Tour Sarah's Summer House
Interior designer Sarah Richardson transforms her second home, a tiny island cottage, into a relaxing space with rustic charm. Tour the house to see how the stunning views inspired every room's design.
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November 25, 2014
The Perfect View
Sarah went for rustic charm when designing the living room. The room seems as if it's perched over the water with its wraparound windows. She arranged the seating around the perimeter of the room so each seat has the perfect view of the water. The shades of blue in the upholstery represent the water, and layering the different patterns, like ikat, floral and striped, gives the room a lighthearted look.
The water inspired Sarah to decorate this guest bedroom with cool blues and greens. A striped vintage rag rug complements bold green-and-white sheets that counterbalance the feminine blue decorative pillows. The curves in the headboard and fabric represent waves in the water, adding to the coastal feel of the room.
Playing With Color
Sarah combined different patterns and textures for a true cottage look in this red-and-white master bedroom sitting area. The painted knotty pine hardwood flooring and wall paneling add to the rustic look, and the experimentation with color with the furniture and accessories is a welcoming, lighthearted approach to cottage style.
The master bedroom previously didn't have any views of the water, so Sarah chose to install a door leading out to a rooftop deck. A heavy mesh railing in a welded frame provides safety but doesn't obstruct the view, and lounge chairs allow guests to get some sun.
Colors from Nature
Sarah incorporated colors from nature in the master bathroom to create a charming cottage look. Mint green, split-face mosaic tile, exotic marble flooring and moonstone details spruce up inexpensive white tiles for maximum impact at a low cost. A marble top and luxurious mirror dress up the charming, quaint vanity, and the two shutter cabinets provide vintage-inspired storage. The transom window above the freestanding tub gives privacy yet fills the space with plenty of natural light.
Kids' Lighthearted Space
Cheerful prints and natural lighting provoke a carefree feel in the kids' loft. The twin bed includes a trundle bed to maximize sleeping capacity without taking up space. The mismatched quilts fulfill the cottage look that fits with the rest of the house.
Colorful and Bright
The sun was the inspiration for the bright colors in this guest bedroom. The recycled white-painted pine paneling on the walls gives a neutral backdrop to the colorful fabric schemes. The division in the windows brings charm into the space, while the brass bed adds a robust element to the summer cottage bedroom.
Light and Relaxing
The small dining area is surrounded by windows, allowing for a great view. The white hardwood flooring and furniture keep the room light, and the sofa and chairs provide the ideal spot to rest after a day out on the water.
In the dining room, Sarah placed mismatched secondhand banker chairs and a soft green bench around the table — a nod to cottage style. The candle chandelier and sailboat accessory add nautical charm, while the whitewashed walls and ceiling illuminate the space.
Two long runs of counter space give plenty of room in this cottage kitchen. Blue-painted antique corbels hold open shelving and support the peninsula overhang, bringing vintage-inspired whimsy to the space. Sarah chose three different cabinet colors to create a dynamic color palette. She used natural materials and a lighthearted color for the backsplash, and the seeded glass cabinet doors bring an extra touch of softness.
Comfortable Lounge Area
For the perfect lounge area, Sarah chose four oversized chairs and grouped them together to create a comfortable conversation space. The whitewashed walls, lightweight draperies and high ceiling bring in natural light and accentuate the cottage style.
One With Nature
Sarah took a dramatic approach when choosing the bedding in the guest cabin, but she softened the look with subtle gray accents. She made the bedside lamp from a birchwood tree, which brings a natural element to the space, while the windows in the door make guests feel as if they're in the middle of nature.