Jennifer Schoenberger loves the charming village of Vickery in Cumming, where she and her family have lived since 2003. Their bucolic farmhouse-style home on an acre of woods even has a parterre garden. But alongside the sweet setting, this Michigan-raised girl makes sure the interior design casts an edgy vibe, too. “Growing up downriver Detroit, I carry a little rock and roll—and some Detroit grit—wherever I go,” Jennifer says. To this end, she covered a man-cave powder room with python-patterned wallpaper, chose black for dining room walls, and customized screens in the living room to create a moody setting. “I feel like some of these spaces really have a bold confidence about them,” she adds.
Jennifer’s canvas is a circa-1982 cottage that once belonged to Vickery founder and builder Pam Sessions, who later hired renowned architect Bobby McAlpine and designer Susan Ferrier for some updates. Jennifer, who was living down the street, always thought of the Sessions house as her “forever home—maybe someday.” The designer was thrilled when Sessions let her buy the house a few years ago. Since then, Jennifer’s personal stamp has involved mostly cosmetic changes, thanks to the striking features already there: a living room clad in pecky cypress, large rooms for entertaining, and a European-style kitchen with open shelves.
The entryway makes an immediate statement with its earthy tones and a colorful abstract painting. Jennifer added the grass cloth wallcovering, but, always the perfectionist, she wasn’t satisfied with the color and had her faux painter give it a deeper hue to complement the room’s rich draperies. Nearby, she papered the hallway in Cole & Son’s bold gondola wallcovering as a background for reclaimed columns with an aged patina. “Those columns have a great ‘crust’ about them—which is my favorite buzzword in design,” she says.
Jennifer was a fan of the existing green-quartz countertops in the kitchen, so she updated the cabinetry with a gray-green hue. Brass features bring out the warm tones, including her favorite thing in the kitchen: star-shaped sconces flanking the range. The adjacent sitting area has a sophisticated spin. The custom banquette is covered in faux-ostrich vinyl, while other textures—lambs-wool pillows and an antelope rug—display a little edge.
Jennifer jokes that she has “multiple design personalities,” but her range also extends to budget. For every high-end antique or window treatment, she also incorporates an inexpensive find: a desk from Cost Plus World Market or the snazzy bar cart from Target, believing that good design includes equal opportunity for sources. “I do not discriminate against price and storefront,” she says. “If a piece has great lines and is made well, I buy it because it’s all about overall style.”
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