As summer approaches in earnest and I remember those wonderful lake side cottage visits as a young girl, I recall my love for the look that made those places so special. At that time in my life I’d never heard of “Adirondack Style” but I sure recognized it when I saw it. To this day the style has the ability to summon fond memories of those sun-drenched days spent on the lake.
Every summer at least one major home decor magazine does a spread on the Adirondack camp look, but none can match the beauty of the former Marjorie Merriweather Post estate, Topridge, located in upstate NY. It is one of the earliest examples of “Adirondack Style”; constructed during the 1890s in the timber frame tradition. The buildings and out buildings of the estate number in the teens and are a sight to behold; even in pictures! The boat houses bring the term timber frame to a whole new level as the frames of these structures are constructed from trees (some real, some fabricated), and I don’t mean logs, I mean entire trees; limbs, roots and all!
The interiors are equally spectacular. The use of Native American textiles and artifacts abound as does the use of the original Adirondack chair. Wood is everywhere; used not only in the structure itself but also in the furniture and the architectural details. Some is polished, some is rustic but all of it has the look and feel of the environment surrounding the estate.
You don’t need to own an estate with numerous outbuildings to achieve the Adirondack look. Some post and beam home owners have incorporated this style into their homes on a much lesser scale without losing either the look or the feeling of carefree summer living.
Think rustic, woodsy and relaxed; throw in a few Hudson Bay blankets and some accessories made from twigs and/or bark. Add a few Adirondack chairs and you’re ready for summer!