Glamour and comfort are words that don’t usually go together — and yet they meet in the middle at the home of Lisa and Jim Sackuvich.
The couple’s home in Raymore has been transformed in phases by Tran + Thomas Design Studio, which was hired in 2014 to refinish the basement, in 2016 for the master suite and just this summer to make over the guest wing. The kitchen is next.
The Sackuviches bought their house in the early 2000s, and lived a decade with ivy wallpaper that wasn’t for them.
“It was very country,” Lisa recalls.
In desperation, they remodeled the kitchen themselves.
“I just wanted to get rid of the golden oak,” Lisa says. The remodel was a high-quality job, done in cherry and granite, but it doesn’t quite fit with the new aesthetic.
“The house (now) has a French-y, Colorado-y kind of feel,” says designer Jill Tran.
Jill and her partner, Carmen Thomas, updated the color palette from a pervasive brown to gray and warmed it up with reclaimed wood, distressed finishes, must-touch textures and a bit of sparkle. The designers also added some whimsical touches, such as a portrait of a hunter with a deer head.
One of the Sackuviches’ favorite retreats is Big Cedar Lodge near Branson, Mo., which provided helpful direction for Jill and Carmen.
The designers papered the walls in the basement bar with a 3D nailhead pattern, laid large-scale metallic tile on the floor and capped the ceiling with tin. Reclaimed wood wall paneling in the pool and TV area makes the space extra cozy. A plaid couch, cowhide rug and deer heads add to the lodge look.
The designers also incorporated the family’s hobbies into the home. There’s a subtle drag racing reference in a purple sepia-toned portrait of the Sackuvich family. Custom benches provide storage for the family’s golf ball collection, and there’s a cornhole game built into a hidden door to a storage room.
After the successful transformation of the basement, the Sackuviches placed full trust in Jill and Carmen to do the rest of the house.
“Just do what you do, and I’ll love it,” Lisa told them.
Upstairs, the women started by updating transitional spaces. The 1984 floor plan was choppy, with narrow hallways and awkward-shaped rooms.
“I walked in the front door and felt like, ‘I’m stuck here, now what do I do?’” Jill recalls.
She and Carmen widened the entrance to the living room, defining the opening with reclaimed beams. On the other side of the room, they removed French doors to a sun room to make it part of the house and attached detailed wood screens for privacy.
The changes altered the flow and use of the living room, located at the center of the house. The designers refinished an entire wall of built-ins by painting golden oak cabinets to look like dark wood and adding stone to the fireplace.
“The biggest thing was that the room was really dark,” Jill says, pointing to its large new chandelier, “on a dimmer, of course.”
Jill and Carmen also tweaked the traffic pattern in the kitchen’s eat-in area by replacing a rectangular picnic-style table with a round one.
It flows into the “Saturday room,” which houses a sofa-like daybed and cafe-style dining. With skylights in the vaulted space and a painted beadboard ceiling, the bright and sunny space feels happy.
“I come to read in here,” Lisa says.
Another favorite spot to curl up is the master suite, which is not overly large. A heavily turned four-post bed dramatically envelops the sleeping couple, while an entire headboard-style wall, with reclaimed wood inserts for extra detail, enhances the cozy factor.
Pendants hanging over side tables allow for bedside space, and a fabulous iron and glass overhead fixture reminds Lisa of a palm tree from the couple’s favorite island getaway, St. John.
“It’s an oasis away from work for Lisa,” Carmen says. “She has a high-powered job that’s stressful, and she can come home and have this total escape.”
The designers revamped the bathroom from floor to ceiling, replacing tile and wallpaper and removing a soffit. New his-and-hers vanities have a distressed look — a finish carried through to the closet — and a jetted tub made way for a hammered copper soaking tub.
A female welder in Texas created a metal window valance above the tub.
“I didn’t want just fabric, but something more special and raw,” Jill says. “This looks really old, and I love that a woman welded it.”
The guest wing on the other side of the house — the newest renovated space — comprises a peaceful bedroom and youngest son Jimmy’s room when he’s home from college. The latter features a giant wall map for pinning travels and a bench for playing guitar. Carmen also designed Jimmy’s custom desk and wall storage for his memorabilia.
The most outstanding makeover is Lisa’s office, a bright, feminine space overlooking the property’s pond. The designers removed a closet and replaced the storage space with gold and glass shelves that show off photos and accessories.
Both designers excel at sourcing unusual pieces, such as the skid hanging on the wall in the dining room and a chair welded out of horseshoes in the guest room.
“We wanted to incorporate a lot of unique antiques and accessories that give the home an eclectic look and feel that’s really cozy,” Carmen says.
Between all the custom work and one-of-a-kind finds, the house has a maximalist vibe. Layer upon layer of detail culminates in the ultimate homey feel, but it is done with a keen eye.
“You have to edit, that’s the trick,” Jill says.
The designers stuck to what they knew about Lisa, who hardly made a change to the ideas they offered.
“It was so easy,” Lisa says. “They understood me.”