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Summertime Style

Writer Marirose Krall  |  Designer Alexandria Como  |  Location Morris County, NJ

A Morris County pool house embodies “casual chic”

The exterior of the pool house features stone accents that coordinate with those on the main house. The path, which is bordered by salvia, leads to the main house

Alexandria Como calls the style of this Morris County, New Jersey, pool house “garden cottage casual.” That’s an apt description considering the structure’s location. “The property is in a wooded area,” Como says. “The gardens around the pool house and the whole home are magnificent. It’s a farm-assessed property, and the homeowners have honey bees and a small orchard. The landscaping is gorgeous.” Como, owner of Alexandria Como Design in Morristown, set out to make the interior of the pool house just as beautiful as the surroundings.

The folding doors open up to the pool for easy entertaining. The planter features mandevilla vine.

The designer wanted this space to complement the design of the main residence, which is just a few steps away. “The home on this property is very old. The clients gutted and restored it. The pool house is new construction; both were designed to have a more transitional feeling with completely modern amenities.”

Rustic touches such as stained center cupboards and shiplap on the backsplash wall complement the garden location. White cabinets to the left and right of the counter house a pantry and a refrigerator, respectively. “The homeowner prefers paneled appliances,” Como notes. “It provides a more cohesive, custom look.”

Two-tone cabinets add interest to the kitchenette.

The Shaker-style doors on all the built-ins also ensure uniformity, while the differing tones keep the look interesting. Como included an additional bit of contrast with black trim around the doors and window. “It was an opportunity to include something a little more bold and less traditional than what is in the main house,” she says. The deep color accentuates the architecture of the space, highlighting the double-height ceiling. Additional accents — the faucet, sconces and cabinet hardware — offer smaller hits of black, ensuring a harmonious connection among the design elements.

The space works beautifully for the clients, who have a large family and entertain often. Como says, “They’re lovely and great to work with; that made that whole process very easy for me.”

Black trim accentuates the windows and doors in the soaring space, which reaches 18 feet at its peak.