If I were in the market for a home in Dallas, I’d buy anything Carol Gantt designed. And if I could buy her personal home, a Lakewood vintage Garrison Colonial Revival, well, I’d be in a perpetual state of bliss.
Remember what I’ve always said, if you can buy the personal home of an architect, builder, or designer, you can simply move in and enjoy life. I’m thrilled to bring you our Inwood Home of the Week, Gantt’s own house at 6616 Lakewood Boulevard.
Y’all have heard me sing the praises of Carol’s company, Gantt Design, many times. Gantt understands older homes in a way most people simply cannot. She’s spent years figuring out how to bring some of the most incredible historical homes in Dallas into this century without compromising their pedigree or style. She’s even made some very high profile Realtors happier in their own homes!
When I first met Carol, I was writing about a home she’d salvaged from a fire. It was a Clifford Hutsell design in Lakewood, and she meticulously put it all back together. I was fascinated by her ability and her dedication. Along with Preservation Dallas, Carol immediately became my go-to resource for all things historical in Dallas.
So, what’s a Garrison Colonial Revival home anyway? It’s a variation on the Georgian Colonial Revival style. In my research, I was charmed to find house plans for this style in the Ladies Home Journal of 1935. I love Bob Vila, so I headed over to his site for the following information:
… The distinguishing characteristic is the 2nd-story overhang in the front. According to legend, the original houses in this style were blockhouses that were built by the early colonists to defend against the Indians. In truth, it probably evolved from the Elizabethan townhouse.
Historic garrison houses were rare, a fact that was emphasized in a magazine feature in 1913. One 17th-century model was described as “portraying a type of architecture not found anywhere else.” That was soon to change.
Beginning in the 1920s, the garrison house was a type of architecture found in many towns. It was also promoted for country houses. These early 20th-century Garrison Colonial Revivals were earnest and conscientious adaptations of original garrison houses.
Gantt updated and expanded her 1946 vintage Garrison Colonial Revival to be a warm and welcoming family home.
“I completely gutted and renovated it,” Gantt said. “It had been remodeled over the years but not in my style. It was a good backdrop to do a lot of the things I love. You know I’m not restrained in my style, so I wanted to add some flourishes!”
Those flourishes are apparent the moment you walk in. Gantt added a decorative stair skirt up the staircase. “It’s indicative of the time period, but I mostly did it just for fun,” she said.
Gantt has a true sense of the eclectic, but it is always based on what is appropriate for the era of a home. The entry floor was stenciled by decorative painter Jeannie Pugh. It’s completely unexpected, yet so appropriate.
“The biggest change was an addition to the back of the house. “A den had been added in the ‘60s or ‘70s, and consecutive owners had removed some of the structure,” Gantt said. “It had become compromised, so I had to pull it all off. I kept the fireplace wall and the foundation, in what was to become the family room, added a second story, and put a master suite upstairs.”
During the rebuilding phase of the family room of this Garrison Colonial Revival Gantt moved the kitchen into this area. I think one of the brilliant design decisions was the ceiling in this room. It’s something most of us would never imagine as such an obvious solution. “When I was framing this room, I wanted to have a wooden ceiling,” Gantt said. “I had to keep the ceiling the same level, so I left the framing open and rusticated it.” Genius.
I had to look twice and ask once when I saw the kitchen ceiling. Knowing Gantt’s affection for certain colors, I asked, “Umm… Carol, is that a pink ceiling?” Yes, indeed it is, because she loves pink.
“I had painted the dining room pink, and that did not go down well with my husband, so, I painted the kitchen ceiling pink, Gantt said. “It took him about six months to notice! It’s more of a coral color than the photos depict, and it makes everyone look lovely!”
The countertops and island in the kitchen are Carrara marble because Gantt likes the fact they age beautifully. The island is huge, and Gantt wired it to be able to put a lamp on top. That’s a decidedly European way of designing a kitchen because as we all know lamp light not only adds great ambiance but it also takes about ten years off of you! She installed a Bertazzoni range, a second convection oven, and a farmhouse sink because if you enjoy cooking this is exactly what you need!
The family room opens onto a screened porch, which is always a deal sealer for me. To enjoy Texas weather year ‘round necessitates having a screened porch!
This immaculate vintage Garrison Colonial Revival has 3,294 square feet with four bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a powder bath. There is a fantastic downstairs office in a lime yellow (another fave Gantt color) that could easily function as a fifth bedroom if you need one.
As is typical with those in the business, Gantt is moving on to her next project. But she is going to miss this house.
“What I love about this house is the way it’s laid out, and the way it functions so well for a family,” Gantt said. “You can be connected, but still have separation.”
David Bush has this vintage Garrison Colonial Revival listed for $1.29 million. We heard there was a massive turn out for the first open house when it was listed last week so come prepared with an offer for this week’s open on Sunday, because this one is not going to last folks!
Open House Sunday, Feb. 3, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Karen Eubank is the owner of Eubank Staging and Design. She has been an award-winning professional home stager and writer for over 25 years. Karen teaches the popular Staging to Sell class and is the creator of the online course, The Beginners Guide to Buying Wholesale. Her love of dogs, international travel, history, white paint, champagne, artificial turf, and Tudor and Midcentury Modern homes, and any house designed by Clifford Hutsell knows no bounds. Her father was a spy, so she keeps secrets very well! Find Karen at www.eubankstaging.com