Design snapshot: Bustins Island Beaut

Waumbek, a cottage on Bustins Island, Maine, is one of roughly 100, mostly antique, small dwellings that ring the three-quarter-mile length of this summer community.

The deep porch, wrapping around the narrow, one and one-half story gable-end shades over-sized windows from harsh afternoon sun, while low window sills welcome softer daylight. Such generous windows can help a small space feel larger. I’ve written about the appealing pattern of “small house, big windows” in a previous design snapshot. The windows' black sashes add crisp borders, like eye-liner around twinkling eyes.

Waumbek is practically a porch with a house, rather than the other way round. The sizable porch adds invaluable outdoor-living space, furthering Waumbek’s surprising sense of spaciousness, considering its size.

Wide, cross-braced guard rails pick up on the broad strokes of the windows and ample porch, suggesting a more generous space than a busy, smaller-scale, baluster design would. Angled brackets on the porch posts quietly echo the cross rails and frame a more personable space between bays.

No surprise, I favor the gable-end treatment of green, accent shingles defining the tippy top, while a white, trim board, in-line with the second floor window-head trim, transitions to the yellow clapboards of the upper-middle section, above the lower porch roof.

To me, Waumbek is an ideal cottage, one to inspire future designs.

For additional reading about Bustins Island and its history, consider The Story of Bustins, a Maine Summer Island.

by Katie Hutchison for House Enthusiast