Designer Ann McCulloch’s clients spent years waiting for the perfect beach property. This one fulfilled all their requirements – panoramic views of a dynamic tidal zone as well as ample privacy. The existing home also had good bones. “My clients loved the character of this older contemporary house, but it felt cold and unwelcoming,” said McCulloch. “My work on their primary residence in Portland is very formal. For this vacation property, they wanted a more casual, relaxed, and warm approach.”

McCulloch and the team at Coaster Construction worked meticulously to preserve the original cedar walls and trim throughout the home. “Coaster’s level of care and craftsmanship was essential to some creative problem-solving. The clever built-ins around the new river stone fireplace facade and other restorative work blend seamlessly with the original construction,” McCulloch said.

“Restoration of extensive, aged cedar work like this is a meticulous bit of accounting,” said Andrew Forrest, Project Manager for Coaster Construction. “We kept every little piece of trim and board we disassemble to reassemble it. We de-nail, mark and number each piece, and carefully store it in case we’ll need it later – because we’d never be able to match or replace the vintage patina of the faded whitewash.”

McCulloch embraces a subtle beach theme throughout the home, including white tongue-and-groove paneling in the main bedroom and a crushed shell top on the dining table. A light patina on wooden furnishing, including the dining room chairs and writing desk from Cannon Beach’s Sesame and Lilies in the main bedroom, make a gentle nod to driftwood.

Lighting fixtures like the one from Ann McCulloch Studio in the dining area complement the décor without being a distraction from the main feature of the home – the view. “Everything in this home is oriented around relaxing and appreciating the natural beauty of the location,” said McCulloch.

McCulloch uses beachy blues as the primary accent color throughout, acting as an anchor to the white and neutral background. Most notable is the broad blue striped fabric on inviting seating in the living area. McCulloch worked with Serena and Lily on the custom sectional, pairing it with built-in banquet seating gracing the picture windows. “I’m a big fan of banquette seating,” says McCulloch. “It’s a magnet for gathering and relaxing.”

McCulloch accessorizes the home with natural and organic textures for a warm, lived-in vibe. Natural fiber linens and window dressings, weathered metal fixtures, and wicker lamps are a cozy touches throughout.

Other notable renovation features include a chef’s kitchen, additional garage, and a custom fireplace surround sourced in Sisters, Oregon. “Working with local makers and keeping an eye toward sustainably sourced and natural material is always a priority,” McCulloch says.


Coaster Construction

Ann McCulloch Shop & Studio

Shoptalk - Ann McCulloch

Ann McCulloch
Ann McCulloch Shop & Studio

What are some of your favorite projects you’ve worked on during your career?

Master Plans for historic homes are a passion of mine. A lot of older homes are not suited for a modern lifestyle. I find it extremely satisfying to create a home for a modern client while retaining the soul of an older home. When completed, the Master Plan allows the homeowner to have a big picture of the final home design before starting any work. It is very rewarding to start and complete each phase over the years.

You recently opened Ann McCulloch Shop & Studio, what led your move into retail?

I have had a retail space in the back of my mind for years and wanted a store that I would enjoy shopping in with some unique product that wasn’t available in Portland previously. Not everyone is interested in hiring a designer and with the shop we can assist customers with furniture and accessories and special orders no matter what size their project is.

What is your vision for your Shop & Studio?

My goal is to be a fantastic resource where customers can find furniture, lighting, fabrics and carpets. In addition we are carrying accessories; jewelry and other items that make great shower, hostess, birthday and Holiday gifts. We are sourcing from smaller companies (woman owned when possible) throughout the US and overseas, many of them do not sell on Amazon, meaning your purchase will be unique.

Many of our products are handmade. I recently visited a vendor in Mexico and watched the artisans creating the most beautiful metal boxes and wine coasters. I also am a vintage junkie and search estate sales and antique stores for beautiful antique treasures.

Favorite Era of Design?

Late 1800’s for all the revival styles and ornament. I have a particular fondness for Carnegie Libraries and look for them in every small town we visit. They are always architectural gems.

Favorite American City?

Butte, Montana because of the beautiful, though neglected architecture.

Prized Possession?

My Curtis photographs, purchased in my twenties.

Dream Vacation?

Montana, always.