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Collective Collaboration

Designer Cathy Kert assembles a dream team for a seamless addition to her historic farmhouse in Pocasset.

Shy has never been a word anyone would use to describe interior designer Cathy Kert. Which is not to say that she is overbearing or boisterous. Instead, her grounded sensibilities give her a strong foundation, void of hesitation and insecurities. She is a woman who understands what she wants and what she needs. When the time came to renovate her nineteenth century home, Cathy Kert had a clear vision of what she wanted to accomplish. 

Pocasset had been a summer destination for the New Hampshire-based Kerts until they made the move full-time in 2016. “When we bought this house it had been abandoned for three years, was in great disrepair, and in need of someone who could see its true potential,” Cathy recalls. The home was originally built in 1893 by Jesse F. Barlow, a local sailor and a carpenter for whom the area is named, and Cathy believes that Barlow used leftover materials from his ships to build his home. In addition, the original foundation was still in place and consisted of rocks more than likely sourced from the shores of Red Brook Harbor, a stone’s throw away.

A new addition now accommodates an updated larger kitchen, additional living space, and a new poured foundation (adjacent to the original) that houses modern mechanicals to climatize the entire antique home. “As we started working on the project, it became clear this was our ‘forever house,’” Cathy explains. “So the decision to make the investment and upgrade the home to meet the way we live made a tremendous difference.” Cathy is fluent in the world of building plans, but she knows her limitations. “I can usually create most of the interior plans I need for a client, but I am terrible at rooflines,” she confesses.

Cathy drafted Eastham Architect Peter MacDonald to tackle that intricate puzzle, and he mastered it. “Yeah, that was tricky,” MacDonald explains. “Cathy had a really good idea of what she wanted to do and didn’t really need much, but how that addition on the back of the house married to the existing roof line and trim—we had spend a little bit of time on that. She’s right, it wasn’t easy.” Cathy confirms when she says, “Peter and I were a really great team. I knew what I wanted, and I knew what I wasn’t capable of, and Peter made my vision a reality.”

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