Helen Thompson
Helen Thompson
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THE STRAIGHT AND NARROW

This unique corner site along a prestigious Dallas street features 13 mature oak trees—unusual for Dallas. The trees presented a challenge that was welcomed by both architect James Larue and his clients. Larue’s charge was to design a house in between the oaks—not only to accommodate the trees, but also to integrate them fully into views of and from the home. The architect worked with interior designer Delaney Warren to create a residence that celebrates its setting and invites the homeowners to live as much outside as in.

The house is protected from the busy street at the front and opens to a large, serene park-like environment in the rear, a design move that is crucial to the experience of the spaces and to daily family life.

Outdoor living is at the heart of the home, with ground floor public spaces and master suite wrapping around the verdant oasis of trees and grass, unexpected in the heart of a major city.

The house is designed to be long and low in the tradition of mid-century ranch houses.

Windows in the main living and dining areas are steel with minimal sight lines; four-foot sliders in the dining and kitchen stack to create a seamless eight-foot wide, 12-foot high opening to the backyard.

Floors are white oak, and steel beams expressed to create a sturdy skeleton to the building.

Custom open shelving and frosted glass cabinets by KTI Cabinets are trimmed in stainless steel and complement the large crystal ice quartzite waterfall island and countertops. A beveled-glass tile wall with gray undertones complements the subtle kitchen palette.

The open kitchen, at the conceptual center of the ground floor, is complemented by a secondary chef’s kitchen tucked behind. Cabinets are quarter-sawn walnut with sap laid in a slip-match pattern to create a long linear appearance of the sap lines and custom stained to retain its palette as it ages. Tile is by Ann Sacks; appliances are Thermador.

White oak treads on the staircase match the white oak flooring throughout.

A wine rack is on view behind a custom glass and steel door.

Wall covering in the master bedroom is by Philip Jeffries.

Bedroom windows are aluminum wood clad, painted to simulate steel windows. Western Red cedar on exterior soffits is continued to the interior ceilings creating uninterrupted flow between inside and out.

The master bath.

A corner window engages with a tree that marks a secondary entrance to the courtyard from the more-quiet side street.

An outdoor living space, with Lueders limestone slabs and storage surround.

Deep eaves create shade and protect porches, inviting life to move outside.

Exteriors feature rough-back Lueders limestone on the first floor. Cut stone Lueders in a lighter shade of cream define the second floor, with paint-grip metal, cedar siding and exposed steel structure completing the exterior materials palette.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY DROR BALDINGER

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