Barbara Mayer-Jampolis and Sam Jampolis knew they were destined to call Boulder home. Located in the foothills of the Colorado Rocky Mountains, the city is an adventure lover’s dream famed for those who value athleticism, the great outdoors and travel. With miles of unblemished land, endless trails and incredible scenery, it is the ideal setting for a family property.
From the moment they arrived, Barbara and Sam knew they wanted their residence to incorporate the magnificence of the Front Range and the surrounding landscape. So began a three year design renovation which required renting a home nearby, cross-country trips to major cities for design consultations and finding and partnering with a trusted interior designer to execute their vision.
Their journey began with an uninspired property that was waiting for its chance to shine. The outdated 1960’s residence contained small rooms and cramped spaces that kept the original homeowners shut off from the home’s natural landscape. Lots of gray stone was used throughout the home’s interior. This limited the surface area of the walls and contributed to an overall feeling that was dark and gloomy. To let in more light, and to emphasize and create unobstructed views of the lake, the space needed to be opened up; the roof raised, windows added and walls taken down.
That’s where interior designer, Donna Pocci, came in. Donna, the owner of Pocci Interior Design Group in Boulder, has an extensive international design portfolio and is committed to helping her clients execute design renovations successfully. As part of her design process she takes a careful inventory of their preferences; exploring their dreams and focusing on objects that are meaningful to them. Knowing this level of detail helps her fashion beautiful homes that are a perfect marriage of functional style and personal aesthetic values.
Before Pocci started drawing plans she met with the Jampolis family to ask what was important to them. What did the space need to offer and how did they want it to be used? She quickly learned about their substantial art collection and knew the design of the home needed to not only boast walls and spaces large enough to display artwork, but the design should make art an integral focus of each room. She also learned of the couple’s connection to nature and their love of fly fishing and other outdoor activities and knew it would be essential to create an uninhibited flow to integrate the inside of the house with the grounds outside.
“To let in more light, and to emphasize and create unobstructed views of the lake, the space needed to be opened up; the roof raised, windows added and walls taken down.”
When questioned about where to begin the remodel process, Pocci’s advice was simple: pick five items, decide on those first and then have fun.
“Don’t get overwhelmed with all the decisions that you need to make. Tailor down the list to five items that are most important to you. If you make those first you will have so much fun making all those other decisions that will make your home truly you. You really want it to be a fun process and to have your personality come out in the design of the house; not the architect’s, designer’s or contractor’s. If you allow those five major decisions to be made first it will allow you to create the home you want in the end.“
Barbara Mayer-Jampolis liked this approach. “The difference between Donna and others was that she listened, whereas others were trying to sell themselves. She wanted to create something we wanted instead of what she wanted and that made all the difference in the world.”
In those agonizing moments when they were stuck and couldn’t decide, Pocci used creative problem solving to put the ball back in Barbara and Sam’s court. It didn’t matter if it was a paint swatch or a fixture, Pocci would narrow it down to three options and let them pick. She created a receptive environment that was optimal for decision making while accommodating their requests.
The remodel began with raising the roof as high as possible and adding skylights and windows to expose the interior to more natural light and brighten up the space. Walls were removed, stone was replaced and glass panels were installed. Slowly but surely the home began to feel less closed off and more inviting. Rooms were more open and exposed and there was a more prominent view of the lake.
For the room décor, Donna created a feeling of warmth by distributing artwork throughout the home and using a technique called “layering.” She added cushions, pillows and other items to the space to create a cozier and more appealing atmosphere.
The overall design of the home was coming along, but Pocci was fervent about connecting the home to the outdoors. For this, she implemented an edgeless design. No matter where her clients stood, she wanted them to be able to look at the stunning view with strategically placed architectural details framing the landscape.
Design details such as the use of light, the shape of windows, and the placement of a glass walkway all created a sense of relaxation and helped the homeowners feel immersed in nature, even when they were comfortably protected in the architecture of their home.
One of the top five decisions for the Jampolis family was the selection of their flooring. The wide plank hardwood was going to cover a significant surface area and would be a driving factor when they chose other materials. When they held a Hickory sample from Carlisle in their hands they knew it was the ideal foundation for the rest of the design.
Hickory has the reputation of being “busy” and “rustic,” so Donna worked closely with Carlisle to help them find a grade for the floor that would create a more contemporary look. Carlisle’s proprietary flooring grades, and the artistry of Carlisle craftsmen made all the difference. Their final choice features lots of rich heartwood, with subtle blonde variations and just the right amount of character. The colors of the Hickory were enhanced with a natural oil finish – no stain. The dark trim around doors, windows and beams complement the organic hues beautifully.
“We loved the Hickory. It has so much life to it. It’s so different. It feels almost musical in how much variety it has. It is also a nice, hard floor and very durable to handle the different weather, our 100 lb lab puppy and our seven grandchildren who are all over the floor with all their toys.” – Barbara Mayer-Jampolis
“The wider boards fit the scale and design of the home. Room were wider and longer, ceilings were higher, windows and artwork took up entire walls – the floors had to be “big” too.”
While most people lay their flooring so it runs the length of a room, the Jampolis’ floor was purposely run the opposite direction. Although it may have seemed counterintuitive, it was purposeful and effective. The floorboards covered a shorter distance but led the eye directly toward the garden and expansive views, connecting the home and its residents to their surroundings and providing a well lit space for their artwork.
”You will notice as you enter the home the back wall of light just draws you into the space and gives you a whole sense of awe as you walk in and see the rustic details of the flooring, the softer woods of the interior trim and focuses on the artwork, the sculptures and the lighting. It is a phenomenal space to walk through.” – Donna Pocci
Once the dust of the renovations had subsided, Barbara knew Donna Pocci had helped to create a powerful design that would honor their family’s legacy for years to come. Entering the home once it was complete, was a breathtaking experience. A retractable glass NanaWall, a significant design feature, opened up to the yard outside reinforcing the impression that the family was surrounded by nature. Soaring ceilings and clerestory glass seamlessly melded interior to exterior and allowed sunshine to pour in. It was simply breathtaking.
No matter where life takes them the Barbara and Sam have a strong foundation to call home, one that keeps them connected to the tranquility of nature while remaining durable enough to withstand the pitter-patter of their grandchildren’s feet.
“We have created something that is an abundance of life. It is both an indoor and an outdoor feeling we have here. Whenever we travel, and we travel a lot, we are always glad to come home to our beautiful environment that we created together. When it’s just Sam and I one of the things we love to do is sit outside on our patio out back with the beautiful view and we look out at all we have created. We absolutely love it. It’s very peaceful. - Barbara Mayer-Jampolis”
“My advice for homeowners that are going to remodel is to get a good team of people that are working together. They all have to work together well. That includes the architect, interior designer, builder and of course, the client. The other thing I would recommend is don’t be in a hurry. Everybody wants to done because you want to move in. But if you get in a hurry, and start cutting corners on making some really important decisions, you’ll be meeting a deadline instead of meeting your dream home.” – Barbara Mayer-Jampolis
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Carlisle is proud to be on the Jampolis team – and on the teams of our clients across the globe. From the artisans in our Custom Color Shop and our small NH mill, we take pride in handcrafting each floor we make board by board, one at a time. We encourage you to call a Wide Plank Specialist today for custom samples for your project.
Donna Pocci is the owner of Pocci Design Group and has more than 25 years of residential and commercial design experience. She is a professional member of the American Society of Interior designers (ASID) and is nationally certified with The National Council for Interior Designers (NCIDQ). Pocci Design Group has designed numerous residential, commercial, hospitality and remodeling projects for clients in Boulder and Denver, Colorado, and in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Illinois, and Nevada. Visit their website to learn more about Donna and the Pocci Design Group.