For years, Jeff and Ellen Miller spent their vacations sailing in Northern Michigan—so they had plenty of time to check out which small harbor town they might like to retire to someday. When that time arrived several years ago, they looked at properties up and down the coast and along inland lakes. When they discovered a sweet piece on the outskirts of Boyne City that included waterfront and a buildable lot with a garage on it, they knew they’d found home.
The couple figured they could find plans for their dream lake cottage online. After all, they weren’t looking to build anything grandiose. Just a small-to-medium sized contemporary Craftsman. But after an unfruitful search they gave up, frustrated. Every plan they found had the back of the house facing the water—they needed a blueprint for a home that fronted on the water.
The Millers first met the woman, Stephanie Baldwin, Owner & President of Edgewater Design Group, who solved that issue and a number of others on the Northern Home & Cottage Petoskey Area Home Tour back in 2015. Baldwin’s home that year was a smart, 2000-square-foot cottage on Crooked Lake with simple lines and a Craftsman sensibility. After seeing that home, the couple knew Edgewater Design Group was the right fit for them.
Edgewater Design Group did indeed come up with the perfect plan for the Millers. At 2,400 square feet, the simple Craftsman with its three bedrooms, vaulted ceiling in the great room and upstairs deck is everything the Millers wanted—including the fact that construction stayed within their budget. An extra courtesy of working with the talented design team is a screened-in porch facing the lake. (“She told us, of course you have to have a screened-in porch,” Ellen says. “And we love it!”)
Edgewater’s other touches are more subtle. The Millers wanted to keep the garage, but the home needed to be sited on a small knoll some feet away in order to capture the views of Lake Charlevoix across the street. The solution is a covered walkway and steps that are so artful they enhance the home.
Another favor Baldwin did for them was to connect them with Legacy Construction, a firm known for its craftsmanship and attention to detail. The Miller home is outfitted with custom molding, cherry cabinetry, a stunning custom range hood, built-in shelving and custom vanities. A warm hickory floor and a lovely earth-toned, Craftsman-style color palette pull it all together, while a fireplace mantel hewn from a tree taken on the property rounds out this gracious lake cottage.
You’ll see six incredible homes on the Petoskey Area Home Tour. Get your tickets at MyNorthTickets.com.