Summer Riggins

Summer Riggins took an outdated cottage in East Dallas and transformed it into a contemporary, elegant haven with luxe features and a custom-build feel. Photo: MetroplexHD

Two weeks ago, an East Dallas property in Old Lake Highlands went on the market and was featured as the CandysDirt Thursday Three Hundred. It caught our eye with its custom-build features; cohesive, elegant look; and Midcentury vibe.

The response was overwhelmingly positive, and people swooned over the details of this big renovation that turned a dated cottage into a chic, welcoming home. (It also went under contract in 12 days, proving our readers have great taste!)

The woman behind the transformation of 561 Classen Dr. is Summer Riggins, a Dallas-area pharmaceutical rep who is self-taught and does this work in her free time.
561 classen exterior before

summer riggins

Photo: MetroplexHD

After you’ve picked your jaw up off the floor, take a moment to look through the before-and-after photos of this house to appreciate the scale of the reno that Riggins undertook. This was not just paint and floors: Riggins reimagined almost every area and made careful changes to reflect a California Midcentury Modern ranch aesthetic, honed over years of study and practice on multiple smaller projects. The Classen house is almost unrecognizable from its pre-renovation state.

Riggins has been on the path to “renovation virtuoso” since childhood.

“While I haven’t completed a [complete] home renovation prior to this one, I did grow up in a household where it wasn’t uncommon to come home from school and find an exterior wall knocked down, with a smile across my mom’s face and a directive we would be rebuilding it as a family,” she said.

Riggins once got sent to her room for not properly drawing layouts for the home she wanted to build one day.

“I truly wanted to be an architect and I’ve always had visions of living spaces running through my head,” she said. “I guess I thought everyone else did, too.”


WhittierAWe’ve found a great property that just isn’t selling, and we’re not sure why. This prairie-style, two-story house in Colleyville was listed at the end of August, and had a $25,000 price reduction in mid-October to $599,900, but still, no buyer.

Listed by Beverly Spillyards at Ebby Halliday’s Southlake office, this property at 6712 Whittier Lane is a custom-build, one of the first in the Whittier Heights subdivision in 2004. With 4,776 square feet sitting on over a third of an acre of land, this house has a lot of everything. It’s a four bedroom, four-and-a-half bathroom house with a three-car garage and all sorts of luxury details. So what’s the deal?


Do you read Homes of the Rich? It’s one of my fave luxury real estate drool sites, and it was founded by a 20 year old kid named Kenny. Maybe he’s 21 now. Anyhoo, Kenny picked up Erin Mathews newest listing last week, a stunning French Chateau at 4617 Meadowood Road in the Preston Hollow neighborhood of Dallas, TX. Technically, this is more towards Bluffview — Meadowbrook is in the honey pot. But nothing shabby about this circular street and in fact, I like this area even better than the honeypot because it’s further away from the tollway.

The 10,815 square foot home home was built in 2005 on 2 acres, features a slate roof, stone exterior and circular driveway. There are 5 bedrooms, 5 full and 3 half bathrooms, 4 wood-burning fireplaces, wood floors and crown molding throughout, two staircases, of course a formal living room, a formal dining room with butler’s pantry, gourmet kitchen, breakfast room, house manager’s office, wood paneled family room with built-in shelves, library with the most gorgeous hardwoods I have seen, recreation room on lower level, covered terrace, 3-car garage, swimming pool, formal gardens and more.

The gourmet kitchen and breakfast room are Dean Fearings’ dream with two Wolf ovens, drawers and shelves. A magnificent armoire between the two bookshelves against the back wall disguises a double Sub-Zero refrigerator. Nearby are the walk-in pantry, house manager’s office and utility room. Adjacent to the kitchen is the family room with its walls of wood paneling and shelves. The home is large, but it can get larger. When more room is needed for entertaining, the metal-and-glass French doors along the entry hallway and in the family room are easily opened to include the covered-back terrace and the palatial grounds with a pool.

The master suite is on the first floor with a bathroom highlighted by the finest woodwork, wall coverings that beg to be touched, and luxurious appointments adjacent to his-and-hers dressing rooms with window seats, cabinets, shelves and rods from the floor to the ceiling. I LOVE the library, a showcase with its wood wainscot and black leather, windows that open to the grounds and a walk-in wet bar.

In addition to the four guest suites — yes, every bedroom is a suite — and gameroom overlooking the main entrance on the second level, there is a stunning lower level that includes wet and snack bars. Every inch of this house is utter, sheer perfection.

By the way, why does Erin remind me of Angelina Jolie at The Oscars? I guess I could so see her in that dress!Erin has it listed at $8,495,000. But did you know this is the house of Kristen and John P. Mullen, he of investment banking moolah, Kristen the talented wife who did all the decorating herself? It was featured on the popular blog, Cote de Texas. You know now it is more chic to be featured on a blog than in a shelter rag — you get far more pageviews!


Want to win my heart for Valentine’s Day? Then snap up this little $65 million dollar estate on 8.04 acres on Jupiter Island, not too far from Tiger Wood’s estate.¬† Ariana Huffington, you should really consider this home as a great investment with your new millions. 9 bedrooms, 13.5 baths, 17,825 square feet. 172′ of oceanfront & 370′ on the Intracoastal Waterway with 6 buildings including garage space for 17 cars. Main house overlooks the Intracoastal, with formal living & dining rooms, great room, gourmet kitchen, wine room, library, den & combined media room & game room. Grill house adjoins a 50′ pool overlooking the Intracoastal, with tennis court nearby. Coach house features 4 car garage down, with 3 bedrooms, 2 baths kitchen and living room. Carriage house includes 6 car garage down, with gym & office up. Oceanfront guest house offers 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, kitchen and living room with something you wont need here, a fireplace. Boat shed will park 7 cars, or any combination of cars & smaller boats. Dock will accommodate a large yacht & includes 2 boat lifts for smaller craft. West lawn allows for a 5500 SF Putting Green with 1 Bunker & 1 Tee set up for 80 yd Pitch shots.