Text: Lauren Gentry Walker
Photos: John O’Hagan
A comfortable space for family to gather, functional and beautiful rooms, and the incorporation of favorite antiques were the three main requirements that Julie and Jeremy Dennis had for their home’s renovation.
For their Mountain Brook, Alabama, house, the Dennises called on their friend and designer Lisa Flake of Caldwell Flake Interiors. “I have been designing for over 22 years, and I always want each client’s home to reflect them,” says Flake. “I want you to know I have been there without the space looking like a duplicate of someone else’s home.”
The transitional abode is a complete marriage of modern and traditional and is made up of clean lines and an abundance of natural light. Nestled within the Crestline neighborhood of Mountain Brook, the Dennis household is actively involved in the friendly, walkable community and has even hosted the neighborhood Christmas party in the past. With three children of their own, having a home where they could all easily meet up for meals and family time was an absolute must.
For a family that loves to entertain, the flow of the home needed to be open and large enough for plenty of out-of-town guests. The family room, one of Flake’s favorite spaces in the house, includes 19-foot-tall ceilings but manages to maintain a cozy feel with beautiful lighting and artwork on display. The more formal living room includes four chairs and an ottoman for a relaxing conversation area. “Most clients don’t want to do this setup in a family room because they love having a sofa to relax on,” says Flake. “That is why the living room is perfect for this format. This is also a walk-through room in the home, so I wanted to make sure you could easily maneuver through it.”
The dining room was designed around the focal point of the space—the sunburst mirror. “This is one of my all-time favorite purchases,” says Flake. “It is so fragile and fabulous that I held my breath when we had to move it, and I truly lost sleep over the chance of something happening to it.” The designer even commissioned a custom console to fit perfectly underneath the piece and purposefully chose a more modern rug to balance and complement it.
An airy, open kitchen with a breakfast nook was also a must for the Dennises. The children love to use the space for studying, eating, and chatting with each other, and the ample counterspace is ideal for preparing large meals. A relaxing master suite, complete with a pop of turquoise, was also requested. Flake used an Oushak rug layered over sisal, and a smaller but equally stunning sunburst mirror was installed over the upholstered headboard. The overall interior aesthetic of the home is kept serene, clean, and stylish with a chic exterior to match. “I encourage my clients to think outside the box so we can really bring the wow factor, and I think we definitely accomplished that with this project,” says Flake.