How to think like a designer {Home Tour by Gacek Design Group}

Have you ever walked through a home and wondered how a designer was able to make everything come together so beautifully (and effortlessly)? Or, perhaps your mind wanders to the curious intent or inspiration behind a room’s design? Well, we, too, had those exact questions – which is why we were excited to sit down with expert designer Richard Gacek, president and founder of Gacek Design Group, and pick his brain about the Midvale model home design for the Legacy at Mountain Lakes in Mountain Lakes, New Jersey.

Join us for an invigorating behind-the-scenes look at this beautiful home – from the perspective of the designer.

Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes

The style of this home is an open concept living space, specifically in the kitchen/dining/living areas, and it’s also a very horizontal as you can see in the banding in the millwork. We really wanted an open and modern feel in this home. You can see a lot of clean lines and when we were choosing light fixtures, I looked for fixtures that were horizontal and linear in shape. We wanted modern without being cold, so we wanted something with bronze or gold tones, like the Haven fixture. These tones are warm and helped us achieve the feel we were after. We wanted richness while keeping it modern with crisp and linear lines.

Image Courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image Courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes

These lighting pieces (Haven) simply became art pieces and not just lighting.

In the living space, we wanted to achieve a modern loft type feel. The furniture is very modern, yet retro with the green accents. Overall there is a textural warmth. We chose a floor with a very reclaimed and rustic look instead of modern. The light fixtures really compliment this warm aesthetic, adding both warmth and softness.

Image Courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image Courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes

The bathroom space is very compact four piece bath that is right off the master bedroom. This bath space is very tight, so we wanted to keep it open. We also wanted to convey an earthy/modern texture. You can see the earth tones in the tile work around the mirror and through the shower and walls. We were going for a clean spa look in an earthy modern way. We tied in the two Alexa two-light bath and vanity fixtures in brushed nickel to give off the look of a bright, spa/resort type bath. We thought the brushed nickel finish offered a crisp and clean updated feel which nicely accented the tile and matched the rest of our bath fixtures. We really wanted the tile to be the story while using the light fixtures to compliment and help it stand out.

I create key focal points in my designs. Once I have that focal point, I choose the other finishes and pieces to be softer so that it supports the main theme. I don’t want anything else competing with that focal point for your attention, be it a light fixture or other accent piece.

Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes

The master bedroom is really an extension of the spa/resort/hotel feel from the bath space, but it’s done in a more textural warm manner. The tile in the bathroom is complimented by the grass cloth on the wall behind the master bed. The accent textures work together. The main thing was the textured wall covering with the linen drapes that have a silver silk screen pattern with them. Metallics are very on trend. The silver in the linen drapes compliments the brushed nickel in the bathroom – it really brings the two rooms together. Also, the two lamps with the silk shades on top of a curvature base, give a misty sheer look with a layer of texture through colors and lines which really enhances the mood while still being modern. We really wanted that open and inviting feel in the bedroom – similar what we have in the bathroom, just in a slightly different way.

Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes

The lower level game room has horizontal band molding and off-white walls to enhance the space. This room is where you enter the townhome from the garage, so we wanted to make this an exciting escape or flux space. We did clean millwork with painted natural tone on tone and a warm seating area with texture and patterns. The pool table is a 1910 billiard table, adding the element of a vintage artifact. So we added warmth through the space with the billiard table, patterns and colors to make it warm and inviting, but we keep it clean with the walls and horizontal lines.

Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes
Image courtesy of Gacek Design Group | Legacy at Mountain Lakes