Denver Woman
October/November 2007

A Feeling of Calm & Contentment
It takes more than bricks and mortar to make a lovely home. In fact, while these materials can effectively create a house, it takes love, creativity and commitment to turn that house into a home that will stand the test of time.

The Denver home of Joy and Andy VanGilder is a true testament to the words above. Built just two years ago, the charming modern Mediterranean structure beautifully blends a traditional flavor with touches of clean, crisp architecture and design. The home is a solid tribute to feng shui, part of an ancient Chinese philosophy that essentially enables us to live in harmony with our environment. In fact, each room in the home incorporates the discipline, resulting in a dwelling that is infused with a feeling of calm and contentment.

The  home of Joy and Andy VanGilder, built two years ago, blends traditional flavor and crisp design into a modern Mediterranean structure.  From the limestone flooring in the entry to the glass and white stone fireplaces, this home is breathtaking in its simple detail.

In the front right sector of the home, just inside the entryway, is the "inspiration" area, which incorporates travel and religion. Within this serene setting, the most dramatic element is a stunning inlaid glass and white stone fireplace. A skillful mix of contemporary and antique furnishings

provides an eclectic and adventurous feeling to this room.  The front left sector of the home, or the "knowledge" area, houses the library and dining room. Here walls are covered in deep rich brown hues, and a charming desk and comfortable chair make for an inviting setting. Gold and off-white dining chairs blend dramatically with the modern demask curtains, and huge French doors provide access to a plant-filled patio.

The front middle of the home, the "depth" area, showcases a sweeping staircase set off by a custom-made swirled wrought-iron railing. Black

walnut stairs complete the compelling effect, and the railing casts shadows that literally dance off the walls.  Just behind the staircase in the middle right is the powder room, a wonderfully appointed room that is symbolic of creativity and children. Here, beaded glass wallpaper offsets salmon-colored walls coated in a pearlized faux finish, and framed kids' art hangs at eye level.

At the rear left is the kitchen, an area that pays tribute to "gratitude" for family, friends, wealth and prosperity. Here, Brazilian cherry flooring unites the kitchen and family room

areas. On the south wall of the room, a huge medallion tile mosaic with inlaid amethyst epicts "health." Beneath the mosaic, a wonderful old storage piece, once a haberdasher's display, frames the effect. Within the kitchen, cabinetry focuses on environmentally friendly materials, incorporating lyptus, a fast-growing eucalyptus hybrid considered a green element in nature. Cleverly, the ovens are located out of sight around the corner, which prevents too much heat from filling the kitchen.

Adjacent to the kitchen, in the rear middle, is the area of the

home devoted to "integrity," symbolized by fire. A huge fireplace serves as the backdrop to a cozy table-and-chair arrangement.  The back right area of the home, the "romance area," boasts a comfortable two-peice sectional sofa covered in red chenille and punctuated with gold-toned pillows, symbolic of two lives coming together.

One feature that bears mention is located in the center of the home, the "earth" area. Nestled against the wall is a fountain and small bench, framed by a mirror that more closely resembles a piece of art. Within the mirror, two

ovals are cut out, providing an almost three-dimensional view of the foyer from the back of the home.

Upstairs, in the kids' suite, a movable wood and tricolored Plexiglas wall separates the playroom from the sleeping area. The walls are painted matching colors, and the bathroom incorporates the same hues. A pale Brazilian oak wood covers all the floors, infusing these rooms with a feeling of lightness and fun.