the owners of a home on the Root River in Franklin debated the idea of
building a cabin in northern Wisconsin, but the setting of their own
property made them change their minds. The wooded land, which gently
slopes down to the river, already gave them views to rival anything they
might find up north. With that in mind, they decided to build an
addition to their existing home that would give them the wooded retreat
they desired and the extra space they needed.
Three, recent winners of Best of Houzz 2015, was given the commission to
design the space. "The owners wanted a room that would take full
advantage of the views without blocking the views from the existing
house," according to Bob Prindiville, designer and owner of Design
Group Three. "They wanted it to be large enough to use for
entertaining but small enough to be comfortable for two, and they also
wanted a room that had more access to the existing patio and yard."
decided the best way to meet all of these requirements was to build a
freestanding structure adjacent to the existing home that would be
accessed by a bridge from the main living area. "By disconnecting
the new space, we are able to preserve all of the existing views and
give the owners the north woods cabin they desired," explains
Prindiville. The result is a 20-foot by 24-foot garden cabin built on a
45-degree angle to the existing home to ensure total privacy for the new
room even though it has two floor-to-ceiling walls of windows.
tribute to the agricultural roots of the setting, the cabin was designed
using a combination of stone, steel, glass and heavy timbers. "We
wanted it to have a contemporary rural feel and look like it may have
been a remnant structure from a farm," says Prindiville. "Once
we had the design, the main challenge we faced was access to the
construction area. The lay of the land meant that all equipment,
materials and manpower had to move down a steep slope through a narrow
side yard. The property’s poor subsoil meant that the entire structure
had to be built on 21-foot-deep pilings."
Inside, the color
palette is bold yet warm with the recess above the cabinets painted an
accent color as a backdrop to the piece of artwork the owners
commissioned for the space. In keeping with the rustic look, the floor,
cabinets, windows, doors and baseboards are all made of custom milled
hickory. Completing the look is forged iron and art glass lighting and a
woodstove selected for its modest size and clean lines.