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Since 1995

James River Construction and Interior Designers: Partnering for the Best

Many of our clients use the professional services of interior designers that we partner with regularly,

but a few of our clients come to us because of a recommendation by an interior design whom they contacted first when making the decision to renovate their home. Designer Tom Duke is one of our referring designers and we are happy he has our number.

Tom Duke is a Principal at Evolve Architecture where the main focus is on commercial spaces including corporate, healthcare, government, higher education and retail facilities. From time to time, clients will ask for help with their homes, and he is happy to help them.

When the Logans asked Tom to help redesign their 1920’s home into an open, modern space, he knew it was going to take a major overhaul. Tom immediately recommended us to his new clients, “JRC is incredibly professional, and this is so important when recommending a contractor to work with your client. Establishing a team relationship is so critical to a successful project.”

After a meeting with Tom and the Logans, they were comfortable enough to get started without interviewing any other contractors.

The Logans are close to retirement age and hope to stay in their home for a long time to come, so Tom’s design needed to take into consideration mobility and accessibility issues as well as how the Logans live their life. They were looking to convert the first floor of their 1920’s home into a more open, modern living space where a bathroom, bedroom, kitchen and laundry were all accessible from the first floor and where they could also easily entertain or host family get-togethers. They also wanted to be respectful of the home’s history by keeping some of the unifying elements.

The biggest issues for realizing their goals were the small kitchen, tiny bath, no real room for a laundry room, and limited space to entertain — something the Logan’s love to do. The downstairs had an existing office that was also renovated and could serve as a future master bedroom if needed.

Tom and the client discussed relocating the kitchen to the middle of the house where the dining room had been and turning the old half-bathroom, kitchen and nook into an office, full bathroom and efficient laundry room. And since Mr. Logan works from home, the office can easily be converted into a bedroom with easy access to the bathroom if that’s ever needed.

Once the kitchen was relocated to the existing dining room space, it became open to the home’s main living areas. This meant that the kitchen’s design needed to be evaluated to complement the living space, making it all feel high-end and contemporary yet comfortable and inviting.

large open kitchen that flows into the living room space seamlessly

Design by Tom Duke

Custom casework in the kitchen and bathroom was built by Bluebird Cabinetry – a favorite of Tom’s. Bluebird’s owner, Andrew Olson, runs his custom shop in Scott’s Addition and creates beautiful cabinetry and, well, just about anything our clients want. 

Opalescent backsplash mosaic tile brings light and color into the space.

Design by Tom Duke

The bathroom expansion also took into consideration future mobility and accessibility issues with a zero-entry frameless and doorless glass shower. 

A strip of bright blue tile wraps around the bathroom, keeping your eye moving and bringing in color.

Design by Tom Duke

Stunning tilework wraps around the bathroom walls with an accent tile running vertically and horizontally through the shower for a sleek look and a burst of color.

Heated flooring and towel racks add pampering touch and functionality

Design by Tom Duke

A sliding frosted glass paneled door gives the space privacy and natural light. Heated floors and a heated towel bar ensures a touch of pampering.

The strip of bright blue tile wraps all the way around the bathroom keeping the eye moving and bringing in color

Design by Tom Duke

In addition to the major undertaking of the kitchen and bath, the home’s sunroom was also expanded and updated to be a four-season space. The fireplace from the living room shared a wall with the sunroom, so a discussion was had about creating a double-sided fireplace by knocking through the exterior brick. This feature now warms both rooms while continuing to connect and open up the spaces within the home.

Tom says the key to designing something his clients will love is to really get to know them – their backgrounds, their families, likes and dislikes, how they use their home and makes them feel at home. Tom made an observation about our owner, Ken, after our first meeting with the Logans that highlights our similar approach, “His hands-on nature is really impressive. He has a willingness to take whatever time is needed to make the client comfortable, as well as the professionals they’re working with. Seriously – amazing.”

But Tom’s real secret to success is in putting the client first. “Listening to your client is key and leads to creating an environment that reflects your client’s sense of home. This in turn creates a strong working relationship, trust and a happy client.” We couldn’t agree more.

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