sneak peek: annie coggan & caleb crawford

Annie Coggan and Caleb Crawford are design professors in New York City – Annie at FIT, Parsons, and more, while Caleb teaches at City College. Just this fall, after fours years in the South, they moved their home base back to Brooklyn, and Annie is now also the artist-in-residence at Brooklyn’s Textile Arts Center. (We peeked into the couple’s Southern home last year.) A perk of working in education is the summer breaks, and even though the couple keeps most of their time occupied with their work for Coggan and Crawford Architects, they decided to make the most of their summer and move operations up to Belfast, Maine. They bought the house four years ago, and it’s taken three years to renovate. This summer was the first that they didn’t share morning coffee with their contractor, Darren. Thanks, Annie, Caleb & Madeline! — Amy Azzarito

We had some rules that we gave ourselves for how to finish the interior. We had salvaged all the wood from the interior of the original house, and I wanted a house that reminded me of southern beach houses from the twenties, with all those wooden walls. We decided to finish all the short walls in the house with the original wood and the long walls with new planks of pine (added bonus — great smell!). The ceilings in the downstairs are quite low, so we have tried not to put art on the walls and let the pine walls speak for themselves. Upstairs, we have tried to employ another strategy: Every summer when we lived in Mississippi, we would stop at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello during the drive to Maine. I was so taken with Jefferson’s way of arranging art and artifacts together on the wall that I want the walls to read as museums; it’s getting there. (All the walls are painted Benjamin Moore China White; that’s a pretty standard Coggan and Crawford color.)

Image above: My work area is comprised of a Crate and Barrel rolling orange table from a few years ago and a chair reworked by me!

See more of Annie and Caleb’s Maine home after the jump . . .

Image above: In the living room, the woodstove sits on common concrete-block pavers, and the back wall is tiled in ceiling tiles that we saved from the house.

Image above: A use-what-you-have kitchen. There is an old stove from Caleb’s grandmother, Martha Stewart’s stools from three houses ago, and an under-the-counter refrigerator from an ill-fated café project.

Image above: My bookshelf is made of old dresser drawers and shelves from our old studio space. It works very well!

Image above: Caleb built the bed and the beautiful Christien Meindertsma was painstakingly bartered for. The octopus light from Autoban was in our Mississippi house, and we love it in our high-ceiling space. Above the bed is my beloved painting by Atlanta artist Jean Glenn (high school friend!).

Image above: Caleb also built the bench in the bedroom. The chairs on the wall are part of my Walker Evans Builds, a chairs series. The small drawings are Caleb’s drawings titled Form Poems.

Image above: We used tile left over from our café project. We found two similar sinks at a junk shop down the road, and Caleb and Darren made the vanity. The bathroom cabinet is from the original house.

Image above: We thought it would be good to have a big guest room that is flexible for a couple and kids. So we gathered up spare beds (double and a bunk bed) and put them in there. On the walls and ceilings are favorite paintings by Caleb, some drawings by me and a planetary mobile that I bought in Savannah one day when I was left alone there.

Image above: Most of the circa 1840s workman’s houses in Belfast, Maine, are this tidy white housey house shape, but I have been dreaming of a red front porch for years. I think it weights the house down to meet the ground. Red/orange is the best color in Maine, next to the bright blue sky and trees. Also, the color is a little tongue-in-cheek reference to Maine lobsters.

  1. Jennifer says:

    I love everything about this house–truly inspiring.

  2. Susan says:

    I just love this place! The pine and white look so great together and the whole place is so simple and clean. Love the fun with the chairs and the way you repurposed so much from the original house. Very homey. ..I could move right in.

  3. Raina says:

    Wow. So many perfect moments in this house. Love: the natural wood, chairs, orange porch, bathroom cabinet. Where is the knot rug from?

  4. I love this space…wonderfully eclectic…Where is the white, iron headboard on the first pic from?

  5. Paige says:

    I appreciate that so much of the home and objects/art within it are handmade or come from a special time. It makes for a pretty unique space. Inspiration for us all!

  6. P says:

    Great to see a Maine house show up on here. They are too few and far between. In recent years, architects in Maine have been having an absolute field day with the amazing structures available to work with: from rustic and worn barns to seaside cottages. In addition to that, the ability to work with an incredible amount of natural light that most homes get and the surrounding natural environment that is plentiful, homes in Maine are becoming works of art and at a great price. More Maine homes please!

  7. Eliana says:

    I think the multiple beds in the guest room is absolutely genius! Also love that they decorated with their own art. Truly inspiring.

  8. am LOVING those orange stairs!

  9. victoria says:

    i love all the pops of white against the natural wood. a modern cabin!

  10. amy says:

    absolutely beautiful! lovelovelove the double sinks – so creative and unique.

  11. WOW, speechless. I just LOVE all the wood and the orange stairs out front!

  12. VisualJill says:

    This place satisfies all my rustic/handmade/reused wood cravings. Unbelievable. The use of those bathroom sinks is genius. SO GREAT to see a home that doesn’t look or feel like everything else out there.

  13. courtney says:

    This is gorgeous. I love all of the natural wood with splashes of color. I especially love the bedroom in the first image. The bed frame is so pretty, and I love all of the different colored pillow cases. I think I might have to try something similar.

  14. swati says:

    Whoa! Just voted for your room in the AT Room for Color contest last week!

  15. Val says:

    Love the white/wood combo! And the ceiling tile wall.

  16. susan says:

    I love it all…..

  17. Gorgeous home! I adore these cozy, eclectic spaces!

  18. Martha says:

    swoon swoon swoon

  19. Maggie says:

    This home is beautiful – makes me want to move to Maine! May I ask where you got your front (or back?) door? I’m having trouble finding nice doors.

  20. Rinna says:

    Holy moly! A positively curated house! That knitted rug is amazing is there any more info on it?

  21. Rick Shaver says:

    Okay, that orange porch. PERFECT. Then the serenity of each and every room, just beautiful. I want to walk through the house in bare feet feasting my eyes on every object in every space. YUM!

  22. Karen says:

    Where oh where did they get the blue knit rug in one the master bedroom??????? LOVE IT SO.

  23. I really like the fact that this place is a home. The timber boarding internally adds a nice softness and the orange steps contrast beautifully against the white cladding

  24. Jillian says:

    The exterior of the house is adorable, and I love how many of the little details they did themselves. I also think the guest room is a fantastic idea. I would love to have twin beds in my guest room.

  25. What a great idea with the bed linen. I have never thought of mixing it up like that! Love your blog :D

  26. Hear hear, P! Not surprised that such creative talented artists would be drawn to Belfast – its such a wonderful town!

  27. Trish says:

    I loveeverything about this interior. I’m going to be dreaming about it.

  28. niki says:

    I love this house!!! Can you please come help me decorate my house!?!?!?

  29. Bev Weidner says:

    This is UNBELIEVABLE. Could I just sleep in that one corner? Please?

  30. Lovely Mrs E says:

    Just beautiful – peaceful – charming – eclectic. PERFECT!

  31. Craig says:

    Really, really nice place. Not sure how I would manage with the kind of ‘sauna’ feel? Being a lover of wood, I’m sure id be okay!

  32. teresita says:

    love the place, and the deconstructed chairs are genius!

  33. I love this house! My family has a small cabin on a lake in Maine and I would LOVE to do something like this to it. I especially like the small details like the way they did the minimal trim around the windows. It makes the outdoors look like a piece of artwork on the wall. So homey and rustic. Great job!

  34. Ohhh lovely little place~

    An exercise in restraint with its natural pine walls, white accents…..the homemade artwork in select places. But very warm, and cheery! I love it.

    This little place reminds me of my aunt’s cabin in the interior of BC, on a remote lake. It brings back summer memories for me as a kid. Thank you for that. :)

    And the red porch ROCKS.


  35. jenni o says:

    wow, I think this is one of my favorite sneak peeks, so different from all the rest. I love the chairs hung on the wall and the way the art is hung so close together, bending around a corner. And I really want to be sitting in front of that wood stove with a blanket!

  36. April says:

    Love how simple and clean the interior is, so much wood to love! The bathroom floor tile is really great, too.

  37. Ellen says:

    Brings back so many fond memeories of living in Belfast, Maine myself …..(lived in a beautifuul, light filled apt. in the old Opera House building many years ago)…..miss the authetic, quirky houses…time for a trip back Noreast!!

  38. Charlene says:

    You can tell that artists live in this home…it’s not pretentious or self-conscious though. i love it and the pieces are really interesting!

  39. ingrid says:

    question! they moved to brooklyn this fall, and then also renovated this place over the summer? i think the term “operations” is throwing me off.

  40. eva says:

    oh man, that planetary mobile! i’d be a happy guest.

  41. Corinne says:

    Annie and Caleb! I’m so happy to see your work on DS!! Yah! I hope Danny & I see you soon… maybe in Maine? :)

  42. erin abott says:

    Love Love Love this house! Annie, I can’t wait to come and visit you up there one of these days. So glad Amy and Grace let us see another one of your homes.

  43. Sara says:

    I’m so glad I got to see the whole house- I love all the details and the color choices – thanks for sharing.

  44. Ana says:

    Amazing! Congratulations!

  45. Just wondering: did you have to do anything behind those ceiling tiles to make the wall fireproof under code?


  46. Roberta Zehr says:

    We are bldg our retirement home on our NYS dairy farm and want to do ceilings, walls and floors (not all) in pine. In the old farm house I’ve had some experience, the problem is with polyurethane finish the wood ambers. Have you left your wood unfinished/what finish did you use?


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