Behind the Brand > Decorating

House Beautiful’s 2023 Show House Is Here: Escape to Our Secret Garden Suite

Nestled in the charming Southeast Hinsdale neighborhood, a suburb of Chicago, this captivating estate is more than just a home; it's an exquisite $10M masterpiece that exemplifies unparalleled luxury. Revered as an iconic piece of history, this property, built in the 1900s, features a total of over 18 rooms, including eight bedrooms, nine bathrooms, a stunning inground pool, and gorgeous gardens. It's a Tudor revival that displays late Victorian architecture and was originally designed to feature functionality over beauty. But we're here to change that! We had the pleasure of working alongside House Beautiful's first ever all-female led design team and first ever home builder, J. Jordan Homes.

"As soon as we laid eyes on this new offering of Chinese Peony, we couldn't believe the timing and felt it was meant to be." - Roxy

Our room is traditional in style, but our goal was to make it also feel whimsical and a little fantastical, like a dreamy garden escape! We included an abundance of layers and playful accents of fringe and tape trims. The furniture and accessories we designed and curated just for this space exhibit graceful curves, blending seamlessly with modern prints and rich textures spanning from the floor up. This includes a grounding sisal rug from Fibreworks, the tactile appeal of woven wooden window treatments courtesy of Hunter Douglas, and a ceiling adorned with our faux grasscloth wallpaper.

Delightful Details

One of our favorite tips for making a smaller space feel more grandiose is to wallpaper your ceiling. This wall is frequently overlooked, but when given a little attention, it can truly add a show-stopping element that brings your eye upward and makes a room like a bedroom feel even cozier. We've used our faux grasscloth peel and stick wallpaper in colorway Sky Blue to bring a hint of color and texture to our room, finished off with custom treillage panels by Fuller Architectural Panels for an extra layer of detail around the perimeter of the ceiling. We chose the lattice work, specifically, as it matched the lattice work on the original radiator covers - it was important to us to honor the historic home in all of our design choices! It's a beautiful high-low moment in our space as the wallpaper is a friendly price point ($49.99/roll) yet is instantly elevated when paired with high end designer details like custom latticework.

Photography by Marta Xochilt Perez and Erin Konrath, courtesy of Dawn Mckenna Group.

Waking Up in Whimsy

Welcome inside our space for House Beautiful's 2023 Whole Home Chicago Show House, a room rooted in traditional design, a space blooming with whimsical delights, a romantic retreat made modern with fresh prints and silhouettes as foils to all the florals and feminine details. If these walls could talk, they'd share the whispers that once whirled around this 13,000 square foot historic Hinsdale home. Perhaps "Alice", by Nick Mele Photography, can let us in on a little secret… 

Behind the Design

Let's take you back to May! When the House Beautiful Whole Home Chicago Show House called, we answered and immediately hopped on the first flight to NY, where inspiration abounded and the iconic fabric houses awaited. We were tasked with renovating the property’s guest bedroom, a cozy space on the second story with original molding and paneling and sprawling views of the side lawn. With our floor plans on hand, we hopped off the plane and headed straight for the Lee Jofa Showroom, where their team kindly opened their doors to give us a private tour of their NYC design studio and a sneak peek at a handful of new releases in the works in honor of their 200th anniversary. One of those fabrics just happened to be a recolored and rescaled version of their highly iconic Chinese Peony, a legacy print that we’ve used in our design projects for 10+ years.  

In Full Bloom

Despite the pattern not having a firm release date and rolling the dice in terms of delivery (show houses have very tight turnaround times!) we decided it was too much of a coincidence and had to go for it – Enter Chinese Peony as the hero of our design. The entire Lee Jofa team was an absolute delight to work with, and it is truly an honor to be the very first designer to use this new offering in a project. You'll see that the updated print features a softer, more painterly effect, and for the first time ever, this legacy pattern is offered as a wallpaper. From the paneled walls to a custom bed tester to the Italian-strung draperies and window valances, our design team worked tirelessly with Jenny from Grace by Design and our contractors to flow match the gorgeous floral pattern in the wallpaper to the textiles and to every pleat and pattern so you can count (Chinese Peony) petals as you turn down for the night, in your comfy Saatva mattress of course!

A Make It Work Moment

As this is the first historic renovation by House Beautiful, honoring the intricate craftsmanship of this 13,000 square foot landmark property was paramount! Our space is inherently dark as the bedroom windows are situated underneath a grand covered porch and at the base of the windows sit radiator covers, which are original to the home. In order to keep the space as light and airy as possible, we worked with the incredibly gifted Grace by Design to dream up custom valances and drapery panels that artfully framed the historic windows. To work around the original radiator covers that we were not allowed to replace, we employed the Italian stringing technique in which the drapery panels are gracefully pulled up above the radiators with hidden cords on the back, almost like a wedding dress bustle, so as to not disrupt the elegant floral flow match. These custom window treatments beautifully frame Hunter Douglas’ Provenance Woven Wooden Shades in colorway, “First Frost.” We selected this artisanal offering as it was an organic way to infuse an extra layer of texture into our space while welcoming in the gentle play of natural light. “First Frost” boasts a subtle sheen that reflects and scatters light throughout the room, adding to the overall charm of the home! Additionally, we did not disrupt the historic molding and trim, but instead gave it a fresh new life with semi-gloss coats of Farrow & Ball's Parma Gray, a tried and true blue we keep coming back to!

On the interior of our bed valance, you'll find our exclusive French Blue colorway of Brunchswig & Fils' designer favorite Les Touches fabric offering - only available for purchase on our site! It's a pattern we love to incorporate in all design projects as it's a small-scaled print which pairs nicely with larger, free-flowing patterns like Chinese Peony.

We’re firm believers that every space needs a pop of modern art. This dreamy "Alice" fine art print by Nick Mele was meant to live in this space. Art should spark curiosity, and this piece did just that. Who is she whispering to? What secrets does she know?

It was an absolute delight to bring this project to life and to work alongside such a talented group of design driven, hardworking women. For those of you who were able to visit the show house in person, thank you for all of the social love on Instagram and for your charitable support of Humble Design. The show house is no longer open to the public, however, you can take a piece of our Secret Garden Suite home with our latest introduction of playful styles in all of your favorite materials and our free interior design services! From woven wicker wonders to tasseled table skirts to upholstered, hotel-worthy headboards, our fresh designs have many tales to tell - including your own. A beautiful life starts at home!

Waking Up in Whimsy

Welcome inside our space for House Beautiful's 2023 Whole Home Chicago Show House, a room rooted in traditional design, a space blooming with whimsical delights, a romantic retreat made modern with fresh prints and silhouettes as foils to all the florals and feminine details. If these walls could talk, they'd share the whispers that once whirled around this 13,000 square foot historic Hinsdale home. Perhaps "Alice", by Nick Mele Photography, can let us in on a little secret… 

Nestled in the charming Southeast Hinsdale neighborhood, a suburb of Chicago, this captivating estate is more than just a home; it's an exquisite $10M masterpiece that exemplifies unparalleled luxury. Revered as an iconic piece of history, this property, built in the 1900s, features a total of over 18 rooms, including eight bedrooms, nine bathrooms, a stunning inground pool, and gorgeous gardens. It's a Tudor revival that displays late Victorian architecture and was originally designed to feature functionality over beauty. But we're here to change that! We had the pleasure of working alongside House Beautiful's first ever all-female led design team and first ever home builder, J. Jordan Homes.

Behind the Design

Let's take you back to May! When the House Beautiful Whole Home Chicago Show House called, we answered and immediately hopped on the first flight to NY, where inspiration abounded and the iconic fabric houses awaited. We were tasked with renovating the property’s guest bedroom, a cozy space on the second story with original molding and paneling and sprawling views of the side lawn. With our floor plans on hand, we hopped off the plane and headed straight for the Lee Jofa Showroom, where their team kindly opened their doors to give us a private tour of their NYC design studio and a sneak peek at a handful of new releases in the works in honor of their 200th anniversary. One of those fabrics just happened to be a recolored and rescaled version of their highly iconic Chinese Peony, a legacy print that we’ve used in our design projects for 10+ years.  

"As soon as we laid eyes on this new offering of Chinese Peony, we couldn't believe the timing and felt it was meant to be." - Roxy

In Full Bloom

Despite the pattern not having a firm release date and rolling the dice in terms of delivery (show houses have very tight turnaround times!) we decided it was too much of a coincidence and had to go for it – Enter Chinese Peony as the hero of our design. The entire Lee Jofa team was an absolute delight to work with, and it is truly an honor to be the very first designer to use this new offering in a project. You'll see that the updated print features a softer, more painterly effect, and for the first time ever, this legacy pattern is offered as a wallpaper. From the paneled walls to a custom bed tester to the Italian-strung draperies and window valances, our design team worked tirelessly with Jenny from Grace by Design and our contractors to flow match the gorgeous floral pattern in the wallpaper to the textiles and to every pleat and pattern so you can count (Chinese Peony) petals as you turn down for the night, in your comfy Saatva mattress of course!

Our room is traditional in style, but our goal was to make it also feel whimsical and a little fantastical, like a dreamy garden escape! We included an abundance of layers and playful accents of fringe and tape trims. The furniture and accessories we designed and curated just for this space exhibit graceful curves, blending seamlessly with modern prints and rich textures spanning from the floor up. This includes a grounding sisal rug from Fibreworks, the tactile appeal of woven wooden window treatments courtesy of Hunter Douglas, and a ceiling adorned with our faux grasscloth wallpaper.

A Make It Work Moment

As this is the first historic renovation by House Beautiful, honoring the intricate craftsmanship of this 13,000 square foot landmark property was paramount! Our space is inherently dark as the bedroom windows are situated underneath a grand covered porch and at the base of the windows sit radiator covers, which are original to the home. In order to keep the space as light and airy as possible, we worked with the incredibly gifted Grace by Design to dream up custom valances and drapery panels that artfully framed the historic windows. To work around the original radiator covers that we were not allowed to replace, we employed the Italian stringing technique in which the drapery panels are gracefully pulled up above the radiators with hidden cords on the back, almost like a wedding dress bustle, so as to not disrupt the elegant floral flow match. These custom window treatments beautifully frame Hunter Douglas’ Provenance Woven Wooden Shades in colorway, “First Frost.” We selected this artisanal offering as it was an organic way to infuse an extra layer of texture into our space while welcoming in the gentle play of natural light. “First Frost” boasts a subtle sheen that reflects and scatters light throughout the room, adding to the overall charm of the home! Additionally, we did not disrupt the historic molding and trim, but instead gave it a fresh new life with semi-gloss coats of Farrow & Ball's Parma Gray, a tried and true blue we keep coming back to!

On the interior of our bed valance, you'll find our exclusive French Blue colorway of Brunchswig & Fils' designer favorite Les Touches fabric offering - only available for purchase on our site! It's a pattern we love to incorporate in all design projects as it's a small-scaled print which pairs nicely with larger, free-flowing patterns like Chinese Peony.

Delightful Details

One of our favorite tips for making a smaller space feel more grandiose is to wallpaper your ceiling. This wall is frequently overlooked, but when given a little attention, it can truly add a show-stopping element that brings your eye upward and makes a room like a bedroom feel even cozier. We've used our faux grasscloth peel and stick wallpaper in colorway Sky Blue to bring a hint of color and texture to our room, finished off with custom treillage panels by Fuller Architectural Panels for an extra layer of detail around the perimeter of the ceiling. We chose the lattice work, specifically, as it matched the lattice work on the original radiator covers - it was important to us to honor the historic home in all of our design choices! It's a beautiful high-low moment in our space as the wallpaper is a friendly price point ($49.99/roll) yet is instantly elevated when paired with high end designer details like custom latticework.

We’re firm believers that every space needs a pop of modern art. This dreamy "Alice" fine art print by Nick Mele was meant to live in this space. Art should spark curiosity, and this piece did just that. Who is she whispering to? What secrets does she know?

It was an absolute delight to bring this project to life and to work alongside such a talented group of design driven, hardworking women. For those of you who were able to visit the show house in person, thank you for all of the social love on Instagram and for your charitable support of Humble Design. The show house is no longer open to the public, however, you can take a piece of our Secret Garden Suite home with our latest introduction of playful styles in all of your favorite materials and our free interior design services! From woven wicker wonders to tasseled table skirts to upholstered, hotel-worthy headboards, our fresh designs have many tales to tell - including your own. A beautiful life starts at home!

Photography by Marta Xochilt Perez and Erin Konrath, courtesy of Dawn Mckenna Group.

Shop The Secret Garden Suite

Jenny Table Skirt Jenny Table Skirt
Wavy Wicker Lounge Chair Wavy Wicker Lounge Chair
Camden Desk Camden Desk SOLD OUT
Cosette Side Chair Cosette Side Chair
Hinsdale Headboard & Bedskirt Queen - Chevron Silk Print Hinsdale Headboard & Bedskirt Queen - Chevron Silk Print
Hinsdale Headboard Queen Hinsdale Headboard Queen
Seaside Wavy Side Table Seaside Wavy Side Table SOLD OUT
Bailey Scalloped Mirror Bailey Scalloped Mirror SOLD OUT
Green Wicker Lampshade Green Wicker Lampshade
Faux Bamboo Footed X-Stool Faux Bamboo Footed X-Stool
Blue and White Floral Aviary Garden Stool Blue and White Floral Aviary Garden Stool
Chinese Peony Light Blue - Fabric by the Yard Chinese Peony Light Blue - Fabric by the Yard
Green Rabanna Lampshade Green Rabanna Lampshade
Sky Blue Faux Grasscloth Peel and Stick Wallpaper Sky Blue Faux Grasscloth Peel and Stick Wallpaper
Chinese Peony Light Blue Wallpaper Sample Chinese Peony Light Blue Wallpaper Sample
Suzanne Rheinstein: A Welcoming Elegance Suzanne Rheinstein: A Welcoming Elegance
White Ranunculus Bouquet in Glass Vase White Ranunculus Bouquet in Glass Vase
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