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Finding a picture-perfect home can be like discovering a needle in the proverbial haystack—unless you’re a seasoned architect and can revamp a less-than-ideal house however you wish. Such was the case for J.R. Lamicq, a principal at Littleton’s Woodley Architectural Group, who spotted this 2007 shingle-style house in Greenwood Village and knew he could nip and tuck it into a dream home to share with his two daughters and their menagerie of pets. “I was actually thinking about building my own custom home…but this neighborhood is an unbelievably cool little enclave with lots of old trees, and the house felt timeless,” says Lamicq, who has designed homes from Texas to the Bahamas, plus plenty of residences in his home state of Colorado. “The house had great bones, but I knew I’d have to modernize it a bit”—which he did with help from Denver interior designer Ashley Campbell.
At the starting line: the cramped main bathroom. “In a lot of the designs that I do, the baths are getting bigger and becoming more spa-like,” Lamicq says. He followed suit by removing non-load-bearing walls and adding 25 square feet to make way for resort-grade amenities including a linear fireplace, a glass-walled steam shower with multiple heads, a soaking tub set under a geometric chandelier, and a coffee maker. “I’m a firm believer that good design and architecture can transform people’s lives,” says Lamicq, who now kick-starts each day with a cup of coffee and the morning news—all without leaving the bedroom suite. “It’s changed the way I get ready in the morning, and I come into work more relaxed and energized.”
Adjacent to the main bathroom is the former study, which Lamicq converted into an expansive closet complete with a custom-woodwork centerpiece island, a trio of capiz-shell pendant lights, and another fireplace. “The fireplace was already in there, and I wasn’t going to rip it out,” he says. “Sometimes those obstacles become unexpected elements that take a space from ordinary to extraordinary.”
These eye-catching moments continue throughout the rest of the house, thanks to Campbell’s selection of eclectic furnishings and accessories. “J.R. wanted to stay with that transitional look, and he likes color, so we did vibrant pops of blue, orange, and pinks,” Campbell says. Tribal-inspired patterns mingle with neutral upholstery, a move that supplies textural warmth around every corner.
That warm, welcoming feeling was key for Lamicq, who hosts fantasy-football and holiday parties aplenty. “One thing I loved about the house was its large dining room that would seat 10 comfortably,” he says. “It’s so nice to not have to put kids at a different table.” The dining chairs are rated for outdoor use—thanks to Sunbrella fabric, which can withstand everything from cat scratches to spilled pinot noir—and are exceedingly comfortable.
The dining space’s showstopper: black-and-white floral wallpaper by Ellie Cashman Design, which is balanced by the comparatively sedate furniture and a glimmering light fixture that casts the entire length of the table in a romantic glow. “When Ashley selected it, I looked at her and said, ‘Never in a million years would I have chosen that wallpaper for myself, but that’s why I hired you. I need you to push me,’ ” Lamicq says. Sometimes, a little push—and the design eye of a skilled architect-makes perfect.