Fresh air, mountain vistas, and endless room to roam are just a few reasons why New Yorkers have long sought refuge upstate. So when seasoned city-dwellers Sabra Krock and Randy Blumenthal, the husband and wife duo behind the much-loved vacation-wear brand and stylish swimsuit emporium, EVERYTHING BUT WATER, decided it was time to find a weekend retreat of their own, there seemed to be no better place to call “second home.”
“There was nothing but trees!” recalls Krock, who, with her husband, did some extensive exploring of their own before settling on an empty lot near the quiet village of Millerton in Northern Dutchess County. “We spent many hours trekking up hills in the snow and surveying land before we settled on what we both felt was just right.”
Taking a more contemporary approach to traditional rural living, the pair decided to build their upstate escape from the ground up; using a custom steel warehouse frame as the skeleton for their unconventional country home. Equal parts industrial and modern, warm wood details and worn vintage furnishings soften the home’s inherently edgy makeup. Though the space’s attention to materiality can’t go unnoticed, the home’s true focus remains the outdoors.
While most would tend to shy away from the naturally cold materials (like steel and concrete) that fall under the industrial look in fear that it would make a space feel impersonal, the duo embraced the style’s clean lines and cool surfaces, while imparting a sense of balance through organic textures and, of course, plenty of wood.
“We chose Douglas Fir as the primary wood,” explains Krock. “It makes up the flooring throughout the second floor, the staircases, the doors, the banister… it’s a very warm wood that really creates a cozy feel.” For the window frames, they opted for mahogany—an appropriate counterpoint to the imposing steel beams and other man-made features.
Talk about the ultimate wood-burning ambiance. In the living room, deep, cozy sofas and antique-inspired furnishings circle a retro freestanding fireplace. With the help of Manhattan-based interior decorator, Jarlath Mellett, the couple filled the home’s extra-spacious rooms with earthy neutrals, worn-down furnishings, and repurposed materials.
“He was very focused on not doing the “expected” with the furnishings—expected being going strictly mid-century modern,” explains Krock. “Instead, he layered in warm vintage pieces with more of a country feel, and kept the overall attitude very relaxed and casual.”
Considering the pair operates almost full-time out of their NYC apartment, which they also share with their three kids, to say they’ve mastered the art of working from home would be an understatement. Although a dedicated place to unwind and reconnect, that doesn’t necessarily mean Krock and Blumenthal get to enjoy the pleasure of escaping their ever-growing inboxes whenever they pack up for the weekend, little ones and dog in tow.
“It’s a luxury to be able to work from home in that we always joke we have no commute, it’s very comfortable and we get to see our kids on and off throughout the day and stay connected to them and each other,” says Krock. “While we have an office inside the house, we usually work together on the terrace under an awning taking calls and occasionally hosting a work-related colleague. We’re both hardworking and focused, so it’s ultimately more of a challenge to leave work behind than to focus,” she adds.
Redefining #EntrywayGoals with every wave of natural sunlight that hits its surface, this “welcome home” moment is about as great as it gets. The secret to this spectacular entryway (besides those charming antique benches)? While two of the homes’ sides are clad in corten steel, a material known for its rust-like, weathering appearance, the other sides are polycarbonate, thus imparting areas of the home with a striking semi-transparent glow.
Around almost every corner, a quiet sitting nook awaits. With each intimate alcove taking full advantage of the property’s uninterrupted mountain views, it’d be hard to pick a favorite spot to relax.
“The library nook on the second floor is a really wonderful cozy space,” Krock says. “We also spend a lot of time plopped on the sofas in the living room or the outdoor sofas on the patio.”
Upstairs, raw, metal textures and golden wood surfaces continue to peacefully coexist. Layered in soft, neutral textiles, the bedrooms feel airy and welcoming, yet full of character. Matte black light fixtures and mounted floating nightstands are just two elevated elements that give the master suite its contemporary edge.
Building off the fun, vintage flair that informs the rest of the home, the charming kids’ rooms boast a mix of modern furnishings and rustic, old-school finds.
When they’re not staying snuggly indoors or checking up on local wildlife from the comfort of their living room couch, you’ll likely find the family exploring nearby trails, grabbing a bite in town, or barbecuing with visiting friends in the backyard.
“In the summer, we spend all of our time outside,” says Krock. “We have a large organic garden and try to make most of our meals from it when it’s in season, and a pool at the precipice of the ridge that’s the center of our summer life.” Winters, on the other hand, call for lots of sledding and hot cocoa in the village.
Given their line of business, it’s easy to picture the couple-turned-business partners retreating to a beachside oasis somewhere in the Caribbean or a vacation home in Miami‚ where, coincidentally, the company just kicked off their “Water Is Everything” initiative (an ongoing project aimed at sparking global awareness about oceanic pollution and giving back through eco-friendly capsule collections). But thanks to New York’s unwavering splendor, the ultimate weekend getaway is only a short drive away.
Want to keep up with EBW’s latest sustainability initiatives and newest, beach-approved styles? Give them a quick follow on Instagram. Or, pop by one of their many brick-and-mortar stores (there are 101 now) to get your summer-ready gear together.
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