Sheila and Eric Werner had always wanted a space in their home where they could enjoy Michigan’s four seasons within a window-wrapped retreat. Like many folks, they looked to Instagram for inspiration. Unlike most folks, however, the Werners drove nearly 200 miles to see it in real life.
“We’re hard-core about architecture and design,” Sheila Werner says with a laugh.
That room — in a model home in Ontario — “was the first time I really saw the ‘industrial loft’ look incorporated into a custom home,” Werner says. “It gave a very modern urban vibe while still having a feeling of living in a warm and inviting home.”
Firming up their plans, they contacted Stephen McKay of Shelby Township-based Cranbrook Custom Homes and then interior designer Cheryl Nestro, owner of Tutto Interiors in Northville, to bring their vision to life.
“We built the house on the premise of wanting a four-season room, and that space was laid out first,” Werner says.
The empty nesters moved into their new home, with their glass-wrapped fantasy space just off the kitchen, in February 2021. Here, Sheila Werner provides details on everything from how to bring the outdoors in to her favorite features and furnishings.
For the floors, the couple chose “Sassy Graphite” porcelain tile from Cercan Tile in Troy, which “wasn’t in our budget,” Werner says. “But Cheryl said, ‘You have to do it; it will look like glass!’ She was right.”
A long table with a wood veneer comes in handy for meals and games. The chairs, from North Carolina-based furniture store Hickory Chair, are upholstered with wool fabric featuring a chevron pattern.
The room’s hard-wearing glass and aluminum doors, designed by Nestro, were created by Weldwork in Royal Oak. “They open inward toward the sunroom,” Werner says, “and they echo the look of the space’s dark aluminum-frame windows [by Quaker Windows & Doors] and the transoms.”
Can’t live without
The five cone-shaped, matte black pendant lights over the table were designed by Tech Lighting. “We [dim] them down; they create cool little halos that are reflected on the table,” Werner says.
Room with a view
“Our architect made sure we’d have optimal views based on the way he positioned the home — which is on 6 acres — and this room,” Werner says.
Through the windows of the space, which is about 25 by 16 feet with 13-foot ceilings, one can see the sun rise behind the home. The big draw is the expansive woodland area, which features old oak trees among a mostly hardwood forest.
Motor City Landscaping in Rochester Hills oversaw the landscaping and outdoor lighting.
Comfy & cozy
A down-filled sofa, Eames chair, custom Berber rug, large ottoman, and pillows with an organic pattern round out the look.
“I told Cheryl I don’t like orange, and the pillows have orange in them,” Werner says with a laugh. “Cheryl said they’re rust and that I need to bring the outside in with that pattern. I now love them! They’re not too loud and not too muted.”
Fire it up
The couple adores their woodburning fireplace — as do their pug, Phoebe, and Persian cat, Chowder. “We love natural fires. It’s messy, but you can’t beat it — the natural heat, the smell, and the feeling it gives you,” Werner says. Matte black tiles from Ciot in Troy surround the fireplace and tie in with the window framing.