Fine art and colorful accents freshen up a Dallas family’s Crested Butte vacation home.
When a Dallas couple and their three kids went looking for a Colorado getaway, they found their dream retreat in the charming mountain town of Crested Butte. The 9,000-square-foot home had it all: open spaces, unobstructed views, and plenty of room for entertaining. But it also had dark, outdated finishes. So the homeowners brought in Dallas-based interior designer Kara Adam to help them give the house a refresh. “We initially told Kara, ‘Just sheets and towels,’” the wife says with a laugh. “That quickly evolved, as we realized we wanted to put our stamp on this home to create a place for our family to enjoy for generations to come.”
Now tasked with a full interior redo, Adam set about selecting finishes that would lighten and brighten the house. Then, to add warmth, she brought in vibrant antique rugs and colorfully patterned fabrics. To complete the transformation, the designer enlisted her trusted art consultant, Dallas-based Lynsey Wiley Provost, to help the homeowners round out their impressive art collection. Now the space is a lovely and comfortable haven for the family of five. “We wanted a home that felt warm and cozy and extremely family friendly,” says the wife. “It’s been a fantastic retreat from the day-to-day city life of our primary home.”
Hearth and Home
Though Adam covered the walls in a fresh coat of white paint (they were originally an orangey-peach color), she left the original stain on the wood. “I thought the stain was really fitting for a mountain house,” she says. For that same reason, she kept several other existing elements in the space, including the stone fireplace surround, the antler chandelier, and the matching antler sconces flanking the fireplace.
Back to Nature
A massive bison triptych by Connecticut artist Rick Shaefer is the focal point of the great room, where the family most often hangs out. Though Adam and the homeowners often swap out artwork throughout the house, the bison piece always stays put. “That will never move,” says the designer. “He’s become a statement piece in this room.” To accent the otherwise neutral space, Adam incorporated pops of blue and green. “We tried to pull colors from nature,” she says. In the corner, a round game table is surrounded by Quintus chairs upholstered in an indigo ikat-inspired textile by Peter Dunham.
All About the Views
“This is the best place in the house to have your morning coffee or a quiet dinner,” the homeowner says of the morning room, which features McGuire dining chairs and a glass-topped table with a tree stump base. “We love the views and how Kara took inspiration from nature when picking the fabrics, furniture, and light fixtures.” The Ochre glass pendant above the table is an especially beloved piece. “We were adamant that it did not obstruct the view,” the homeowner says of the fixture. “Kara found the perfect light, with its similarity to icicles in the winter but open enough to allow full views of the mountains.”
In the homeowners’ bedroom, Adam’s first order of business was to rid the space of its dark painted walls. She added a wall of white shiplap behind the bed and papered the other walls in a Phillip Jeffries wallcovering. Then she dressed the bed in luxurious Matouk linens and layered it with soft pillows in bright, fun prints. “[The wife] loves color—the more color the happier she is,” Adam says. “So we get really playful with the fabrics and the patterns with them. Lately that’s been very much a trend in what clients are asking for. Color has really had a resurgence.” The bench at the foot of the bed is upholstered in a geometric fabric by Maresca Textiles.
Granite counters and a brown backsplash paired with dark-stained cabinetry made the kitchen look dim and drab. So Adam made a few room-transforming tweaks. She left the cabinets as is but replaced the backsplash with white marble from Waterworks and updated the countertops with White Mountain quartzite in a leather finish. “Quartzite is super durable,” says the designer, “so it’s great for a vacation home.” The turned-leg Hickory Chair barstools are upholstered in Walter G fabric from James Showroom in Dallas.
The homeowners’ children got to pick the color scheme for their rooms, which is how this space ended up splashed with lavender. Adam upholstered the bed in a fabric by Jennifer Shorto and installed a custom upholstered chair with purple trim. The window seat is a comfy spot to read a book or take in Crested Butte’s signature scenery.
Even the home’s bathrooms feature cherished artwork. The painting in the primary bath is by a local artist, and it’s one of several pieces in the house that the homeowners purchased in Crested Butte. “We have really fallen in love with the town and want to support the local gallery Oh Be Joyful,” says the wife. “Owner Nick Reti represents a wide array of artists and happens to be a very talented painter himself. The artists capture the surrounding beauty on canvas, and it’s yet another way to bring the outside in. We have met many of them, and it makes the pieces we have that much more special.”
Set the Bar
The bar in the game room is one of three bar areas in the house, a must for the frequent entertainers. “Crested Butte has become a destination for many of our friends,” says the homeowner. “So the summers are a time when we entertain quite a bit.” The painting is by noted Western artist Kenneth Riley.
In the game room, an image by Dallas photographer Allison V. Smith nods to the homeowners’ Texas roots. The photo hangs above a console table topped with a bronze horse sculpture the homeowners found at a Denver art gallery. “They have some really cool pieces in the house, and we continue to swap and add,” says Adam. “We’ve talked about building an art barn on the property, like a gallery, where we would change out art regularly.”
Architecture: Freestyle Architects, freestylearchitects.com
Art Consultant: Wiley Fine Art Advisory, wileyfineartadvisory.com
Builder: Jack Huckins Construction, jackhuckinsco.com
Interior Design: Kara Adam Interiors, karaadaminteriors.com
Get the Look
Photography: (All images) courtesy vendors/Michael Hunter
From our July 2021 issue