A Surprise Story with Help from Interior Designer Edith-Anne Duncan

In Roanoke, Virginia, designer Edith-Anne Duncan works with a couple to revive a historic home while giving it personal flair.

Text: Tiffany Adams
Photography: Dustin Peck

A house is not a gift you expect to find under the tree on Christmas morning. However, Jason Bingham managed to surprise his wife, Shelby, in 2018 with the deed to a house she had been eyeing for months. “We have renovated 15 or 16 homes, some for us to live in and others as flip projects, so I went browsing with a good friend who is a realtor to see several. I immediately loved the bones of this one,” she says. The couple made an offer but were unable to reach an agreement with the seller, leading them to table it for the time being. However, Bingham never stopped thinking about its potential. “My mind at night would wander and think, ‘I could move this wall and do this, and make it work,’” she says. Needless to say, she was thrilled when her husband presented her with the opportunity.

Living Room Before and After


Study Turned Dining Room Before and After

A study off the front entry was converted to the formal dining room. “Green is a lucky color for my family. Even my bridesmaids’ dresses were green,” says Shelby Bingham.

Sunroom Before and After

In the sunroom, original latticework was kept in place while a fresh coat of white paint updated the walls and stonework.

Staircase Before and After

The flowers in the set of eight commissioned pieces by artist Tommy Mitchell were chosen because they represent birth months of the family members or hold special meaning to them.

Kitchen Before and After

Working with Ideal Cabinets Design Studio, Duncan orchestrated a mix of wood, quartz, and antique brass throughout the flowing kitchen space, which includes an adjoining breakfast nook, workspace for Bingham, and a bar.

Bedroom Before and After

In the master bedroom, a hand-painted Phillip Jeffries wallcovering becomes art behind the bed. Timeless monogrammed bedding from Leontine Linens completes the tailored yet current look.

Set in a beautiful historic district in Roanoke, the house was built in 1914 by a family who owned a local department store. Through its storied history, the home has played host to numerous private and community celebrations. Bingham longed to restore this glory, and although she had tackled renovations before, she knew she needed help with the challenge. “This was too big of a house for me; that’s how I came to Edith-Anne. I had to up my game,” she says, referring to Blacksburg-based designer Edith-Anne Duncan.

While several rooms had fallen into disrepair, others had stunning original features and only needed a little TLC to make them shine once more. Overall, the flow and purpose of some rooms were updated to be more conducive to modern living. What was once a small study at the front of the house became the dining room, while the previous dining room’s square footage was used to expand the kitchen. Upstairs, a hallway and vestibule were transformed into a closet in the master suite, while a small bedroom was converted to a new master bath.

“I was feeling overwhelmed, but Edith-Anne gets to know your hobbies, your interests, and what colors you like and uses that to create your home,” says Bingham.

“We knew we wanted this house to be classic but also full of color; very artistic but still inviting, approachable, and not at all pretentious,” says Duncan. After addressing some of the key problems from a structural and functional standpoint, the designer was able to infuse style with layers of color, fabric, wallpaper, furniture, and art. Original floors, the latticework in the sunroom, coffered ceilings in the living room, and all the interior doors stayed, while updated brass finishes, acrylic drapery rods, and contemporary fabrics enlivened the home’s rooms. Green was selected for the dining room and living room because it’s a favorite of Bingham’s, while other palettes were inspired by the couple’s artwork collection. “For me, if it’s done, then it’s time to put it on the market,” Bingham jokes, noting the family hopes to make memories in the home for years to come.

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