Lisa Sherry‘s clients, a family of five – two forty-something parents and three teenage kids – were moving from Chicago to Greensboro, NC when they contacted her. “Business affairs routinely brought the husband to Greensboro over the years, and the couple knew a move would be in store,” the designer explained. “They said that they embraced the move as a ‘total life upgrade’ and ‘a better way to live’. Having relocated a lot during their marriage, they wanted to create their ‘forever home’ in Greensboro – until retirement and the beach house.”

Before even finding the right house, they got in touch with Lisa, having found her through Houzz and Instagram. “We clicked from the very beginning,” she said. “They loved my work and how I work. I’m focused and professional, but also accessible and candid.” The family had seen a home pop up in Starmount, a trendy neighborhood of Greensboro that they gravitated toward, but were put off by some of the overly elegant architectural details and don’t-touch Romanesque decorating style. After it fell on and off the market a few times, it’s location and size were too good to pass it up. It just needed a designer’s touch.

The first thing that Lisa did was tone down some of the Italiante architecture and modernize the home by painting it Benjamin Moore’s China White. Ornate drapery with swags and jabots came down and were replaced by breezy white window treatments. “My team and I totally made-over the first floor without knocking down a wall or undertaking any major renovations,” Lisa said.

Knowing and appreciating Lisa’s signature neutral and organic style, the family wholeheartedly embraced her vision for the home’s design. “They’d moved a lot in the past,” she told us, “and described their last home as a bit of a happy hodgepodge with a shabby chic vibe. When they made new acquisitions, nothing was purged. That was fine then, but not now. Greensboro is their long-term landing pad, and they wanted it right.”

The home was designed for real-life, where every piece served a purpose, whether it was functional or aesthetic. In the den, for example, Lisa decided to break up the tricky long layout of the space by creating two “pods” by means of placing the sofas back to back: one faces the fireplace and the TV, and the other serves as a quiet seating area. “It turned out lovely, but the real beauty is that everyone can be alone together,” she added.

Without involving any heavy construction, Lisa Sherry and her team were able to completely transform their clients’ newly purchased house into their forever home in just under six months. “When we touched base a week or so post-installation, they actually made my heart sing,” she shared. “The wonder of the space, they told me, is that they didn’t feel like they needed to get used to anything. It felt natural and right. Like home.”