House Tour

Cabin Masters

A family finds solace, and creative footing, at a former summer retreat in Bridgton.

TEXT BY SARA ANNE DONNELLY
PHOTOGRAPHED BY ERIN LITTLE
The Delamater's outisde their Bridgton, Maine cabin

ABOVE Emily and Matt Delamater, with their daughter, Rowan, on the front porch of their South Bridgton home, stand between a pair of yard-sale Acapulco chairs Emily painted.

Eighty years ago, Emily and Matt Delamater’s property on a hill overlooking Adams Pond in South Bridgton was, quite literally, Vacationland. Comprised of a circa 1933 lodge and several cabins dotting 17 acres of fields brimming with wild wheat, flowers, and berry bushes, the outpost was a respite for rusticators. “People would come from Portland or Boston or New York and stay in a cabin or stay in a room,” Emily says, “and then there would be communal dinners and you would take walks or go to the nearby lakes.” According to a brochure they got with the place, the lodge specialized in “adventures in good eating.”

On the Delamaters’ watch, the lodge, where they now live with their three-year-old daughter, Rowan, and its environs remain a gathering and feasting spot. They hire friends to teach weekend artists’ retreats here (Emily is a photographer who runs her freelance business from a detached studio and Matt is an actor and the CFO of Portland’s Oxbow Brewing Company), rent out the one remaining cabin on Airbnb, and frequently throw large dinner parties for family and friends. “That was part of our dream — finding a space that could accommodate all that,” Matt says.

Since the home was built with crowds in mind, little about it needed to be changed. Its open-concept living room features a skylit cathedral ceiling, second-floor balcony, and a massive granite fireplace that serves as a cozy nighttime centerpiece. The eat-in kitchen can seat more than a dozen people around a 10-foot-long vintage Grange table brought out for parties. And a large deck and screened porch — which account for about a quarter of the home’s 1,750-square-foot plan — deftly handle overflow. “We were like, wow, this is open and airy like a more modern house, but it has so much character from being an old house,” Emily says, noting the pine kitchen floor streaked with decades-old burn marks from a former cookstove and petite, handblown windows on the interior and exterior doors.

the 1933 home was once a lodge for Lake Region tourists
kitchen sitting area in the Bridgton, Maine cabin
an early-20th-century dresser

LEFT TO RIGHT 1) The 1933 home in Bridgton was once a lodge for Lake Region tourists. 2) A steer skull purchased in New Orleans presides over a kitchen sitting area – cut in Emily and Matt Delamater’s Bridgton home. 3) The early-20th-century guest room dresser was a yard-sale find when Emily was a teenager; above is an ink drawing by Chontos.

Matt and Emily have been together for 20 years — they met in nearby Oxford when she was 16 and he was 19 — and, in some ways, have been getting ready for this move ever since. Emily calls herself a “huge flea market hound” and has been collecting furniture since she was a teenager, waking up early to hit her antiques dealer neighbors’ annual yard sale. Matt collects as well, mostly vintage books. For their wedding anniversary each year, they buy one piece of art, building on a compilation that includes an ink drawing by Oxford high schooler Silas Gordon, illustrations by famed Philadelphia beer-label designer Keith Shore, and more than ten pieces by Berlin-based painter Heather Chontos, formerly of Portland and a friend.

ABOVE A leather Eames-style lounge chair — a favorite napping spot — wicker armchair, and nubby-fabric-covered footstool from Emily’s mother bring unexpected texture to the screened porch.

A palette of warm whites on the home’s log, paneled, and Sheetrocked walls amplifies the natural light streaming in through large windows and makes every prized possession stand out. “Amazingly, a lot of this stuff was in our [former] house in Portland, but things were so close together you almost didn’t see them,” Emily says. “It was nice to give it all space to breathe.”

Two years ago, Emily and Matt made a list of what it would take for them to leave their life in Portland: Lots of windows and light. Outdoor lounging space. Open fields. A separate studio. A place with history. They’d never find all that, they assumed, and forgot about the list until Emily stumbled upon it a few months after moving into the lodge last year. Realizing where they ended up is “literally all the things we put on the list,” Emily says, “it’s just this very kismet, cool situation.”

Heather Chontos painting
Burrow Style + Home blanket
Heather Chontos painting and pillows
Heather Chonots lampshade

LEFT TO RIGHT 1) A Chontos painting anchors a living room vignette populated with a 1970s-era record player and Wassily Chair found on Facebook Marketplace. 2) Nearby, a mid-century wood-and-brass starburst clock echoes the jagged design on a cotton blanket by Burrow Style + Home; the Diamond Chair is from Saco rehabber Jay Hart. 3) In the master bedroom, the family’s cat, Dinah, provides a stark counterpoint to a painting and pillows by Chontos. 4) A lampshade by Chontos weaves an intriguing visual narrative with a 1919 Underwood typewriter in the living room.

Cabin Masters

A family finds solace, and creative footing, at a former summer retreat in Bridgton.

The Delamater's outisde their Bridgton, Maine cabin

ABOVE Emily and Matt Delamater, with their daughter, Rowan, on the front porch of their South Bridgton home, stand between a pair of yard-sale Acapulco chairs Emily painted.

TEXT BY SARA ANNE DONNELLY
PHOTOGRAPHED BY ERIN LITTLE

Eighty years ago, Emily and Matt Delamater’s property on a hill overlooking Adams Pond in South Bridgton was, quite literally, Vacationland. Comprised of a circa 1933 lodge and several cabins dotting 17 acres of fields brimming with wild wheat, flowers, and berry bushes, the outpost was a respite for rusticators. “People would come from Portland or Boston or New York and stay in a cabin or stay in a room,” Emily says, “and then there would be communal dinners and you would take walks or go to the nearby lakes.” According to a brochure they got with the place, the lodge specialized in “adventures in good eating.”

On the Delamaters’ watch, the lodge, where they now live with their three-year-old daughter, Rowan, and its environs remain a gathering and feasting spot. They hire friends to teach weekend artists’ retreats here (Emily is a photographer who runs her freelance business from a detached studio and Matt is an actor and the CFO of Portland’s Oxbow Brewing Company), rent out the one remaining cabin on Airbnb, and frequently throw large dinner parties for family and friends. “That was part of our dream — finding a space that could accommodate all that,” Matt says.

Since the home was built with crowds in mind, little about it needed to be changed. Its open-concept living room features a skylit cathedral ceiling, second-floor balcony, and a massive granite fireplace that serves as a cozy nighttime centerpiece. The eat-in kitchen can seat more than a dozen people around a 10-foot-long vintage Grange table brought out for parties. And a large deck and screened porch — which account for about a quarter of the home’s 1,750-square-foot plan — deftly handle overflow. “We were like, wow, this is open and airy like a more modern house, but it has so much character from being an old house,” Emily says, noting the pine kitchen floor streaked with decades-old burn marks from a former cookstove and petite, handblown windows on the interior and exterior doors.

ABOVE 1) The 1933 home in Bridgton was once a lodge for Lake Region tourists. 2) A steer skull purchased in New Orleans presides over a kitchen sitting area – cut in Emily and Matt Delamater’s Bridgton home. 3) The early-20th-century guest room dresser was a yard-sale find when Emily was a teenager; above is an ink drawing by Chontos.

Matt and Emily have been together for 20 years — they met in nearby Oxford when she was 16 and he was 19 — and, in some ways, have been getting ready for this move ever since. Emily calls herself a “huge flea market hound” and has been collecting furniture since she was a teenager, waking up early to hit her antiques dealer neighbors’ annual yard sale. Matt collects as well, mostly vintage books. For their wedding anniversary each year, they buy one piece of art, building on a compilation that includes an ink drawing by Oxford high schooler Silas Gordon, illustrations by famed Philadelphia beer-label designer Keith Shore, and more than ten pieces by Berlin-based painter Heather Chontos, formerly of Portland and a friend.

ABOVE A leather Eames-style lounge chair — a favorite napping spot — wicker armchair, and nubby-fabric-covered footstool from Emily’s mother bring unexpected texture to the screened porch.

A palette of warm whites on the home’s log, paneled, and Sheetrocked walls amplifies the natural light streaming in through large windows and makes every prized possession stand out. “Amazingly, a lot of this stuff was in our [former] house in Portland, but things were so close together you almost didn’t see them,” Emily says. “It was nice to give it all space to breathe.”

Two years ago, Emily and Matt made a list of what it would take for them to leave their life in Portland: Lots of windows and light. Outdoor lounging space. Open fields. A separate studio. A place with history. They’d never find all that, they assumed, and forgot about the list until Emily stumbled upon it a few months after moving into the lodge last year. Realizing where they ended up is “literally all the things we put on the list,” Emily says, “it’s just this very kismet, cool situation.”

ABOVE 1) A Chontos painting anchors a living room vignette populated with a 1970s-era record player and Wassily Chair found on Facebook Marketplace. 2) Nearby, a mid-century wood-and-brass starburst clock echoes the jagged design on a cotton blanket by Burrow Style + Home; the Diamond Chair is from Saco rehabber Jay Hart. 3) In the master bedroom, the family’s cat, Dinah, provides a stark counterpoint to a painting and pillows by Chontos. 4) A lampshade by Chontos weaves an intriguing visual narrative with a 1919 Underwood typewriter in the living room.


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