A fashion industry couple gave their midcentury Decatur cottage a glamorous touch

The photographer and stylist maintained the integrity of the home, choosing to preserve rather than replace
Von Hoene home
The C-shaped home wraps around a heated, 13-by-26-foot pool and Japanese-inspired landscape designed by L. F. Saussy Landscape Architects.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

As quick as the click of a Canon’s shutter, fashion photographer Liz Von Hoene decided to buy her 1952 house in Decatur’s Parkwood neighborhood. Peeking through the vacant home’s ample windows in the summer of 2015, she saw the sun-soaked open floor plan she’d been hunting for. Even more exciting, she spied original period elements. “I could see a Herman Miller floating sideboard. That was one of the things that made my heart go ka-thunk ka-thunk,” she says.

Von Hoene home
Homeowners Rebecca Weinberg, left, and Liz Von Hoene. The painting is a portrait of Rebecca by New York–based artist Tony DePew.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
In the master bedroom, French bulldog Jip lounges beneath a brass and crystal chandelier that was original to the home’s dining room. “It’s romantic, and it’s one of those unique things we treasure because of the people that lived here before,” Liz says. The vintage bench is by Milo Baughman. The midcentury chair and ottoman by Adrian Pearsall were purchased from City Issue in Inman Park. Rebecca gave the pillows to Liz as a birthday gift.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Liz and her partner, Rebecca Weinberg, are no strangers to style. Liz shoots for high-end clients like Neiman Marcus, and Rebecca is an Emmy-winning wardrobe stylist best known for outfitting Carrie and company on the HBO series Sex and the City. In this house, the pair saw a gem, and the sellers found doting new owners who would appreciate the one-of-a-kind home, which was designed by their father, architect Thomas E. Garner. They even pulled out hand-drawn blueprints and news clippings about the house to show potential buyers. “It was very clear that the family wanted to make sure that whoever purchased the house understood the architectural integrity,” Liz says.

Von Hoene home

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
Padded plastic furniture made by Samsonite in 1965 graces the bluestone pavers. Carpenter David Jones built the rain chains.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
The two children’s bedrooms can be combined or separated by sliding a central partition. The homeowners played with the mirror effect by choosing near identical furnishings in alternating colors. The vintage, molded plastic chests and headboards in the style of Raymond Loewy are from ReMOD Gallery in Medford, New Jersey. The armchairs and ottomans are from Ikea.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

She and Rebecca promised the Garners that they would polish the 3,300-square-foot family home with respect. “That’s been really important to Liz and me—to understand what we have here and try to build on it, versus trying to make it something that it’s not,” Rebecca says. Most decisions were to preserve rather than replace, since the new owners loved so many native features of the cozy three-bedroom, 2.5-bath home, including the brown-black and charcoal-stained cedar shakes on the facade, the caramel brick chimney, the flame-orange doors, and the parquet floors in several rooms.

The women enlisted carpenter David Jones for delicate restoration projects—“things that most people would just rip out because they don’t know how to fix the situation,” Liz says. For example, two of the bedrooms are divided by sliding a central partition, but the doors were no longer operable. David restored and reinstalled them.

Von Hoene home
In the dining room, clerestory windows frame the trees in the ravine across the street. “It’s like having your own forest preserve,” Liz says. The dining table and chairs are by Eero Saarinen, and the midcentury nickel and Lucite chandelier is by Gaetano Sciolari.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
The den hosts twin sofas from Bed Down and a vintage Saarinen coffee table. The shutters are original. “Someone else would have probably taken them right off, not realizing how amazing they are,” Liz says.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
Flea market finds such as old cameras and doll heads are on display in a combination office and dressing room next to the master bedroom. The sofa is vintage.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

An all-new, stone-gray-and-white kitchen is the most impactful change, although the original U shape was retained. “We just opened it up, made it a little bit larger,” Liz says. Designer Tory Winn and carpenter Brian Ashworth created custom cabinets incorporating open shelves to display collections of creamy ceramics and Cathrineholm enamelware.

Von Hoene home
Designer Tory Winn helped the homeowners execute their vision for an open, U-shaped kitchen. Brian Ashworth of Ashworth Cottage Kitchens built the custom cabinetry. The countertops are Caesar-stone, and the pendant lights are by Tom Dixon.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

Von Hoene home
A model from a Neiman Marcus advertising campaign, photographed by homeowner Liz Von Hoene, presides over the living room’s floating shelf by Pace Collection, a curvy silk sofa, a coffee table by Isamu Noguchi, and swivel chairs by Adrian Pearsall.

Photograph by Andrea Fremiotti

The couple furnished the entire home with vintage treasures as glamorous as their careers. In the living room, for instance, a fashion model shot by Liz cranes her impossibly long neck over finds like Adrian Pearsall swivel chairs, a curvy sofa in robin’s egg blue silk, and a Noguchi coffee table.

Although the home is as well-dressed as a runway, it’s also suited for a casual, celebratory lifestyle that includes children (five between the two of them, ages 12 to 25). “We love cooking in the kitchen with groups of people around, sharing wine, sharing stories, taking it all outdoors, jumping in the pool, and watching the kids play four square on that little patio,” Liz says. “It’s a beautiful house, but we live in it.”

Resources
Landscape designer L. F. Saussy Landscape Architects, lfsaussy.com
Kitchen designer Tory Winn Interiors, torywinninteriors.com
Carpentry David Jones, davidjonescarpentry@yahoo.com
Cabinetry Brian Ashworth, cabinetcottagellc.com

This article originally appeared in our Spring 2018 issue of Atlanta Magazine’s HOME.