Vision Accomplished

BY Lou Anne Liverman

In their newly redesigned and reconstructed property on the Intracoastal side of Bald Eagle Lane homeowners Steve and Lee Malone of Dunn NC and daughter Lindsey were the perfect coastal hosts. As it turns out so was their modest-turned-modern home that worked double-duty — offering unique contemporary appeal and delightful outdoor living spaces.

We had a lot of boats tied to the dock with 50 or more guests for a big cookout on July Fourth Lee says nodding toward the waterway from inside the family s newly streamlined home. We do a lot of entertaining she says.

It was great Steve adds The space flowed well; I couldn t believe there were that many people. There was plenty of room for everyone.  

Entertaining that many guests was no small feat for a house whose footprint at the time of purchase two years ago measured just less than 3 000 heated square feet with minimal outdoor living spaces. Yet the unassuming structure did not measure up to the grandeur of its setting; it was purchased as a fixer-upper that would eventually be torn down as part of a five-year master plan for the property.

Steve explains from the beginning of the purchase/planning stages the ultimate long-range goal was for an eventual new build including a screened porch pool pool house and garage. What the Malones didn t realize was how quickly their vision for a coastal vacation home would become reality.

Once the sheet rock was taken off this house we realized how structurally sound it was Steve says. It was too nice to tear down.

At this point the Malones switched gears realizing they could start turning this into what they wanted for the future Steve says. On site from the beginning of the planning stages architect builder and furniture designer Bryan Humphrey was the lead visionary for the next phase of the redesign and subsequent reconstruction.

We were absolutely thrilled working with Bryan Lee says. It s the first time I have worked with a builder who also is an architect. His creativity has been amazing. His attention to details really made all the difference.

Early in Humphrey s creative space planning was his solution to the setback restrictions and easement regulations that prohibited the construction of a 20-foot by 30-foot standalone garage. Humphrey simply raised the roof. The outcome resulted in a 1 892-square-foot garage beneath the house along with an additional fifth guest bedroom and full bath. Likewise a portion of the home s unused second-floor bonus area was converted from an empty storage space into an extended master suite equipped with full-service coffee and wet bars. Across the hall from the master a retro game room — finished with psychedelic wallpaper and a vintage Pac Man machine — offers a sentimental throwback to 80s arcades. With a full bath and sectional sofas and chairs the room can also serve as both a fun and functional guest room.

We built on the existing shape says Humphrey of the home s original footprint and exterior elevation. The owners really wanted the stainless steel wire railings on the outside for example and so the look bridges the line of traditional shape with a more sleek and modern style.

The exterior s sophisticated barely black paint color in contrast to crisp white trim and gleaming vertical-paneled metal roofing further enhances the striking home s original lackluster curb appeal.

Also as part of the home s exterior Humphrey designed and constructed approximately 900 square feet of attached outdoor living space including covered front and back porches an outdoor shower and a spacious waterside deck contiguous to a screened porch equipped with outdoor-living amenities. Comfortable custom-built furniture echoes the Mid-Century Modern trend brought forward for the 21st century. With overhead heaters an oscillating fan and an outdoor wide-screen television the family predicts the porch will be the go-to gathering place all seasons of the year.

Paces from the porch and deck a fire pit is surrounded by a pair of poured concrete sofas. From this ground level vantage point the heated swimming pool beckons. Adjacent to the pool is a detached 575-square-foot heated pool house which offers the family and their friends a full kitchen and dining area plus rollaway bed space and a full bath. Pavers designed by Humphrey contribute functional and aesthetic qualities to the overall livability and landscape of the property s perimeters and creatively link outdoor spaces such as the pool area to the nearby covered dock — complete with sink mini-fridge and cleaning spaces for the day s catch.

Susan Covington of SAC Art Design Inc. says Bryan [Humphrey] definitely pulls it all together. He s going to make it happen for the client and he s going to make it happen for me [as the interior designer].

Of the home s interior decor and overall style Lee Malone knew from the outset she wanted the look to be different; not the typical coastal Cape Fear regional style or the dark traditional look of her year-round home. She reached out to two designers Mark Wilkerson of Austin Texas and Covington of Wilmington NC.

I have always thought it would be fun to have a very contemporary house and this place seemed like a good fit for that Lee says giving a nod to the orange and turquoise color palette grounded in gray scale. Personally knowing Covington for a number of years and familiar with her friend s eye for creative style Lee says it seemed natural to reach out to Covington for help achieving the look she wanted.

Lee told me she wanted this house to be different. More modern. Contemporary. Clean lines. Minimalist with Mid-Century elements Covington says. That s where we started.

Two years later the end result is the seamless marriage of unique textures and vibrant colors complemented by the classic smooth lines of the Mid-Century Modern style. Combinations of glass concrete limestone and marble are used innovatively on walls floors and various surfaces throughout the home offering both tactile and visual interest. Custom handcrafted wooden furniture including bed frames headboards creative cabinetry and tabletops provide contrast offering depth and warmth to the space. White walls and white accent pieces — notably Eero Saarinen s iconic white Tulip Chairs and Arne Jacobsen s hanging Egg Chair — accentuate bold graphics and original artwork showcased throughout the house. 

Covington designed interior doors for both efficiency and aesthetic purposes while intriguing lighting such as headboard backlights and rope lighting offers appropriate ambience to the home s overall style and scheme.

And there is the fun funky wallpaper in the game room Covington laughs. And a shuffleboard table.  

Lindsey Malone says the game room is her favorite. Her favorite outdoor space?  The pool obviously.

As for Steve and Lee they acknowledge their new home — with all of its current coastal comforts and functional and aesthetic amenities — exceeds their expectations of what they envisioned for their second home making their favorite feature understandably more difficult to pinpoint.

Well Steve says I can tell you there s not a finer place to cook and to eat supper than sitting at that table right there gesturing toward the outside deck and its panoramic view of the waterway. There s always a nice breeze and the trees.

Yes Lee says that and the beautiful sunrises from our master suite.