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Dramatic domain
Family's custom -built home brings together nature and style



Homeowner and interior designer Kim Temkin-Taylor says the word "architectural" comes to mind to describe the living/dining room. "Itís connected to the adjacent spaces but still has its own identity." The trusses are made of a wood composite material with a walnut veneer and faux parchment finish to give them a rough timber feel. The wood floor is laid in a chevron pattern to lead the eye to the outdoor views.

The dramatic trusses that bridge the ceiling of the Mequon home of Rich Taylor and Kim Temkin-Taylor not only make the room a "wow" space, but frame the equally dramatic views of the wetlands that lie just beyond their property. "The seasons change all around us and we are right there," Taylor says.

For Taylor, a photographer, and Temkin-Taylor, an interior designer, visual appeal is an important aspect of the homeís design. For him, itís reducing visual clutter; for her, creating visual drama with a well-designed lighting plan. For both, itís enjoying the outdoor views.

Low-voltage lighting connected to dimmers and installed on the trusses allows for many different effects in the great room throughout the day. "The lighting is huge throughout the house but in this room in particular, lighting is key," she says.

A three-year design process allowed the couple to make numerous custom accommodations. "It took a lot of planning," Temkin-Taylor says. "There were certain points where we just stopped and reworked things."

Temkin-Taylor says she first envisioned the design as contemporary. "I really wanted clean lines, no crown moldings or embellishments," she says. "But a lot of our furnishings area really quite eclectic. That sort of creates an artistry in the house when there is that mix. It creates a space thatís more interesting if you have different elements, as long as they work together," she says.

She took an inventory of the familyís existing furnishings, reusing some pieces, such as the dining table, and selling others that didnít work in the new home, such as the dining table chairs. "I donít like things to be too matchy-matchy," she says. "I scout out different things and put them together because that makes it more interesting.

"This house is also a real mix of high and low price points, and I think thatís fine to do," she says. "I think there is good design at every level."

A glass chest the homeowner and her daughter found in Florida is framed by a family-themed painting by a Sodona, Calif., artist.



A lighted coved ceiling adds both drama and warmth to the master bedroom. Temkin-Taylor says her goal was to create a peaceful, serene, comfortable escape. A gas fireplace opposite the bed adds another layer of comfort to the intimate setting. The bed, with its fabric-covered headboard, presents a contemporary feel. Itís covered with a faux fur throw and Thomaspaul pillows.


A BainUltra freestanding air tub is a focal point in the master bathroom, set off by the long, narrow design and mini cathedral ceiling. Temkin-Taylor uses lighting, warm and cool tones and a mix of materials ó limestone countertops, wood cabinetry, porcelain floor tile ó to create a soothing escape.


The cozy study is a gathering space for the couple and their two teenage children. Itís a TV room or a quiet reading room and a favorite spot for the family dog, Ollie.