3 Top Living Room Design Gallery –
Richard Coakley and his sons congenital the berth for his Haidan’s Rock Lane work-in-progress almost 20 years afore alpha to body the house. BETSY COAKLEY PHOTO
LITTLE DEER ISLE — Walk into a Coakley abode and you’ll be amidst by wood, amplitude and light. A artist and architect who can blooper a band from “Moby Dick” into the chat with ease, Coakley has been creating homes for about bristles decades, aboriginal up in the Pembroke breadth and for the aftermost 35 years on the Blue Hill Peninsula and Deer Isle.
Haidan’s Rock Lane, a continued clay alley off Eggemoggin Alley on Little Deer Isle, is Coakley’s latest arena ground. Pitched rooftops and gables approach out of treetops, a scattering of houses tucked at the ends of ambagious driveways that advance to the shore. Over one shoulder, the Deer Isle-Sedgwick Bridge hangs abeyant in the air. Handcrafted board docks jut out into the Reach. Coakley builds them, too.
“I’m affectionate of a backer of the being who builds a abode can additionally be a designer,” he said, sitting on a bank armchair by the stairs of his accepted work-in-progress. “This one actuality is mostly about light. Sort of, slightly. I achievement to accept it, affectionate of the mix of accumbent and vertical and maybe the activity of animation of mass.”
To allocution architecture — exoteric and autogenous — with Coakley is to footfall into a apple that is actual abundant his own and that he is afraid to let go of.
“It’s aloof the way it is,” he said. “I appetite to go to the actual end, and I appetite to put my acumen into it. Like the bathrooms. I’m activity to go crazy on them.”
A Yale-trained sculptor, Coakley absolved his Ivy League apprenticeship with a flick of one hand.
“No amount what, alike afore I was in school, I admired authoritative stuff,” he said. “In school, I consistently admired accomplishing art. I struggled with aggregate else. The alone affair that got me by was adamantine work.”
In his accepted work-in-progress in Little Deer Isle, Richard Coakley advised a chandelier from a caster taken the chiral pump of an old blaze tanker barter he begin in a Sedgwick field. ELLSWORTH AMERICAN PHOTO BY ANNE BERLEANT
Betsy Coakley paints nautical-themed access accomplish for bedmate Richard Coakley’s homes. BETSY COAKLEY PHOTO
Richard Coakley-built houses blink out of treetops on Haidan’s Rock Lane in Little Deer Isle. BETSY COAKLEY PHOTO
Coakley builds in the post-and-beam appearance but with digressions. He is added about the beams than the posts — his wife’s 1620-built ancestors home in Massachusetts featured hand-jammed, belted elm beams, including the “summerbeam” active the breadth of the home and captivation the weight of all the beams.
“It absolutely was an absurd house,” he said. “It acquainted like apartment should feel.”
Coakley called his architecture aggregation afterwards that axle and threw in a 54-foot summerbeam in the Sedgwick home he congenital 35 years ago for him, Betsy and their two sons. But while he brand the coziness and amore of a 6-by-5-foot ceiling, as in his own house, Coakley said that times accept changed. The Haidan’s Rock Lane houses are “the beginning” of new designs featuring college ceilings that flood accessible spaces with alike added light.
Coakley said he aerial his contempo appearance from an old Maine postcard. “I affectionate of alarm these boathouse houses. The abstraction is that this anatomy could accept existed above-mentioned to this as a boathouse and addition came and adapted it into a house.”
In his work-in-progress, windows arise high, walls stop abbreviate of ceilings, and the first-floor active allowance rises up two belief tall. Advised with three bedrooms and two baths, the house’s admiral sitting amplitude has congenital basement to bandy a brace mattresses on, and one bedchamber with congenital bunks. And about aggregate is congenital and congenital by hand. Closet doors and shelves, kitchen cabinets and dressers. A access leads upward, its balustrade arched forth a arcade aloft the aboriginal floor, was crafted from lengths of atramentous locust scavenged from a Bangor Hydro pole.
Pine floorboards of altered shades were laid in the kitchen — “The abstraction is to accomplish it attending a little recycled,” Coakley said — and the admiral attic is spruce, which Coakley wants to leave amateurish to “let it artlessly burnish.”
Coakley has congenital almost 45 houses in his career — he’s now 75 — with about bisected congenital from the arena up. But he’s had some bounded advice the aftermost 13 years from two lobstermen who about-face to carpentry during their offseason, Casey Ryan and Aaron Lyman, whom he speaks of in the accomplished agreement on carpentry skills, adeptness and character.
Richard Coakley, an ardent “Moby Dick” reader, attaches a bang weathervane to the roof of one of his homes. BETSY COAKLEY PHOTO
Most houses he builds booty 9 to 11 months, he said. “This one actuality I anticipate I’m activity into year cardinal five.” Cancer treatments, and now chemotherapy, “slows me bottomward a lot. I’m accepting older. I aloof can’t do what I acclimated to. And I’m aloof demography my time.”
Plus, he loves his work.
“Just say, if I had all kinds of money, I’d do this anyway. Maybe,” he said. “I’m affectionate of bedeviled a little. That’s why I like ‘Moby Dick.’”
Living Room Design Gallery
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