Friday, June 19, 2009

Style at the Stevens Estate

Garden Party at the Stevens Estate in North Andover

I was just visiting one of my favorite design blogs, Elements of Style which is written by the talented (and humorous) Boston-based designer Erin Gates. For today’s “Fashion Friday entry, she notes that hot pink is one of the hottest new trends and posts some gorgeous pics to illustrate and inspire. Well I am glad to know that when I pulled out my peony-pink skirt last week (I bought it 5 years ago, but have always loved the designer-detail of its construction) that I was on the cutting edge of fashion as I attended an old-fashioned garden party ...

As this year’s program director for the Village Garden Club of Lynnfield, I booked the Stevens Estate Special Events & Conference Center in North Andover for our year-end event – a light and delicious catered meal set up outside this historical mansion (I am on the team of designers who are “adding sparkle” to this beautiful event property.)

Original rendering of the Stevens Estate by
Boston architects Hartwell & Richardson

Most of us wore hats (not quite Kentucky Derby, more garden inspired) ...

and the 20-or-so members from the club were able to enjoy each other’s company while sitting outside the veranda,

later touring the amazing architecture inside,

(Can't you just picture a bride – or the lady of the mansion –
floating down these stairs to greet her awaiting guests?)

then chatting over dessert and coffee while sitting beside original marble fireplaces in the intimate setting of the oak double parlors.

We had the entire estate to ourselves, and even though it can accommodate much larger parties, it felt cozy in an awe-inspiring way. Whenever I travel up the long, curvy drive that leads to the estate, I feel like I have “arrived ... almost as if I had lived back in the day (the mansion was built in 1886 for Charlotte and Moses Stevens, one of the founding families of North Andover and owners of a prosperous textile mill).

Check back for more posts that highlight the design updates we will be making to the estate. To book a tour or to inquire about scheduling your next event, contact the estate manager, Laura Gifford. The Stevens Estate is a hidden historical treasure that brings one back to the times when entertaining at home was grand-scale, dressed-up and high-style.

723 Osgood Street
North Andover, MA 01845
Phone: 978-682-7072

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