Fine Lines: A Crisp, Glamorous Houston Home
January 09, 2014
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CARL MAYFIELD
Sophisticated. Well-mannered. Youthful. Serene. The words Reagan Miller uses to describe the architectural style of Holly and Jeremy Taylor’s River Oaks home also fittingly describe the couple themselves. “They didn’t come with any preconceived ideas about style,” explains the architect. “Both had a sensitivity to fitting within the historic eclecticism of the neighborhood, but they also wanted to express their own personalities.”
That said, it was perhaps yet another word that had the most influence on the home’s ultimate modern Regency design. “We wanted it to be crisp,” says Holly. “Not too formal and with clean, classic lines.” Architecturally, the concept translates into a symmetrical exterior typical of the Regency style with light-colored and hand-troweled stucco walls, a slate tile roof, a straightforward window fenestration and a petite pair of dormers. Oversize windowpanes and steel doors infuse a more modern feel. “We tried to be respectful of scale with simple devices and surrounds,” says Miller. “The dormers were more or less obligatory,” he adds with a laugh.
Inside, meticulous attention was paid to the profiling of the millwork, such as baseboards, crown molding and doorframes. “I don’t think there’s a curve anywhere inside the house,” asserts Miller. “Everything was reduced to a fine line, a 90-degree right angle with a very defined edge.” Achieving that look was up to builder Scott Frasier, who brought in a team of carpenters, painters and other finishing pros early on. “It was important to plan ahead and consider the end result,” he says. “The workmanship needed to be very precise.”
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