February 14, 2018
Together, the three companies that come under the auspices of the KingsHaven brand symbiotically breathed new life into a handsome mansion in Wayne, Pennsylvania, the de facto “capital” of Pennsylvania’s Main Line.
The 11,500-square-foot estate has held its majestic position at 100 Pembroke Avenue since having been designed in 1895. Famed architect William Price conceptualized the home in an European Arts and Crafts style with Gothic influences.
After KingsHaven Properties started work on the home two years ago, the residential real estate restoration and development company carefully retained the home’s extravagant proportions and exquisite details, while refurbishing its faded beauty through extremely thoughtful restoration practices and state-of-the-art construction methods (www.KingshavenProperties.com).
Modernity was added to the home via geothermal heating and air conditioning, luxury appliances, radiant floor heat and new data lines. Expansion details, such as a multiple-car Tudor-style garage and a refurbished third floor and basement, were implemented with the capable hands of talented design and renovation experts overseen by Lauren Wylonis and Ed Wylonis. The sister-brother team are the creative redevelopment and renovation experts at KingsHaven Properties.
The manor house’s façade is a graceful mélange of rust-colored brick, limestone trim and leaded glass windows. Upon entry, the home reveals Gilded Age glamour: A double staircase, exposed beams, a carved limestone fireplace, and walls that sweep upward to a 20-foot-high coffered ceiling.
To marry the patina of age with the functionality of modern day, Lauren and Ed collaborated closely with their interior design team at their sister business KingsHaven Design.
This involved KingsHaven Design’s creative Mimi Boston Johnson working with them focused upon reclaiming, restoring, and revitalizing the property, taking it into the 21st century, yet never losing sight of the estate’s esteemed past during the process.
They worked to infuse the home’s interior and exterior with hand-selected furnishings, luxury lighting and pristine architectural details consistent with the estate’s historic significance (www.KingsHavenDesign.com).
Lauren’s lifelong passion for art, antiques, and architecture led to her career in art and interior design and the founding of KingsHaven Design. Her unique vision of interior design was the foundation for the large-scale Pembroke project and numerous other notable estates and high end-commercial properties. KingsHaven Design was integral to the project, as its designers specialize in transforming timeworn interiors and exteriors into breathtaking spaces for inspired living.
The myriad design elements came directly from the KingsHaven brand’s third business, which is called, simply, KingsHaven (www.KingsHaven.com).
KingsHaven, for which Lauren serves as Chief Executive Officer, is a high-end maker of lighting, decorative accessories and furniture that is created collaboratively with artisans all over the globe. Ed is Chief Operating Officer for KingsHaven.
The KingsHaven products are European-inspired, which made them perfect for the Main Line estate rehabilitation project.
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Since lighting yields both illumination and aesthetic design for a home, KingsHaven’s in-stock and numerous customized fixtures were installed on the interior and exterior at Pembroke to full advantage. Made of exotic woods and hand-forged iron, KingsHaven’s lights are steeped in historic styling, but are created with a transitional flair that accommodates modern and transitional interiors as well as practical daily life.
For lovers of historic homes, to give new life to such a grand estate is the stuff of dreams. It involves extensive planning, design and installation exercises that go far beyond choosing the right wallpaper or replacing an aged architectural element. It’s a feat of design and development serendipity. But, this is the beauty of design-based teamwork through the mutual businesses of KingsHaven Properties, KingsHaven Design and KingsHaven. They manage to complete serendipitous feats of breath-taking design to fulfill the dreams and aspirations of homeowners for beautiful, luxurious spaces with a sense of chic style and élan.
To see mismatched or out-of-character accents and accessories on a historic home is an exercise in heartache for devotees of architectural beauty. This is one of the many reasons KingsHaven creates artisan products that embrace, and improve upon, the centuries-old designs of Europe. The quality level found in historic mansions, such as this Main Line manor, fairly dictates that nothing less than excellence will do.
Beyond a canopy of trees lies the historic manor at 100 Pembroke Avenue, a home originally built for Philadelphian Jacob Reed, whose venerable Reed's Sons' Store had served as esteemed clothiers since 1824. Refurbishing it resembled the act of falling in love, with equal doses of passion and prudence for KingsHaven’s businesses and staffs.
There is a whiff of an English university in the quiet cloisters of this grand manor. It is only fitting that such areas should have prominent lighting to match. The perfect fixture to grace the home’s front entrance was found in the medium-size Agincourt Lantern Sconce, a handcrafted English Gothic lantern that features antique-style drawn glass, with its velvety finish, from Germany. The design is inspired by a turn-of-the-century fixture acquired by KingsHaven.
One each of the large Agincourt Lantern Sconce was chosen to flank this limestone-trimmed window. The sconce was inspired by the same antique fixture as was a smaller version, but it has slight differences. There is a scroll design at the bottom and a twisted, iron cord wrapped around the top in a nod to English barley twists. It is available in multiple finishes.
To make a statement, one need not be in Philadelphia ringing the Liberty Bell. Rather, the placement of this large Bond Street Pendant will have all eyes transfixed. Made of iron, this hip pendant is reminiscent of London’s West End Bond Street, where elegance and cutting-edge design are the norm. This fixture is stocked in the circle motif, but it may be custom ordered with different shapes or even initials and various finish colors via KingsHaven.
When distilled to its essence, the aim of KingsHaven is to marry the patina of age with the functionality of modern day. Nowhere was this truer than with the Main Line project in which a gorgeous home couldn’t have one fixture looking out of place or behaving like a cranky antique. The Tudor Chapeau Lantern Sconce, Curl Back, blends seamlessly with the English design roots of the home, featuring an elongated cone roof that exemplifies classic Tudor style. With the curved ribbon strapping, the lantern adheres to a rectangular backplate and can be mounted indoors or outdoors. It also is customizable.
The rich and stately feel of great English estates is in the details, as with this exposed stone style at the 100 Pembroke Avenue home. It is matched by the accessories, as with the Tudor Chapeau Lantern Sconce, Square Back. Like the Curl Back version, this lantern imbues the home with the English vibe it deserves. Attached to the rectangular backplate, it mounts smartly indoors or outdoors.
The home’s vast living area mirrors the style of England’s medieval and Arts and Crafts architecture. Despite the grandeur found in its two-story ceiling height and majestic staircase, the room retains various cozy spots, making it the sort of space that could easily host a wedding or, conversely, quiet reading or perhaps a family’s rambunctious dogs and playful children.
The lofty space of the home’s second-floor landing simply begged for the dramatic design of this iron chandelier; there was no way around it. KingsHaven customized this fixture, as it can with any of its offerings. The closest “off the rack” fixture is the Thames Chandelier, which introduces a stunning hand-tooled quatrefoil surrounded by hand-hammered iron torches. The Thames is reminiscent of French ironwork from the turn of the century and combines traditional texture with Old World design. It makes the first and an impressive statement upon entering the manor.
The home is rich with decorative wood details, as with this intricate example on the newel posts and caps of the grand staircase. Upon close inspection, one can see the two principal motifs of Gothic tracery carved into the posts: The pointed arch and the trefoil. Additionally, the balusters are formed into the “barley twist” form, which was originally a Baroque design of Spanish-Moorish origin. Such well-preserved details maintain the historic essence of the home’s 19th-century English Arts and Crafts style, and KingsHaven Properties and KingsHaven Design would have had it no other way.
This room is made more charming by its low wainscoting and classic pattern in the coffered ceiling. An overstuffed sofa and Os de Mouton chairs add to the distinction. A nod to both past and present is given by way of the Luna Globe, an updated version of an armillary sphere. The hand-crafted iron sphere is embraced by a beautiful ring of laurel wood with delicate graining, and it offers warm light and chic ambience. In this installation, KingsHaven customized the wooden ring with a hand-painted design and repeating motif.
So airy and light, the home has multiple dining areas. This bright dining room is bathed in natural sunlight that seeps through the windows. It needed accessories that glistened like the sun’s rays against water, so the Chancellor Globe was chosen. This extraordinary nickel-plated and glass chandelier dazzles as it hangs from an ornately designed crown. This classic English design by KingsHaven adds sparkling elegance to any setting. Various size options make it a focal point or lovely accent.
KingsHaven’s sconces appear throughout the Main Line manor. Installed in pairs, they add beauty and texture when they flank fireplaces and bathroom mirrors, and can be easily placed in formal or casual settings. This Charing Octagon Curved Arm Sconce, which was used to flank a bathroom mirror, features an upswept arm that proudly holds a hand-hammered iron torch. The octagonal backplate makes this sconce ideal for the transitional or traditional home. It is stocked in Charred Iron, Burnished Brass and Antique Nickel finishes, or it can be customized. The candle cover is available in white, black and cream.
A stately soaking tub was chosen to offer a divine respite from the day’s work and play. Why shouldn’t it be placed underneath a heavenly org of light? For the renovation, the KingsHaven team chose to install its small Chancellor Globe, which lends an unexpected hint of glamour to and bright panache to any room.
For one powder room, a single vanity was designed, built and installed by KingsHaven, one of the company’s unique and specialized home furnishings. Of note, these gorgeous vanities are handcrafted by artisans one piece at a time. In the Pembroke powder room, it was edged by a pair of Charing Hexagon Curved Arm Sconces. Made of wood and marble, this vanity is unique and can be customized to fit any decor. For ultimate versatility, KingsHaven furniture is offered in standard finishes and can be crafted in any paint or stain color requested.
The upper landing of the home reveals a depth of character that is incredibly rare in today’s homes, modern or historic. There is a classic elegance inherent in the espresso-stained exposed beams and coffered ceiling, as well as in the barley twist balusters, all of which were restored to their former glory by KingsHaven’s design and development arms. As a counterpoint, the walls were kept spare and calm, accented by the beauty of a series of KingsHaven’s Essex Double Arm Sconces.
Here, up close, it is easy to see that lighting the stairway, as it ascends to the upper floor, was made possible with KingsHaven’s Essex Double Arm Sconce. In its finish of Charred Iron, this distinctive sconce creates a crisp contrast against white wainscoting. Adapted from a French antique, the sconce features double torches which sweep upward from the transitional shield style backplate. Offering an impressive statement of light, this fixture can find a home as easily in a rustic modern kitchen as it can amid antiques in a distinguished living room.
Preserving windows for more than 100 years is not an easy feat. Luckily, the KingsHaven Properties team discovered the home’s original lead-paned and stained-glass windows were largely intact. Only a very few stained-glass pieces were unsalvageable, and KingsHaven Properties replicated perfect replacement pieces only where absolutely necessary. All others were painstakingly cleaned and repaired as part of the restoration process.
Welcoming guests as they enter, this charming parlor can be viewed from the home’s front door, straight past the grandeur of the living room. The room is comfortable and blends into the overall design scheme through a focal-piece painting with boats afloat on the water and the well-thought use of two French antique re-upholstered chairs. The low-slung bergères of the classic Os de Mouton, feature hand-carved stretchers in the motif of a sheep's horns. The wood has been meticulously refinished by hand, achieving a delicate sensibility.
Like these attractive chairs, KingsHaven acquires and sells antiques in any number of fabric and finish options. The Paoli, Pennsylvania showroom presents a changing variety of antique options that offer lovely touches of yesteryear found side by side with the many new furnishings and fixtures on display. Furthermore, KingsHaven staff is able assist with special requests.
Clearly, historic homes are an art form unique among the arts, because their beauty can be enjoyed through day-to-day life. KingsHaven understands the value and significance of such homes and works within its three branches to preserve architectural history for generations to come.
Visit www.KingsHaven.com or our showroom in Paoli, Pennsylvania, for appointing your own home superbly and beautifully for your family.
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Seeking to inspire and support the design community during this difficult time caused by the coronavirus, we have partnered with two of our favorite design product brands to bring you an exciting Virtual Design Challenge unlike any we’ve seen.