PaperCity Magazine

May 2013 - Houston

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Page 37 of 51

THE A DESIGNER'S DREAM DECORATOR JULIE DODSON PULLS OUT THE STOPS FOR A GLAMOROUS MEMORIAL-AREA HOUSE WITH RUSTIC LEANINGS. EVERYBODY SHOULD BE SO LUCKY. Out of the blue, a young interior designer with a promising portfolio gets a referral. The builder of a grand, one-off house has recommended her to the homeowners. The wife pays a visit to the designer's office, spends half an hour looking at some photos of past work, takes a quick reading of the vibes (one presumes), and announces, "Okay, you're hired." The chemistry indeed turns out right. Everybody involved is thrilled with the designer's work. But, wait — it gets better. In the year-and-a-half course of it all, she and the couple become close friends. This is a dividend of doing business that simply can't be quantified. And in a profession where judgments are subjective and client relationships can be fraught, it's a bonus that is never guaranteed. "I started my company when I was 26," says Julie Dodson, the designer, who just turned 37. "I've had really great projects, but I have never had one of this magnitude. It was that difference-making project that you dream of as a designer. And I had such a great experience working with them. For so long, I took on every single project that I could because I love designing and creating. But I learned through experience that taking on too much can get you into trouble. And I learned to choose people I'm going to like working with." How fortunate is Dodson to be able to reach that conclusion based on a positive experience, rather than a regrettable one. Architecturally, the house strikes a delicate balance between weightiness and buoyancy: stone, slate, patina-ed brick and heavy timbers on the one hand; soaring ceilings, light-flooded spaces and a flowing plan on the other. Dodson's challenge for the interior was attaining an equally harmonious expression ABOVE: In the living room, a concrete sculpture of a deer, found at Round Top, sits before a Robert Deyber oil, Night Light, purchased from Martin Lawrence Gallery in Newport Beach. More wildlife: the silvery color of the Edelman Leather Royal Hide covering the pair of Dennis & Leen fauteuils is called Catbird. French oak flooring from Custom Floors. LEFT: In a hallway, the pair of acrylic chandeliers is from Allan Knight in Dallas. Limestone flooring from Chateau Domingue. BY JONATHAN LERNER. ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN ROBERT DAME. PHOTOGRAPHY JACK THOMPSON.

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