At the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, a spectacular mountain setting inspires the stylish conclusion of a partially completed home.
“It had great bones, but it was too rustic and dark,” Angie Gerdes recalls. She and her brother Joe Long—co-owners of GV Construction Renovation Specialists—were seduced by the scenic setting of an unfinished home located at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, but they were less thrilled with many of its existing features and finishes. Regardless, they recognized the project’s potential, so they purchased and overhauled the home with a site-inspired vision as their guide. “As soon as I visited and saw the Bell Canyon Stream running through the property, I immediately had ideas for working the home’s impressive surroundings into the design,” says Long, who focused on building and construction.
From the get-go, Long and Gerdes collaborated with interior designers from The Black Goose Design, a sister company to GV Construction, as they planned and executed the home’s renovation. “We wanted something more modern and grand, something lighter and brighter,” Gerdes says. The transformation begins at the threshold.
Originally featuring a small wooden door surrounded by sidelights, the entry now boasts an enormous pivot door with inset windows and modern lines. “The front door immediately grabs your attention,” Long says. He also replaced the interior’s undersized doors with larger versions that relate better to the 6,700-square-foot home’s volume and scale. The team ditched the orange-tinted wood stain that darkened the old doors, painting their replacements with a sophisticated gray hue instead.
In fact, every hint of the interior’s outdated wood finish was eliminated. The team removed heavily stained moldings and window casings, painted over the wood-toned stair railing, and darkened the orange-hued cedar ceilings and interior beams. “The old stain dated and darkened the home,” says Gerdes, who oversaw the project’s furnishings and décor. New white-oak floors and a lighter wall color—Alabaster by Sherwin-Williams—lighten and brighten the interior, as do new and enlarged windows.
“Joe made the windows much more grand,” Gerdes explains. Senior Designer Denise Johnson agrees. “It’s like the windows are works of art on the walls.” Long also added large cantilevered decks to expand the views and to increase enviable living space outdoors.
Bifold, collapsible doors open a new deck to the family room and adjoining kitchen, creating an expansive, all-important entertaining space. Inside, Long reimagined the family room’s stone fireplace, enlarging and modernizing it with dark sheet metal and a steel beam mantle. “Running floor to ceiling, it is now more grand and modern,” Gerdes says.
The team designed the kitchen from scratch. Today, a warm mix of stained and painted cabinets anchors the room while daring, black-and-white marble—appropriately named Scandalous—animates the back walls and waterfall-style island with bold veining. “We wanted to add pattern with a natural element,” says Gerdes, explaining the fearless choice. Open shelves, clear-glass pendants and a rustic, bar-height dining table lend elements of industrial style, as well.
Throughout the home, furnishings and accessories were thoughtfully layered to foster the interior’s luxurious, livable décor. “We wanted it to be comfortable and great for entertaining with the focus always on the views,” Gerdes explains. Thanks to the collaborative team, that’s exactly what the new homeowners enjoy today.
Dress your home in this project’s hues.