The best homes don’t follow every design rule. They bend and sway to their own unique rhythms, retooling classic vernaculars and redefining what an elegant home should be. Take Ace Brandt’s gorgeous lake house, which renowned kitchen designer Mick De Giulio reimagined from top to bottom (“Into the Woods,” page 88). Convention begins and ends with the lake views, which De Giulio prioritized from the get-go. After that, the home takes an unexpected detour from the woodsy cabinlike aesthetic one might expect from a Northern Minnesota retreat, veering instead toward decidedly modern territory with a high-contrast palette, earthy organic materials, and clean-lined furnishings. It’s a refreshing take on a classic lake home—and it works beautifully.
In Houston, interior designer Courtnay Elias gave her modern stucco home a punchy mix of colors and patterns that reflects her passion for bold, edgy design (“The Surprise Within,” page 58). “On the inside, our house is a little bit like a French macaron,” she says. With its unabashed palette and ode to fun, it is indeed a treat for the senses.
In Scottsdale, Arizona, a dream team comprising architectural designer Gary Wyant, builder Scott Edwards, and interior designer Caroline Tyler DeCesare turned a vacant hillside lot into the site of a home that is as spectacular as the landscape surrounding it (“Desert Treasure,” page 76). Outside, it’s pure Spanish Colonial; inside, it’s a bright, airy homage to natural materials such as white oak, Calacatta marble, limestone, and concrete.
Hats off to these fearless pioneers—and the many more within our issue—who are changing the way we think about design and sharing their successes with us. Welcome to Elegant Homes.