So, growing up, when all my friends were watching The Jetsons and nerding out over robots and modern, glass homes in the sky, I hunched over my college ruled “sketch pad” and drew (excellent, if I may say so) classical homes, beautiful fireplaces, and raised paneling… trying to master the art of marble graining/shading with a No. 2 Lisa Frank pencil. But, the point of this little foray into my youth is that I think I might get James Carter on a deeper level than most, which I’ll tell you more about in another post…
Anyways, for those of you that don’t know, James is a pretty big deal, and now that he can add a blog feature on Christian Daw Design to his list of accolades and features, I think the sky’s the limit.
So without further delay, this is James’ dream home.
In 2000, James bough a small, post-war cottage on a narrow lot in the picturesque neighborhood of Mountain Brook, in Birmingham, Alabama, and moved right in… Over a decade later, after studying the land and surrounding homes, he leveled the existing structure and started construction on a new, rambling, quirky, Georgian dream home. Then two more years later, he moved right on in…
The scale and proportion are perfect on this home. James used reclaimed slate for the roof and chose a simple whitewash for the new brick exterior, which results in a historic feel and a sort of easy grace. Also, I really have a thing for pea gravel and brick drives. So there’s that.
Check this out… Do you see the library ladder on the far stair wall? Well, then do you see that little porthole window in the center? What do you think is on the other side? I’ll show you in a little bit. (It’s the final image below!)
The walls in the main halls are Benjamin Moore’s Alaskan Skies (one of my go-to colors), and the sconces above the that neoclassical Italian dresser (Parc Monceau) are antique, just like the rug. James actually started to collect for this house 25 years ago… And can you see a little glimpse of library in the back…? That’s where we’re headed. (Also, how many hidden doors have you spotted so far?)
James has such a great attention to detail, clearly, so in addition to all the woodwork (cornices, mantel, over-mantel… that classic Greek key pattern), he even designed the lead obelisk you can see in the garden.
The walls are Cushing Green, by Benjamin Moore. James describes the color as, “strong and cozy.”
So when a pretty prolific architect has over a decade to design his own dream home, this is what you get, I love it.
So James, do you Airbnb? Because… um… I have some very important business in Birmingham.
AND, FRIENDS, DO YOU REMEMBER THAT LITTLE PORTHOLE WINDOW FROM UP ABOVE??? Well it opens up onto the most charming little office nook… retreat… man cave? Complete with a gallery wall of personal photographs, nestled privately on the side. Love it.