This magnificent shingle-style home is as suited to its lot on Walloon Lake as it would be on the New England coast, where the classic 19th-century style was born. Take a look inside + view building resources below.

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The Petoskey-based firm White & Liebler Architects specializes in designing period homes for 21st-century living. So, when the new owner of a 1990s log home on Walloon Lake came to Nick Liebler with the hopes of updating the interior and transforming the exterior into a classic shingle-style home, he was all in. “The owner is well-traveled and has a great appreciation for architecture,” Liebler says. Shingle style was first popularized in the 19th century on the New England coast, around the time of the American centennial. Among those to embrace and popularize the style were legendary New York architects McKim, Mead & White, who were drawn to the simpler, more American trend rather than the ornate styles that had reigned during the Victorian era.

The blueprints to transform the log home were complete when the contractor, Scott Kennard of Harbor Springs’ Wentworth Builders, sounded an alarm about the foundation. His opinion: the foundation was unstable. The log home was a teardown. Liebler agreed. After mulling over the setback, the homeowner saw it as an opportunity to customize his home from scratch. Liebler hit the drawing table again, and came up with this Shingle-style masterpiece outfitted with all the amenities of luxe modern living—made a reality by Wentworth Builders and its team.

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

The crux of what makes this home Shingle style are the natural shingles that cover the entire exterior: Alaskan yellow cedar on the walls and red cedar shingles on the roof. Indeed, true to the overlapping Arts & Crafts and Shingle-style periods, all of the materials used in the home are natural, including the copper terrace roof and gutters, and the natural stone used in the fireplace, chimney and landscaping. The organic materials are pulled together by a custom trim and window-cladding shade of deep charcoal-green. “The subtlety of that green is incredible,” says Kennard. “It just glows.”

Traditional elements continue on the interior, including architecturally-accurate trims and moldings, custom-crafted built-in cabinetry and use of natural materials including wide-plank vintage white oak flooring, locally harvested basswood shiplap paneling and Douglas fir beadboard. A screened-in sleeping porch off the master bedroom completes the home’s classic, lost-in-time feel. “That old- cottage feel was something that the homeowner really wanted to experience,” says Liebler. Both the sleeping porch and the balcony off the guest suite above look out onto the back side of the home where there is a view of a pond on the property next door. “It’s this really tranquil, peaceful setting—it looks like ‘On Golden Pond,’” Liebler says.

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

The ambiance of a bygone era, indeed, but the home supports a cutting-edge lifestyle from its open floor plan to the kids’ bunk room (above the garage) that is outfitted with built-in bunks, each completed with charging stations and television screens. Both Liebler and Wentworth agree, however, that what makes this home truly live modern is its connection to the waterfront. “Today’s current standards for the way people live on the water is a lot differ- ent than it was even 30 years ago,” Liebler says. “One of the key features is that when you step in the front door, there is a straight line of sight out to the lake so that you’re immediately drawn to the outside. This kind of relationship between the indoor spaces and the outdoor spaces is re- ally important, and we have a lot more opportunities to make that happen today—more even than, say, in the 1990s—as far as the amount of glass that can be on the lake side.”

After that initial watery view from the entrance, a custom wet bar situated on the lake side of the great room beckons, and in turn opens to a covered terrace outfitted with a state-of-the-art outdoor kitchen. From the terrace, a short, winding slate path leads to an in-ground hot tub. All of the landscaping, of course, culminates on the sublime Walloon Lake waterfront. The beautiful irony of this home is that, despite all of its cutting-edge amenities, it blends perfectly into its rustic, wooded shoreline. “That nestled-in character on the lake was something the owner wanted to preserve,” Liebler says. “He didn’t want it to feel like this was a brand-new house—it looks as though it has been on the site for 100 years.”

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Walloon Lake Cottage Building Resources

Architect | White & Liebler
Contractor | Wentworth Builders
Building Materials | Preston Feather
Kitchen Design | O’Brien Harris (formerly Signature Kitchens)
Windows | marvin.com, prestonfeather.com
Painting | Exodus Painting
Paint | Sherwin-Williams 
Roofing | Lemieur Roofing, 231.838.1530
Millwork | Phillip Elenbaas Millwork elenbaasmillwork.com, Thomas & Milliken Millwork, tmmill.com
Marble & Granite | TJ Marble and Granite
Flooring | Everlast Floors
Stone | Capital Granite
Plumbing & Heating | W.W. Fairbairn & Sons
Automation | Spire Integrated Systems
Landscape Architect | Common Ground Landscapes, 231.313.2642
Landscaping | Robinson’s Landscaping & Nursery
Gutters | Michigan Gutters

Photo by Jacqueline Southby

Photo(s) by Jacqueline Southby