Panache Classic Painting

Beauty that Lasts

The best way to get to know Larry Lanouette, owner of Panache Classic Painting, is to speak to those whose homes he’s transformed into personal works of art, such as Bob and Pam Symonds.  

Their charming stone Cape Code home sits on Hedge Apple Lane, a private road first developed by six DuPont engineers back in the 1950s. Together, they bought 26 acres from the Henry Thompson estate and divided it into six parcels, each less than four acres so that the two acre zoning laws would prevent anyone from subdividing their land. “This home was built by a fellow named Walter Bruner,” shares Bob. “His wife designed it. They meant it to be a Craftsman home. Well, it’s not technically a Craftsman home, but it was as close to Craftsman as his wife could figure out how to design. We know this because we became friends with their two children who grew up here.” The house is built with 18” thick solid stone, all the way to the footers. “They just put the finest materials into this,” Bob relays.

After buying the house in 2001, Bob and Pam continued that tradition of only using the finest materials and chose Panache Classic Painting to help them turn the house into the home they envisioned. It was a collaborative process based upon building a relationship that has stood the test of time for over two decades now. “Larry was interested in getting to know who we are as people, getting a feel for the home, and an appreciation for its beauty,” says Pam.

That relationship allowed Larry to tailor the home specifically to the couple. “Larry was able to offer up options that I don’t think I would have thought of in the store or if left to my own devices, and particularly some of the exterior colors that were ultimately chosen, especially for the shutters,” explains Bob. “It was very tricky because we have a beautiful Avondale stone home and we needed a color that wasn’t going to draw attention to the shutter but was going to enhance the beauty of the stone. Larry mixed a custom color for us that worked beautifully.”

Upon entering the home, one is surrounded by rich, gleaming wood. However, it didn’t always look that way. “All this wood is original,” points out Larry. However, when he first met Bob and Pam, it was in a state of disrepair. “There was a decision on whether to get rid of it and put drywall up or plaster or go over it. We decided to just refinish it, and all these finishes you see are 20 years old.”

“The finish on the wood is extraordinary,” enthuses Bob. “This is the way it looked when it was brand new. Larry just brought everything to life.”

When he says everything, he doesn’t just mean the wood. As Bob explains it, there isn’t a painted or wooden surface in or on the Symonds’ house that Larry hasn’t touched. He even refreshed the garage door medallion! What’s remarkable is that while the exterior finishes have been redone due to exposure to the elements, the interior work hasn’t been touched in decades. “It’s been 20 years since he started working on this house,” says Bob. “It looks as beautiful today as the day he walked out of our house and had just finished it.”

Bob credits the long-standing beauty to Larry’s materials. “He uses Fine Paints of Europe,” Bob explains. “It has tremendous longevity – that’s what attracted us to it. The depth that it brought out in the wood is different from that of domestic finishes.”

While Pam agrees that the products are superior, she also believes that Larry’s process has contributed to the home’s lasting beauty. “One of the benefits of having Panache paint your home is in the prep work,” she says. “That was a major benefit, because there’s just no comparison as to what Larry does versus what the average person can do.”

Both Bob and Pam were impressed by Larry’s commitment to his craft. “There were some times that Larry cared more about how something looked than we did,” laughs Pam. “We thought it looked great, but to him it wasn’t good enough, and he would put in extra time and extra effort so that it would meet his standards.” Bob concurs, adding: “He spared no effort whatsoever to get this house to reach its full potential of beauty. His commitment to us is extraordinary.”
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