Home Tour: An Artful Aspen Cabin by Hillary Thomas
What happens when you mix a world-class art collection, an awesome ‘70s cinder block house in Aspen, Hillary Thomas Designs, and a bachelor pad with an impossible ski season deadline? Super rad things of course!
Since founding her company in 2010, Hillary Thomas and her team have quickly become design world darlings. With projects that inspire all over the country, a signature East Coast-meets-Hollywood-meets-World aesthetic, and gorgeous product lines (hello finials!), Hillary has the market cornered on a vintage chic look.
Today, she and photographer Patrick Cline take us behind the scenes of a speedy design job she completed for a client in jet-set destination Aspen, Colorado. The house has paneled wood ceilings, cinderblock walls, original tiling, and panoramic windows, and is plunked in the middle of picturesque forest.
"This was a unique project for us to take on,” explains Hillary. "We’re a full-service interior design firm so we typically specify every fabric, trim, and piece of furniture from start to finish. But to finish this job in time for ski season, we knew we would have to cut corners.”
“It just so happened our client was simultaneously getting ready to sell his bachelor pad apartment in San Francisco, which was designed by Jay Jeffers a few years prior,” Thomas tells us. “So we loaded up two trucks with the majority of what was there, plus more than a dozen pieces from our client’s impressive art collection.” Without a real install plan in mind, Thomas sent her design associates, Kristan Atkins and Lexi Zavad, to Aspen to place the furniture, artwork, and accessories. “They took care of every detail—down to the toothbrushes in the toothbrush holders!”
The open floor plan of the living room “allows for easy entertaining and lounging with friends and family,” Thomas says. To contrast with the snowy backdrop out the expansive windows, Thomas added pops of bright green and turquoise.
The original Helen Frankenthaler is one of the house’s showstoppers. “It’s the first thing you see when you get upstairs with its long shape and primary colours,” Thomas points out. “You can’t help but be in awe when you see it.”
“The Solaria Chandelier hanging over the dining table was one of the few things purchased specifically for the house,” says Thomas. “It fits the space perfectly with its modern edge and funky shape.”
Thanks to a gorgeous array of abstract and figurative paintings, cinderblock walls have never looked cooler than in this house. “Our client has a fabulous art collection that we were lucky to draw upon for this house,” Thomas says. The design team decided on placement based on colour and size. In the living room above the main staircase, “the gallery wall adds a refreshing burst of colour in contrast to the grey cinder block walls and ties the whole room together,” Thomas says. “It's everyone’s favourite part of the house when they come over. It’s an eclectic mix of paintings that all came together surprisingly well.”
The designer describes the master bedroom as “a cosy space where you just want to curl up with a good book,” and we couldn’t agree more.
"I love the irony of this painting of a man sunbathing hanging over the bed in a mountain house,” Thomas says.
“Nothing says the ‘70s are back like an entire bathroom clad in royal blue mosaic tiles,” she jokes.
Though “cool as hell,” the spiral staircases throughout the house made moving furniture a difficult job, Thomas tells us.
Do you dig the modern, artful style of this Aspen cabin? Tell us in the comments below.