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Maine Homes Design Awards

2018 Readers' Choice Winners

Earlier this year, we asked readers if they had a room whose design they were particularly proud of, a house with head-turning curb appeal, or an impressively landscaped yard.

Dozens of confident souls came forth, submitting 161 entries across five professional and five amateur categories in our inaugural Maine Homes Design Awards contest: curb appeal (house exterior), living and/or dining room, bath, and landscaping. More than 4,000 visitors also viewed our online gallery, casting votes to pick a Readers’ Choice winner in each category. And it was all for a good cause: Fifteen percent of the net proceeds we collected from entry fees went to the Maine chapters of Habitat for Humanity.

Congratulations to the winners who submitted the standout projects shown here. And to all the entrants, thank you for sharing your hard work with us.

Sponsors

Knickerbocker Group
Town & Shore
Wright-Ryan Homes
Margo Moore

PROFESSIONAL CURB APPEAL

PROFESSIONAL CURB APPEAL

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Peter's Cove, Harpswell

BANKS DESIGN ASSOCIATES, LTD./SIMPLY HOME

Linda Banks says: This Harpswell home transcends the homeowners’ goal of building a quintessential Maine cottage with a front porch and screened porch. Thanks to the vision and expertise of their designer and architect, this home is exactly what they wanted but also so much more. The partial glass front door makes an impression, as it offers the first glimpse of the ocean view, while the standing-seam metal roof over the front porch breaks up the facade and creates a welcoming vignette to walk through. Thoughtful touches, like antique ship lanterns on either side of the front door, heighten the American vernacular of the stained white-cedar shingles and vertical board-and-batten siding. The linear plan of the home is long and narrow, making the most of the waterfront setting, while a series of descending gables keeps the eye moving. This home has curb appeal in spades, but most importantly it appeals to the lucky family who lives here.

ARCHITECTURAL AND INTERIOR DESIGNER:
Linda Banks

CONTRACTOR:
Christopher J. Ballard, Custom Builder

WINDOWS:
Marvin Windows and Doors

Photography by Megan Burns for A.W. Hastings & Co. 

PROFESSIONAL CURB APPEAL

RUNNER UP

Modern Farmhouse, Falmouth

MARVIN DESIGN GALLERY BY ELDREDGE LUMBER

Sarah Isakson of Marvin Design Gallery by Eldredge Lumber says: Nestled in the trees in Falmouth Foreside, this contemporary farmhouse perfectly blends a classic look with modern style and conveniences. The black-and-white palette speaks to tradition and offers a beautiful contrast, while the warm wood of the doors invites you in and makes you want to stay. The Marvin double-hung windows featured here also showcase a traditional look while possessing the best of today’s performance capabilities.

ARCHITECT:
Gulfshore Design

CONTRACTOR:
Rutherford and Sons

LANDSCAPING CONTRACTOR:
Anderson Landscape

PAINTING CONTRACTOR:
Douglas Mason Painting

WINDOWS:
Marvin Design Gallery by Eldredge Lumber

PROFESSIONAL LIVING AND/OR DINING ROOM

PROFESSIONAL LIVING
AND/OR DINING ROOM

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Ship Channel, Cape Elizabeth

BANKS DESIGN ASSOCIATES, LTD./SIMPLY HOME

Linda Banks says:  This house is perched at the edge of the sea, creating the feeling that you are on the bow of a ship. The floor plan runs parallel to the ocean, offering expansive views of the water. In the living room, a soft and calming color palette relates to the gorgeous views without competing with them. A curated mix of unique objects and art sourced from Europe, along with pieces by local Maine artists, gives the living space depth and interest. The living room flows easily into the light and airy dining room — a layout that facilitates relaxed living. With windows on three walls that look straight out at the rocky coast, the dining room design is minimal yet thoughtful, making the most of the remarkable views.

ARCHITECTURAL AND INTERIOR DESIGNER:
Linda Banks 

CONTRACTOR:
Christopher J. Ballard, Custom Builder

MILLWORK:
Tidewater Millwork 

GAS FIREPLACE:
Embers Stoves & Fireplaces

FIREPLACE SURROUND:
Jamb

WINDOWS:
Marvin Windows & Doors

PROFESSIONAL LIVING AND/OR DINING ROOM

RUNNER UP, TIE

Ferry Beach Porch, Scarborough

MAINE WOODWORKS

Margaret Logan of Maine Woodworks says: When summertime beckons in Maine, our living spaces expand outward. The days are longer, friends and family come and go, and we covet those moments when we can steal away from it all. This colorful retreat on Ferry Beach in Scarborough offers a comfortable, cozy spot to sip sweet tea, enjoy a balmy afternoon, and catch up with friends. It’s perfect for siestas and unexpected houseguests.

PROFESSIONAL LIVING AND/OR DINING ROOM

RUNNER UP, TIE

Luxe Barn, Falmouth

BANKS DESIGN ASSOCIATES, LTD./SIMPLY HOME

Linda Banks says: The concept for this expansive living space evolved from the idea of living in a one-room barn. Even with 24-foot-high ceilings, the 1,200-square-foot space feels inviting and warm with unique details like hanging lanterns in the dormers and a curated collection of antique signs and local art. The living room is defined by back-to-back fireplaces and can be seen from a bird’s-eye view from a balcony overhead. With the volume of a barn and the adaptability of a loft, this living area checks off all the boxes for the discerning architect and designer who lives here. Furthermore, it tells the homeowner’s story with its cohesive and expertly curated mix of antiques and art.

ARCHITECTURAL AND INTERIOR DESIGNER:
Linda Banks

CONTRACTOR:
Flying Point Construction

MILLWORK:
Tidewater Millwork

FIREPLACE SURROUND:
Portland Architectural Salvage

WINDOWS:
Marvin Windows and Doors

PROFESSIONAL KITCHEN

PROFESSIONAL KITCHEN

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Hall Bay House, Georgetown

THEODORE + THEODORE ARCHITECTS

Wiebke Theodore says: Flow, sunlight, function, and transparency are the key ingredients in this kitchen. The space is warm and welcoming and the work triangle is large enough to allow for helpers and guests to be at the walnut island, which has seating on the sides. The island functions more like a table than a bar and has space for recycling and storage. From the kitchen, you can see guests arriving via an interior window that also brings in eastern light. The exterior wall dissolves. On the south side of the kitchen, there is a large, operable window that relates to the quartz countertops. The long view of the bay and sunsets are the focal point. A wood-and-steel staircase and extra-deep window across from it provide more places for people to perch and weave the living room, dining room, and kitchen together. The space is calm, functional, and no-nonsense. Every inch is maximized by the design, yet the feeling is open and generous.

PROFESSIONAL KITCHEN

RUNNER UP

Reinvented Rancher, South Portland

SOPO COTTAGE

Laurel LaBauve says: This bland, boring 1960s ranch was in desperate need of an update. A key goal was to make it lighter and brighter and give it a bit of a wow factor — a big challenge in a 750-square-foot house. By eliminating a wall and raising the ceiling, the kitchen became the centerpiece of the home. The design incorporates reclaimed lumber to give it some much-needed character and a board-and-batten feature wall to draw the eye upward. The new cabinets, quartz countertops, and appliances provide all the amenities needed in a modern kitchen.

DESIGNER AND PROJECT MANAGER:
Laurel LaBauve

CONTRACTOR:
Waterhouse Builders

MATERIALS:
Hammond Lumber

Photography by Laurel LaBauve

PROFESSIONAL BATH

PROFESSIONAL
BATH

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Lakeside Modern Bathroom, Raymond

E4 INTERIOR DESIGN

Emily Mattei says: Once a dated master bathroom with a sunken tub, this room is now an open, bright, modern, spa-like space, thanks to a full renovation. The vanity, with its custom floating mirrors, allows the clients to catch a glimpse of the lake beyond the glass. A standalone soaking tub is nestled on the lake side of the bathroom and surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows and a wall-to-wall storage niche accents a large walk-in shower.

INTERIOR DESIGNER:
Emily Mattei

CONTRACTOR:
Wright-Ryan Homes

PROFESSIONAL BATH

RUNNER UP, TIE

Town Landing, Southport

KNICKERBOCKER GROUP

Brady-Anne Cushing says: The design inspiration for this bathroom is based on the feel of a traditional New England farmhouse, utilizing rich autumn reds and golds in the paint selections and travertine tile, and natural cherry in the cabinetry. A design challenge was capturing the ocean view through the low windows. The integration of a view was accomplished with the tub placement— one can look out to the expansive bay while enjoying a luxurious bath.

PROJECT ARCHITECTS:
Rick Nelson, Andy Munsey, Adam Maltese, and Randy Smith of Knickerbocker Group

CONTRACTOR:
Knickerbocker Group 

INTERIOR DESIGNERS:
Brady-Anne Cushing and Elena Duralde of Knickerbocker Group

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER:
William Haney of Knickerbocker Group

PROFESSIONAL
BATH

RUNNER UP, TIE

Town Landing Powder Room, Southport

KNICKERBOCKER GROUP

PROJECT ARCHITECTS:
Rick Nelson, Andy Munsey, Adam Maltese, and Randy Smith of Knickerbocker Group

CONTRACTOR:
Knickerbocker Group 

INTERIOR DESIGNERS:
Brady-Anne Cushing and Elena Duralde of Knickerbocker Group

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER:
William Haney of Knickerbocker Group

Brady-Anne Cushing says:The powder room in the house at Town Landing realizes a fresh aesthetic by utilizing traditional cottage detailing with whimsical accents. Through the use of warm woods for the cabinetry, brass and bronze in the fixtures, and a fun metallic wallpaper, a calm yet playful environment was created.

PROFESSIONAL LANDSCAPING

PROFESSIONAL LANDSCAPING

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

An Architectural Gem, Cape Elizabeth

TOWN & SHORE ASSOCIATES

Kelly Fleming of Town & Shore says: This architectural gem, designed by one of Maine’s most prominent architects, presides over one of the most magnificent waterfront sites on the Cape Elizabeth coastline. Like a fine piece of art, the home’s soaring, barn-like ceilings, wonderfully open floor plan, cozy den with a fireplace, and accommodating guest suite will captivate you. Built in 2014, the home is pristine with no detail overlooked. Enjoy central air, radiant heat, an automatic whole-house generator, and a Sonos and Bose sound system. The home is situated on two very private acres with a manicured lawn that rolls down to a pebbly beach. The landscaping also includes stone walls, a charming fire pit area next to the beach, and beautiful perennial gardens. Enjoy the crashing surf and the passing of cruise ships, the Cat ferry, oil tankers, lobsterboats, and sailboats from an Ipe deck that encompasses a gunite, saltwater, heated pool. This property is truly exceptional and maximizes the best of a Maine waterfront home.

ARCHITECT:
Stephen Blatt Architects

CONTRACTOR:
Warren Construction Group

LANDSCAPING CONTRACTOR:
K. Moon Landscape Design 

PROFESSIONAL LANDSCAPING

RUNNER UP

Partridge Cottage, Midcoast Maine

KNICKERBOCKER GROUP

Steve Malcom says: Nestled along the coastline, this quintessential cottage is beautifully balanced by its natural surroundings and enhanced by thoughtful landscape planning and native plantings by Jorgensen Landscaping. Winding paths and bold stone accents are highlighted by delicate plantings, ferns, and grasses.

ARCHITECT AND CONTRACTOR:
Steve Malcom, Knickerbocker Group

LANDSCAPING CONTRACTOR:
Jorgensen Landscaping

STYLING:
Knickerbocker Group 

AMATEUR CURB APPEAL

Staples Point Project, Freeport

AMATEUR CURB APPEAL

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Staples Point Project, Freeport

NANCY LIGHTER

Nancy Lighter says: The idea for this barn began one winter when our entire family came to Maine for Christmas. We live in South Florida and maintain our property on Casco Bay as a second home. Feeling a bit overcrowded, we decided we needed more space to enable us to spread out and better enjoy our time together. We began discussing the idea of a rec barn, nestled among our 100-year-old apple trees, with our builder, Matt Wogan. I wanted a classic, New England–style red barn with a large living room where my family can watch the deer that come to eat apples every evening at dusk, a substantial kitchen, open to the living room, so we can all be together when preparing meals, and a game room upstairs. We recently had my daughter’s wedding on the property and the barn was filled with family and friends, whom I visited with while sitting on the couch in front of the fireplace, holding my newest granddaughter.

ARCHITECT:
Waltman Architectural Design

CONTRACTOR:
MaineLifeHomes

LANDSCAPING CONTRACTOR:
Earthscape Unlimited 

MASONRY CONTRACTOR:
Nelson A. Bowie Masonry

AMATEUR CURB APPEAL

RUNNER UP

Foster Bluff on the Rocks, York

SHARON DEAN

Sharon Dean says: Foster Bluff is located on the Nubble Peninsula and has 180-degree ocean views. The lower patio has a fire pit and heated pool and takes advantage of this great location. This is a lovely place to watch the lobsterboats and sea life.

ARCHITECT:
Jason Farmer

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER:
Civil Consultants

Photography by Jennifer Thibodeau 

AMATEUR LIVING AND/OR DINING SPACE

AMATEUR LIVING AND/OR DINING SPACE

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Staples Point Project, Freeport

NANCY LIGHTER

Nancy Lighter says: The barn living room’s main focal point is these gorgeous windows — high enough to see Casco Bay from upstairs and wide enough to see all those gorgeous apple trees and watch the deer from downstairs.

Photography by Jennifer Thibodeau 

AMATEUR LIVING AND/OR DINING SPACE

RUNNER UP

Foster Bluff on the Rocks, York

SHARON DEAN

Sharon Dean says: This is a vacation rental property. The property owners are not professional architects, but designed this home and its rooms to leverage a beautiful location on the Nubble Peninsula in York. This space has a gas double-sided fireplace and lots of windows. The dining area is flexible, with tables made by the owner that can be combined to seat 10 or 16. The living room flows into the kitchen and dining area and out to a large deck looking over the Atlantic.

ARCHITECT:
Jason Farmer

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER:
Civil Consultants

AMATEUR KITCHEN

AMATEUR KITCHEN

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Staples Point Project, Freeport

NANCY LIGHTER

Nancy Lighter says: The kitchen needed to be modern in function yet antique in style. I always start with one design aspect that truly excites me and then build everything around that. When I found the black stove, refrigerator, and dishwasher from AGA Marvel, I just had to have them! White subway tile with charcoal grout and black granite countertops complete the look, and the end result is a kitchen that feels timeless and inviting.

Photography by Maria Lamb

AMATEUR KITCHEN

RUNNER UP

Featherbed Island House, Machiasport

MARIA LAMB

Maria Lamb says: Featherbed Island House is a cozy but open Cape overlooking its own private island just offshore in Machias Bay. The kitchen was recently redone utilizing existing oak cabinetry. The accent wall is white wash over blue wash and the open shelving is made from a repurposed hickory tabletop found at the dump and refinished. The countertops are Viatera Rococo, the appliances are GE Slate, and the sink is a custom slate farmers’ sink from Sheldon Slate in Monson. The kitchen table was a side-of-the-road find that was finished using vinegar and steel wool and a bright purple base. After all, this is Maine and we are all creative here.

AMATEUR BATH

AMATEUR BATH

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

Staples Point Project, Freeport

NANCY LIGHTER

Nancy Lighter says: This bathroom started with the back shower wall that follows the line of the barn’s barrel roof, which I felt needed to be highlighted. I could have continued the white subway onto that back wall, but I felt it called for something more. The contrast truly stands out when you walk into the bathroom. Many a jaw has dropped upon seeing it for the first time.

Photography by Mary Davis

AMATEUR BATH

RUNNER UP

Passy Overlook, Belfast

MARY DAVIS

Mary Davis says: This bathroom was built using universal design principles. There is room for a wheelchair next to a high toilet. A wall provides privacy and a future grab bar location. The tub surround has a smooth surface for easy transfer in and out. The walk-in shower is sized to allow a wheelchair to turn around and has blocking for future grab bars; for now, a shelf provides stability. A heated shower seat provides comfort and a view of the river. A hand-held shower head is within easy reach and shower products are stored in a low niche that is accessible from a wheelchair. Pullouts in the sit-down vanity provide storage for jewelry; the knobs are handmade glass. There is task lighting in the shower and over the vanities and tub. Large windows, including one in the shower, provide natural light. The non-skid tile is warm underfoot thanks to radiant heat. The bathroom opens into a doorless walk-in closet where two levels of racks ensure easy access. A pony wall between the shower and tub has decorative shelving and hidden storage for a wastebasket that is easily accessible from a standing or sitting position.

CONTRACTOR:
Birdseye Builders

CABINETRY:
Cabinets by Sunny

AMATEUR LANDSCAPING

18c Willard Cape, South Portland

AMATEUR LANDSCAPING

READERS' CHOICE WINNER

18c Willard Cape, South Portland

MEREDITH PERDUE AND MICHAEL CAIN

Meredith Perdue says: For us, living in a small, 1750s Cape with a larger yard, one of the best parts of summer in Maine is that our livable square footage seems to double. When we moved into our home eight years ago, a fenced-in backyard was a must for our dog. To soften the fence and provide a lattice for eventual shade vines, my husband and father built a hemlock pergola and laid a brick patio for meals and entertaining. As time went by and we learned how we liked to use the yard, we added a studio, peastone fire pit area, and stone-edged perennial garden, which provides color (and gardening lessons) throughout the summer.

PLANTINGS:
Estabrook’s

Photography by Mary Davis

AMATEUR LANDSCAPING

RUNNER UP

Passy Overlook, Belfast

MARY DAVIS

Mary Davis says: Just two years old, this garden is evolving from an empty lot to a pollinator paradise. A no-mow front lawn ensures something for bees and butterflies from April to November. The backyard is a seasonal stream where invasive plants are being replaced with native primula and marigold. Meandering paths were cut through the invasive material to provide room for spring bulbs. Each path ends with a seat and a view. The master gardener who lives here moved more than 200 plants, shrubs, and trees from her previous out-of-state garden. She is still in the process of discovering the right spots for about 25 of them and determining which will survive the property’s Zone 5 temperatures. The first garden project was to put seating in a grotto using antique granite steps. Around the seating, perennials were added, along with large rocks to help hold them on the slope. A vegetable garden is being built with raised beds. A raised herb garden, located off the kitchen, is new this year. The goal is to always have something in bloom for pollinators and bouquets.

LANDSCAPE DESIGNER:
Mary Davis

ON NEWSSTANDS NOW!


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