When longtime clients of Kurt Jacob Miller and S. Lukas Mack decided to leave Chicago and relocate to Hinsdale, they made sure to have their trusted design team in tow.
“Hinsdale is suburban living at its best,” says Miller, who co-owns Jacob Lukas Design with Mack. “When we walked up to the front of this 1920s Georgian Revival house, it was giving us all of the Home Alone vibes. We told our clients they had to buy this house—immediately. While we love historic home design, we had a number of ideas for how we could make this house modern and fresh and feel like them.”
Miller and Mack have an established reputation in the industry for creating elegant and practical interiors. Their firm was built on the shared belief that your home should be a comfortable place that reflects your personal style. With an extensive knowledge of design history, as well as degrees in design and marketing, this duo creates beautiful spaces for clients of varying tastes and aesthetics. They pride themselves on having a stress-free design process that their clients truly enjoy.
When their Hinsdale homeowners moved into their new home, it had been recently renovated.
“All of the rooms were very neutral,” adds Mack. “There was a lot of gray that made the home seem very cold. But the house still had many of its original architectural details intact and the rooms were all very well-proportioned.”
When it came time for Jacob Lukas to put design to paper, they channeled their love of Scottish castles.
“The homeowners’ aesthetic is more traditional than contemporary—more transitional overall,” Mack explains. “Our inspiration was a modern take on Scotland’s Balmoral Castle—very youthful, not stodgy.”
While each of the home’s living spaces is generous in size, closets were lacking.
“Our first challenge was to outfit the entry way with a large armoire that could accommodate all the things a hall closet is intended for,” Mack says. “We were on the hunt for an oversize French antique armoire that could help with storage. Thankfully, these clients weren’t snobs about the pedigree of antiques or consignment pieces we found for them. It gave us a lot of freedom to shop for treasures locally. We loved The Courtyard in Hinsdale and Wheaton’s The Perfect Thing. We found some great pieces with such character that make this home feel very special, including a giant armoire for the foyer. It fit just perfectly next to the staircase without an inch to spare.”
In the downstairs living spaces, Jacob Lukas used damask and tartan plaids in warm hues of navy to set the mood.
“We could never forget that we were designing this home for a family,” Miller explains of his clients who have a young child. “We needed to think elegant, but washable.” Thus, the family room’s white sectional sofa makes much more sense when you know it’s been covered in a new performance-made fabric that’s derived from all recycled materials.
The nod to Balmoral is evident in the choice of the black wrought iron light fixture chosen for the family room, as well as the royal fleur de lis motif that is repeated in a mirror, in an ornamental structure above the doorway, and an art piece on the wall. The room is grounded with a dark gray, almost black paint on one of the facing walls. While navy blue is subtle in this space, there are pops of it in the sectional’s pillows and on the trim on the white drapes. These tones were carried through into the living room, where the rich brown leather sofas are accented with pillows in various blue patterns and finished with a fur throw. A mix of antiques, well-placed décor in the unfinished pine bookcase, and the homeowners’ love of contemporary art pieces (they own several original Chagalls) were the finishing touches.
“We played off the fact that this home has so many beautiful working fireplaces,” says Mack. “The living room is an inherently cozy space—a room that needed to be comfortable and livable for this young family, so finishing it with natural textures on the windows and furnishings just enhanced this idea.”
One of Miller and Mack’s favorite parts of this home project was also one of its most challenging—a secondary foyer off the primary bedroom on the second floor.
“When the addition was put on to this home by the previous homeowners, they converted a bedroom into another foyer and this space felt very disconnected from those around it,” Miller says. “To finally integrate the addition with the original home, we created a wall of mirrors and leveraged our client’s love of fashion for the furnishings and lighting we selected. This is a perfect example of how thoughtful design can solve any problem.”
For more information and to learn more about the furniture collection they recently debuted, follow Jacob Lukas Design on Instagram @jacoblukasdesign, call 312.450.5101, or visit jacoblukasdesign.com.