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Bringing It All Back Home

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Relying on local materials, local craftsmen, and the land her family has farmed for over two centuries, a New Yorker rediscovers her Midwestern roots.

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  Lauren Ewing’s stylish but unassuming shotgun-style house in Vincennes, Indiana, is set into a hill overlooking a field she has known since childhood.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    Lauren Ewing’s stylish but unassuming shotgun-style house in Vincennes, Indiana, is set into a hill overlooking a field she has known since childhood.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  Ewing used Canadian maple for the hallway and living-room floors, giving them a bright, clean look. A built-in shelving system borders the hearth, creating functional and decorative storage spaces for firewood collected on-site.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    Ewing used Canadian maple for the hallway and living-room floors, giving them a bright, clean look. A built-in shelving system borders the hearth, creating functional and decorative storage spaces for firewood collected on-site.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  The floor-to-ceiling living-room window was inspired by Philip Johnson’s Glass House.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    The floor-to-ceiling living-room window was inspired by Philip Johnson’s Glass House.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  A leaf-green countertop adds a splash of color to the kitchen.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    A leaf-green countertop adds a splash of color to the kitchen.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  The living-room sofa is by the New York–based designer Stanley Jay Friedman.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    The living-room sofa is by the New York–based designer Stanley Jay Friedman.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  The surfaces of both decks—–including the small one off Ewing’s bedroom—–were fashioned from recycled plastic fibers.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    The surfaces of both decks—–including the small one off Ewing’s bedroom—–were fashioned from recycled plastic fibers.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  Ewing designed a floor-to-ceiling window to provide an expansive view while bathing her living room in natural light. She hired D & H Glass, a local company that makes plate-glass windows for grocery stores, to join three standard-size windows, filling the 9-by-18-foot space for under $4,000.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    Ewing designed a floor-to-ceiling window to provide an expansive view while bathing her living room in natural light. She hired D & H Glass, a local company that makes plate-glass windows for grocery stores, to join three standard-size windows, filling the 9-by-18-foot space for under $4,000.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  Ewing’s builder, John Lane, used a front-end loader to stack slabs of Indiana limestone for the house’s front steps. Each slab rested atop a layer of ice cubes, creating just enough clearance for the nylon straps to be pulled free. The slabs settled into place as the ice melted in the summer sun.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    Ewing’s builder, John Lane, used a front-end loader to stack slabs of Indiana limestone for the house’s front steps. Each slab rested atop a layer of ice cubes, creating just enough clearance for the nylon straps to be pulled free. The slabs settled into place as the ice melted in the summer sun.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  For the exterior and roof, Ewing chose Una-Clad corrugated-steel siding. The material, more commonly found on commercial buildings, is lightweight, durable, easy to maintain, and recyclable.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    For the exterior and roof, Ewing chose Una-Clad corrugated-steel siding. The material, more commonly found on commercial buildings, is lightweight, durable, easy to maintain, and recyclable.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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  The cabinets in Ewing’s bedroom were made from wild cherry trees harvested from the property. The enormous trunks were too big to fit into the portable sawmill that her brother, Mark, brought to the property, so he blew them apart with dynamite and fed the pieces into the mill. The cabinets were made by Ewing’s friend Paul Keller.  Photo by: Kyoko Hamada
    The cabinets in Ewing’s bedroom were made from wild cherry trees harvested from the property. The enormous trunks were too big to fit into the portable sawmill that her brother, Mark, brought to the property, so he blew them apart with dynamite and fed the pieces into the mill. The cabinets were made by Ewing’s friend Paul Keller.

    Photo by: Kyoko Hamada

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