A Historic Piedmont Farmhouse Revival


Traditional Neutral Bathroom

The master bathroom features a deep tub set into a marble deck with a wood paneled front, an inlaid marble mosaic rug and a water resistant upholstered bench with teak legs from Waterworks. Countertops are chocolate brown fossil marble, and sconces are by Visual Comfort.

Cream Country Master Bedroom

Slipcovered chairs and an ottoman, all by Lee Industries, provide a comfy spot to linger in the master bedroom. The tiger maple four-poster bed was custom made. Built ins include bookcases sandwiching a window seat with roomy drawers for extra bedding.

Traditional Blue Dining Room

Custom chairs by designer Jan Roden, covered in a Vervain fabric, surround an antique monk’s table in the dining room. Clipped velvet from Beaumont & Fletcher adorns the windows. The Gothic lantern is by Visual Comfort.

Country Neutral Kitchen

The kitchen cabinetry is by First Forest Furniture & Millwork Co. The cherrywood was left unpainted for a warmer feel.

Country White Library

Gaston & Wyatt custom made the library’s millwork. Open shelves and a mantel designed by architect David Neumann hold the homeowners’ collections of vintage books.

Country White Front Exterior

The one story wings suggest horizontal expansion through the years, and an old fashioned porch welcomes guests into the core two-story home.

Country Blue Mudroom

Tile flooring in the mudroom breaks up the reclaimed heart pine floors found throughout the home.

Country Transitional Neutral Living Room

A sofa in mohair and swivel chair in Ultrasuede, both by Lee Industries, provide textured seating in the living room. A handmade Oushak grounds the cozy arrangement.

Country Neutral Staircase

Sunlight pours into the hall through oversize double-hung windows in a porch beyond the library; the Moravian star fixture is from Authentic Designs.

Country White Exterior and Driveway

Gentle Gardener Green Design installed the landscaping’s plant material, and Lithic Construction did the hardscape.

My clients were looking for someone who could design a second home in the vernacular style of the Virginia Piedmont,” says architect David Neumann, the man who ultimately created a new “old” house for homeowners Karen Hulebak and Joseph Rodricks amid 86 flora-and-fauna-filled rural acres in Virginia. The resulting structure blends in beautifully with the region’s 18th- and 19th-century farms, and shares similar features: two stories with cut-in dormers, clapboard siding, steep gables, standing seam roofs, columned porches and stone chimneys.

Inside, reclaimed heart pine floors, 10-foot-high ceilings and quality millwork further support the concept the homeowners desired for their weekend retreat. They also intended to move in full-time upon retirement, so they wanted a floor plan that supported one-story living with modern amenities. “We had a clear idea about the focus of the home,” says Karen. “We wanted a continuous space in which our favorite activities would take place: cooking, reading, entertaining and listening to music.”

Neumann made the first-floor kitchen the hub, from which the living and breakfast rooms emerge through cased openings. The dining room also connects to the kitchen through a butler’s pantry. “This inner core still fits the vocabulary of regional farms, with informal spaces, not many hallways and few aligned doors, yet possesses an interconnectedness and circulation that goes from room to room,” says the architect.

From the core of the house, topped by the guest quarters upstairs, the remaining lower spaces branch out in three wings, rendering the home T-shaped. These respectively encompass the office and master suite; the library; and the mudroom, laundry room and garage. “We made the one-story appendages look organic,” says Neumann, “as if not realized at one moment, but rather occurring over time.”

Another feature is the abundance of natural light. This was created by a winning combination of double-hung windows and sash-and-panel doors—which illuminate rooms on several sides—coupled with an open flowing floor plan. “The goal was always to be a part of the landscape,” says Neumann. “The windows and doors allow the eye to extend outward, but a lot of the living spaces are also physically connected to the outside via porches and terraces.”

Perhaps, then, it’s no surprise that when it came to the interiors, the homeowners endeavored to create a home that reflected the serenity of their surroundings. “We wanted the natural world to be a part of our interior world,” says Karen. She found the ideal decorating partner in Jan Roden, a designer whose furnishings store, And George, carries the old-world yet nature-inspired pieces Karen loves.

Roden set about combining her clients’ existing furnishings with items that she custom-designed, such as the leather-and-wood kitchen stools with nailhead trim. “We wanted to create a farmhouse with worldly influence expressed by the owners’ travels and put an upscale spin on things, yet have it be comfortable and functional,” adds the designer.

Antique tables nestle alongside traditional seating upholstered in user-friendly luxe fabrics, such as Ultrasuede, linen and mohair. Roden also integrated the homeowners’ collection of natural found objects, such as bird’s nests, into the de´cor, because Karen insisted that nothing be too precious. She wanted the house outfitted for country living with contemporary conveniences and imbued with a forever feel.

And project manager Donna Stewart, who worked with site supervisor William Holmes on the build, completely understood the directive. “A top-of-the-line sound system, for example, is perfectly concealed behind period-style millwork in the living room,” she says.

In the end, what was a weekend retreat quickly became a primary residence for the homeowners, who rearranged their professional schedules to suit their chosen lifestyle much sooner than expected. And it was a change they eagerly embraced. “The team didn’t just build a home for us,” explains Karen. “They built us into a community.”