Find us in New England Home’s Summer Cape and Islands Issue!

Creating beautiful, gently green interiors is both my work and my passion, but there’s a special pleasure involved when I work in a home of architectural significance.  New England Home Magazine’s Summer Cape and Islands Issue features Dujardin Design interiors in just such a place:  a home designed by architect Hugh Newell Jacobsen in Sconset, on Nantucket Island.


Photography:  Michael Partenio

Designed by Mr. Jacobsen in 1990 and untouched since it was built, it is a prime example of the Jacobsen style:  a large center pavilion flanked by “outbuildings” recalling the barns, detached kitchens and smokehouses of rural America.  The house fits perfectly into the Nantucket landscape, with gray exterior and minimal trim.


Photography:  Michael Partenio

The interiors we created preserved all the original details of the house, and celebrated Mr. Jacobsen’s vision, while fitting the home to the new owners’ lifestyle, and resulting in more healthful surroundings.


Photography:  Michael Partenio

It was our pleasure to carefully select striking furniture and fixtures to mirror the clean lines of the house, while infusing the home with quiet luxury.


Photography:  Michael Partenio

Be sure to pick up a copy of the Cape and Islands Issue, and enjoy a visit to a bright, sun-filled, truly American home!



The Pleasures of Summer at Pumpkin Pond Farm

Photography:  Kevin McGowan

One of my favorite places on Nantucket is Pumpkin Pond Farm, a certified organic 9.5 acre farm and nursery located at 25 Millbrook Road.   Owner Marty McGowan, his wife Holly and his sister Mary have created an Eden-like oasis of color and flavor, offering a wide variety of delicious vegetables and greens, along with trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals and just for good measure, rare and beautiful antique garden ephemera.

They are dedicated to sustainable agriculture and good soil science, in addition to planting for color and beauty as well as taste.  Marty prides himself on being a nutrient rich-organic food source for the island.  More people are becoming aware that local food is healthier than food that has to travel long distances to reach our tables.  Pumpkin Pond also buys seeds and heirloom varieties only from certified organic providers.


Photography:  Kevin McGowan

“I have fun discovering the provenance and stories behind many of the heirloom varieties we grow,” says Marty.  For anyone interested in the story behind their heirloom vegetables, he suggests a visit to Gary Ibsen’s TomatoFest.

You’ll find both French and Italian varieties of herbs and greens, fields overflowing with fragrant flowers for cutting and 26 different kinds of heirloom tomatoes.  (Plan on attending their August tomato tasting for an exploration into sweet and delicious pairings with cheese, wine and salami from Boston’s North End.)


Photography:  Kevin McGowan

A tropical greenhouse is home to banana plants, gardenias, passion flowers and ginger, along with a wide variety of succulents.  20,000 varieties of annuals add an explosion of summer color, and their extensive tree and shrub collection, along with a wide selection of hydrangeas, make a visit to the farm an experience you won’t forget.

A new addition this year an herb garden, where they’re exploring new and exiting varieties of herbs, such as an oregano from Greece or Spain, and paprika from Africa.  The herb gardener, fondly known to as “Farmer Josh,” makes wonderful herbal sun tea fresh daily.  A favorite of visitors is Chocolate Mint with Chamomile; stop by and try some!


Photography:  Kevin McGowan

Holly, Marty’s wife, is the creative vision behind their unique collection of garden ephemera.  You can find both classic and eclectic ornaments, furniture and urns to grace your garden there.

One of their favorite events happens July 25-28 when the Nantucket Garden Festival takes place. It’s one of the season’s most popular events for islanders and non-islanders alike.    The farm hosts the Opening Night party from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on July 25th; add it to your calendar now.

Hope to see you there!






People Can Be Hazardous to Your Health, Too! Guest Blogger Debbie Phillips

Photography:  Rob Berkley

 I’m delighted to share the wise words and thoughts of a special friend and this month’s guest blogger, Debbie Phillips.  Debbie is an author, speaker and the founder of Women on Fire, an organization that promotes women’s success through inspiration, strategies and support.  She and her husband, Rob Berkley, conduct “Vision Days,” life coaching retreats on Martha’s Vineyard which have helped me tremendously in my own life and work. 

I’ve just completed a weekend of Vision Days, and am re-energized with new goals, both personal and professional.    Please enjoy Debbie’s insights here, to inspire you in your own life.

You’d never roll toxic paint onto your beautiful living room walls.

And, you wouldn’t hand your precious child a cadmium-tainted toy.

Ditto for cleaning solvents with odors that knock you on your heels.

So, why on earth would you ever allow a toxic human being to contaminate you, your lovely environment and your peace of mind?

In my nearly two decades working as a life and executive coach, how to handle toxic people is right up there with “how do I discover my life’s purpose?”

Almost everyone has someone who wreaks havoc on their well-being – and many people live with an abundance of toxic intruders.

The offenders range from help-rejecting complainers to down-right nasty or hurtful people who zap your energy, leaving you physically or emotionally drained.

These include people with explosive tempers, offensive and annoying behaviors, people without boundaries who trample all over yours.  There may even be people you don’t feel physically safe to be around.

“But I’m related to her,” I will often hear.  Or, “he’s my boss and I’m at his mercy.”

There is good news!

Just as you can transform your home from toxic to eco-friendly, you can do the same to your life by removing toxic human energy.

Photography:  Rob Berkley

By following these steps you are on your way to a “greener life”:

1)      Make a list of toxic people in your life. They can be relatives, co-workers, bosses, friends, neighbors, anyone you may feel dread seeing, thinking about or being with. If you’re not sure who is toxic in your life, ask someone you trust who cares deeply about you.  Sometimes we’ve put up for so long with someone toxic that we become numb to the abuse.

2)      Create a scale from 1 to 5 — with 1 being annoying to 5 being harmful or destructive to your spirit and well-being.  Now rate each toxic person on your list.

3)      Starting with anyone who receives a 3 or higher score, decide how you wish to handle.

Photography:  Rob Berkley

Here are some effective ways for handling most toxic people:

1)      Minimize your contact with them.  Just because you’ve known gossipy, negative Jane since the 6th grade, it doesn’t mean you have to keep her on your invitation list or accept one from her.

2)      Declare your space a Positive Zone.  One client informed her toxic mother that she would no longer participate in any negative criticism about family members.  She then told relatives that if they heard through the grapevine anything she said that was less than flattering, they could be assured it wasn’t true. She created a Positive Zone in her life.  It worked! Over time, she simply politely excused herself from family conversations that devolved into character assassinations of others.

3)     Calmly and clearly inform toxic offender that “it’s not OK to yell, criticize, berate, etc.” Let them know you will remove yourself from the situation.

Photography:  Rob Berkley

You’ve turned the corner to a more non-toxic life when you can easily answer these questions and make a choice:

1) Does this person leave me feeling depressed, demoralized, belittled, misunderstood, criticized or exhausted?

2) Or, does this person leave me feeling uplifted, supported, understood, respected, cared about, and alive with possibilities?

May your life be filled with eco-friendly people!

Debbie Phillips  and her husband Rob Berkley live on Martha’s Vineyard and in Naples, FL.  Learn more about Debbie and her work at or at  www.visionday.comAll photos kindly provided by Rob Berkley.  See more of his work at


Photography:  Rob Berkley