You are here

Before and After: Gorgeous Family Home in Richmond

This Richmond redo starts right in the middle with a welcoming center hall 

Written by Candace Ord Manroe
  • Gordon Beall

    Though not quite adrenaline junkies, Sasha and Mike Hogan do lean toward the extreme. She’s a marathon runner and world-traveling mountain climber, summiting Russia’s Mount Elbrus last July. He’s an investment banker, but also a U.S. Naval Academy graduate who did a Desert Storm tour shipboard on the Red Sea. So while it’s easy to imagine these two debating the latest in outdoor gear, it’s harder to visualize them fussing over floor plans and fabrics for their Richmond, Virginia, home. “Yet that just goes to show there’s two sides to everyone,” laughs Sasha, who approached the renovation of their 1930s English Revival in the city’s quiet West End as another adventure. What started as a small project went the distance as a major renovation that included additions of a new kitchen, family room, and capacious covered porch, as well as dramatic redecorating throughout.

    Curb appeal and square footage—the usual catalysts for renovations—weren’t the motivating factors here. The house was charming and wasn’t terribly small. What it lacked was flow. “We enjoy entertaining, and people would get stuck in the library, kitchen, or coat closet,” Sasha explains. The poor layout also meant that entire rooms went unused daily. Sasha and Mike, their two children, and their two big dogs lived, cramped, in just a portion of the home.

    A turquoise-painted door gives the vintage house a welcoming new look.

    Photography: Gordon Beall
    Produced by Eileen a. Deymier

    Architect: Dan Ensminger, Ensminger Architecture, 503 Ridge Top Rd., Richmond, VA 23229; 804/323-6299.
    Interior designer: Kat Liebschwager, Kat Liebschwager Interiors, 3801 West Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221; 804/288-3350,
    Contractor: John Gray, Peak 3 Construction, 2079 Dabney Road, Richmond, VA 23230; 804/864-5001,
    Tile contractor: Sedin Galijasevic, 804/677-6941.
    Landscape designer: Nancy Dransfield, Landesign of VA, Inc., P.O. Box 15582, Richmond, VA 23227; 804/261-6773,

    Door paint: Fine Paints of Europe,

  • Before: Foyer

    Before, there was a narrow entry and disjointed rooms.

    “To solve the problem, Sasha wanted a center hall,” says architect Dan Ensminger, who gutted the middle of the house to create a gorgeous, glossy hall framed by an archway and refined with wainscoting. Ever the outdoors lover, Sasha hoped the new centerpiece would facilitate more than a smoother interior flow. “I wanted it to direct people to the back of the house, where we could entertain outside.”

  • Gordon Beall

    After: Entry

    Working alongside Ensminger, designer Kat Liebschwager tried to channel Sasha’s personality to ensure that the new and reworked spaces were a spot-on reflection of her client—colorful, fun, sophisticated. “She has a fantastic art collection and loves color. She was big into pink and orange, but we decided to tone it down to neutrals for the furniture and walls so the art could be the star,” says Liebschwager, whose style Sasha first admired at Ruth & Ollie, the designer’s popular shop in Richmond’s Carytown district. Although their project bloomed big, the Hogans weren’t cavalier with resources. “We used a lot of their existing furniture and accessories and re-covered them,” the designer says.

    A large painting in the new back porch set the palette, which, though more neutral than before, is hardly timid. Its richest hue—a true turquoise—is introduced immediately at the shiny front door, which took a new arched shape in the redo. Pops of saturated turquoise leave a trail of accent color from the central hall all the way to the back porch, knitting the spaces together.

    The foyer and new center hall improve traffic flow. 

    Bench (“Ingrid” #V113-BE): Vanguard,
    Fabric (“Rastrelli”/Ecru #F1325-04, by Designers Guild, discontinued): Osborne & Little,
    Painting above bench; wall finish and floor paint: by Sunny Goode,
    Throw (“Richard Nixon Alpaca Throw” #5442): Jonathan Adler,
    Pillows: Ruth & Ollie,
    Chest (“Cabrillo Nailhead Chest” #323-113N): Bernhardt,
    Lamp: owner’s collection.
    Chandelier (“Margarite Iron Chandelier”/Gilded Iron #SK5102GI, by Suzanne Kasler): Circa Lighting,
    Light fixture in entry hall  (#505-415, by Regina Andrew): discontinued.
    Stair carpet (“Aylin”/Camel #96273, Karaman Collection): Stanton,
    Area rug (custom, “Patchwork”/Beige, Gold): Saddlemans,  

  • Gordon Beall

    Jewelbox Bench

    Glamour also makes its debut in the center hall. “Sasha wanted a more sophisticated, grown-up look,” says Liebschwager, who hired a local artist to paint diamonds on the floor and tone-on-tone metallic stripes on the wall. The hallway settee is gold-leafed. “When the light hits the center hall, it shimmers like a jewel box,” she says. 

    The art is by Sunny Goode, who also painted the walls and floor.   

  • Before: Living Room

    Before, the doorway to the living room was rectangular. 

  • Gordon Beall

    After: Living Room

    An arched doorway creates a graceful passage from foyer to living room. A pair of Victorian chairs got fresh upholstery: Designers Guild on the seats and arms, Cowtan & Tout on the backs. 

    Pair of Victorian chairs: owner’s collection.
    Chair-back fabric (“Zanzibar”/Pebble #11003-01): Cowtan & Tout,
    Seat and arm fabric (“Ruggiero” #F1547-15, by Designers Guild, colorway discontinued): Osborne & Little,
    Small round table between chairs (discontinued): Worlds Away,
    Demilune behind chairs: owner’s collection.
    Art above demilune: by Greg Osterhaus,
    Art to right of door of doorway (vintage “Madeline” prints by Ludwig Bemelmans): Hammer Galleries,
    Coffee table (“Diego Cocktail Table”): Oly,
    Tray on coffee table (discontinued); for similar: Kat Liebschwager Interiors,
    Vase on coffee table (“Marbled Mercury Vase”): Arteriors,
    High-backed settee (“Dautry” #1096, discontinued); fabric (“Frett”/Pumice): CR Laine,
    Accent pillow (“Nizam” #F6130-04): Osborne & Little,
    Area rug (custom, “Cyndera White”): Saddleman’s,

  • Gordon Beall

    Cheerful Family Room

    Easier circulation between previously cloistered rooms resulted from Ensminger sorting out the spaces like the pieces of a puzzle, adding portals where none existed before. “The architect had a strong vision and did a great job with it,” Liebschwager says. She enhanced Ensminger’s work by repeating glam decorative elements to make the new connections shine. A chunky mirrored cocktail table brings sparkle to the family room addition; a round mirror behind the settee in the original living room forms a shimmery focal point.

    This new space opens off the living room and also adjoins the relocated kitchen and new center hall. A Patterson, Flynn & Martin rug and Cowtan & Tout drapery fabric create neutrality with the RH sofa and the homeowners’ reupholstered chairs.

    Wall paint (“White Sand” #964); ceiling paint (“Iced Green” 3673): Benjamin Moore,
    Area rug (“Cite Square”/Ivory, discontinued): Patterson, Flynn & Martin,
    Sofa (“Lancaster”): Restoration Hardware,
    Lounge chairs; table between chairs: owner’s collection.
    Lounge-chair fabric (“Crystal Weave”/Alabaster #63671): Schumacher,
    Lamp on table between chairs: Ruth & Ollie,
    Accent pillow fabric (“Bernhardt”#F5442/03, discontinued): Osborne & Little,
    Round end table next to chair (“Brigit Circle Side Table”/Silver #128065): Interlude Home,
    Coffee table (“Estelle Rectangular Coffee Table” #319 021): Bernhardt,
    Turquoise chair (#7011-CH, discontinued): Vanguard,
    Fabric (#7292/03, discontinued): Romo,
    End table by sofa (“Christine Round Tall Side Table”/Antique White): Oly,
    Lamps flanking sofa (“Moondust,” discontinued): Currey & Co.,
    Mantel (custom): Tim Hunter, 804/319-0369.
    Fire screen (“Circle Fire Screen” #02244): Cyan Design,
    Painting above mantel: by Duane Cregger,
    Striped benches: owner’s collection.
    Fabric (“Mala”/Aqua #LB50001-3, by Baker Lifestyle, discontinued): Lee Jofa,
    Hanging light (design by Kat Liebschwager): fabrication by Colonial Metalcrafts, 804/358-6000.
    Drapery (“Sutton”/Natural #J376F-08, by Jane Churchill): Cowtan & Tout,
    Hardware: The Finial Co., the

  • Gordon Beall

    Colorful Alcove

    Perhaps the most clever space is an arched alcove created in what was formerly the breakfast area. “We preserved the front window, added a window seat above the radiator, and a coat closet on one side and a powder room on the other,” Ensminger says. A crystal chandelier and deep turquoise accents on fabrics, pillows, and pom-pom fringe make the hardworking area as eye-friendly as a full-size room.

    Robert Abbey lighting adds a dressy touch to the window seat area between a closet and powder room. The space features Designers Guild fabric on the seat and window. Trim on the valance is Kravet. 

    Ceiling light (“Bling Flush Mount” #S1002): Robert Abbey,
    Window treatment fabric (“Capucheen Azure” #F1369/02, by Designers Guild); bench-cushion fabric (“Regence Turquoise” #F1492/07, by Designers Guild, colorway discontinued); accent pillows (“Monplaisir Turquoise” #F1341/03, by Designers Guild, colorway discontinued): Osborne & Little,
    Window-treatment trim (Scallop/Fan Edge Fringe #T30394.35): Kravet,  

  • Gordon Beall

    Pretty Dining Room

    Repurposed as the dining room, the former kitchen has its own glisten. A pair of mirrored doors open up to the dining room’s new china cabinet—smart use of what originally had been an alcove for the stove. For symmetry, a second pair of mirrored doors was added along the same wall, but these are dummy doors that lead only to greater reflection.

    Nina Campbell wallpaper makes the major statement in the dining room, a space that previously was the kitchen. A sisal rug calms the floor. White leather backs add interest to tufted chairs. A Currey & Company chandelier gains quiet glam with a single crystal swag. Silver leafing shimmers on the ceiling. 

    Wallpaper (“Paradiso” #NCW4030-03, by Nina Campbell): Osborne & Little,
    Ceiling treatment (silver leafing): by Sunny Goode,
    Table: owner’s collection.
    Chairs (“Imperial Dining Chair” #152 with white leather backs): TCS Designs Inc.,
    Fabric on chair front (Pavane”/Linen #F1508/01, by Designers Guild): Osborne & Little,
    Sisal area rug (“Canvas” #470, Bakari Collection): Fibreworks,
    Sconces (“Serena Wall Sconce” #5166); chandelier (“Crystal Lights Chandelier” #9891): Currey & Co,
    Mirror: Williams & Sherrill,  

  • Gordon Beall

    Pristine Breakfast Room

    The pure, simple white of the leather chairs and a high-gloss lacquered table in the breakfast nook lets a dynamic blue oil painting by Kiki Slaughter steal attention. 

    Table: LaDiff,
    Chairs (Ajax Side Chair”/White Leather); chandelier (“Serena Drum Chandelier”): Oly,
    Drapery (“Alston Trellis Embroidery”/White on White #713032): Thibaut,
    Mirrored chest: Williams & Sherrill,
    Lamp on chest (“Windham”/Silver) Worlds Away,
    Oil painting: by Kiki Slaughter,
    Blue wall paint (“Ocean Air” #2123-50): Benjamin Moore,

  • Before: Kitchen

    What was previously the kitchen is now the dining room. 

  • Gordon Beall

    After: Kitchen

    One of the most beautiful rooms, the new kitchen, also is one of Sasha’s favorites. “I love it even though I’m not a huge cook,” she says. “I have way too much ADD to scramble eggs without getting distracted. My son gives me a grade on breakfast every morning!” The kitchen’s elegant but not overdone white cabinetry teams with pale turquoise tiles to transition to the new enclosed porch.

    An Ann Sacks glass tile backsplash adds cool color to the white cabinetry. Metal counter stools and a pair of glass lanterns continue the glam look of the other rooms. The faucet is by Perrin & Rowe from Rohl. 

    Cabinetry: Martin-Star Cabinetry & Design,
    Backsplash (“Lucien Rectangle Field Tile”/glass): Ann Sacks,
    Lanterns above island (custom): Toombs Ltd.,
    Counter stools (“Biedermeier Counter Stool” #4014): O’Brien Ironworks,
    Counter-stool fabric (“Mezzola Lusso Ocean” #F1453-05, by Designers Guild): Osborne & Little,
    Faucet (Perrin & Rowe Collection): Rohl,

  • Gordon Beall

    Perfect Patio

    The new covered porch includes wicker sofas, a Wisteria glass coffee table, and aqua ottomans from Serena & Lily. Here, the turquoise pigment digs deep again, as in the center hall. “This is where we live all summer,” Sasha says.

    Sofas (“Provence”): Restoration Hardware,
    Pillows: Ruth & Ollie,
    Coffee table (“Glass Coffee Table” #W4178): Wisteria,
    Ottomans (“Moroccan Leather Pouf”/Turquoise #CH11): Serena & Lily,
    Range garden seat: Legend of Asia,
    Art: Palette,
    Cabinet under painting: owner’s collection.
    Ceiling fan: Fanimation,
    Ceiling paint (“Seabrook” #750): Benjamin Moore,  

  • Before: Back Yard

    Before the renovation, the back yard included a simple terrace. 

  • Gordon Beall

    After: Back Yard

    Beyond the porch off the family room, a spacious flagstone terrace provides ample space for dining, lounging, and cooking.

    Wicker chairs (“Provence Bucket Armchair”); large table: Restoration Hardware,

  • Gordon Beall

    Family Portrait

    Although the center hall remains Sasha’s most beloved single space, she equally treasures how the renovated house lives. “When we host supper club now, people move from room to room and end up in the living room, which we had never sat in before”—the ultimate testament to a successful redo.

    Sasha Hogan with daughter Katie, 14, son Carter, 11, and chocolate Lab Ramsay and yellow Lab Huntley.

  • Karyn R. Millet