Interior designers and other experts in the home industry work on an impressive number of spaces throughout their careers. But even if some of the makeovers and redesigns start to blend together after a few years, there are some rooms that are just truly unforgettable.
So, to give designers a chance to revisit their favorite projects—and to bring you plenty of inspiration for your own home—we’re sharing the one room these pros will remember forever. For some, there’s a sentimental connection, for others, there was an obstacle they never thought they’d overcome. But no matter what, these rooms are worth remembering.
Our scene is set in Waco, Texas, home of all things modern farmhouse and fixer-uppers. Interior designers in the area may be known to give the people the shiplap they desire, unless you are designer Lesley Myrick, who was called upon by a bold client who wanted to swap her farmhouse-style kitchen for the space of her dreams.
“I’ll never forget how this project started,” Myrick shares. “This client called me because her kitchen needed some major improvements. It was a terrible layout with an awkward island, and it wasn’t functioning well for her young family, with three kids under 3 at the time.”
The client was ready to wave goodbye to her dysfunctional layout and one eyesore accent wall that just had to go. Without a kitchen for three months, the homeowners set up a makeshift one via camper in their driveway, and made it an adventure for their kids to cook all their meals outside on the grill.
“It was so sweet how they chose to view the inconvenience of a kitchen remodel with a sense of play and fun,” she says.
Read on to explore this fresh, colorful, and functional kitchen that Myrick will always remember.
Shiplap, barn doors, and white walls were all the rage locally at the time, and Myrick often felt like she stuck out like a sore thumb with her love of color and pattern when she lived there. Clients like this one, though, allowed her to express creativity and uniqueness and trusted her process.
“This kitchen was a mix of high and low, color and neutrals, patterns and solids, which is still what I’m into today,” Myrick shares.
It’s hard for Myrick to choose a favorite element of the room, but among them are the mix of textures and colors, the bright blue island in shade Deep Sea Dive by Sherwin-Williams—which creates a focal point and ties in the blue patterned backsplash—and the classic brass pendants over the island.
The matte black faucets and black hex knobs used on the cabinetry read subtle and modern, and it allowed the patterned backsplash and brass pendants to take center stage in the design.
Every renovation comes with its share of challenges, and for this space, it was the aforementioned shiplap wall. The wall was floating in the middle of the kitchen, which was a large issue, as the team determined it was likely concealing a support column.
"We planned the design around it, but unfortunately once the wall came down, the column wasn’t where we expected it to be, and it caused a major hiccup in the design," Myrick shares.
Ultimately, the clients decided to install a hidden ceiling beam that would keep the kitchen flow open and stick with the original design that included a generous island—but the beam increased the project budget significantly. Some of Myrick's planned elements, including upper cabinets and backsplash tiling that went up to the ceiling, couldn't make the budget cut, providing a few challenges for her first full kitchen remodel project.
"While I had more than 12 years of experience in interior design, this was my first time managing a gut remodel from start to finish," she says. "Pulling it off within the timeline we had promised was the icing on the cake."
This kitchen remodel had a strong influence on future designs for Myrick.
"This project gave me the confidence to use bold color and pattern in a more permanent way than on upholstery or pillows,” she shares. “The design is ‘playfully polished,’ which has now become my tagline. I think this kitchen perfectly sums up what Lesley Myrick Interior Design is all about and has helped shape and define my aesthetic.”
“There were, of course, frustrations and challenges along the way, just like with any design project,” she continues. “But, I had a great relationship with the clients who trusted me to push them out of their comfort zone, and that made the project a huge success.”