A raspberry-red front door pops against the white panels and black satin shutters on the Hughes home. A decidedly timeless, Colonial look defines the home’s exterior, which is shaded by large oak trees. Inside, a brick-floored entryway creates a warm welcome, guiding guests to the living room to the right.
“We call this our happy room,” homeowner Susan Hughes explains. “Because of all the windows, the sun starts shining through here at about 8 a.m. and stays sunny and lit until the sun goes down in the afternoon.” With an affinity for English décor, Susan outfitted the room with oil paintings and rich wood furniture pieces. “I love a home that has the look and feel that you’ve collected things that you love all your life,” Susan says. Scouring estate sales and attending auctions has allowed Susan to curate an eclectic, yet cohesive, array of furniture and accessories. Built-in bookcases showcase family photos and favorite novels, while an oversized sofa is the perfect place for the whole family to pile up. Quiet neutrals allow green ivy and boxwoods to pop, creating a look that is fresh and timeless. Oak flooring in this room, and throughout the home, helps reflect a warm, golden glow.
Through the living room, the dining room is coated in a smoky blue paint that catches glints of light from the chandelier. With Old-World ironwork and modern glass balls, the light fixture brings both a sense of past and present to the space. Crisp linen curtains frame the windows and keep the room feeling bright. Outside the windows, a lush landscape was one of the home’s selling points. “You can see the backyard and the creek, and I just knew our grandsons would love playing in it,” Susan explains. Strong family ties are apparent in the home, especially at the large antique dining table. “We have big family gatherings here – Thanksgiving and Christmas and birthdays for the grandkids. This house can accommodate a lot of us,” Susan says.
Beside the dining room, one of the favorite areas of the house is the kitchen. A few cosmetic upgrades took the room from outdated to ideal, and Susan saw the potential from day one. Painting the dark cabinetry a creamy hue brightened up the space, and using tumbled marble as backsplash added loads of texture and warmth. A cozy window nook behind the round table is an idyllic place to curl up, while a picture window above the sink (complete with an Edison bulb light fixture) makes washing dishes less of a chore. And, according to Susan, this is the place everyone wants to be. “This is the heart of the house. We had a big house and downsized, and everyone comes over and just wants to be here and in the keeping room. This is the gathering area,” she says.
Another coveted spot in the home is the keeping room, located just off the kitchen. With a large exposed brick fireplace and built-in log nook, the space is as warm and inviting as it gets. “This is the favorite room,” explains Susan. “We’ll have 20 people over and they want to sit on top of each other just to be in here.” Wooden paneling on the walls was painted cream to lighten the space, and a natural woven sisal rug allows for an organic texture and a pet-friendly surface. “I love this room,” Susan says. “It’s a really great, warm, soft place to land at the end of the day.”
Upstairs, the master bedroom features romantic whites, balanced out by dark wooden furniture pieces. A light wall color, called stardust, makes the space appear airy, while a Persian rug adds rich, saturated tones. Square-framed windows look out onto the front yard and let sunshine into the space, while oil paintings acquired throughout the years bring a traditional tone.
In the attached master bathroom, black and white floor tiles bring a classic, retro vibe along with the subway-tiled backsplash. Oval-shaped mirrors are kept frameless for a sleek look, and overhead light fixtures create a flattering glow. White granite countertops feature specks of black and gold, rounding out the chic space. After living here for about two years, Susan credits the Internet for bringing her to a house she had long loved. “I remember driving past this house when I was young,” Susan recalls. “And I always loved it because it has a real historic feel to it. I love the big trees and the oversized lot with a creek in the back. I knew with a little vision, it could be exactly what we wanted.”