There are so many ways to design a beautiful home. One home trend we love is timber framing. This vintage method has recently grown in popularity in residential homes, and the exposed wood looks stunning amidst our local setting. Purple Cherry Architects Founder and Principal, Cathy Purple Cherry, shared with us just what this trend entails:
“Before metal nails were invented, wooden buildings were assembled by notching wood to fit it together and pegging the wood with a wooden ‘nail’. This notching technique is memorialized in timber frame and log structures. The building method of notching (mortise) and pegging (tendon) wood has been around for thousands of years. Timber framing itself refers to the method of constructing a “frame” from heavy, large-cut square timbers. Framing a structure this way results in exposed timbers seen from the inside of a space. This method also results in one of the most beautiful building outcomes.
Photo by Tria Giovan, courtesy of Purple Cherry Architects (Example of Purple Cherry Architects work (auto barn))
Today, when timber framing is used, it is an intentional selection introduced to contribute to the beauty of a home on the inside. It exposes the bones of the house to the visitor’s eye. This then places all finishes and insulation to the outside face of the frame in a sandwich of structural plank boards, insulation, plywood sheathing and roofing material.
Photo courtesy of Purple Cherry Architects (Up-close 3D Revit rendering of their work)
One of the most fascinating things about a timber frame structure is that most people do not know that the timbers are fully cut, mortised and assembled off site at the supplier’s yard. These timbers then are numbered, disassembled and shipped to the job site for re-assembly. This allows the erection of the building to move very quickly, often within three or less days!” – Cathy Purple Cherry, AIA, LEED-AP/Founder and Principal of Purple Cherry Architects
Photo by David Burroughs, courtesy of Purple Cherry Architects (Example of Purple Cherry Architects work (indoor pool room))
Our beautiful local landscape captured the heart of Thomas Jefferson and continues to impress us today with Blue Ridge Mountain backdrops and luscious green rolling hills. Cathy Purple Cherry, founder of Purple Cherry Architects—a high-end residential local architecture firm in Charlottesville, VA—shares how you can create meaningful places by fusing architecture and nature together…
“By the title of this blog, you would initially think that I might write about landscape architecture because this is where nature traditionally meets architecture [similar to these images of Purple Cherry Architects’ award-winning Harness Creek Pool House]. Instead, I want to focus on how nature can be brought into architecture and how the visual connection to nature through architecture can influence our emotions… most significantly moving us to experience joy, awe, humbleness, faithfulness and peace.
In the mountain landscape of Austria, the family chapel Maria Magdalena is, in my professional opinion, one of the best examples of how architecture and nature can combine to inspire self-reflection and elevate the visitor to a higher level of emotional thinking. This human connection with nature is known as biophilia. It is our fundamental human biological inclination to connect to elements within nature, and biophilic design is the method of bringing nature into the built-environment. From studies, it has been learned that biophilic design can reduce stress, increase creativity, improve our well-being and expedite healing. This whole experience is heightened with the overlay of related sounds and smells… rushing water, blowing winds, wrestling leaves.
There are many ways that nature can be brought into architecture from the simplest step of a large window with an incredible view to an interior garden space within four walls. Patterns within architecture that reflect the structures found in nature can further connect us to natural elements as well. However, what is undeniable is that spaces created to engage surrounding nature into the architectural experience are, by far, the most successful spaces in making us really think way beyond our own small world. The emotional feeling is undeniable. And it is a really happy feeling.” — Cathy Purple Cherry, Principal and Founder of Purple Cherry Architects
Keep an eye out for Cathy Purple Cherry’s article on UVA’s architecture inspired by Thomas Jefferson in Book 6 of Charlottesville Wine & Country Living!
Whether complementing a space or serving as a dramatic centerpiece, decorative lighting is an essential style element of a room. Beyond illumination, lighting fixtures can instantly change the ambiance of a room from classic to contemporary and everything in between. Planning a remodel? The lighting experts at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery share four on-trend styles to consider for your next project!
Jewelry – Lighting is often referred to as the jewelry of the home. Fixtures that incorporate sparkly jewels delicately strung along intricate metal framework, as showcased below in the Crystorama “Mercer” chandelier, elegantly make that statement quite literal. Whether used as a centerpiece for the dining room or to create a jaw-dropping experience in the entryway, this fixture design is a great conversation starter.
Pendalier – This new lighting design trend features a chandelier inside an oversized pendant—also known as a “Pendalier.” The Crystorama “Sylvan” chandelier by Libby Langdon Lighting below is a classic example of this design. This daring fixture can enhance a room without overpowering it. Adding a Pendalier to your home gives any space a dynamic and dramatic feel.
Crystal – The use of crystal elements in light fixtures creates instant glamour and casts a wide array of dazzling prismatic colors. Crystal can be incorporated in any fixture—from classic to modern—to complement your space. Known for their dramatic and elegant designs, Crystorama Lighting, like the Crystorama “Hollis” Pendant below, offers a wide array of fixtures with modern crystal expressions.
Mid-Century Modern – Clean angles, sleek form, simple yet beautiful geometric designs are characteristic of Mid-Century Modern. These lighting fixtures like the Crystomara “Bleeker” chandelier below can be used to brighten your living room, add a glow to your spa bath and illuminate your entryway without compromising style.
Whether you decide to take a chance on a new lighting trend or stick with a tried and true design, decorative lighting fixtures that illuminate your space and reflect your personal style are always on trend!
The Farms of Turkey Run offer a unique enclave of 40 private country estates within an 800-acre haven surrounded by the 5,000 acres of protected rural splendor, which is the Mount Ida Reserve. This private community, located in a lovely and historically significant district of Albemarle County, is situated along Blenheim Road just 12 miles south of Charlottesville. The Farms of Turkey Run offer spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, flowing streams, quaint ponds, beautiful rolling pastures and country-wooded areas perfect for hiking and horseback riding. Set among some of the most prestigious and historic estates in the greater Charlottesville area, Turkey Run is within minutes of Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, James Monroe Highland, University of Virginia (UVA), Keswick Hall, Lake Monticello and Dave Matthews’ Blenheim Vineyard, and Trump Winery.
The Farms of Turkey Run seeks to offer residents the combination of convenience, privacy, natural splendor and investment protection. Each of Turkey Run’s 40 estate parcels provides a minimum of 21 acres. Whether one enjoys mountain views, ponds, streams, large open pastures or manicured forests, Turkey Run has a plethora of sites from which to choose. With offerings of 21–50 plus acres, each property owner is guaranteed a private retreat to enjoy outdoor activities such as farming, horseback riding or walking the miles of trails traversing the 800-acre sanctuary and the adjacent 400-acre Farms of Lower Sherwood.
Blenheim Farm, an all brick Georgian style 5,400-square-foot estate, is located within the Farms at Turkey Run subdivision. It is privately situated on over 25 acres of open and manicured wooded land, complete with a creek and pond site. The property is lined with a three-board fence and includes a wrought iron gate. This upscale home includes 5 bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms, and a top-of-the-line kitchen with quartz counter-tops, stainless appliances, a breakfast bar and custom cherry cabinets.
Blenheim Farm is currently for sale. You can join The Farms of Turkey Run for an open house every Saturday and Sunday from 9am–5pm.
We asked Purple Cherry Architects to share a little about their award-winning work. This high-end residential local architecture firm, established in 1996 by Cathy Purple Cherry in Annapolis, Maryland, specializes in custom, luxury residential projects. Here is an inside look on how this architecture firm beautifully works to capture and showcase our spectacular local landscape…
“Where else can you imagine wanting to frame the most breathtaking views than in Albemarle and the surrounding counties? Capturing the layers of hills and mountains in their various shades of green. The rising sun. The setting sun. The picture always changes thanks to Mother Nature but the frame remains the same. That’s why it’s so important to get the frame right. And that starts in the early design stage with an architect before building a new home or addition.
As the new owners of land in Afton with incredible 180 degrees views, east to west, of the Blue Ridge Mountains, my husband and I have the great opportunity to frame many views. When determining those views, I am looking from the east to west as well as from the ground to the sky. In understanding how various architectural elements can affect view, my specific homesite is informing my desired floor plan and elevation elements. In specifically desiring a southwest ground-to-sky view, I know my porch cannot be in the same view, as the roof would cut off the sky view. In my desire to go 12 feet high with glass to get that full ground-to-sky frame, the porch will slide to the south face providing shade from the mid-sun. It will also slide towards the east corner to allow the southwest corner of the main great room to have the most powerful framed view. The porch itself will have three open walls capturing the full 180 degrees panoramic live picture.
As a custom high-end residential design architect, my responsibility to our clients is to create incredible spaces. This includes determining important connections to the surrounding landscape. In polar opposition to the mid-twentieth century speculative home design approach that looked inward more than outward, the twenty-first century custom home client is wanting to bring nature inside. Biophilic design strives to connect architecture with nature for the known health benefits of stress reduction and increased healing, productivity and learning. Natural light and visual connections to nature feed our souls and lift up our spirits. I can’t imagine anything better than a home that supports our emotional well being.
Views can be captured in a variety of ways. Interior windows can be used to transfer outside views to interior corridors, or they can create clear through views from front yards to back yards. The beauty in nature can be framed through a variety of architectural shapes creating different ‘paintings’ on our interior walls. Each framed view is unique and should be treated as such.
In creating the right design, we may ask our clients if they like to sleep in or not. If they do, then we wouldn’t place the master bedroom on the east or rising sun side of the house, but rather we would put it on the west side of the house. We would frame the sunset for those summertime evenings reading in bed. If our client is an early riser, we might do the exact opposite, flooding the master suite with incredible sunrises. For each and every client, the framed views are different and are unique to that client’s home. With the development of new residential products, operable glass panes are getting bigger than ever, window walls are sliding away, window frames are getting narrower, screening is becoming relatively invisible and bronze interior frames are trending. All of these options are inviting the views to come to the foreground of design, and allowing incredible projects to happen and inspirational spaces to come alive.” — Cathy Purple Cherry, Principal and Founder of Purple Cherry Architects
Purple Cherry Architects is an award-winning high-end residential architecture firm that recently opened an office in Charlottesville this past fall. With Best of Houzz awards in 2015, 2016 and 2017, as well as winning the Designer’s Choice Award for Local Traditional Architect/Home & Design this year, Purple Cherry Architects is pleased and excited to be able to share an inside look at one of its private waterfront residential projects—the Duvall Creek Home.
The owners of the Annapolis home desired a traditional, turn of the century, Georgian home with symmetrical, flanking wings. Leading up to the house is a tree-lined, meandering driveway and a parking court at the front. The symmetry of this 10,000 SF home lends to its classic appeal.
The formal entry was designed to ensure that upon opening the door, the waterfront view would be seen. The traditional look and feel of the home is emphasized throughout the interior with raised paneling, heavy mill-work, traditional railings and wide-wood strip flooring. The backside of the house explodes with the connecting rooms, opening up to reveal a 180-degree full view of the waterfront. The spacious, open floor plan communicates between all three floors without going back through the formal area.
The design of the home provides a first floor casual entertainment area with a connected kitchen, dining and living room spaces.
This inside, large entertainment area connects to a large, screened-in, green-blue slate porch which leads to a waterside entertainment area featuring an outdoor cooking kitchen and in-ground pool.
The kitchen connects to a wine cellar and a large mudroom, supporting a family of five. Two staircases lead to the second floor which provides five bedrooms and a large laundry area. An extensive infusion of organizational strategies was incorporated to support a household with three children who are heavily involved in sporting activities. These organizational strategies can be seen throughout the home.
The house and surrounding hardscaping levels were designed to accommodate large family and social gatherings. Additionally, the house includes a four-car garage—two-car garages in each flanking wing. To maximize space, a workshop / home office is located above one of the garages while the top of the other garages houses an independent in-law suite with a separate entry for privacy.
Purple Cherry Architects’, an architect firm in Charlottesville, is responsible for this beautiful Duvall Creek Home among other projects.
When we asked Sean Miller, Investment Advisor of Miller Asset Solutions, for advice on choosing an investment advisor for 2017, here is what he said.
“I do not have any faith in economic or investment outlooks. None – zero. No one knows the future; it is as simple as that. What I do know is that investors can gain an advantage by choosing an investment advisor who has the following objective attributes:
LOWER FEES AND PERFORMANCE-BASED FEES: Fixed Fees below 1%, or fees below 1% including a performance-based fee, are the fee structures that absolutely align the mutual interests of the client and manager. Many folks too often forget that a dollar saved in costs or fees is actually worth more than a dollar earned from investment returns (thanks to taxes). In addition, investing in cost and fee reduction can provide far greater returns per unit of risk than anything else an investment organization can do. In fact, there’s an argument to be made that cost and fee savings represent risk-free returns to investors.
SMALLER IS BETTER: Larger firms have unnecessary administrative layers. Each layer has a cost, and the presence of each layer is disproportional to clear communication. Administrative layers are much like a placebo – present but offering no efficacy or value. There are fewer layers, if any, at smaller investment firms. Greater, direct access and seamless communication will be yours at a smaller firm, versus a larger firm.
ALIGNED INCENTIVES: Typically 100% of an investment manager’s personal capital is invested in the same positions as his clients. In this way, they act as a true fiduciary steward of shared capital. Often referred to as having “skin in the game,” advisors with skin in the game perform better and are more accountable. What is good for the advisor or manager is good for the client. This eliminates conflicts of interest. Aligned incentives are a very good thing, not just in investing but in life. The more aligned interests are the more you can base a relationship on trust. The optimal outcome is a more seamless web of deserved trust.
ABSOLUTE LIQUIDITY: Choose an investment manager who invests simply, preferably one with no proprietary products with hidden fees. Investment complexity is usually costly, unnecessary and results in your investments being illiquid [not easily converted into cash]. Liquidity is essential during times of severe market stress.
SAME INSURANCE PROTECTIONS AS ANY MANAGER: Many folks do not know that their investment account insurance protections are similar – regardless of the manager. For example, all investors have $500,000 for each account provided by SIPC (Securities Investors Protection Corporation) and then their investment custodian usually provides coverage for amounts exceeding the SIPC limits. This means all investment managers generally have the same insurance protections against fraud and malfeasance.”
Virginia’s reputation as a wine state continues to rise, so now is the time to buy in before the boom really gets going. According to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, Virginia is currently the 6th largest producer. The region’s terroir—the French word for the combination of climate, soil quality and elevation—is more like Southern Italy’s than California’s. Specifically, Virginia’s terrior is suitable for the production of full-bodied, fruity wines higher in alcohol content, such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Vermentino. In these general regional conditions of sloping uplands and a warm, robust climate, each farm and even each field offers its own unique terroir, “so it’s essential to examine every aspect when choosing your property.”
Fancy yourself as a vintner? As you can see, “it’s important to know exactly what you want your land to do before you start shopping. We can help with our extensive knowledge of farming and the Virginia farm market to find you the best piece of property. We’ll partner with you through all of the steps and considerations necessary to foster success, no matter what venture you have in mind.” For example, many of the same terroir conditions that can make or break a vineyard operation also apply to orchards. With both crops, you need a certain amount of elevation, good air circulation and excellent drainage. You would also have to think about road accessibility for incoming or outgoing deliveries and foot traffic as well.
With the growth of the industry, the natural growing conditions and beautiful views, it’s easy to choose Central Virginia for your winery or vineyard location. With our knowledge and expertise of the area, we can help make your dreams a reality. —Gayle Harvey Real Estate
Have you visited the Shelter for Help in Emergency (SHE) Design House 2016 in Keswick Estates yet? The Shelter is our area’s most important resource for providing services to women and children who are victims of domestic violence, most importantly operating a temporary emergency residential facility. Two tickets to visit the Design House provide a night’s shelter for someone in our community. Not only will you be supporting a fantastic cause but you will also see how a group of talented local designers transformed an empty house into a stunning home. Hopefully, you’ll be able to use these ideas in your own home.
The best way to understand the transformation is to look at before and after photos. My partner at Folly, Beth Ann Kallen, and I are the designers of the breakfast room. The Shelter also asked us to help stage the kitchen. Below are the before photos.The space had nice bones, beautiful hardwood floors, and high end appliances, but looked dated and lacked character.
Our first step was to paint – you can’t underestimate the power of paint. We selected a soft white for all of the trim and Sherwin Williams Snowy Owl for the walls. Luckily, the homeowners agreed to paint the cabinets as well, which made a huge and immediate impact on the space. We also removed the ornate carved details above the range and on the front of the island. Suddenly, it was fresh and light.
The next step was to change out the builder grade light fixtures. Over the kitchen island we hung black drum shade pendants to coordinate with the existing countertops. In the breakfast room, we initially selected an open iron and brass fixture. However, after discovering the ceiling would need reinforcement to hang the fixture, we changed tactics and specified a large custom made drum pendant in the green and white leopard linen that matched the cushion cover fabric we used on the kitchen stools. Green was our accent color, and helped to make the breakfast room feel open and connected to the outdoor patio designed by the Market at Grelen.
Next came the fun part– setting the table with an eclectic mix of placemats, china, linens and accessories, and hanging works of art. Our favorite piece is a map of London, framed in 18 sections, that measures about 10 ft. wide and 7 ft. high. I found the map in a shop in London– a city that both Beth Ann and I love. Beth Ann lived in London for a few years and I traveled there often when I worked for Christie’s auction house in NYC.
Gather your friends, have lunch at nearby Keswick Hall and definitely visit Design House 2016. Tours run daily May 7–22, 2016 from 10am–4pm with extended hours on Wednesdays and Thursdays to 7pm. During your visit, look for the before photos displayed in each room– you will be amazed and inspired!
Identifying the right farm property for your needs could be one of the most important decisions of your life. With Gayle Harvey Real Estate, “you’ll have access to the full complement of farm listings in the area from Culpeper in the north to Amherst in the south, and from Louisa in the east to Rockbridge and Augusta Counties in the west.”
The area around Charlottesville is extremely desirable for agricultural ventures, in part because of the ideal growing conditions and partly thanks to the ready-made market of local restaurants and grocery purveyors who emphasize locally-sourced products and farm-to-table dining. In a history that dates back to early Colonial days, “there’s probably never been a better time than now to be a farmer in Virginia: there’s both plenty of land available and a growing, eager customer base.”
Central Virginia’s climate and topography is ideal for any agricultural specialty. Want to raise livestock? Cattle, sheep, horses and more exotic animals love the lush, open pastures and abundant waters; there are a number of prize-winning operations already located here. For more horticulturalists, the fertile soils, relatively mild climate and choice of elevations let you pick a perfect locations for every crop—from vegetables, grains or fruits.
Distribution is easy in Central Virginia as well. One interesting option is community supported agriculture (CSA), which lets you sell directly to consumers. Another is the Local Food Hub, “a non-profit organization that connects Virginia farmers with distributors, schools and restaurants who want ultra-fresh local food while offering farmers support services and pre-harvest revenues.”
If you’re thinking about buying a farm in central Virginia, you’ve made a wise choice in considering one of the most versatile, multi-faceted agricultural regions in the nation. Now all it takes is fine-tuning your vision and selecting the plot of land that will make that vision a reality. “And you don’t have to do it alone.” —Gayle Harvey Real Estate