A family transforms their dark, dated rooms to fit their indoor-outdoor Arizona lifestyle while getting the most out of every space.
Reimagining rooms so they work harder.
No dead zones! That was Jessica and Jeff Reinhart’s mission when they started renovations on their two-story Arizona house. With three kids and a business they run from home, they were able to imagine occasional uses for all the rooms. But they wanted every space in the house to be more than occasionally useful.
For that reason, the Reinharts sometimes did the opposite of most modern makeovers. Working with interior designer Jo Gick of J&J Design Group, they made
THE PLACE TO CHILL
A common feature in the neighborhood, the backyard casita typically works as a guesthouse, but the Reinharts remade it as a pool house where parents can relax in the AC while keeping an eye on the kids.
thoughtful layout shifts and design updates that would not only look great but also wring every bit of utility from each room. To create upstairs bedrooms for their kids, for example, they carved up an oversize master suite. They moved the laundry from a high-traffic zone on the main floor to the underutilized basement and replaced it with a mudroom. In the kitchen, they actually got rid of some windows to create more usable walls but also widened the door to the backyard by installing glass sliders to bring in loads of sunlight and create a seamless inside-out transition.
Other tweaks were smaller, like simplifying the front yard landscaping to expose a porch made for drop-in visits. “We looked at every area of the house to carve out places to gather,” Jessica says. The overall effect is as warm and welcoming as the family itself.
THE PLACE TO WELCOME
They replaced Tuscan-style yellows and reds with off-white stucco edged in navy (Parisian Night by Dunn Edwards, which finds another home inside—turn the page to see it). The new scheme feels modern but works with the existing terra-cotta roof and Mission-style door.
THE PLACE TO PLAY
There are two surprises in the backyard: The grass is faux (better in the Southwest), and a projector screen hangs under the eaves. “We set out blankets, have friends over, and stream movies from our laptop,” Jessica says.
BEFORE, MY BOOKS WERE ALWAYS STASHED IN RANDOM PLACES, AND I THOUGHT A ROLLING LADDER WOULD BE THE COOLEST THING.
THE PLACE TO READ
To make the most of a high ceiling, Gick built in tall bookcases (painted to match the exterior trim), installed curtains at the same height, and hung an oversize chandelier.
THE PLACE TO ENTER
To keep the clutter of life at bay, each kid has a cubby for coats and bags and a drawer for shoes, above. Though mudroom storage is all business, the pairing of patterns on the wallpaper and floor tile gives the space a playful look. “The wall pattern is curvilinear and the floors linear, so they complement each other,” Gick says.
THE PLACE TO GATHER
Light wood floors and white Shaker cabinets go a long way toward brightening and simplifying the kitchen. There are plenty of details, though, to add interest: Geometric cage pendants, the arabesque tile backsplash, and Chippendale-style stools have angles set against the room’s rectangular shapes.
THE PLACE TO WORK
Jessica and Jeff’s business, Lumitory, is devoted to bringing people together IRL (that’s In Real Life, not online) with supper club kits and conversationstarter cards. In their office-brainstorming room, below, they jot ideas on the walls and desktop, both covered in whiteboard paint, or on computers powered by outlets down the center of the desk.
THE PLACE TO PLAY
The playroom, right, was Jeff’s idea. He wanted to create a spot where the kids could use their imaginations and play on their own. In a small basement room, they built a loft (complete with a slide) and separate areas to read, pretend, or work on art. Above the desk, the kids’ latest artwork hangs on plexiglass sheets hung with binder clips.
The finishing touches: They cut windows into the wall and added a half door, real shingles, and window boxes, below.
THE PLACE TO SLEEP
It can be a challenge to find a style kids won’t age out of in a couple of years. For now, the teal wall and skateboard art suit son Chase and provide a focal point for the long room, above, but they’ll be simple to update. The upholstered bed and mod nightstands will adapt to any look. n
THE BIGGEST GIFT OF THIS HOME IS THAT NOW WE HAVE SPACE TO SPEND QUALITY TIME TOGETHER.
WALL RICE BOWL DE6170 DUNN EDWARDS
New wide trim makes three narrow windows look like one larger unit.