In 2013, when Nick Gavin was nonetheless a bachelor, he discovered a one-bedroom, 1,700-square-foot cottage on Shelter Island that appeared like the best private retreat. The earlier proprietor, Melvin Dwork, a New York inside designer, had created a casually trendy inside with pine-paneled cathedral ceilings and a flooring of lagoon-green ceramic tile that was deeply interesting to Mr. Gavin, now 39, an actual property agent at Compass, in New York.
“It was actually a giant, open loft area, with 15-foot ceilings,” he mentioned. “There have been no partitions.”
Apart from including a pool to the yard, he didn’t see the necessity to change a factor. So when one other purchaser made a competing provide on the home, Mr. Gavin met with Mr. Dwork to guarantee the designer that he deliberate to take care of what Mr. Dwork had created.
That assembly helped, Mr. Gavin mentioned, and Mr. Dwork, who handed away in 2016, bought him the home for $675,000. However life may be unpredictable. Simply earlier than closing, Mr. Gavin’s solo existence started to alter when he met Katrin Thormann, now 33, a vogue mannequin he married in 2019.
As they started courting, it didn’t take lengthy for Ms. Thormann to see the enchantment of the home. “It was so enjoyable,” she mentioned. “We simply put our mattress in entrance of the fireside and spent a lot time there.”
However after the couple had a daughter, Greta, in November 2016, they started to appreciate that crashing on a mattress in entrance of the fireside couldn’t be a everlasting association, and that having multiple bed room may be useful.
A couple of 12 months later, they employed the design agency Workstead to create an addition that may include a brand new major suite, and to make selective updates to the remainder of the home, together with splitting the previous major bed room into two rooms: one for Greta and one for in a single day company.
“Nick was simply actually in love with the home,” mentioned Ryan Mahoney, a principal at Workstead. “That they had a number of respect for Melvin as effectively, so that they wished to deal with what was there with a number of deference.”
Workstead designed a 620-square-foot addition impressed by the unique construction, however set aside from it by a glass-walled breezeway. For considerable sunshine, the designers added 4 pairs of French doorways and tall home windows within the new construction, and cut up the toilet into separate nooks containing the vainness, bathe and bathtub, all related by a central hall. In addition they repeated particulars from the unique construction, together with the pine-paneled cathedral ceiling in the lounge and the inside shutters.
To increase the kitchen — beforehand only a compact space of countertop with a small, under-counter fridge — and make room for full-size home equipment, they took area from an adjoining full lavatory and transformed it right into a powder room. To create new cupboards that appeared previous, they specified painted, rough-hewn pine doorways.
“We mainly did intestine the kitchen, however changed it with one thing fairly related,” Mr. Mahoney mentioned.
Outdoors, they put in a brand new cedar-shingle roof and changed the previous siding with new materials. In addition they copied an current customized cedar-shingle sconce to make extra exterior lights and added a couple of conical copper sconces by Arne Jacobsen that can develop a patina over time, similar to the wooden.
Geoffrey Nimmer, a panorama designer, added new patios and turf to tie the construction into the panorama, with the objective of creating the whole expanded residence appear like one cohesive unit.
To complete the inside, Mr. Gavin and Ms. Thormann moved a set of furnishings, equipment and artwork into the house, mixing items they owned with solutions from Workstead. Amongst their favorites are a classic Pierre Chapo eating desk, which Mr. Gavin mentioned set the tone for a lot of the opposite furnishings, and a prized portray by Ron Gorchov that hangs above the fireside of their new bed room.
In addition they reinstalled a pair of vintage diamond-shaped, black-painted wooden louvers that Mr. Dwork had mounted above the lounge home windows way back and left with the home.
Building on the addition and renovation began in February 2019 and took slightly greater than a 12 months to complete, at a value of about $850,000. As the ultimate punch-list repairs have been being accomplished, the household moved in for a long-term keep when the pandemic struck New York in March.
“It actually was a sport changer for us,” Mr. Gavin mentioned. “Katrin and I did this mission as a quiet retreat exterior the town, as a weekend residence and summer season home.”
However the second it was accomplished, it turned a full-time home for six months, he mentioned, and the couple got here to understand their up to date residence, and the neighborhood, much more.
“It made us marvel if perhaps we might reside on the market, and have our daughter signed up for varsity there, as a result of we like it a lot,” Ms. Thormann mentioned.
Now that they’re again in Manhattan, they plan to return to the home as usually as doable, in all 4 seasons. It’s a dedication that’s positive to proceed post-pandemic, Ms. Thormann mentioned, “particularly now that we’ve additional bedrooms, and might convey household and associates.”