Designer Podge Bune takes us on a tour of her Hamptons home and shares her beach house decorating ideas. Read her full interview to see how she transformed a 1970s gray house into a unique and whimsical, English-style cottage.
"Everything in this room has a story," Bune says. "The painting of women on a beach was the first thing my husband and I bought when we came to New York. There's a portrait of my dad when he was a little boy, a photograph that my son took when he went to save the gorillas in Uganda. We all have certain things that are important to us and we travel with them, like a snail with his shell."
An old fishmonger's sign hangs over a sitting area just off the fireplace.
An old pie cupboard in eye-catching turquoise provides more storage for china.
In the dining area, an antique Swedish table seats eight. "In England, you talk to the person on the left and then the right, and you gossip. At the end of dinner I often wondered, 'What was that all about?' Here, with only eight, you can have one conversation." Lifting the ceiling meant more room for bookshelves and her collection of scrapbooks.
The dishes are antique ironstone, and the place mat is made from leftover fabric. "We English are very frugal," Bune says. "And nothing really matches. I take my cue from the garden, where you can have lots of colors and nothing ever clashes."
Redouté prints and a touch of chinoiserie add color to the master bedroom. Coverlet by .
Bune forgot to measure before she left for an antiques show. Luckily, the mirror she found for the master bath just fit. The cabinets were originally in the kitchen; she topped them with and fitted them with a sink.
On the shed, Garden Cucumber moves to the walls and Cactus Flower becomes the trim.
A rose-covered archway frames the front door.
The steps down to the beach from this Hamptons cottage are marked with railings covered in driftwood. "I just nailed it on and added a few shells," Bune says. "I have to redo a bit every year because the wind takes it."
Bune chose her roses for their scent and didn't worry about color. "I thought, 'Well, let's just have a riot.' I'm so bored with all white. But be warned. Roses are persnickety. I have to do a little nip and tuck every day."
The vivid pink paint on the house is 's Cactus Flower, with Garden Cucumber trim.
Four hammocks amid the trees are very tempting on a lazy afternoon.
A teak table and chairs from is set with china Bune bought years ago at Habitat. She had the teak deck made with no nails: "It makes the most incredible difference, especially when you're barefoot." The rock in the distance is crowned with a Buddha. "I'll sit up there and look out at the water, and all's right with the world."