Blank Canvas - Design Bureau

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Blank Canvas

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Featured Company: Urban Dwellings - Location: Bath, Maine - Project Type: Residence - Project Name: Residential Renovation

Photo by Trent Bell,

By Emma Janzen

Urban Dwellings design principal Tracy A. Davis is all about understated chic, a philosophy best expressed through her renovation of a 100-year-old residence in Bath, Maine.

The 1,900-square-foot home needed lots of work to become contemporary. Gutting the space and creating an open, flowing floor plan was the first priority. At one point in its life, the house had been separated from a single-family layout and divided into a two-family structure, so Davis’s first task was to bring it back to a single-family home.

Doors were removed, walls knocked out, and spaces enlarged. Pumpkin pine-wood floors were discovered after peeling back layers of carpet—“a great reminder of the home’s original footprint,” Davis says—but other elements like trim and moulding were left intact.

Next, the color scheme of the house needed to change, Davis says. The original home featured a rainbow palette of wall colors. ”One was dark pink, and another was duck yellow,” Davis says. ”One was lime, and another was orange. It was crazy.” To clear the clutter and start fresh, crisp white walls set the tone. The single color selection created a backdrop for artwork and other fixtures.

Most of the accent pieces chosen were large-scale art and sculptures, organized in a way that would emphasize their viewing without being too obvious about the intention. Davis added both fixed and accent decorative lighting as one way to highlight “the many textural layers used in furnishings and accents.”

Overall, Davis says that she is most proud of the clean, uncluttered design, which allows guests to “peacefully absorb the stillness and calm of the finished selections and art.”

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