Anyone who has lived in this area for long knows the name Ocean Ridge is synonymous with good taste and prestige. It is a highly esteemed address and features long stretches of unspoiled beaches and seaside cottages that have been lived in, or summered-in year-after-year. The home at 810 is timeless, too, and was built with those same notions of enduring appeal and with the aesthetic and legacy of future generations in mind.
When we first set eyes on this property, we were amazed by its show stopping glamour and allure. Images of this home could (and should!) have been pulled from the pages of a magazine. We were even more delighted when we discovered its design success is a testament to the collaborative partnership of sellers David and Cortney Stallings. As owners of Shenandoah Homes, builder and designer respectively, this is a marriage made up of talent and innovation as well as love and admiration.
We spoke with Cortney to find out more about the evolution of her enviable talent, how she would describe her signature style, and we asked her to share some ideas and methods for improving our own spaces at home!
Cortney is blessed with inordinate natural talent that is evident in her designer’s eye and her process. She is a working mother, a storyteller and a visionary— using her personal knowledge about what works and what doesn’t, to style her own homes as well as homes for Shenandoah, winning accolades as well as sales.
Understanding purpose and function, including who and how the home will be used is paramount. And, Cortney explains, a room should flow and feel good! Incorporating raw, natural elements is key as well as providing open spaces that are non-confining and let the light shine in, particularly when at the beach— Cortney’s sweet spot! Her signature style is modern coastal with a focus on peaceful palettes, continuity and balance. Using the fundamentals of design, and 810 Ocean Ridge as the ultimate example, you will see texture, pattern, proportion and scale masterfully manipulated to wonderful effect.
Cortney is a connection-maker, too, and works with people across the globe to find stunning, one-of-a-kind pieces that click into place and blend seamlessly with the decor or juxtapose perfectly for a pop of color or contrast. She looks for items that have a history like the dining table at 810 Ocean Ridge. Custom made by her friend Zbig in Poland, it’s center features a turquoise resin that absorbs light during the day and glows at night— a delightful counterpoint to the deep blue kitchen cabinets and dyed-to-match lapis-hued sofa, all balanced out by the underlit onyx countertops. The home at 810 Ocean Ridge is a symphony of exquisite details and fixtures, and tactile organic pieces that blend together beautifully.
For those of us who are swooning from our desks and couches at home — Cortney has revealed some of her styling secrets and tips! Her first piece of sage advice…declutter! Next, she says, let the function of the room be your guide. Look around and let the large pieces tell you the flow, so you can decide what’s working, what isn’t, and make sure it all feels good. Remove or add items as needed and know that one change can make a big difference whether it’s a new couch or new bedding. Be sure to select objects that you love. Cortney says “What you like is what you like! Your home does not have to look staged.” She reminds us that it’s okay to mix modern with traditional, old pieces with new and let the pieces you love stand out!
We are grateful to have clients like Cortney who let us shine a light and let us know a little bit about who they are, what they do and the why behind it. Thank you, Cortney — we are honored to be a small part of the magic you make!