In the City I refer to all my properties by their address – come to think of it – even my childhood homes, 30 Cornerwood Drive, and 530 Main Street, were referenced by their number. On the island, houses have names, and I look forward to discovering our house rental’s name each year upon arrival. They are clever like “ACK Lantis”, adorable like “Sweet Pea”, often nautical like “Ebb Tide”, “Three Buoys”, or “SEAsons Greetings”, and a few sad houses that have no name at all. Such was the case with 7 Gardner Street – our rental. It didn’t feel right that it was nameless. Perhaps the owners didn’t want to get too attached, a name gives a place character, and personality, and this property is for sale, after all. I’ve decided that it deserves a warmer address than 7 Gardner Street, so it will be known to me henceforth as “Knot-All-Us” a play on Nautilus of course, and in deference to the reality that the owners must share the property with others.
These owners are architects and did a lovely job of renovating and decorating, though the project isn’t done. I’ve never had an issue with that. I like to think of ownership in the collective rather than the individual. Particularly with old properties. Nantucket has the nations largest pre-1850’s houses, according to the Nantucket Historical Society. This is due in large part to the whaling industry going kaput. Everyone left, and left those beautiful homes behind. They need a lot of work, and it’s too much to ask one person to take it all on solo. Do your part, pass it along to the next person, that’s my motto.
The design is minimalist, seaside, summer home. Not to be mistaken for a collection junk attempting to pass as pieces with character. From the abundance of towels, to the fine bedding – the Oly Studio hide stool, and under the sea designed pillows, all set against clean white walls, and glossy painted floors, Knot-All-Us, has pizzazz. The artwork consisted largely of seascapes of their own making, and collected beach finds – coral, starfish, seashells, and rocks, decoratively displayed in bell jars, and baskets.
I was inspired. I found my own piece of driftwood with it’s knotty branches, bleached by the sun, and naturally sculptural, that will return from the Island with me. Oh it will take some doing, as it is no small piece, but as always, I am up for the challenge. A home must have a mix of new and old, of natural, and of one’s own creation. It must include bits, and baubles, and framed scraps of paper, ticket stubs, or cocktail napkins that mark your history, and tell your story. Sterility is not allowed. It’s simply too sad for words.
Today is too beautiful for sadness. Save it for a snowy day, and go find your own piece of art. ACK nice while you’re doing it.