Lived-in elegance on Callawassie Island

Watching a bald eagle take flight, soar and dive in the hunt for lunch is exhilarating. The scene connects us to our environment and brings us close to the wild.

It’s a view Maggie Baum enjoys daily from the home she shares with her husband, Daniel, amid the marshes, creeks, long-leaf pine trees and Spanish moss-draped live oaks on Callawassie Island. A neighborly bald eagle stops by their half-acre property almost daily, eats and perches in a tree nearby. She doesn’t know where it nests, but she follows its movement often from behind the lens of a telescope in her dining room.

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It’s not the only example of beauty and nature coexisting in harmony at the Baums’ house. The 3,500-square-foot home features classic, spacious interiors that flow seamlessly from room to room in a monochromatic palette — the work of interior designer Anne Hagerty of Anne Hagerty Interiors.

”I love the restraint,” she said. “The property is really beautiful. Sometimes a client who has a really beautiful view comes in and wants to do too much. They want window treatments and bright colors. To me, this home is quiet and simple in an understated way. The details of the woodwork, the trim, the cabinetry and finishes are so beautiful. The back of the house is all open for the view, which I love. I wanted to make it special without overpowering the view.”

Hagerty has been working with homeowners in Bluffton and Savannah since opening her company in Savannah in 2010. She later opened Abode Fine Home Furnishings in the heart of Bluffton. Her experience has given her a unique eye for colors and styles that complement the Lowcountry look.

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“The base of the house, whether the paint colors or finishes, are in the grays and neutrals,” she said of the Baums’ Callawassie home. “Maggie loves blue, so we brought in blue accents.”

That soft color base appears everywhere “to make the house feel like one home. Especially in an open concept home, there needs to be a sense of place,” she said.

The home exudes warmth and comfortable elegance thanks to elements like the brick-encased fireplaces in the great room and screened patio, as well as the brick in the homeowner’s entry and the sealed heart-pine flooring throughout the home. That lived-in elegance extends to the home’s furnishings, with their clean minimalist lines, as well as custom-made area rugs in neutrals, linen and cotton blend fabrics, dark natural wood, and custom-made cabinetry.

“The interior is updated, classic and timeless,” Hagerty said. “There’s a lot of clean lines. It’s very elegant and minimal but warm; we used a lot of warm building materials. The wood on the walls, for example: in some places we whitewashed it and other places we painted it.”

The house and its decor fit the Baums and their lifestyle perfectly.

“We’re kind of casual,” said Maggie Baum, a retired executive in the department store industry, who, with her husband, a retired insurance industry executive, bought their lot last year and moved into their home in September. “We like to cook and entertain.”

But while the home’s flow might be a perfect match for the Baums, the decision-making process wasn’t. It took a skilled negogiator to balance Maggie’s contemporary style with Daniel’s traditional preferences. That’s where Hagerty stepped in.

“He’s more traditional and I’m more contemporary Lowcountry with some traditional features, and we needed her to keep us friendly,” said Baum, a Boston-area native. “(Hagerty) was always the tie-breaker.”

“They came with two different perspectives,” Hagerty said. “Maggie was more modern and contemporary, and Danny was more mountain — the couple moved to the Lowcountry after spending 10 years in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. A lot of what we do is like marriage counseling, making everybody happy.”

The Baums and Hagerty originally met serendipitously. The Baums were leaving the upstairs office of Scott Pearce Architects in Bluffton when Maggie slipped into Abode on the ground floor to look around.

“I started talking to her one day in her shop,” she said of Hagerty. “It was a gut feeling, so I brought my husband in and he felt the same way.”

“With the clients, you know it’s a fit or not,” Hagerty said. “You want them to trust you.”

After all, it takes trust to let an interior designer like Hagerty turn your house into a home.


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