With a litrle nudging, Mike concurred. Reid got on writh creating a simple utilitarian form crafted from local ledge stone, rough-sawn cedar lap siding, and a rusted Cor-Ten steel roof. “Upon approach, the house isn’t very exciting, but when you get farther in and see how the building pushes our and up toward rhe lake, ir’s very dramatic,’ says Reid. He extended rhe inrerior rimber-frame rafters outside for additional effect.
A carefully conceived deck both expands the living space and continues the contemporary theme. “We used a minimalist steel railing to complement the architecture without impeding the panorama,” he adds.
THE INTERIOR: SMALL SPACE LIVING LARGE
Inside, the 1,100 square feet lives large thanks to ceiling heights that go from nine feet in the kitchen to a soaring twelve feet in the main living area. The ascending fir ceiling tops stone walls that blogend the space; durable concrete floors handle wet flip-flops and snowy boots with equal ease.
At the center, a bank of windows wraps around to meet stone on either side. The biggest expanse of glass was placed front and center to frame the mountain and lake tableau. “The largest pane is at eye level, and there are smaller units above and below
The cabin owners’ granddaughter has a great view while arranging flowers.
For ventilation,” says Reid. “And because rhe house is built inro rhe hillside, rhe cool earrh provides air-conditioning.’
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With such a simple material palette outside, Mike and Linda opted for a similar approach indoors. But simple doesn’t have to be boring. “Its not very fancy, but we wanted it to be fun so we added lots of color,” says Linda, noting many ol their selections were in direct response to the surrounding environment. “We chose those lime green dining room chairs because we see that color outside, and the painted turquoise backsplash in the kitchen references the lake. The orange bar stools are just lor fun.’ Frameless bamboo cabinets provide a quiet kitchen backdrop. To prevent the double-height island from looking too sleek, Reid mixed black granite on one end with a raised slab of reclaimed wood on the other. “1 thought using an old bar top for one section made it more casual and approachable,” he says. “This is Montana, after all.” Reid collaborated with his mother on the suspended cable lighting system that provides a glow when the sun goes down. “We didn’t want recessed cans because it’s not very energy efficient to punch holes in the ceiling,” he says. “This was a way to create good, adaptable lighting that fits with the architecture.”
In the master bedroom, soothing blues and browns mimic the hues in the stacked stone wall.
And, like the adjacent living room, the sleeping quarters enjoy spectacular vistas. “We can have snow until mid-July and can actually see the glacier from our bed,” says Linda. Wildlife sightings are a regular phenomenon in their neck of the woods as well. “We’ve observed a bald eagle migration and have even seen a moose swimming across the lake.
In such tight quarters, storage is always at a premium. So in lieu of space-hogging doors and closets, Reid introduced bamboo built-ins in the master bathroom. “It’s so much easier to pack and repack with this kind of storage setup,” he says.
No strangers to living out of a suitcase, Mike and Linda appreciate those little amenities 011 their ever-increasing visits to Swan Lake. “We’ve started coming here in every season, but summer is still the big draw,” says Mike. “We just wish the summer months were longer.”