A traditional with a modern twist.
Let’s talk solar panels.
We all need to be thinking about climate change and how we can reduce our carbon footprints. What better place to start than with the home you live in. Clover House is an environmentally conscious home. It is fully powered by solar energy.
Down a tree-lined private lane far off the main road, set in +5 acres bordering land trust, stands this 13,695 sq ft., 6-bedroom home. This beautifully appointed house designed and built by Gardner & Larson Homes, exudes traditional charm and elegance.
Built in 1996, the house has been updated inside and out through the years. In 2014, Clover House had its most transformational change when it removed its dependence on oil and moved to Mitsubishi Electric VRF, a high-efficiency electrical system, for cooling and heating, that utilized the home’s existing ductwork and provided zoning capabilities. In conjunction, with this move to electric, the owners also starting researching ways for the house to become energy independent. It is now fully sustainable on the fuel of clean and renewable energy for its electrical needs from its array of photovoltaic solar panels, set within the house’s extensive grounds and blended into the beautiful landscaping. Not only is this home reducing electricity-related carbon emissions and setting itself as a role model but it is also significantly decreasing monthly maintenance costs. Imagine no utility costs, all while benefiting from privacy, location and luxury.
As with all projects, marketing the gorgeous interior of this property took a strategic approach. To get the full scoop on the project we sat down with Principal Designer and owner of LTW Design, Leia Ward, to discuss staging this, traditional with a modern twist, property.
Why was this project appealing to LTW Design?
Living a sustainable lifestyle is so much more than having a recycling bin and reusable grocery bags. I found the level of commitment our clients had to sustainability was extremely admirable and truly fascinating. We’ve never worked with a luxury property that is completely off the grid. We were intrigued and excited to be part of the process to bring in an environmentally conscious & eco-friendly buyer.
What was the overall aesthetic you were going for when staging this house?
This stunning home has traditional bones traditional and we felt it was important to marry the existing architecture with a modern feel to create a transitional aesthetic. We needed to create formal and informal spaces, taking into account the different features and focal points in the many, many rooms. We pulled pieces that predominantly had a contemporary and modern style. And as always we stayed true to the LTW brand of a crisp palette with clean lines.
Many of the rooms in the house were wallpapered. How does wallpaper affect your design process?
Wallpaper creates a statement and adds a layer of depth to room that paint simply cannot match. It usually has a longer life expectancy than paint because it is more of a commitment. Once a homeowner puts it up, it usually stays since it can’t be changed as easily as a painted wall. When staging the wallpapered rooms in the Clover Project, our goal was to find the right balance of texture and clean lines that showcased the pretty patterned wallpaper and did not compete. Our goal was to create a dialogue between the furniture and the walls that would speak to the modern buyer.
How did you avoid an abrupt transition from traditional to modern?
We embraced all of the beautiful architectural details throughout the home, such as the stunning moldings and detailed trim work. For example, the library was encased in dark wood paneling with ornate carvings and trim work. To highlight this, we brought in pieces that, although modern in shape, also featured traditional elements such as tufting. The most fun was adding a vintage Scrabble board game. We could imagine buyers dreaming of sitting by the fire playing Scrabble and having good conversation. We are always trying to showcase a lifestyle.
It’s clear you are able to expand your aesthetic into various house styles, but what did you love about staging a more traditional home versus the many modern homes in the LTW portfolio?
Here on the East Coast, there is so much history and as a result, many historical homes are very traditional in style. Though as time has moved forward we are embracing a more modern style with less detail, more windows, less trim and less rooms because everything is open floor plan living these days. While many of our projects are newly built modern homes, this was a very special property because the grounds and interiors felt so regal and stately. It felt as if it could be home to a royal family. My entire team, as well as myself, just loved walking through each room, from one wing of the house to the other, appreciating at all the architectural details and imagining how much time and work went into every inch. It was truly amazing to experience.