, ample storage) and form (natural light, spring-y details). These four potting rooms in our clients’ homes are some of our favorites.

This potting room is part of a family-focused addition that includes a basketball court, a workout room, and plenty of outdoor space. Like the rest of the addition, the potting room allows an easy flow between the indoors and outdoors.

The massive windows in the potting room on the left let in tons of natural light and fresh air, and the shelves manage to keep even this, the messiest of tasks, neat and organized. In the room to the right, beautiful tiled floors and soapstone countertops create a sense of continuity between the rest of the home and this indoor-outdoor space.

Photo to the right by Jane Beiles.

Don’t these two spaces instantly remind you of the English countryside? Both feature large sinks, which keep the potting mess contained, and charming aesthetic details.

Elegant Home of the Month: A Chic Renovation

A few weeks ago, we showed you the first phase of this home’s renovation—a dream kitchen that was featured in House Beautiful. The second phase of the project transformed the family room and master bathroom to make them more modern, multi-functional and family-friendly.

The family room is drenched in sunlight from the large windows and has ample seating, centered around the fireplace. A grid of antiqued beams and posts warm the space, while adding structure.  The wall-mounted TV is easy to see from any spot in the room (no more fighting for the best seat on movie night), but it doesn’t impose.

You may remember the stunning breakfast room from our previous look at this renovation. This smaller table with built-in banquette in the family room is just right for games, after-school snacks and homework.

The master bath is sleek and modern with two sinks (a God-send for any healthy marriage), chevron-tiled floors, and clean lines throughout, from the vanity to the tub.

Love the side table in the master bath (left)? Get it here. We’re also crazy about the details in the powder room, like this beautiful sink (right).

The home has two entrances—the front door, framed with beautiful molding and accessorized with topiaries (left), and a more hidden side entrance.

Photos by Jane Beiles.

Game On

Football season may be over, but basketball season is in full swing and baseball season is just around the corner (not to mention New Year’s resolution season, which may or may not have been DOA). Whether you need a place for practicing your jump shot, after-school play or making good on those resolutions, we’ve rounded up our favorite sporty spaces for inspiration.

This client was a Texas A&M alum who wanted a half-court replica of the school’s famous court right in his home, logo and all.

This field house, when it’s complete, will house a batting cage and squash court (pictured below).

The batting cage, pictured in progress at the left, has huge glass lift-up doors. They’re 13.5′ tall with enormous counterweights. The squash court was done by Anderson Courts in edge-grain maple, which is the international standard for professional courts. 

Who wouldn’t be motivated to work out in this beautiful exercise pavilion?  It’s a perfect Zen spot to practice yoga.

You may recognize this half-court from this family-friendly addition, which also included an exercise and game room, as well as lots of outdoor play space.

A Dream Kitchen

This kitchen is fresh — with white lacquered cabinets and tons of natural light — and dramatic — with antique-mirrored cabinets and a playful chandelier. It’s so functional, with its open floor plan and ample counter space, that it elevates home cooking to the next level. Can you imagine how stress-free dinner party prep would be in here? Are you picturing yourself drinking coffee by the window? House Beautiful agreed that this is a truly dreamy kitchen and named it Kitchen Of The Month!

Keep an eye out for a future post with more about this project and its second phase!

It’s Party Time!

The holiday season is in full swing—bring on the cocktail parties, potlucks and family dinners! Did we stress you out? We’ve rounded up our favorite bars, wine cellars and butler’s pantries that make entertaining effortless, stress-free, and elegant.

Make It Work

These butler’s pantries are true workhorses that serve a multitude of entertaining needs. Use them for prep or for serving buffet-style meals. Set up a bar where guests have everything they need to mix a drink or pour themselves a glass of wine. A great butler’s pantry is whatever you need it to be in the moment.

Pick Your Poison

A proper in-home cellar is every wine collectors need. Choose the perfect bottle for your holiday festivities (and never worry you won’t have enough to last the night). If cocktails are more your style, keep a fully stocked bar where guests can help themselves to a drink.

Elegant Home of the Month: A Classic Gambrel

This month’s Elegant Home is one of our favorite projectsThe clients loved their original home, and wanted to expand on it to suit their lifestyle and growing family. Because of the house’s original structure and strict zoning regulations—which couldn’t accommodate the required five bedrooms or a garage—it had to be torn down. The home we created in its place is in the same Gambrel colonial style as the original home they loved so much. It’s a reimagining of their original house, with all of the adjustments the family required and the addition of a gorgeous pool and expansive outdoor living space.

Fall Fun: Outdoor Fireplaces

Summer may be long gone, but we’re not ready to hole up inside just yet. These outdoor fireplaces are fantastic for clients who want to spend time outside as temperatures drop. We design outdoor spaces to suit our clients’ specific needs. While one family likes to snuggle under a blanket and watch movies by the fire, another likes bring guests out to the porch for a cocktail. We rounded up our favorite outdoor spaces — some have wall-mounted TVs, others have full dining spaces, but they all have a roaring fire.

 

Elegant Home of the Month: A Seamless Addition

For this month’s Elegant Home, we expanded on a traditional Georgian Colonial, creating an addition that continues the style of the existing house.  It gives one the impression that it had been there all along.

We added the section that you see on the left in the above photo, creating a multipurpose entertaining and lounging space that leads to a covered porch and to the pool in the back yard. The style and details of the addition are reflective of the traditional look of the rest of the home, and create a seamless transition.

 

 

 

The clients wanted to turn their existing sun room into a wine bar with a tasting table. We updated the space with custom storage and an open layout to fit the long table.

To replace the old sunroom, we added a new one just beyond the wine bar. The space is both cozy, with a fireplace and leather paneling, and airy, with floor-to-ceiling windows.

The wine bar and sun room lead to an elegant covered porch.

The whole addition was to center on an outdoor “room” that was created by two gorgeous, long-established hedges, and that area leads to the pool and pool house. The space blends traditional elements, like the existing Colonial structure and the hedges, with modern details, like leather paneling and a full-service wine bar.  It really gives this modern family the best of both worlds!

Photos by Jeff McNamara.

 

Mud Rooms and Homework Rooms: The Heroes of the School Year

With the kids back in school, chances are there are two rooms in your home that are getting a lot more attention: the mud room and the homework room. Suddenly there’s football gear or soccer uniforms strewn around the mud room, while the homework room is a mess of textbooks and school supplies. For our clients, we pay a lot of attention to detail in these two spaces. It’s the details — custom storage solutions and clean, calming lines — that keep these rooms organized, clutter-free, and pleasant to be in. With the right design, these two spaces can be the unsung heroes of the school year.  Here are some of our favorites:

1. The Homework Room

2. The Mud Room

 

Litchfield County Elegance

For August’s Elegant Home of the Month, we selected one of our favorite projects in Litchfield county. The clients had kept an eye on this gorgeous, 58-acre property for years, and jumped at the chance when it finally went on the market. They called on us to build their dream home from the ground up, with the interesting challenge of making a brand new home look as if it had belonged on the property all along.

The photo to the left shows the home’s classic, inviting front entrance, while the photo on the left shows the rear of the house, with its covered porch and beautiful water views.

The family’s covered porch is as perfect for entertaining as it is for relaxing with a calming view of the water. Natural materials like stone and wood reflect the natural elements of the property.

The pool fits in seamlessly with its rustic environment. A sunset swim in this pool seems pretty enticing, doesn’t it?

The home’s stately elegance, along with Michael Trapp’s seemingly effortless landscape design lend it a classic Litchfield style. Although it was built to the specific needs of the client, it gives the impression that it’s been around for years of morning swims and family barbecues.

Landscape and interior design by Michael Trapp.

Photographs by Jeff McNamara

The Dog Days of Summer

It’s safe to say we’re in the dog days of summer as we endure temps in the high 80s here in Connecticut. These dogs have the right idea — they’re laying around in built-in beds and cooling off in stainless steel puppy showers. The pup above is Max Falotico (of Brooks & Falotico), eating a treat in his custom food station. Take a cue from our roundup of dog-friendly design.

This pup’s crate is built into the bottom of floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. The owners added a bed to give him a cozy place to nap.

Another luxurious, built-in crate. We doubt any dog would mind being in here for an afternoon.

Left: A stainless steel dog shower from Ridalco makes bath time that much easier. Right: A puppy-friendly mudroom.

As the owners come and go from their home, they can easily let dogs in and out of their conveniently built-in crates. The dogs’ gates seamlessly blend into the aesthetic of the space.

Pamper your pet even further with a monogram dog bed cover, Match your puppy to your belt with a Vineyard Vines whale collar. Tote her to the beach in a dog carrier that allows her some dignity. Give him the royal treatment with dog bowls from Harrods.

P.S. Check us out on Cottage & Garden’s list of 2014 Innovation in Design Award winners!

Elegant Home of the Month: A 2014 IDA Winner!

 

We have exciting news: Brooks and Falotico has won a Connecticut Cottages and Gardens Innovation in Design Award! The sleek, modern bathroom in this month’s Elegant Home was chosen as the best in its category.

The client wanted a large master suite with a fresh aesthetic, providing a calming escape within their home. The suite has a shared closet space (including area for a large shoe collection), a spacious master bath, a study, sitting area, and bar.

The award-winning bathroom. Its clean, modern look includes a Normandy Gray limestone floor and backsplash, Sienna Silver travertine shower tile, a composite tub, and concrete countertops in color matched sinks.

The closet is personalized to the clients’ needs down to the last detail. The dressing room includes a costume jewelry cabinet with custom interiors, built-in full-length mirrors, and pullout hanging rods. The shoe closet puts a prized collection on display. Its mirrored walls, glass doors, shelves, and white trim put the shoes in the spotlight and offset the oak millwork of the closet and adjoining rooms.

The expansive master suite on the second floor connects to a first floor study by a dramatic spiral staircase.


The study and bar reflect the rest of the suite’s aesthetic, including natural materials like hand-hewn waxed oak floors, custom oak interior doors and trim. The two-story master suite, with its calming look, spacious bath and closets, and easily accessible bar, is truly an oasis within the home.

All photos by Jane Beiles. Interior design by Pimlico.

Sandals, Sailing, and Salty Air: Our Favorite Coastal Homes

The best seaside homes are the ones that blur the line between indoor and outdoor. Big windows let sunlight and salty breezes flood in, a perfect patio lends itself to outdoor meals, and an outdoor shower is blissful between an afternoon on the beach and a long, lazy dinner.

We rounded up three of our favorite coastal projects. Each home caters to the distinctive needs of its owner while bringing the outside in.

MARTHA’S VINEYARD

This home is in a historic district, so we kept the exterior traditional to reflect the neighborhood’s roots.

A quintessential Martha’s Vineyard view.

Glass doors let sunlight into the kitchen and living room, and open up to an outdoor patio.

Imagine waking up and walking out to the balcony for a view of the lighthouse. On the right, the home’s water-view verandas.

LITTLE COMPTON, RI

A big, beautiful back yard is ideal for barbecues and soccer games alike.

The dining room is elegantly simple, and can accommodate a sizable dinner party. Meanwhile the kitchen is better suited to relaxed family breakfasts around the island.

The master bathroom looks out over the water, a lovely way to start the day, while the bedroom’s fireplace makes it a cozy spot for a rainy night.

 

SHELTER ISLAND

The main house in this Shelter Island family compound manages to be both grand and charming simultaneously.

Organic elements in the walls and cabinets bring a beach-cottage vibe to the kitchen and contrast nicely with modern, stainless steel appliances.

Traditional proportions and floor-to-ceiling windows make the ocean view the star of the living room.

In the guest house’s living room, the same philosophy applies: simple interior, big windows, gorgeous ocean views.

Guests also get the ultimate summer home experience: a luxurious outdoor shower.

Sailor’s Delight: Louise Brooks’ Waterfront Home

The greatest challenge for any architect has got to be designing their own home. Louise Brooks, founding partner at Brooks and Falotico, did just that in 2011. The design reflects her years spent creating homes for others, her ability to make traditional details fresh, and her family’s love of sailing.

This is one of several Brooks and Falotico-designed homes that sit on one street near Fairfield County’s Long Island coast. Gambrel style detailing and the house’s traditional proportions and scale are pleasing to the eye. A sweeping staircase makes for a dramatic and welcoming entry hall.

Details, like bespoke millwork and trim, give the living room character and charm. Notice the nautical rope molding on the mantle — a nod to the Brooks’ Martha’s Vineyard summers.

Here’s the picture perfect dining area with generous windows to fill the space with light.  Rounded bow windows and a backgammon table provide the ideal post-dinner lounging spot.

In contrast to the rest of the bright, white interior, the library, with its warm cerused oak millwork and sisal carpet, has a cozier feel.

The kitchen is classic, simple, and refined. (And the plate rail is a Brooks and Falotico signature.)

Adjacent to the kitchen is this lovely spot for morning coffee or evening drinks. That’s Louise on the right.

The first floor’s fresh white finishes are reflected upstairs in the master bath and dressing room.

When the Brooks’ grown children visit, they hang out and play pool in the third floor game room.

At the small kitchen off of the game room, cabinet details, a round window, and hardware are reminiscent of a finely fitted yacht.

P.S.  Many of the unique pieces of furniture you see in these photos are by Oomph, the furniture company that Louise Brooks started with her Vineyard friends in 2009.

Photos courtesy of Traditional Home, New England Home, and Nancy Hill.

Summer Fun: Pool House Roundup

This is more than just a pool house. The first floor has a full kitchen, a covered porch, and a living room with huge sliding doors that open up to the pool, making a fantastic summer entertaining space.  There is also a home office on the first floor and guest bedrooms upstairs.

The structure of this pool house was built around an existing stone wall and uses natural materials like stone and wood to appear cohesive with the wall, while also reflecting the shingle style design of the main house.

The outdoor shower in the left photo picks up on the colonial style of the main house with details like the brick, gate, and hardware.  The Edgartown pool house on the left is reminiscent of a traditional Martha’s Vineyard cottage.

Glass doors open all the way, letting the outdoors flow into the large, open interior space. With a full kitchen, living room, changing room, and full bathroom, you could spend the whole summer out here. 

Elegant Home of the Month: One Kitchen, Well Mixed

For this kitchen, it was all about choosing the right materials. Originally, dark cherry cabinets and white tile floors made the space feel dated. For the new space we used white shaker cabinets and a white marble blacksplash and countertops, which instantly brightened it up.

Stainless steel appliances and a custom hood paired with nickel hardware and plumbing add shine and contrast.

A new coffered beam ceiling and white flush board walls create a clean, bright backdrop for special details like antique copper light fixtures.

To warm up the space we added hand-scraped oak floors and a fieldstone fireplace with a wood mantle. These rustic touches complement the backdrop of the white details. The cozy banquette at the breakfast area ties in visually with the fireplace mantle, and pops of color brighten the space.

The sitting room carries the kitchen’s notes of blue, and a custom barn door allows the family to separate public and privates spaces while maintaining an open floor plan. The whole space’s mix of warm wood, clean white marble, and stainless steel appliances make it an inspiring place to cook, hang out, and entertain.

Spring Cleaning: The Perfect Closet

The closet is arguably the hardest room to organize in any home (and it’s even harder to maintain). We design closets that are customized to our clients’ needs down to the last detail, so there’s a place for everything and everything’s in its place. We rounded up our favorites, from a shoe collector’s ultimate display to little girl’s dream dressing room. No two closets are the same.

1.) SHOES, SHOES, AND MORE SHOES

For the closet on the left, we created built-in shelves of varying heights in order to maximize storage space, and added a comfortable and convenient bench. The client on the right was less interested in practicality; she wanted to create an eye-catching, museum-like display for her stunning collection of designer shoes.

2.) ACCESSIBLE ACCESSORIES

When it comes to accessories, if you can’t see them, you won’t wear them. Visibility and reachability are key. The cabinet shown on the left holds the client’s most treasured jewels and bags, while the client on the right uses a handy ladder to get her out-of-reach purses.

3.) DREAMY DRESSING ROOMS

Beautiful mirrored cabinets, ample storage space, and tons of natural light make for a delightful place to get ready in the morning.

The dressing room on the left has personalized clothing and accessories storage and one of our favorite closet amenities, garment pull out rods.  It efficiently doubles as the hallway that leads to the master bath.  A little girl’s dressing room on the right has designated places for clothing, shoes, and adorable stuffed animals, making it easy for her to keep tidy.

Out with the Old…

We’re taking a look back at some of our favorite Brooks & Falotico renovations. And who doesn’t love a good before-and-after?

1.) Exterior

The original structure was a boxy and boring builder’s Colonial. By pushing out the front and adding classical detailing and large windows, the curb appeal is beyond transformed. See more of the project in our portfolio >

 

2.) Entry

In extending the front facade of the house forward, we created additional interior space for an open, refreshing entry, with a glass box that allows tons of light into the front of the house. The transoms, pilaster details, and decorative railing at the top are traditional and well-proportioned to the 1 ½ story front elevation, and bring a sense of timelessness to the home. See more of the project in our portfolio >

3.) Living Room

The original living room is nice, but needed some oomph. The large windows and coffered ceiling (a Brooks and Falotico signature) tie this living room to the entry, creating continuity and a welcoming touch. See more of the project in our portfolio >

4.) Family Room

The original family room space was tired and dark, which we remedied with glass and light, and the painted, sliding barn door makes the classic room feel homey. See more of the project in our portfolio >

5.) Kitchen

Crisp white elements and stainless steel appliances balance out antique-style wide plank flooring and a coffered ceiling. Notice that clever paper towel holder–another B & F signature. The cozy banquette and mantle is an integrated design using antique beams, visually tying the fireplace and breakfast area together. See more of the project in our portfolio >

6.) Breakfast Room

Don’t let the cute kid and his pumpkins fool you — this breakfast room desperately needed improvement. It went from cramped and dark to spectacular, thanks to a two-story space, lots of windows, mirrored cabinets, and modern light fixtures. See more of the project in our portfolio >

7.) Office

From chaotic mess to super organized, this office is life-changing. See more of the project in our portfolio >

AIA Connecticut Awards

Vote for your Favorite Residence in AIA Connecticut People’s Choice Awards. Online voting for the awards ends on September 20. Here’s an in-depth look at the projects.

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