My grandparents built a home on this land on Lyon Street in 1955, after moving to Raleigh from Albany, New York. My stepdad, with whom I was close, grew up here and I have beautiful memories of holiday dinners and visits with my grandparents. The neighborhood around Lyon and Hathaway Streets was remarkable. Neighbors knew my grandparents and helped us look after them into their old age. In 2015, both my dear stepdad and my grandmother passed away. We were lucky to build here and already had such a sense of community.
I’ve worked in real estate in Raleigh for 15 years. I studied design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York; as the daughter of an interior designer, the creative aspects of real estate motivate me. I’m passionate about helping people create environments that feel perfect for them, whether they’re building from the ground up or buying an existing home and transforming it to suit their style and taste. After so many years working on clients’ behalf, I always wanted to build a home for myself—just once!
In early 2016, my fiancé, Jim Geikie, and I decided designing and building a home was just the creative project we wanted to tackle together. We set out to create something worthy of this sentimental land and neighborhood. The process was revealing—every step turned out differently, but better, than we anticipated. Through my industry network, we worked with some of the most talented professionals in Raleigh. Our builder, DJF Builders, referred us to architect Gary Murphy of Murphy Garnow Design Group who translated our Pinterest boards and napkin sketches into a perfect floor plan. Our priorities included seamless indoor-outdoor living around a private European-style courtyard, a kitchen-living area that could be the social center of the home and a dreamy master bedroom retreat on the main floor. He nailed it. My mother always says, “God is in the details,” and our finish and trim carpenter, Tony Jordan of Bone’s Construction, delivered beyond expectation. Raleigh’s charm is in enjoying outdoor living most of the year, and the collaboration between our landscape architect, Frank Liggett of Liggett Design Group, and Craig Mayhugh of Liquid Designs, who designed our pool, have given us outside spaces for all four seasons. The highlight for me was working with my mother, Christine Flowers, to design the interior and pick all the colors, textures and accessories. She has incredible taste and a tremendous influence on my own style. We tried, throughout the process, to give good guidance but generally let these talented pros do what they do best. They didn’t let us down.
When we moved in, our neighbors, the Strothers, brought over fresh strawberries as a house-warming gift. When she lived here, my grandmother Evelyn’s tradition was to give fresh-picked strawberries to all her neighbors.