Explore Skylands, Martha Stewart’s summer retreat

Join us this week as we explore Skylands, Martha Stewart’s summer retreat on the remote Mount Desert Island in Maine. This huge 12-bedroom home was built in 1925 for legendary car executive, Edsel Ford (son of Henry), by the architect Duncan Candler. The three-story country pile is nestled high on a hill which overlooks the beautiful Seal Harbor. It is constructed from local pink granite, and is so enveloped in trees and vines that it appears to have grown out of the hillside. Danish-born landscape architect Jens Jensen was commissioned to design the 63-acre retreat back in the 20s and not much has changed since then.

Martha Stewart purchased the property in 1997. Everything came included with the home, right down to the furniture, glassware and crockery. This gives the place a sense of pure authenticity, and Martha had no intention of disrupting that. “I didn’t have to buy a plate,” she said, “although I’ve certainly added my fair share.” She also avoided the trap that many owners of large old homes fall in to – knocking through too many walls and creating huge open plan living areas that feel cavernous and cold.

That’s not to say this home is cozy though. The 60-foot-long beamed living hall is the heartbeat of Skylands and during the summer is a bustling hub of activity. It’s a large communal space with several seating areas plus plenty of plants and ferns. Martha has curated a beautiful collection of Georgian stools, 18th-century-style winged chairs, and faux-bois concrete furnishings. The faux-bois cement table, from Carlos Cortes, stands in the center of the room; Martha often leaves out local guide books on the table for her many guests. There are bespoke sofas and an elegant wing chair is placed next to a vintage tassel-footed table by Carole Stupell. The walls are painted in a soft taupe, and on the other side of the room (I did say it was big!) is a 19th Century sofa from Ann-Morris, along with some antique Georgian stools.

You can find a huge antique bed in the master suite, topped with a Rogers & Goffigon–fabric canopy. On the far wall hangs an antique Chinese embroidered screen. The seating area consists of two wood framed armchairs and a matching sofa. The same fabric is used for the bed linens, too, which goes to show the level of care of detail Martha has gone to in this beautiful home.

We absolutely adore Martha Stewart’s country retreat and admire her willingness to keep the building just as she found it. Seen something you like in this week’s blog? Austin Home Interiors has a fabulous collection of luxury furniture and also provides beautiful custom upholstery. Contact us today via  [email protected] for a free consultation with one of our designers.

We got inspired by www.architecturaldigest.com. Find the original article here

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