The room's color palette, inspired by the colors of autumn foliage at its peak, bursts alive as one enters the space. "I don't think that's a color palette I would necessarily use in the South where it's hot a lot of the time," says interior designer Linda Woodrum. "But it works really well in a cooler climate."
Walls of windows connect the room to outdoor spaces and contribute to the home's treehouse feeling.
Antique-style luggage trunks, topped with bean-filled candle hurricanes, double as accent tables.
Hand-woven from worsted New Zealand wool, a men's wear-influenced area rug stylishly sections off the space.
Both practical and stylish, durable upholstery fabrics keep the focus where it should be: on reconnecting with family and friends.
Nested tables can be rearranged as gatherings require. Birch boxes, crafted by carpenter David Brown, serve as display pedestals for accents and artwork.
A collection of pinecones, displayed in a natural grass basket, are among the thoughtful details that connect indoor to outdoor spaces.
Birch panels clad the fireplace chase and complement the maple flooring. An ottoman doubles as a coffee table.
A steel wall sculpture, inspired by midcentury designs, graces the chase. "We needed something three-dimensional, and the bits of copper coming through relate to all the colors in the room and the copper cladding on the outside of the fireplace," says interior designer Linda Woodrum.
Built-in shelving, crafted from birch wood, serves as display space for decorative art.
HGTV Dream Home 2011 features a Sonos wireless music system that streams songs into each room via Zoneplayers.
Speakers are installed in the ceiling to amplify the home's sound system.
Although interior designer Linda Woodrum chose durable fabrics to upholster furnishings in the gathering room, she opted for silk throw pillows. "Silk is such a wonderful fabric because it's so reflective of light," she says. "It holds color so well and it has such visual depth."
Silk pillows, which interior designer Linda Woodrum refers to as the "jewels" of the room, can be removed when a large (or rowdy) gathering is planned.
Apples in a hammered bowl provide a pop of bright green; a paisley throw connects to the room’s fall-foliage theme.
Crisp white orchids and a bouquet of forsythia inject the room with a natural element.
A mixed-media painting by Axel Stohlberg marks the entrance to the kitchen. "We liked that painting because it was bold and crazy," adds interior designer Linda Woodrum.
Oil, pastel and gouache paintings by Jon Gregg, a Vermont artist and co-founder of the Vermont Studio Center, grace the walls in the gathering room. "They have the right feel – they are whimsical and a bit impressionistic," says interior designer Linda Woodrum. "They were right for the space."
A Lutron control panel in the gathering room allows the homeowner to manage lighting as well as window shades.
Custom-built spruce pine box valances house and conceal Lutron window shades.
The gathering room connects to the annex, where a wall of windows provides a breathtaking view of Stowe's mountain range.
Recessed and track lighting brighten the space on gray days. Art lamps shine a spotlight on mixed-media work by artist Jon Gregg.
The wood deck is easily accessible from the kitchen and gathering room via a private entrance door.
HGTV Dream Home's open floor plan invites relaxation. The dining room provides additional seating for guests, who prefer proximity to the kitchen.
During bleak winter months, the room's interior colors warm and brighten the home.