Design Project: A Modern Ski Chalet Weekend Retreat In Oregon

This modern ski chalet come mountain cabin in Oregon is a welcoming, low-maintenance weekend retreat for a growing family. You'll want to see their rather genius Ikea hack...

PROJECT

A modern mountain cabin that’s located in Government Camp, Oregon, with interiors by Casey Keasler of Casework interiors. The three keywords to steer the project were ‘gezellig’ (Dutch for cosy), ‘alpine’ and ‘funk.’ Alpine might sound obvious, given the location of the home, but this concept played out through the addition of functional, design-forward features like ample, accessible, discrete storage for snow gear at the entrance, and design tricks that minimise the need for snow removal and maximise natural lighting. Keasler also chose a simple palette of of black, white, and whitewashed wood, warmed up with pops of colour and pattern. The result is a matte black cabin with abundant personal touches, making a welcoming, low-maintenance weekend retreat for a growing family.

EXTERIOR

After a three-year stint abroad in Amsterdam with
 their two young kids, these owners had big dreams of a small chalet. Their time abroad informed their decision making and influences for the home. The active family wanted a low-maintenance weekend retreat that would ‘give energy and not take it away’. The starting point was a three story structure
 by Keystone Architecture built by Ethan Beck Homes with a sloping roof that could shoulder snow load, 
much like ski chalets sited above the treeline.

The tall, thin cabin calls to mind the century-old residences that line the canals of Amsterdam—with the addition of a sloping roof for functionality in the region’s heavy snow conditions.

The exterior is actually not a true black – it’s softer than that. Interior designer Casey Keasler wanted a colour that was a little more faded since the chalet has such a modern silhouette. She felt that a true black would be too stark, true black tends to show dirt and dust quicker. Casey pulled out her brushes and paints and blended the perfect black that has the softness she wanted to achieve, a shade that didn’t look freshly painted. The colour was extended into the interior in a gloss sheen on the trim, doors and window frames.

HALLWAY

A colourful rug adds warmth to this modern hallway that features black flooring and a steel bench with wood cubbies. The hallway is designed for gear management with hooks and a custom-made bench with storage baskets. The floors are made of durable, hospital-grade FLEXCO radial high-profile rubber. The colourful rug from Kat + Maouche softens up the stark interior.

LIVING ROOM

In the living room, the high ceilings make the space feel larger, while the angled windows allow plenty of natural light, and a black fireplace complements the black window frames.

The open-plan living space is anchored by a black brick fireplace with a sleek modern profile. The interior features statement accent pieces set against an overall neutral palette of whitewashed floors and white walls with black trim.

The client spent three years living in Amsterdam and the Rijksmuseum was near their home, which was a favourite spot. The Rijks offers free hi-res downloads of their masterpieces and they wanted to incorporate something Dutch in the chalet’s interiors. After sifting through paintings, Still Life with Flowers, by Jan Davidsz de Heem was the chosen favourite. Casey Keasler downloaded the image and went to work photoshopping the vase and adding flowers to create a bouquet. Once the bouquet was complete, she created a repeat and had it printed on heavy weight canvas, that was UV treated (because of all of the windows on the top floor) and stain treated (because life). It was upholstered on a naked Ikea corner sofa. Now it is a unique piece of furniture that reminds the family of their time abroad.

The fireplace, along with the abundance of floor cushions and fur throws make the cabin cosy – or ‘gezellig’, as the Dutch would say.

The home’s reverse floor plan places the bedrooms on the lower level of the home and the living space on the top floor. This makes sense due to the amount of snowfall in the area. Snow banks get so high in this town, that they often cover up windows on first and second floors of homes. Thus, with the living room upstairs there’s natural light where it is needed most.

The owners also wanted to put a ‘funky spin on things.’ This concept plays out in elements such as artwork with the lyrics to the Sugarhill Gang’s 1979 hip-hop hit “Rapper’s Delight.” The song has a very personal meaning for the couple – the first time the owner called her now-husband (in circa 1996), his answering machine had a recording of him and his roommate rapping this song.

KITCHEN

In the kitchen, lower black cabinets tie in with the black dining table, while white tiles and open corner shelving has been installed on the walls. Casey Keasler added thoughtful details like instant hot water for tea and a floor outlet underneath the kitchen table for raclette parties—’so no one would be tripping over the cord.’

Get the look: The kitchen rug is from Kat + Maouche. The dining area’s Salt Chairs are from DWR. The Factory Light 9 Pendant is from Schoolhouse.

MASTER BEDROOM

Simple floating shelves and single sconces have been placed on either side of the bed, while dark flooring contrasts the white walls.

Get the look: Bedding from Schoolhouse and an Isaac Sconce in brass

CHILDRENS’ ROOM

A set of wood bunk beds with a minimalist black ladder makes a cosy modern kids room.

Get the look: The children’s bunk beds are custom made

Get the look: Bedding and black Radar Sconces are from Schoolhouse.

BATHROOM

The black and white theme continues in the bathroom, with a brass light fixture adding a metallic accent.

Get the look: Astrid Sconce from Schoolhouse.

Interior Design: Casework 

Architect: Keystone Architecture Planning, Blane Skowhede

Photography by Mikola Accuardi

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