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A Former Baseball Player's Property Is Reinvented For Modern Suburbia

By Michael McCarthy | October 12, 2020 | Home & Real Estate

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Owning a 7,246-square-foot home that was custom designed and built by a major league outfielder is a brilliant conversation-starter at cocktail parties. Then reality sinks in. A family with several young children loved their new home built by former Red Sox Carl Crawford in Wellesley—it even had a massive batting cage, which had to go—but needed some revamping to fit their lifestyle. David Supple and his team from New England Design & Construction (nedesignbuild.com) took on the project and quickly created several solutions, including a separate entrance and a traditional New England roofline, to make a significant impact on aesthetics and daily living. The firm partnered with A Blade of Grass for exterior changes that amped up family fun. “From the moment I saw this site, I felt it was an opportunity to create something extraordinary—striking while harmonious,” says Supple. “The innate challenge was how to craft the original grand architecture into a classically dignified yet warm family home, while seamlessly shifting the primary focal point of the property.”

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ROOF APPEAL

The barrel copper roof is a striking design feature and keeps with the traditional Boston architecture and design; it’s reminiscent of the Massachusetts State House—elegant yet warm and inviting. “The innate challenge of designing and introducing a barrel copper roof to a traditional home is there is no margin for design error with such a prominent element,” says Supple. “The copper patinas as it ages—the color and design now integrate seamlessly into the environment. With this arrangement, we gently draw the guest’s attention and craft a new primary entrance to the home, evident by design. Guests are drawn in, and it flows seamlessly.” Adding to the look: The cantilevered exterior roof is crafted with rich mahogany.

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TRANSITIONAL SPACE

David Supple’s team designed and built an additional entrance, which serves as a gradual transition from interior living spaces to the tranquility evoked by new landscaping. It’s now a warm receiving area for guests, with slate herringbone flooring and custom trim and millwork crafted by New England Design & Construction. A custom-upholstered banquette, also crafted by the company’s millwork specialist, provides for a variety of functions, including casual dining, a work-from-home space and a hub for children’s activities.

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KEEP IT NATURAL

New England Design & Construction teamed up with Blade of Grass to use lots of natural stone on the stairs (thermal bluestone with New England fieldstone risers). The effect provides a natural element and visual grounding to the home’s overall aesthetic.

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STATE OF PLAY

For outdoor beauty and fun, A Blade of Grass launched a master landscaping plan that included a fire pit and an outdoor basketball court that converts to an ice-skating rink for the Massachusetts winters. The team achieved a greater connection between the home and yard by raising the backyard grades and terracing the patio spaces—allowing a gradual progression from kitchen to grill area and from fireplace and back lawn area. Plantings included reliable long-blooming, whiteflowering hydrangea like Quick Fire and Grandiflora. Larger evergreen screening trees, such as green giant arborvitae and Canadian hemlock, were planted, along with shade trees like sugar maples and river birch.



Photography by: Ed Glick, Glick Creative Group