Inside Katherine Jeter’s bejeweled family home in Massachusetts
A blank canvas outside Boston is transformed into a clean, homey showcase, using subtle elements of drama, surprise and brilliance.
New house – under construction but almost finished– Located just outside Boston, it’s just the right size, with an open, airy layout, plenty of light, and a wooded backyard. The homeowners, a blended family with four children, thought it was perfect: a blank canvas they could customize to suit their taste and contemporary lifestyle.
“There were certain things about the house that couldn’t be changed, including the hardwood floors and kitchen millwork,” says interior designer Elizabeth Georgantas, a friend of the couple, who they tapped to fine-tune the aesthetic. “But there was so much we could do to make this house really special.” For example, while the upper white kitchen cabinets were already installed, Georgantas called for them to be painted matte black, which dramatically changed the color of the room.
There were key elements in the design that were of particular interest to homeowner Catherine Jeter, a jewelry designer and owner of The Vault on Nantucket. Lighting was key: Jeter was drawn to the distinctive fixtures, some of which were designed by fellow jewelry designers. Choosing unusual stone for key areas of the house was another priority. When she and Georgantas went to Kumar to examine the stone, Jeter said, “I fell in love with the jungle-like slab, a bit like the view we see from the kitchen windows.”
However, Georgantas suggested that instead of using stunning white soapstone on the island, which cannot be appreciated well on the horizontal plane, it could be used to create an artistic focal point on the wall behind the fireplace. “It makes such an impact; “It’s such a mysterious forest,” Georgantas says. Perfectly polished black granite tops the island’s waterfall counter. The same material was used in the fireplace on the other side of the open room where the living area is located. “The monolithic granite block on the fireplace really anchors this side of the room, taking a very simple pre-design and personalizing it with a wow moment,” she says.
The informal dining area, integrated between the kitchen and living space, is where the family eats together; It’s also where they have fun. The large table – with unconventional and sculptural qualities – was essential to accommodate gatherings of various sizes. Taking the opportunity to reference the wooded environment once again, Georgantas tracked down an Italian craftsman who crafted a base made from two massive hand-gilded logs and a top to go with it. Above, one of Lindsey Adelman’s Globe Burst chandeliers fills the space in a material and elemental way.
Jeter envisioned her office off the lobby as a beautiful salon where she could meet clients. The walls are sheathed in cream snakeskin, and the heavy barn doors initially planned for the space have been replaced with casement doors that can be closed while still letting in light. “Everything here is a nod to Katherine’s jewelry,” Georgantas says, pointing to the antique brass chain work — which looks like rose gold — on the Otero chandelier and the polished brass, wood, and glass desk with alligator-inspired legs.
Across the hall, a set of mirrored doors leads to the surprise of the house. The plan initially called for the space to be a formal dining room that Jeter and her husband knew they would never use. Instead, the couple decided to turn it into an adult lounge. “I went to boarding school and university in London, and I loved Annabelle’s Club (a private members’ club). “I wanted to create a room with a similar feel, a place where adults could have a cocktail and chat,” says Jeter. Georgantas immediately recognized the glamorous, club-like feel they were headed for. mechanism.
A gorgeous Silk de Gournay wallcovering in imperial blue, ‘Hippolyta’s Forest’, envelops the room in romantic elegance. The shelves and built-in decorations are painted with purple lacquer, and the ceiling is covered in gold leaf. The furnishings are full of vibrant jewel tones, there are light fixtures made from antique pots, and a leopard-print rug underfoot. It’s a decadent atmosphere with playful tones too, including a hanging chair decorated with Swarovski crystals. A pantry attached to the space was converted into a formal bar with lacquered cabinets and a rich green marble countertop with purple veins that Jeter loves for its deep, moody appeal. “The jewel tones in these spaces have a romantic flow that doesn’t impact the rest of the house, and is very contemporary, sparse, and clean,” Geurgantas notes.
The bar is accessible from the kitchen as well, but sliding doors enclose the adults-only area when it’s family time. Children are allowed into the powder room, another delightful wonder with its peacock feather wall covering and hand-blown glass globe light that shines like a precious jewel, reflecting light off the feathers in hues of pink and green. “The Peacock Powder Room is everyone’s favorite room, including my daughter and her friends,” Jeter laughs.
Creating a home that its residents clearly love is a joy for Georgantas. “The best part of my job is always working with good friends,” she says. “I love the idea that they can move forward and create new memories in a home I designed to help them meet their collective needs, their individual personalities, and their vision of their family’s daily life for years to come.”
Georgantas created a specialized light installation that appeals to Jeter’s passion for lighting. A series of small Pucci lights hung from the ceiling above and on the walls along the open staircase that runs from the top of the house down to the basement, create a pattern that Georgantas says resembles champagne bubbles. “Let’s pretend you’re having a really fun party and you’re spraying champagne everywhere, and it’s dripping all over the walls; that’s the effect.” At night, the lights can be seen when one comes from the street into the driveway: a welcoming signal to the family that they are about to return home.
It was first published in the print edition of Boston Home Magazine’s Winter 2024 issue, under the title “Jewel Box.”