Leaving Manhattan behind, homeowner Betty Spence decided to build her dream house on a rugged piece of land in the Housatonic River Valley, in the agricultural town of Cornwall, Connecticut—a Feng Shui-informed retreat utilizing natural materials in harmony with its surroundings; a composition of simple modern lines and bold colors. After a false start with an architect who turned out not to share her vision and part of the foundation already poured, the task was challenging.
It was created views from the house to focus on the sloped site’s scattered stone outcroppings, towering trees, wetlands, and abundant wildlife. The house stylistically references local agricultural sheds, using red cedar for its exterior and roof decking, fir framing, and a red standing seam metal roof. On its south side, rock outcrops shelter a sustainable garden of organic vegetables and flowers on raised beds. The wraparound deck of Ipe wood overlooks a stunning vista dotted with bird feeders and the occasional visiting bear.