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Cool, Casual Austin Home

The founder of the hottest brand in ice chests keeps it low-key in an everyone’s-welcome family home 

Written by Sally Finder Weepie
  • Ryann Ford

    Ultimately, Roy Seiders says, “life is about having a good time doing what you love.”

    For Roy, a guy who’s so wild about fishing that he joined with his brother to invent Yeti—a cooler strong enough to stand on while casting a line—outdoorsy endeavors dominate his list of loves. But tarpon and whitetails share time with another activity near and dear to his heart: hanging out with family and friends. That devotion is evident in his and wife Kathi’s new house in Austin.

    “The thing that was most important to us was having a welcoming home,” Kathi says. “We wanted a place that’s accommodating for our family and for company—we’re always having people over.”

    Serendipitously, family includes the couple’s sister-in-law, Emily Seiders of Austin’s Studio Seiders design firm, just the person to pull together their interiors.

    “Roy joked that, like his business, the decorating project had to have core values,” Emily says. “We laughed about it, but really, the things he talked about—everything being timeless, comfortable, durable, and functional—did guide my design. They need a house that’s beautiful but also very livable, warm, and inviting.”

    Designer Emily Seiders and architect Ryan Street envisioned the look for the paneled doors, which they had custom-made by Maverick Doors in San Antonio. 

    Photography: Ryann Ford
    Produced by Donna Talley

    Architect: Ryan Street, Ryan Street & Assoc., 2414 Exposition Blvd., Suite B-140, Austin, TX 78703; 512/421-0800,
    Interior designer: Emily Seiders, Studio Seiders, 2414 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703; 512/626-8420,
    Builder: Michael Deane Homes Inc., 2414 Exposition Blvd., Suite D-100, Austin, TX 78703; 512/478-2400,  

    Wall paint: custom Venetian plaster.
    Flooring (European white oak): Kristynik Hardwood Flooring,
    Windows (steel door assembly): Rehme Steel Windows & Doors,
    Hanging light at window “La Mer Hanging Fixture” #2147): Paul Ferrante,
    Area rug: vintage Oushak.
    Doors (custom design by Studio Seiders and Ryan Street & Assoc.): fabricated by Maverick Door and Millwork,
    Door finish: ebony stain.
    Driftwood console: Found for the Home,
    Art over console: Paul Meyer Studios,
    Wall sconces (“Olga” #MM-8030): Urban Electric Co.,
    Candlesticks on console (“Iron Candlestick” #F-AC09): Formations,
    White vase holding greenery (product line varies): Global Views,
    Smaller white vase: Jenni Kayne,

  • Ryann Ford

    Cool Console

    For this family, nothing is more inviting than nature. So, Emily pulled natural elements inside to create a calm, comforting, tactile environment. “I wanted rooms to feel good rather than have them hit you with color or pattern,” she says. Emily and architect Ryan Street, a childhood friend of Roy’s and lead architect at Ryan Street & Associates, blended hard and soft, shiny and matte, rustic and refined to weave a textural delight. Steel windows balance plaster walls; reclaimed oak juxtaposes fine linens.

    “We set the tone for the house at the entry,” Emily says. Handcrafted wood doors open to a free-form driftwood console crowned by abstract art. “It’s organic and relaxed, with contemporary elements mixed in.”

  • Ryann Ford

    Casual Space

    That vibe continues in the living room, where oak ceiling beams and a carved wood cabinet play yin to the yang of massive steel-and-glass door units that usher in sweeping views. A pair of big, plush sofas welcome family and friends to cozy up in front of a crackling fire. “We didn’t put a TV in this room on purpose,” Kathi says. “It’s set up for conversation—Roy and I love that.”

    The rectangular sofas, ottoman, and concrete fireplace are softened by arched doorways, a round Saarinen table, and the curves of a 56-inch-wide chandelier that suits the scale of 14-foot ceilings. “Getting a balance of shapes was important to me,” Emily says. “It was all about shapes and textures. I wanted to absolutely layer the room in textures.”

    Metal-and-glass doors by Rehme Steel Windows & Doors of Spicewood, Texas, blur the lines between the living room and courtyards.

    Wall paint (custom Venetian plaster): Champion Drywall,
    Mantel and over-mantel (board-formed concrete with steel mantel): custom.
    Mirror on mantel (custom): Studio Seiders,
    White vases on mantel: Keith Kreeger Studios,
    Armoire (“Olympia Cabinet” #F-CB04): Formations,
    Benches in front of mantel (“Elliott”): Lucy Smith  Designs,
    Floor lamp (“Parrish Floor Lamp” #79953): Arteriors,
    Drapery (“Transit” CH2604, by Chivasso):  JAB Anstoetz USA,
    Area rug (“Tread”/Sea Glass, hand-knotted using highland wools and Chinese silk, from Nepal): Black Sheep Unique,
    Sofas (“Lawrence”); long ottoman (“Elly Ottoman”): Verellen,
    Sofa fabric: Perennials,
    Pink pillows on sofa (“Bola Cushion”); throw: Susan Connor New York,
    Fabric on ottoman cushion (suede): Holly Hunt,
    Sofa end table (“Saarinen Side Table” with Carrara Marble top): Knoll,
    Rectangular end table by sofa (“Reclaimed Elm End Table”): Clubcu,
    Table lamp (vintage mud jar lamp): Brown,  

  • Ryann Ford

    Earthy Color

    Color plays a supporting role here and throughout the house, with charcoal-tinged navy tones complementing earthy rust hues. Potted trees add a pop of green that echoes outdoor views.

    Planter (“Boxwood Planter”): Formations,
    Art (by Kelly O’Neal): Found for the Home,
    Trunk under art (antique, Spanish): A. Tyner Antiques,

  • Ryann Ford

    Textural Kitchen

    Flowing from the living room, the kitchen furthers the feast of textures. Smooth Calacatta marble tops white cabinetry, while durable Virginia Mist granite, a soapstone look-alike, caps the stained-wood island. A zinc range hood injects subtle glimmer. Small appliances tuck away in the adjacent pantry. “I like to keep clutter out of the kitchen,” Kathi says. “It feels better to me.”

    The custom hood over the Wolf range is by Handcrafted Metal of Austin. 

    Cabinetry (custom): River City Cabinets,
    Hardware: Rocky Mountain Hardware,
    Perimeter countertop (Calacatta Marble); island countertop (“Virginia Mist Granite”): Architectural Granite & Marble,
    Lights (“Eugene Pendant,” by Thomas O’Brien for Visual Comfort): Circa Lighting,
    Range: Wolf,
    Range hood (custom, zinc): Handcrafted Metal,
    Sink: Blanco,
    Faucet (“Perrin & Rowe Bridge Kitchen Faucet with Sidespray” #U.4719): Rohl,
    Refrigerator: Sub-Zero,
    Art on counter: vintage.
    Backsplash behind range (Moroccan Zelij tile): Architerra Showroom,
    Bar stools (“Tractor Counter Stool”): Design Within Reach,   

  • Ryann Ford

    Gathering Zone

    It also ensures a clean view from the dining table, located a few steps from the island and in front of another wall of steel-clad glass doors that open to the patio and courtyard beyond.

    The eating area, with its concrete-topped table and modern cowhide chairs, boasts the warm, intimate feel of a breakfast nook. It handles both family meals and gatherings, which can easily spill out to the patio.

    A smart floor plan lets gatherings easily flow from the kitchen to the dining nook and family room, then out to the patio. 

    Wall paint: custom Venetian plaster.
    Sliding door and rail system (custom design by Studio Seiders and Ryan Street & Assoc.): fabricated by Maverick Door and Millwork,
    Dining table (“Concrete and Reclaimed Elm Table”); white vase on table: Clubcu,
    Host chair (“Malaga Chair”); side chairs (“Fernando Chair”): Jayson Home,
    Hanging light over table (“Belden Linear Lantern” #S5015, by Ian K. Fowler): Circa Lighting,
    Rug runner: vintage Oushak.
    Wine storage: Sub-Zero,
    Chaise in adjoining room (“Oviedo Leather Chaise”): Restoration Hardware.
    Floor lamp by chaise (“Mia Floor Lamp” ##TOB1021, by Thomas O’Brien for Visual Comfort): Circa Lighting,

  • Ryann Ford

    Lovely Patio

    “Roy and Kathi aren’t formal, so there was no need for a formal dining room,” Emily says. “They just want everyone to feel welcome, whether you’re family, friends, or a delivery guy who just happens to show up at lunchtime.”

    When the kids aren’t perched at the island or playing in the courtyard, you can find them in the family room off the kitchen, outfitted with a TV and comfy furniture. A dark-stained barn door closes off the space when adults want their peace and quiet.

    Alfresco gatherings are almost always in season at the Seiders home, where everyone’s welcome to grab a drink from the outdoor refrigerator, cozy up to the fireplace, and cheer on the home team. 

    Sofas (“Exo Lounge”); coffee table (“Desert Coffee Table”); chaise lounges by pool (“Exo”): Danao Living,
    Sofa and chaise cushions: Sunbrella,
    Plain pillows with stripes on sofa: Pehuen Designs, 201/590-5354.
    Striped pillows on sofa: Jenni Kayne,
    Peach throw pillows on chaise lounges: custom.
    Bar cabinet: custom.
    Concrete side table by sofa (“Roy”): Made Goods,
    Wall treatment (stucco): Michael Deane Homes Inc.,
    Floor tiles (Buff): Lueders Limestone,  

  • Ryann Ford

    His Study

    Roy cherishes quiet time in his study just down the hall. It’s lined with oak paneling that stops short of the beamed ceiling. “Allowing a band of white plaster to show through keeps the room from feeling too dark,” says Emily, who also gave Roy a striking steel shelf unit to display a few of his favorite things.

    A Julian Chichester desk wrapped in sophisticated black vellum serves as Roy’s command central. Visitors can grab a seat in Oly Studio lounge chairs. A handmade wool rug infuses subtle pattern.

    Desk (custom, “Jane Churchill Curved Desk”/Black Vellum): Julian Chichester,
    Desk chair (“Eames Executive Arm Chair”): vintage.
    Light on desk (“Brazo Table Lamp”): Found for the Home,
    Photograph behind desk (Prickly Pear and Orion): by James H. Evans,
    Paneling: reclaimed white oak with custom stain.
    Area rug (handmade wool area rug in tile pattern): Creative Flooring, 713/522-1181.
    Hanging light (“Stockholm Iron Lantern/Single”): Bobo Intriguing Objects,
    Lounge chairs (“Moore Chair”); fabric (“Ivory Mohair”): Oly,
    Pillows (“Tribe Cushion”): Susan Connor New York,
    Table between chairs: vintage Chinese.
    Floor lamps (Studio Swing Arm” #81134): Circa Lighting,
    Drapery: Schumacher,

  • Ryann Ford

    Prized Posessions 

    Other treasures—his prized trophy mounts—line the fireplace wall. “I had to rein him in a little,” his designer sister-in-law says with a laugh. “If you leave those Seiders boys to their own devices, you’d have a room full of trophies. But we compromised and came up with a space that’s masculine, yet tailored and beautiful.”

    Paneling: reclaimed white oak with custom stain.
    Area rug (handmade woola rea rug in tile pattern): Creative Flooring, 713/522-1181.
    Cart beside mantel (vintage bar cart by Brown Saltman): through Studio Girasole at 1st Dibs,
    Mantel (custom limestone surround): Decorum Stone,

  • Ryann Ford

    Serene Bedroom

    Just as Roy has his haven, Kathi has hers—in the serene master suite. A custom Julie Neill chandelier and puddled draperies in the bedroom speak to femininity; a 19th-century English antique bench lends a bit of age and elegance. “It’s luscious,” Kathi says. “It’s simple and peaceful, a place to relax. And the bath is simply dreamy—so calming and serene.”

    A luxe bed by Verellen with an upholstered headboard, flowing draperies in Kravet linen, and lounge chairs slipcovered in a rich fabric layer softness into the space. 

    Wall paint (custom Venetian plaster): Champion Drywall,
    Flooring (European white oak): Kristynik Hardwood Flooring,
    Drapery (linen): Kravet,
    Chandelier (custom, for similar, “Babette”): Julie Neill Designs,
    Pair of lounge chairs (“Moyen  Lounger Skirted Chair” #5200-01): Lee Industries,
    Lounge-chair fabric (“Amori”/Stone #4476): Pindler,
    Pillows on lounge chairs: Susan Connor New York,
    Table between lounge chairs (“Hourglass Table”/Silver): Bunny Williams Home,
    Long-necked vase (“White Glaze Vases”): Clubcu,
    Small vase (“A Question of Eagles”): Jenni Kayne,
    Planter: antique olive jar.
    Art beside planter: Alexis Walter Art,
    Area rug: Prestige Mills,
    Bed (“Emilio”); bed fabric (linen): Verellen,
    Bed cover; blue pillow shams: Restoration Hardware,
    Blue blanket: Matteo,
    Striped pillow shams (“Rippled Stripe”): Coyuchi,
    Black-and-white pillow: vintage Turkish.
    Bedside table (custom): Studio Seiders,
    Table lamps (“Olsen Table Lamp” #ARN3026, by Aerin for Visual Comfort): Circa Lighting,
    Box on bedside table: antique English.
    Art above bedside table: Found for the Home,

  • Ryann Ford

    Master Bathroom

    A graceful arched nook embraces the bathing area, which doesn’t house a traditional tub. “It’s all plastered, kind of like a miniature pool,” Emily says. As in other rooms, walls are also clad in smooth-coat plaster that softens light from the curvaceous sconces and Italian chandelier. An expansive window overlooks a private courtyard tucked away from the main yard’s rollicking after-school play sessions and gregarious family gatherings.

    Svelte curves in the tub and shower niches, an antique chandelier, and John Saladino sconces bring femininity to the bath. Custom white-oak-and-steel vanity cabinets are topped with honed limestone, which also covers the floor.

    Wall paint (custom Venetian plaster): Champion Drywall,
    Bathtub (custom plaster tub): built on site.
    Bath and sink faucets (“Tara”): Dornbracht,
    Flooring and vanity countertop (“Simena Honed Limestone”): Agora,
    Area rug: vintage.
    Chandelier (antique, Italian): W. Gardner Antiques, 832/648-4718.
    Vanity cabinets (custom, white oak and steel); mirrors (custom): Studio Seiders,
    Cabinetry hardware (Catch Cabinet Pull): Rocky Mountain Hardware,
    Sinks (“Kathryn Under-Mount Bathroom Sink”): Kohler,
    Sconces (“Wall Sconce” #992): John Saladino,
    Baskets: Found for the Home,
    White vase by sink (“Robertson Tall Vase” #7714): Arteriors,
    Patterned vase by sink (“Agateware Vase”): Lam Bespoke,
    Upholstered stool: antique.

  • Backyard Paradise

    “Roy and his siblings grew up in Driftwood, in the country outside Austin,” Emily says. “You could say they were free-range—they had freedom to go explore. He and Kathi wanted that for their kids. The yard and sports court lets them run, and it lets the whole extended family get together and enjoy each other’s company.”

    Because, for Roy and Kathi, that’s what’s truly important. “You see houses that are really pretty,” Kathi says, “but what is that really worth if you don’t share it with others?” 

  • Ryann Ford


    Thoughtful architectural details imbue the new house with timeless character. 

  • Ryann Ford

    Bocce Court

    The courtyard was designed with kids in mind. There’s plenty of room to run, or to get together a friendly game of bocce.

  • Ryann Ford

    Busy Family

    The casual kitchen handles everything dished out by this young, active family: Roy and Kathi Seiders, plus kids (from left) Violet, 10; Reese, 12; Jane, 4; baby Margo; and Hays, 8.

  • John Merkl