first impression

At three stories, six bedrooms and 3000+ square feet, the Southern Living Tarpon Run Idea House is big!  Of course, not every corner of the house could be featured in the editorial spread.  One area that wasn’t shown in the feature is the central staircase.  The view below is the first thing you see upon entering the house:


Doug and Bess designed a pair of benches that flank the front door which provide a place to sit down and take off your shoes or to put down a bag of groceries.  Beyond the entry area, the upper floors beckon by way of a sky-lit staircase.  The simple horizontal railings relate to the exterior architecture of the house.  The aqua color on the back wall of the stair continues up into the upper floors and gives a hint of the palette found elsewhere in the home.



[We think you can never have enough hooks inside a door where family members and guests come and go often.]


Paige and Anna Kay hung photos they took of the Port Aransas area on the back wall of the stair, collage style–one of our favorite ways to display artwork and photography.

collagewall slih

[Black frames and white mats are always a fun and graphic way to display art, but against the cool aqua color of the wall the effect is even more impactful.]


At the top of the stairs, a pair of consoles flank french doors leading to a porch with gulf views.  Above the [Rustic Two Drawer Console] from Wisteria, Paige and Anna Kay hung a piece by Courtney Garrett, and artist we feature prominently in our Rosemary Beach shop.  The blue tones of Courtney’s piece contrast beautifully with the orange shaded glass Barbara Cosgrove lamp.


To view more of Courtney’s work, visit her website [here].  We have several of Courtney’s pieces on display in our shop or works may be commissioned through Tracery as well, call (850) 231-6755 for more information.


[All photos by Laurey W. Glenn for Southern Living]

antiqued mirror


A very distinctive feature of the Southern Living Tarpon Run Idea House is the kitchen back splash, which is made up of antiqued mirror panels.  We selected this treatment because we liked the character it bought to the kitchen.  As Paige remarked in the magazine story, because the mirror already is aged you don’t notice spots and smudges, which makes it perfect to use behind a cooking surface.  The mirror reflects the gulf view out the windows on the opposite Family Room wall and allows the cook to see guest seated at the bar.

While mirrored walls have a lot of good qualities, we admit the idea can be a little 80’s so we like aging the glass first and foremost to give texture and to keep the effect from getting too slick.  In the case of the Idea House we had to be careful to not let the treatment start to feel too much like a bathroom, so we had the mirror cut into rectangular panels and installed those on the wall, as opposed to using one big sheet of glass.


You can see in this overall shot of the kitchen how much depth and interest the antiqued mirror back splash creates–imagine how  much more cold (and less interesting!) a typical tile back splash would have been in this setting!  [photos by Laurey W. Glenn for Southern Living ]


This was the first time we had used antique mirror in a kitchen, however we’ve had great results using the treatment in Powder Rooms.  In a Mountain Brook, Alabama home which is nearly complete, we’ve covered one wall of a Powder Room in antique mirror panels and then placed an old french table with a beautiful white bronze vessel sink in front of the wall.  We’ll have photos of that soon…it’s stunning!


In another Mountain Brook home we completed last year, we designed two giant mirrored panels which bracket both ends of a banquet-sized dining table. 


We had leaded glass caming  and steel rosettes installed between the panels in this application to add detail.  At one end of the room we hung an antique Italian mirror on chains over the mirrored panel, creating a beautifully layered composition.  [photo by Ryan Davis]


The antiqued mirror in both the Idea House and the home pictured above was created by our very talented friend and go-to-source for all things expertly finished, Jan Hale, owner of Jan Hale Studios in Montgomery, Alabama.  Jan and her staff have helped us create many beautiful and distinctive finishes–from textural plaster to hand painted stencils.  To create the antique mirrors we like to use, they strip sheets of new mirror by using a special (and top secret) chemical process that when complete rivals any authentically old mirrored glass.  We love this finish every time we employ it and you can be sure you’ll be seeing it again in some of our soon-to-be completed work!