Boston Home

Hunter Hill Creates a Whimsical Bunkhouse Beach Retreat

Mother-daughter design duo Hunter Hill conjures a sentimental summer-camp vibe in a Cape Cod guest bedroom.

“We didn’t sit down and design this all at once; we collected interesting pieces along the way,” Archambault says. In addition to vintage finds, they pulled in pieces from local companies and big-name brands. The Annie Selke natural jute rug with geometric stitching is textural, forgiving and a fun counterpoint to the orderly gingham and pinstripes. / Styling by Sean Williams / Photo by Tamara Flanagan

Karen Cacciatore has never experienced sleepaway camp, but she adores a summer-camp aesthetic. The cozy but breezy bedroom in the new guest cottage behind her 1850s farmhouse in Chatham channels a bunkhouse-meets-beach-house vibe with a thimbleful of grandma chic mixed in. “It’s a touch kitschy,” the designer admits.

Before Cacciatore and her daughter/design partner, Colette Archambault, started sifting through antiques shops, they tasked architectural designer Zibrat & McCarthy to mimic the roofline of the historic main residence. The directive ensured that the dwelling didn’t feel out of place and created an all-important architectural element: eaves. “Every decision was about creating the feel of being tucked into an attic,” Cacciatore says.

The room, like the rest of the cottage, which doubles as a pool house, is wrapped in nickel gap painted the duo’s go-to white, Sherwin-Williams’s “Alabaster,” a soft shade that never reads yellow or gray. The planks are a just-warm-enough backdrop for the maple Jenny Lind spindle beds that are, obviously, tucked under the eaves.

Gingham sheets and pinstriped ottomans that stand like trunks at the foot of each bed provide timeless color and pattern that will flex as the family grows. Amish-style quilts hearken back to ones Cacciatore remembers her grandmother making.

As for accessories, vintage tennis rackets from the Brimfield Antique Shows kicked off the scheme, while felt pennants and a seascape in a vintage carved frame discovered in a dusty bin at nearby Harwich Antiques lend quirk and a sense of place. Swapping out the sconces’ transparent glass shades with lobster-red ones was the final pop required for an authentic Americana feel. “The space is all about nostalgia,” Archambault concludes.

Architectural Designer Zibrat & McCarthy Designs
Builder Fore & Aft
Interior Designer Hunter Hill

First published in the print edition of Boston Home’s Summer 2024 issue with the headline “New England Nostalgia.”