EASY LIVING

BY JEFF HAMPTON | PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHARLES DAVIS SMITH

Schlosser’s combination and use of textures in the design of her own residence truly makes this house unique.

It’s rare that homeowners get to design a home for all their needs both today and into the future, but that was Cristie Schlosser’s goal for her new family residence in North Dallas.

“Part of the design process was to evaluate what we thought our future needs would be and to make it easy to live, entertain and still raise our teen son,” Schlosser says. “Our daughter is away at college, so we had to make a place that she’d want to come home to and visit. Most importantly, we wanted to design a home for our next phase of life so we could live here as long as we want.”

The result? “Every place I look in the house is a happy place for me because it’s just easy living, light-filled spaces that incorporate the outdoors,” she says.

Schlosser, founder of Schlosser Design Group, a Texas-registered interior designer, and a past chair of the Dallas Design Community of ASID Texas Chapter, designed the 4,800-square-foot home with Mark Domiteaux, a Dallas-based architect she had not worked with previously but whose work she liked.

“I knew I needed a creative team that understood my aesthetic design, and Mark and I seemed to think very similarly,” she says.

And her aesthetic? “It’s a little bit mid-century modern, it’s a little bit contemporary, but it’s warm. I have some transitional pieces mixed in as well. I prefer strong, clean lines and visual texture,” Schlosser says.

Schlosser and Domiteaux collaborated on the space planning, and a prime need was room to host the couple’s civic, charitable and family gatherings. “It had to be warm, inviting and easy to rearrange for whatever setting we need to have,” she says.

A Pollack-designed Tufenkian area rug frames the living room seating area, composed of David Southerland teak lounge chairs stained dark walnut with cushions covered also in a Pollack design. A McGuire sofa from Baker Furniture and mid-century influenced cocktail table from Theodore Alexander complete the space.

A floating island sets the design intent along with the horizontal line of white upper cabinets. A single Neolith panel was used on the face of the island under the cantilevered bar top for durability and low maintenance. The kitchen backsplash is beveled iridescent glass from Ann Sacks. The breakfast chairs are Lowenstein.

The floating staircase with white oak treads is flanked by a wraparound limestone wall.

The table and chairs in the formal dining area were handed down from Schlosser’s mother-in-law and are mid-century modern antiques from John Stuart of New York.

The Schlossers like to cook and gather at home, so the kitchen is designed for efficiency. Dishes are stored adjacent to double dishwashers so everything is put away quickly.

“The kitchen is designed in stations,” she says, “with wellthought- out details that serve a purpose.”

To accommodate discussions and even live music, the main living area has acoustical ceilings. And for group dinners, there is storage off the living room for tables and chairs. “Since the living room is not that large, we do have to move furniture from time to time,” Schlosser says.

Some events spill out into a backyard space made possible by locating the garage in a basement. “That allowed us to have this beautiful outdoor space that makes you feel like you’re in Colorado or Lake Tahoe,” says Schlosser.

Another need was workspace. The Schlossers don’t work from home but have always had home offices, so she created a suite with two offices flanking a shared conference room, which also has storage and a side entrance for deliveries.

Schlosser selected all the finishes and materials, including white oak floors with a natural stain throughout much of the house, Amtico luxury vinyl flooring in the kitchen and office, and Fabrica carpet in the TV room and bedrooms. Custom-designed cabinetry and woodwork is in rift cut walnut.

Schlosser decorated with furniture they already had, but she also designed a breakfast table with Kenneth Crain, and designed her daughter’s bed and the nightstands in the master bedroom.

Furniture-style custom cabinets were designed by Schlosser; the countertops are Caesarstone. The skylight over the tub floods the room with natural light. The combination of warm, saturated wood, light and airy linen-textured tile, gray linen and silk wallpaper, and warm white walls feels crisp, clean and delicate at the same time.

“I planned around what we already owned,” Schlosser says. That includes large paintings by her mother, local award-winning artist Cecie Borschow, which prompted the closing of an open staircase to create more wall space.

That staircase leads to the bedrooms for the couple’s children. The daughter has what Schlosser describes as a “hotel suite” for her visits, while the son’s side of the house incorporates studio space for his photography and art projects.

With plans to live in place, Schlosser specified an incline to the front door, light switches located 36 inches from the floor, and an elevator shaft that is ready to go from the garage to the second floor. Until that is needed, Schlosser and her guests benefit from a staircase with wide stair treads and low 5-inch risers.

Clad in warm-toned brick and limestone with a standing seam metal roof, the house fits well in an old neighborhood transitioning with a variety of styles, and lush foliage helps the house blend in with older homes.

Schlosser says, “We put in mature landscaping so it looks like we’ve lived here forever.”

And forever was Schlosser’s goal.

Jeff Hampton is a freelance writer based in Garland, Texas. Find out more at jeffhamptonwriter.com.

In the home office a uniquely designed mix of finishes were used, combining rift cut walnut panels separated by linenpatterned laminate cabinet fronts and tops for durability. The custom sliding doors that separate Schlosser’s work area from the conference room are made with Luminex acrylic panels, which allow light to pass through and keep the spaces from feeling closed in. The linen texture provides privacy.