When Chicago-based designer Tom Stringer and his partner, Scott Waller, first saw their three-story 1906 townhouse, its condition was beyond dire, but Tom was immediately taken by its graceful limestone facade.
Inside was another story. “It was terrifying,” Tom admits. “The house had been torn apart and ‘historicized’—each room based on a different period in history.
Today the flow of rooms is so seamless that a visitor would assume the layout was the original architect’s intention. The result is very much a self-portrait. “Years ago I figured out that I love to live with three things—contemporary furniture, French antiques, and African art,” says Tom. “I finally got to go all out with that formula. There’s no part of it I wouldn’t do again.”
Interior designer: Tom Stringer, Tom Stringer Design Partners, 314 W. Superior St., Suite 601, Chicago, IL 60610; 312/664-0644,
Architect: Steve Rugo and Lindsay Graham, Rugo/Raff Architects Ltd., 20 W. Hubbard St., Chicago, IL 60654; 312/464-0222, rugoraff.com.
Landscape architect: Douglas Hoerr, Hoerr Schaudt Landscape Architects, 850 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60607; 312/492-6501, hoerrschaudt.com.
Photographs by Werner Straube
Text by Lisa Cregan
Produced by Jenny Bradley