Perfect Balance

In the family room, a Jacobsen Egg Chair reflects the owner's Danish heritage.
 Interior 
August 07, 2017 | 10:38 am / Home&Interior
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Susan Gulick marries style and durability in the new Great Falls home of a couple with five kids

When Sigrid and Joshua Smitt Goldman first visited the five-acre Great Falls lot where they would build their future home, they found their Shangri La. Dotted with large, wooded properties, the neighborhood felt worlds away from the 15th-floor Reston apartment the couple shared with their five kids. “We loved how the street has almost a rural feel to it although you’re minutes away from Great Falls Village,” Sigrid recalls. “We stood there one evening and all we heard was crickets.”

After visiting a Gulick Group model home nearby, the couple had discovered this property listed on the builder’s website. They acquired the land and enlisted the company to build a farmhouse-style home there. Customizing an existing design, the plan added a wide front porch, yellow siding and stone details that not only blend in with the home’s bucolic surroundings but also pay homage to Joshua’s rural Alabama roots.

Avid racecar drivers and collectors, Sigrid and Joshua also commissioned a freestanding, nine-car garage connected to the main house via a breezeway. And they requested a veritable playground behind the home with a covered lanai as well as a pool, spa, fire pit and outdoor kitchen.

At the builder’s recommendation, the couple called designer Susan Gulick of Susan Gulick Interiors for help. (Though the companies share the same name, they’re separate entities). While construction was underway, the designer began to finish and furnish the interiors. “Coming from an apartment and moving into a large home, I knew a lot of furniture had to happen,” Sigrid relates. “We had some ideas but not the bandwidth or skill set to do it right.”

Susan Gulick focused on furnishings that would withstand the rigors of the couple’s kids, aged five to 16, and their two large Newfoundland dogs. “They wanted it be functional in the broadest of terms,” she recalls. “Not just a couple of rooms, but every room.”

In her plans, the designer married rustic farmhouse elements with a modern edge, noting that Sigrid hails from Denmark and gravitates to the simple, pared-down forms of a Scandinavian aesthetic. “We mixed in modern elements, but in warmer way,” she explains.

Myriad adjustments to the floor plan were made to suit the family’s lifestyle. For example, Gulick repurposed the living room into a home office for Sigrid and Josh, who own 3DISC, a global medical-imaging equipment company based in Sterling. “We didn’t want the space to be too industrial since it’s where you walk into the home,” says Sigrid. “Susan found a furniture-maker to build us beautiful rosewood desks.”

Gulick also wove in Scandinavian design, from fabric by a Danish designer for Maharam on the dining-room chairs to the sculptural Egg Chair in the family room. This iconic Jacobsen piece is upholstered in blue—a favorite color of the owners that visually connects spaces throughout the home.

Celadon sets a tranquil mood in the library, where Gulick designed custom cabinetry finished by decorative painter Roberta Marovelli. “Sigrid wanted the library to be soft and kind of spa-like,” Gulick notes. Complete with a sleep sofa and access to a powder room converted into a full bath, the space doubles as a ground-floor guestroom.

In the breakfast area, the designer dressed up a woven-vinyl Chilewich rug with faux-leather banding and nailhead trim. “We made it look custom but you can just wipe it off,” she says of the practical yet stylish solution.

◼ Editorial / inStory.net
Topics: home, interior
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