June 12, 2024
Look Inside This Interior Designer’s Custom Home!

There’s something fascinating about peeking into an interior designer’s home. After all, they spend each day surrounded by beautiful things, with their finger on the pulse of the latest decor trends. With that in mind, we jumped at the opportunity to talk to Dallas-based interior designer Erin Sander of Erin Sander Design about her own gorgeous abode in University Park. From a custom-designed coffee nook to a vaulted, red-brick annex that serves as a study, this is one home you’ll want to look to for inspiration!

Exterior of an interior designer's home in Dallas, Texas.

Take a peek inside this gorgeous home designed and owned by interior designer Erin Sander!

Located on a quarter of an acre in Dallas city proper, Erin Sander and her family occupy a 5,000-square-foot estate with four bedrooms and five baths. “We built it from the ground up,” Erin explains. “There was another home on the property. In this part of town, older homes with no historical relevance are frequently taken down to host a new house. So we tore the house down, and then I drew the floor and architectural plans for this house.”

Erin designed the home to be casual yet elevated, contemporary yet functional, serene with a subtle edge — hallmarks of her signature style. “Our brand design is ‘relaxed, refined luxury,’ so that was the basis as I was building this new house,” she tells us. “As I was researching different styles, the ‘Belgian farmhouse’ aesthetic really aligned with our brand and my personal aesthetic. So that’s the direction we went.”

The home is awash in natural light with beautiful elements around every corner — understated details that make a grand impact. “As a designer, there are a lot of things that draw my eye on a consistent basis, so I’m constantly getting inspiration from travels, other projects, and things out there in the design world,” says Erin of her inspiration. “There were definitely some architectural features that I wanted to make sure we incorporated, such as the long hallway that terminates in the window, with steps leading up to the second floor. I wanted to have a few moments where there was a beautiful termination, and you can see through the house.”

Long hallway with beamed ceiling and custom fixtures.

“I drew those fixtures for the space, and then an artist made those for me,” Erin tells us. “I also drew and detailed the wood for the artists to lay in that manner on the floor.”

Living room with vaulted ceiling.

“This is probably where we had to make the most choices for practicality for our family,” Erin says of the living room. “When we moved in, all of my kids were rather young. So all of these are performance fabrics. In the foreground, there’s a McGuire chair in Lisa Fine fabric.” Additionally, the coffee table is custom-covered in grasscloth, and artwork by Katrine Hildebrandt adorns the walls.

As you enter Erin’s home, the first room you’ll find is the annex. Formerly her office, the space now serves as the family study. “It’s a vaulted story-and-a-half space,” Erin says of the room. “Initially, before I had our firm in an office space here in Dallas, I officed from that space. It has great storage, vaulted ceilings, beams, and also more privacy being by itself in the eastern corner of the house.”

Erin Sander's home office.

This gorgeous space served as Erin’s in-home office but now functions as a study. “My main office is about five miles from my house, in the design district,” she says of her current office space.”

The kitchen stands out with beamed ceilings, rift-sawn white oak flooring, and pale blue accents. An oven range from French manufacturer Lacanche adds a splash of color in just the right spot. “This is one of the pivotal points that went into the kitchen,” says Erin of the high-end piece. “I wanted to insert a little bit of color, and their offerings are broad but not overly broad. Choosing that blue color for the range set the tone for the other blue accents. They also take about a year to procure, so it’s something we had to decide on very early.”

Kitchen with beamed ceiling and island with stools.

With hand-hewn Douglas fir beams and rift-sawn white oak hardwood floors, the kitchen incorporates natural materials with modern appliances. Additionally, an unlacquered brass faucet by Waterstone and a backsplash by Clé Tile offer standout details.

Fixtures in a hand-hewn brass finish, custom-made by Urban Electric Company, are suspended above an eye-catching island with deep-set planking on its sides. Stools in a simplistic Scandinavian design offer practical, easy-to-maneuver seating, and various decorative bowls offer a lovely focal point and a glimpse of Erin’s passion for ceramics.

“You’ll see a bowl of fruit in the very back,” she offers. “That’s a vintage bowl from my grandmother’s collection, and I use that frequently with styling. It’s one of my favorite pieces.” She also references the bowls in the foreground. “They are by a ceramicist out of California, Sara Kersten,” she relays. “I’ve been collecting her pieces for years.”

The countertops, made of honed marble, were an experiment for Erin. “I frequently have to advise my clients on the materiality of their countertops for their kitchens and baths,” she explains. “I wanted to use the marble so I could see the highs and lows of living with it.” Additionally, though it’s tough to spot, the café curtains are made of hand-blocked fabric by Galbraith & Paul out of Philadelphia.

Hallway in Erin Sander's home, culminating in a blue door.

An archway provides a soft entry into the kitchen, while a high-end range from Lacanche picks up the surrounding blue accents. “There are a couple of lighting pieces throughout the home that I drew and detailed, then had made by a local artist,” says Erin. “And that’s one of them.”

Boasting vintage chairs and various collected art pieces, the dining room melds an intimate space with cozy-eclectic decor for a contemporary edge. “The chairs are vintage McGuire — I love to use McGuire pieces in our work,” says Erin. “I just love the texture and the warmth that they bring. I had the seats recovered in a Peter Dunham fabric, and the art piece is from an artist named Addie Chapin. It says in Latin, ‘deo gratias.’ The tallies signify counting our blessings.”

Erin Sander's dining room.

Exposed brick and modern art lend a contemporary edge to the dining room. “The light fixture is from Currey & Company,” says Erin. “It’s a simple, good, high-low moment.”

Dining room with a view of the yard.

A collection of pewter dishes adds a dark contrast to the dining room. “They’re my mother’s pewter set,” says Erin, “and the two serving pieces on the bottom are from this great vendor in Austin, Unrefined. We get to make frequent trips to Roundtop, being in such close proximity, so that’s a vendor I found there.”

An affinity for coffee led to one of the home’s most memorable nooks — the coffee station. With a La Spaziale espresso machine (featuring walnut panels from Clive Coffee out of Portland), custom open shelving, and a beautiful backsplash from Ann Sacks’ Savoy series, the space is a go-to morning staple that’s both charming and pragmatic.

“Our family has a longstanding love for coffee,” Erin tells us, “so detailing out this coffee bar was something my husband and I enjoyed doing together. Besides being aesthetically pretty, it has some great, practical components. The refrigerator drawers on the left house all the things for morning coffee. This area gets a high level of use for us. We get beans from all over the country!”

Coffee station with open shelving.

We’re envious of this fabulous custom coffee station!

Arched entryway to room with bison painting.

A glimpse of what’s across from the coffee station showcases a photograph of a bison. “Our family has Western roots,” says Erin. “My husband and I both grew up outside of Denver. We still make frequent trips to the mountains and the West — that’s the origin of that piece.”

In the primary bedroom, a fixture from Oly Studio offers a whimsical focal point. “It’s a flock of birds, and it’s such an interesting thing to look up at every evening!” says Erin. Other standout features include vintage cabinets sourced from Juxtaposition Home in California and custom lamps from a maker in Roundtop, TX. Pale pink chairs add tranquil warmth, as does the custom-made quadrille bedding.

In the master bath, custom white oak vanities add a natural element, while hand-cut limestone floors bring in a dose of character. “We laid it in a pattern that I drew,” Erin explains, “and then interspersed this tiny blue celeste marble mosaic. The blue celeste is what’s behind that freestanding tub as well.”

Master bedroom with white bird chandelier and pale pink chairs.

Vintage cabinets, custom lamps, and a beautiful avian light fixture from Oly Studio round out the master bedroom.

Master bathroom with free-standing tub.

“We designed the master suite to really flow,” says Erin. “It has two entrances and a strong connection to the bedroom, so it all kind of lives as one.” The master bathroom is shown here, complete with a freestanding tub and custom white oak vanities.

Powder bath with ornate, arched interior window.

This moody and wonderful powder room has a charming mock window and antique French flooring from Chateau Domingue out of Houston.

Designed to make use of a variety of materials (one of this year’s prominent design trends), the home’s exterior is flanked by live oaks and potted olive trees. “We were able to have a lot that has a bit more width for this area of town,” Erin tells us, “so I wanted to create something that wasn’t all two-story. I wanted it to be a little bit more approachable. That perspective from the street of having a small courtyard of trees as you pull up was a priority for me.”

Wooden bench in the back yard, surrounded by holly trees.

A custom wood bench from David Sutherland is nestled amongst Savannah holly trees.

Exterior of Erin Sander's home, featuring the entryway.

A combination of materials — such as lime-washed brick and cedar shake — makes for a dynamic exterior.

A special thanks to Pär Bengtsson for the photography.

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For more inspiration from interiors across the South, check out our HOME FEATURES ARCHIVE.

Jenna Bratcher
About the Author

Jenna Bratcher

Jenna Bratcher is StyleBlueprint Nashville’s Associate Editor and Lead Writer. The East Coast native moved to Nashville 15 years ago, by way of Los Angeles. She is a foodie through and through and enjoys exploring the local restaurant scene bite by bite.