Launch Slideshow

Hidden Gems

Reclaimed materials are a hallmark of custom builder Josh Wynne's projects.

Hidden Gems

Reclaimed materials are a hallmark of custom builder Josh Wynne's projects.

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    Matt McCourtney

    Ninety percent of waste was recycled during the construction of the 2,913-square-foot LEED Platinum home, located in a Sarasota, Fla., historic district.

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    Matt McCourtney

    Hand-hewn cypress beams salvaged from the Ringling Towers Hotel flank the fireplace.

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    Matt McCourtney

    The kitchen gets a unique touch from the teak pantry doors.

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    Matt McCourtney

    Egyptian doors add privacy to the study.

Reclaimed materials are a hallmark of custom builder Josh Wynne’s projects. They help foster an Old World, traditional look that his high-end homeowner clients adore.

Antique pieces dating back as far as 400 years grace many of his custom homes. “It adds instant character to my projects,” he says. “I started doing it on my own accord and now clients are asking for it to help recreate a certain type of interior atmosphere.”

This Sarasota, Fla., home features a set of 400-year-old teak shutters from Burma repurposed into pantry doors and the fireplace surround was customized with massive cypress beams salvaged from the nearby Ringling Towers Hotel before its demolition in 1998. Furniture and artifacts from the former landmark, built in 1926 as the El Vernona Hotel, were sold and auctioned by Sarasota Architectural Salvage.

Even though the home is the highest-scoring LEED dwelling in Florida, the project did not receive points for the reclaimed items. “It’s really a novelty, I can’t say that I’m using so much reclaimed material that it’s making a massive difference to the environment, but it does go along with an inherent philosophy that ties into the sustainability part of my projects.”

To find these treasures, Wynne peruses nearby warehouses and salvage shops and does some hunting himself when he travels. His favorite spots are out-of-the-way antique stores or warehouse sales of demolition projects.

While it takes time and money to track down these hidden gems, Wynne says he does not pass the extra cost on to his clients. “It’s a marketing tool that sets our projects apart,” he says.

Green Details

  • a salvaged door was scraped, re-painted, and hung from an old douglas fir beam to be used as a bathroom door.

    Trash to Treasure

    Reclaimed materials add character to architect Frederick Hyer's residential projects.

  • Looking Up

    Pine and oak trees from the site were used in the kitchen ceiling.

  • hand-hewn cypress beams salvaged from the ringling towers hotel flank the fireplace.

    Hidden Gems

    Reclaimed materials are a hallmark of custom builder Josh Wynne's projects.

  • rough-hewn douglas fir ceiling beams were reclaimed from an old factory.

    Reclaimed Beauty

    This California home owes much of its rustic good looks to reclaimed materials.

  • windows and doors were salvaged from area buildings and incorporated into the energy star home.

    Old Is New Again

    The Flip House remodel re-used nearly all of the materials deconstructed from the original 1924 home.