Michael Winn Celebrates the Holidays at Home

After years of debating, Melinda and Michael Winn decided to tear down their 1950s home and create their dream abode from the ground up.

Goldendoodle Archie warms himself by the fire. A Scandinavian flavor reigns over the Christmas decor, while 8-foot casement windows fill the room with winter sunshine.

Text: Lydia Somerville
Photos: Stacy Zarin Goldberg

As head of a design-build firm, Michael Winn was in the unique position to realize the vision he and his wife Melinda had of tearing down their 1950s Cape Cod home and building their dream. With architects, designers, and craftsmen under one roof, he had a team at the ready to create the formal exterior and casual interior he wanted. From the outside, the house presents a French Provincial aspect.

“I wanted a look of permanence,” says Winn, “with a brick exterior, cedar shake roof, and copper gutters. Inside, it’s more contemporary, with white oak beams and floors.” With two children, Jackson, 11, and Mia, 10, and Goldendoodle, Archie, the needs of family life dictated a level of ease and comfort in the choice of furnishings.

Holidays at Home

In the dining room, Melinda and Michael Winn took a color cue from the painting over the sideboard with the table decorated with cerulean blue tableware.

Holidays at Home

Holidays at Home

The steel front door “weighs as much as a car,” says Winn.

Holidays at Home

The Provincial facade of the house, painted Neutral Ground by Sherwin Williams, lends a sense of permanence.

Holidays at Home

A Lacanche range presides over the kitchen, and its brass accents are echoed in the faucet, hardware, and circular light fixture over the island. Appliances are concealed within the cabinetry. The Winns painted the cabinetry in Lamp Room Gray by Farrow & Ball.

Holidays at Home

In the breakfast room, natural materials abound from the wicker chairs to the table and chandelier.

Holidays at Home

In the bathroom, walnut cabinetry warms the space and contrasts with the Waterworks freestanding tub.

Holidays at Home

Winn considered the terrace his pet project, buying a limestone slab and hiring a local stone mason to build the stacked stone fireplace.

Holidays at Home

Aiming for a clean, calm look for the bedroom, the Winns opted for a large closet to hold all the apparel, leaving the room free of clutter.

To keep things simple, Winn chose Benjamin Moore’s Stone White for the entire house and kept crown moldings to a minimum at the 11-foot ceilings. “I like a cleaner molding profile,” he says. At eight feet tall, French casement windows usher in plenty of sunlight and open to the stone terrace. In the family room, the positioning of the television proved a challenge. “I don’t like the TV over the fireplace,” says Winn. “But we found this wood-framed Samsung screen that looks like a piece of art.”

In the kitchen, the design took direction from the choice of a Lacanche stove. “The range is very French and analog,” says Winn. “There’s nothing fancy about it. It’s a well-built gas stove that is utterly simple. We designed the cabinetry to hide all the high-tech appliances and let the stove set the tone.” In the house’s only departure from Stone White, the cabinets are painted Farrow & Ball’s Lamp Room Gray. Over the island, a simple brass ring fixture appears to hover in midair. “We decided to have fun with the lighting and chose a more modern fixture,” says Winn.

In the owners’ suite, a minimalist mood prevails with streamlined furniture and clean design. “We have a large walk-in closet that allowed us to keep the bedroom uncluttered,” says Winn. “We also don’t have a television in there, so we have a very peaceful, quiet space. Automated blinds are set on a timer to reveal fantastic views of our backyard.” The bathroom indulges in the luxury of space as well, with twin vanities of walnut flanking the soaking tub.

At Christmas, the family sets the dining room table for a Christmas Eve feast with accents of cobalt blue taken from a painting over the sideboard. Gifts at each place setting offer a preview of Christmas morning and delight impatient children. On the long-awaited morning, a casual spread is served at the breakfast room table with its comfortable wicker chairs. Later in the day, the Winns will toast the holidays on the terrace. The outdoor space functions year-round thanks to the stacked stone fireplace, complete with a limestone mantel, rendering it a true outdoor living room. “Melinda and I each chose areas of interest to work on,” says Winn. “And this terrace was certainly mine.”

Previous articleThe Refreshing History of Punch Bowls
Next article12 Scents of the Season