An Outstanding Modern Home With A Range of Texture
This design duo sets up a chic contemporary home in Litchfield County.
When one of her children planned to attend a private school in Washington, CT, interior designer Claire Maestroni and her life partner, Giorgio Maroulis, began searching for a home in the area. “We looked for something close to the school and found this lovely home right across from it,” says Maestroni. “It had a suitable layout for our family lifestyle.” Althought the 1940s Colonial had been renovated right before they moved in, it was mostly done in a more traditional manner, which is not this design duo’s typical style. The couple—who are the cofounders of Voce Di Design Studio in Woodbury—were looking to create a “modern country home” concept for their new digs.
“We have a modern, but timeless, aesthetic, and even though the house is located in a very rural area, our inspiration was an urban feel yet in a rural setting,” notes Maestroni. “In order to bring it to our liking, we treated it almost as a staging project, but with some slight interior design improvements and complete painting throughout.” They also changed much of the lighting to match the modern home aesthetic, introducing Arteriors sconces in the living room; a large Nuevo floor light in the dining room; an elegant Herman Miller wall sconce in a guest bedroom; and a unique wood-carved table lamp from RT Facts in the primary bedroom.
Artwork played a central role in the design of this modern home. “In any of our design projects, we always start from the art,” says Maestroni. Although most of the couple’s art collection is European, the majority of the clean-lined furnishings are domestic, with the exception of a dining table inspired by Belgian designer Axel Vervoordt and Danish Panton chairs. This combination in the dining/sunroom, partnered with a large black-and-white print by Costas Picadas and a one-of-a-kind console from the Antique and Artisan Gallery creates an aesthetic of warm minimalism and European timelessness.
Soothing colors flow throughout the entire home. “A neutral palette is the best background for not only the artwork and the furniture, but also to avoid any distractions and allow our mind to enjoy the environment,” Maestroni explains. “We prefer to use bright colors as an accent that we repeat in several rooms, either through the art or the accessories. It is almost as an ‘Ariadne’s thread,’ where we will follow this touch of colors to guide us through the home and bring us to harmony.”
In the kitchen, white and gray matte-finish shaker cabinetry complements modern walnut base cabinets. “The kitchen cabinets were new when we moved in, but we were able to make the space more modern by the use of the sleek Nuevo faux-leather counter stools.” Metal shelving above the island adds to the contemporary industrial-restaurant vibe.
Even though hues are kept at a minimum, a variety of textures abound. “We used different materials such as leather, sisal, wool and linen to bring the outside in and to include the organic aspect that is always important to us,” explains Maestroni. In the living-room bookcases, for example, a carefully curated selection of books and art pop against a removeable wallcovering in a gray grasscloth finish. “It complements the gray in the kitchen and creates a background for books and objects.”
Also in the living room, an iconic Le Corbusier chaise longue is finished in cowskin and black leather, while a black wood stump creates a naturalistic end table. And the designers’ favorite aspect of this Litchfield County family home? “Here, we’re surrounded by nature, giving it the feeling of a tree house.”
The print version of this article appears with the headline: European Flair.
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