I was thrilled to see the new March Veranda. There are several lovely features but I was particularly excited to see the inclusion of the restoration of “Boxwood”, the 1914 Nashville house originally designed by architect Charles Platt. As any of you long time readers know, I am a devotee of everything architect Gil Schafer touches. I have been stalking his work for years and back in September, ran three straight days of articles about his projects. At that time, I had wanted to include this house, but unbeknownst to me, it had just been shot by Veranda so Schafer graciously asked if I would hold off writing about it until its appearance in the magazine.
I don’t want to spoil your fun of seeing it for yourself in Dara’s marvelous new issue, so I will show you some different shots of the house than appear in the article, that I was originally going to include. Here is the exterior of the original house before the restoration.
You can see the restored version at the beginning of this post. While Schafer clearly maintained Platt’s vision, many details were improved upon. Obviously, painting the brick made for a cleaner more unified aesthetic. Also the two chimneys were replaced by a single central stack which also cleans up the stately symmetrical view of the entrance and a fabulous new tympanum window was installed with a beautiful hanging lantern.
You can see his magic as well in the beautiful restored garden facade.
The restoration of Boxwood took over three years. But the results are magnificent. Schafer collaborated with David Netto, who designed the interiors, and the combination of Schafer’s timeless classicism and Netto’s more modernist approach made for some surprising vignettes. One of the most successful examples is the incredibly entry. The floor, while a classical motif, has a more modern application netting a splendid appeal.
Kitchen and breakfast room have signature Schafer touches with clean classic millwork and the incorporation of old materials to give the house its vintage appeal. Like all Schafer houses, this features the best of modern conveniences contained within a period context.
The loggia is one of my favorite rooms and in my view, one of Netto’s most successful.
And I know every mother is going to sigh when they see this incredible mudroom. It’s an organizational fantasy. Schafer is brilliant with these types of spaces as many of you may remember from Willow Grace Farm, the spectacular horse farm he designed (and Michael Smith decorated) which was featured in Elle Decor.
The combination of the skylight, lanterns and louver doors, reminiscent of men’s club locker rooms, makes for a gem of a space. Notice the way the bordering of the floor was handled – again a subtle contemporary nod in a classic way.
as does the beautiful millwork for the newel and baluster as well as the second floor stair hall.
The child’s built-in desk has a place for everything and behind you can see the teepee that I believe is part of Netto’s children’s collection.
The master bath is one of my favorites that Schafer has ever done. Although I’m not a huge fan of mirrors in front of windows, the rest is so spectacular, I’m willing to overlook that detail. From the beautiful basket weave floor to the mirrored niches to the handsome millwork, concealing extensive storage, this bath is the perfect combination of classic aesthetics and modern convenience.
So if you don’t already own it, do be sure to get the March Veranda. The feature on this project shows other rooms and photos with sourcing references and a different perspective since Netto also authored the article.
Lastly here is a link to the video of Schafer speaking about his firm and work after receiving Veranda’s 2010 Art of Design Award in Architecture.
And in the meantime, I will continue to stalk Schafer’s site, waiting for his next project to appear!