From the April/May 2010 Issue:

What A Girl Wants

  • Writer: Elizabeth Eckstein
  • Photographer: Tim Proctor
  • Designer: Joseph Picardo Interior Design

She had definite ideas for her new house, inside and out. No front-facing garage. No entryway staircase. A fireplace on both sides. Big kitchen. Living area, including her bedroom, on the main level. Things she loves around her.

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enlarge | Haddonfield homeowner gets what she likes: gorgeous fabrics, luxe details, antiques, and eclectic pieces in a great layout
Architect Thomas Wagner of Haddonfield obliged with an L-shaped cottage that features box and arched windows, New England-style composite shingles, cement shingle siding, and cultured stone trim. He incorporated a side-loading garage, tucked away the staircase, and supplied a grand kitchen space and two cozy hearths in a unique design that combines a wide-open flow with intimate rooms and extras such as a lift from the garage on the lower level of the home, which sits on a sloping lot.

The interior motive was a simple, no-sweat plan with Joseph Picardo Interior Design in Philadelphia, a firm the homeowner had worked with before, making each space lovely and livable. They chose beautiful fabrics, interesting patterns and textures, pinks and greens with neutrals, her collection of antiques, and new-found favorite pieces.

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enlarge | Antique-wash pine wall units, trim, baseboards, and molding balance the wool crewel fabric on the library walls, draperies, and sofa. The mantel is hand-finished to match, and the cane-back and upholstered armchairs and throw pillows pick up colors in the candy-striped area rug.
Setting the Tone

The 3,300-square-foot house evolves front to back from enclosed spaces to an expansive great room with walls of windows and arched doors that open to a tree-shaded stone patio.

In the dining room, behind an arched picture window at the front of the home, hand-painted murals bring to mind an imaginary land with palm trees and pines over panels of fresh green. Chinese-style Chippendale chairs circle a walnut-topped table under a 1940s crystal chandelier. A star-embellished mantel and Federal period mirror crown the fireplace, while berry-colored drapes with ball tassels echo the tint of the roofs in the vistas on the walls.

Directly across the hall is the library, where hand-finished pine molding, baseboards, and trim outline panels of textural crewel fabric in a crisp vine-and-flower pattern. A reproduction pagoda-topped eighteenth-century mirror hangs above a hand-finished fireplace mantel. The crewel continues in the custom sofa and also inspired the choice of the striped fabric on an upholstered chair. The chair fabric led to a candy-striped area rug, pale pink-and-cream upholstered chairs, and a pair of caned chairs with soft green linen velvet cushions at a leather-topped writing desk.

The homeowner found a quiet haven in her master suite, where a walk-in closet at the front end muffles street noise. Regal gold-on-gold walls catch sunlight streaming through a bumped-out bank of windows. Complementary cherry-cream patterned fabrics set off simple bed linens.

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enlarge | A lantern-style pendant and leaf-striped wallpaper serve as a backdrop for an antique maple and mahogany desk in the hallway.
The Main Artery

The house’s thoroughfare of a hallway — which includes the homeowner’s maple and mahogany antique desk and antique botanical prints — opens into the wide windowed space at the back of the home. Here a large kitchen features an onyx cooktop backsplash in a quilt pattern, a breakfast area featuring a dining set with chairs painted vermillion and dove-leather cushions, and the family room.

Coral lounge chairs punctuate the floral print on the family room sofa, chair, and ottoman. Roman shades and panels in a small green plaid showcase the windows. It’s from a corner in this room that architect Wagner situated an open staircase to a second-story used mostly by guests. One bedroom features a masculine motif — a trio of fish prints, vintage metal beds with casters, two spectacular lamps (one of mercury glass) — but maintains the mix that runs through the entire house of pattern alongside pattern, nubby with smooth textures, neutrals and more vibrant colors, vintage antiques in a contemporary design: in other words, the home she wanted.

Elizabeth Eckstein
a frequent contributor to Design NJ
a writer and editor in most media for more than 30 years


SOURCES Overall: architecture, Thomas Wagner, Architect in Haddonfield; interior design, Joseph Picardo Interior Design in Philadelphia; landscape design and installation, Country Lane Nursery Inc. in Medford. Dining Room: mirror, Ingham Springs Antiques in New Hope, Pennsylvania; sisal rug, Stark Carpet Co. in Philadelphia; mantel, mural, butler’s pantry stenciled walls, Pine Street Studios in Wenonah; fireplace chairs, Southwood Furniture Co. in Hickory, North Carolina; table and chairs, homeowner; sideboard, through Joseph Picardo Interior Design. Library: antique writing table, homeowner; wall units, American Classic Cabinet Co. in Haddonfield; fabric on walls, Travers & Co. in New York City; caned chairs at desk, Minton-Spidell in Culver City, California; area rug, Stark Carpet; art and frame, and nineteenth-century Chinese trunk on stand, homeowner; floor lamps, Jerome Sutter Lighting Collection through John Boone Inc. in New York City; desk lamp, Vaughan in New York City; mantel, trim, baseboards, Hugh Luck of Pine Street Studios. Hallway: pendant lantern, Vaughan; wallpaper, Clarence House in Philadelphia. Kitchen: cabinetry, backsplash, American Classic Cabinet Co.; dining set, barstools, The Menagerie in Philadelphia. Family Room: coffee table, Robert Allen /Beacon Hill Showroom, New York City; Greek key rug, Stark Carpet; floral upholstery fabric, Scalamandré in New York City; lamps, owner. Master Bedroom: area rug, Stark Carpet; wallpaper, Clarence House; bed linens, John Matouk & Co. in New York City. Masculine Bedroom: needlepoint rug, Stark Carpet; drapery fabric, F. Schumacher & Co. in New York City.

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