Turning a 1950s ranch-style home into a three-story, 6,000-square-foot show house was a labor of love for Joanna Goodman, director of interiors at Christopher Architecture & Interiors.
The stately home, which sits high on a hill in picturesque Mountain Brook just a short stroll away from Crestline Village, was renovated for the purpose to raise money for pediatric cancer research. Specifically, Joanna says, Christopher Architecture wanted to raise money for Open Hands Overflowing Hearts, a local Birmingham charity that works to raise funds for childhood cancer research. Because the goal behind the project was so special, Joanna says the renovation was extra meaningful.
“Typically, when I begin a project, I feed off the adjectives the client uses during initial conversations,” Joanna says. “With the show house, however, we were the client and designer — and it was up to us to create a space that was both functional and inspiring to viewers.”
With no limitations, Joanna let her imagination run wild in the form of bold colors and curated statement pieces. Cozy nooks dovetailed into functional spaces throughout the home’s floor plan — and there was no shortage of elegance. Joanna says her goal in designing the home’s interior was to encourage eventual buyers to think outside the box when considering living in the six-bedroom, six-bath house.
“The flow and flexibility of the home is unique,” Joanna says. “Before, the house was compartmentalized in typical 1950s architecture. We opened up several rooms to each other and kept others small and cozy.” Because the property boasts an impressive view overlooking Country Club Road, Joanna says providing ample natural light through a plethora of windows was essential to the home’s layout. Each room was designed with the anticipation of how the house’s future owners could best use it.
“Working with a blank slate, we were able to test the boundaries of design and develop a truly unique product that takes current trends to the next level,” Joanna says. “That’s the beauty of working within a firm that offers both interior and architectural services. Knowing the materials and color palette of the exterior, I worked to complement that feeling on the inside of the home.”
Dark interior hues contrast the home’s crisp white exterior and create a relaxed mood. Almost every inch of the home, Joanna says, was designed with the intent of comfort and relaxation. “I wanted contrast, so that you could appreciate each element and not have it all blend together,” she says.
Several local vendors donated materials for the charity. One such donation was a slab of Alabama white marble, which was repurposed as a 10-foot-long kitchen island, contrasting nicely with the room’s dark kitchen cabinets. “It became the focal point of the room,” Joanna says of the impressive island.
The family that eventually purchased the property, Joanna says, thought about hiring a decorator to make the show house feel more like their own. After a few months, however, Joanna got a call from the homeowners. They wanted her to recreate the gracious environment the show house originally boasted.
“The lofted playroom we designed for the show house is now being used as an office and the second-floor sitting area is now the teenager’s hangout space,” Joanna says. After creating the home’s gorgeous interiors to reflect Joanna’s passion for design and ideal vision for gracious living, she is delighted to see a family inhabit her original vision. “It’s fun to see the house being enjoyed in so many different ways,” she adds with a smile.
A stunning home, indeed! Thank you to Chris Luker of Luker Photography for today’s beautiful images.
- Architecture: Chris Reebals, Christopher Architecture & Interiors
- Interior design: Joanna Goodman, Christopher Architecture & Interiors
- Windows: Auburn Millwork Inc. with Lincoln Windows
- Countertops: Pacific Shore Stones
- Cabinets: Heath Hughes
- Hardware: Brandino Brass
- Wall and floor tiles: Fixtures & Finishes
- Hardwood flooring: Firerock
- Lighting: Bevolo Gas & Electric Lighting, Visual Comfort & Co., Currey & Company, Gabby Home, and Arteriors
- Appliances: Ferguson
- Plumbing: Kenny & Company from Fixtures & Finishes
- Rugs: King’s House Oriental Rugs
- Outdoor Furniture: Summer Classics
- Pavers: Peacock Pavers
- Iron: Red Mountain Ironworks