Campbells' Coup

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photos by:
January 25, 2010
Originally published in Make It New!

Modernist furniture may signal worldly tastes, but its American origins lie in Michigan’s humble reaches. It’s here that Keith and Mary Campbell renovated a lakeside cottage into a rustic stage for their heirloom mid-century pieces.

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  Built around the twin trunks of a maple tree, the Campbells’ outdoor deck provides tranquil views of the lake and a chance for the family to spot roaming wildlife while enjoying their morning coffee. During warmer months, the wide space creates an ideal secondary dining room, shaded by the canopy of leaves overhead.
    Built around the twin trunks of a maple tree, the Campbells’ outdoor deck provides tranquil views of the lake and a chance for the family to spot roaming wildlife while enjoying their morning coffee. During warmer months, the wide space creates an ideal secondary dining room, shaded by the canopy of leaves overhead.
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  With the help of a local contractor, the Campbells ripped out drywall, reconfigured windows, and gave up a garage in the well-worn ranch house.
    With the help of a local contractor, the Campbells ripped out drywall, reconfigured windows, and gave up a garage in the well-worn ranch house.
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  George Nelson and Eames furnishings from Michigan companies like Herman Miller blend seamlessly with original decor from Keith Campbell’s childhood home in Ann Arbor. Seen here is the combined living and dining area.
    George Nelson and Eames furnishings from Michigan companies like Herman Miller blend seamlessly with original decor from Keith Campbell’s childhood home in Ann Arbor. Seen here is the combined living and dining area.
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  The living room, before renovation.
    The living room, before renovation.
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  The day-lit corner of the living room creates a nice nook for reading.
    The day-lit corner of the living room creates a nice nook for reading.
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  In the kitchen, Danish PH 5 lamps illuminate the island and table. The lined wood planks on both the ceiling and floor draw the eye naturally through the space to the study beyond, where Keith’s father’s original Jens Risom desk resides.
    In the kitchen, Danish PH 5 lamps illuminate the island and table. The lined wood planks on both the ceiling and floor draw the eye naturally through the space to the study beyond, where Keith’s father’s original Jens Risom desk resides.
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  A tastefully spare selection of vintage pieces accents the warm knotty pine in the master bedroom. The orientation of the room maximizes the picture window that replaced the original garage door. Campbell designed a closet in an alcove behind the wall at the head of the bed.
    A tastefully spare selection of vintage pieces accents the warm knotty pine in the master bedroom. The orientation of the room maximizes the picture window that replaced the original garage door. Campbell designed a closet in an alcove behind the wall at the head of the bed.
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  A discreet master bathroom eliminates visual clutter.
    A discreet master bathroom eliminates visual clutter.
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  The renovation transformed the unassuming building into a modern homage to the northern Michigan lake cabins they had both grown up visiting.
    The renovation transformed the unassuming building into a modern homage to the northern Michigan lake cabins they had both grown up visiting.
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  The rise of the front lawn and the height of the trees give the house a subtle presence amid magnificent surroundings.
    The rise of the front lawn and the height of the trees give the house a subtle presence amid magnificent surroundings.
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  While the general form of the exterior remains the same, a fresh color scheme distinguishes the new house from its former identity.
    While the general form of the exterior remains the same, a fresh color scheme distinguishes the new house from its former identity.
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  The cottage sits on an acre of mature trees, with a sloping lawn stretching to the pebbly shore of the inland lake. The Campbells regularly drag their kayaks down to the water’s edge and set off toward the deeper waters of Lake Michigan.
    The cottage sits on an acre of mature trees, with a sloping lawn stretching to the pebbly shore of the inland lake. The Campbells regularly drag their kayaks down to the water’s edge and set off toward the deeper waters of Lake Michigan.
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