A Modern Dallas Home with a Courtyard-Style Design


Modern Courtyard-Style Home Exterior

Floor-to-ceiling windows bring to light an architect's modern approach to traditional forms in this stunning courtyard-style Dallas residence.

Modern Cement Plaster Exterior

Smooth troweled cement plaster and a slate roof define the exterior.

Aubergine and Persimmon Living Room

Interior designer Deborah Walker used linens and velvets by Donghia and Chivasso to introduce this Dallas home’s aubergine and persimmon scheme in the living room.

Living Room Bar Area

A bar area in the living room opens to reveal a vibrant wavy cast-plaster wall by Modular Arts.

Kitchen Breakfast Area

Polished stainless-steel and glass pendants by Boyd Lighting from Donghia line the kitchen’s breakfast bar, which features barstools in a Pierre Frey textile. Glass cups on metal are by artist Pavel Hanousek. Contrasting sapele wood and white Zodiaq countertops create impact.

Casual Breakfast Area

Chairs by One Furniture Group from Hart Associates surround a custom table from JG Designs to form a stylish casual dining spot in the breakfast area, which is grounded in the same rift-sawn white oak flooring as the kitchen. The effervescent fabric on the chair by Artifort from Scott+Cooner adds a pop of color.

Expansive Indoor-Outdoor Space

Glass doors by Kolbe & Kolbe lift and slide from the living room to the loggia, creating an expansive indoor-outdoor space outfitted with a Janus et Cie dining table and chairs; Dedon sofas and chrome stools are by Cyan Design.

Rear Courtyard

The garden has an architectural quality that relates well to the house’s form. Landscape architect John Armstrong used madison confederate jasmine, which climbs the chimney flue and covers a trellis panel in the rear courtyard. Dedon chairs and ottomans reside next to the pool by Pool Environments.

Contemporary Courtyard Entry

Architect David Stocker designed the house with a courtyard outside the front entrance.

Modern Hallway to Master Bedroom

A hallway to the master bedroom presents a rough-cut limestone wall, one of the interior’s most striking details, and includes an acrylic triptych by Christopher H. Martin.

Master Bedroom with Colorful, Patterned Rug

Walker custom designed the bed and chaises in the master bedroom, where a colorful patterned rug from Interior Resources lays the foundation for the palette. Citrine-covered Cumberland Furniture chairs feature a veneered back panel—a nod to the home’s architectural influence. Gold accent tables from Made Goods shine in the natural light.

Modern Master Bathroom

Connected to the master bedroom via pocketing doors, the master bath features TKO Associates hardware. The tub is from Pierce Decorative Hardware and Plumbing.

The family-friendly neighborhood of Dallas’ Highland Park holds great appeal due to its historic homes and location near every high-end store imaginable. So it makes sense that architect David Stocker would reference famed fashion designers when describing this courtyard estate. “This home is more Armani or Gucci in terms of style,” he says, referring to his pared down version of the traditional vernacular. “These are designers who take the customary form of a suit and rework the materials while keeping it recognizable,” Stocker says. “It’s the same with this house. Introducing contemporary ideas to a more conservative neighborhood can be pretty loud. We wanted to do it in a subtle way that would be welcoming to the neighbors.”

No black sheep here. Rather, this stunning architectural feat blends into its surroundings with discriminating details that make a statement without saying a word. From the exterior’s fine stitching, slate gabled roofs, and hand-troweled cement plaster façade to the interior’s flush baseboards, smooth walls and lightly coffered ceilings, Stocker balances styles with ease. “When you build a home with the principle of less is more, you have to be careful,” says builder Brad Ellerman, who has worked with Stocker and his team on many homes in the area. “Crown moldings, window and door trim, and wall texture hide many imperfections. The lack of these required great precision and attention to detail.”

Of the home’s many fine details, the more than 50 wraparound windows may be the most impressive. Flooding the rooms in natural light—a requisite of the owners—the windows exemplify Stocker’s approach with their modern floor-to-ceiling height and traditional mullions. “We created a courtyard to bring light deep into the house,” says Stocker, who worked on the project with architects Mark Hoesterey and Enrique Montenegro. Another essential for the clients: Proper flow between the inside and the outdoors. And, thanks to interior designer Deborah Walker, who introduced wood, stone and other textural accents, the home possesses undeniable warmth and cohesion.

The owners, a family of five including a globe-trotting husband, wife and three young children, didn’t look far when searching for a lot to build their dream home. Having lived down the street for years, they opted to tear down an existing house on this property and build from the ground up, including new landscaping from front to back. “We brought the landscape into the interior visually,” says landscape architect John Armstrong, who used hibiscus, marigolds and Knock Out roses for their scent and needlepoint hollies and Claudia Wannamaker magnolias for privacy.

To further shield the window-happy home, Stocker positioned the study, living and dining spaces toward the front and the most-used family room, office and master bedroom in the rear. The second floor comprises the children’s rooms and play area and the third floor, a craft room for the wife. “A good house is a tease; it should prompt people who walk by to stop and think, ‘Mmm, what’s happening in there?’” Stocker says.

Inside, the home takes a decidedly modern turn, with its sleek finishes and eye-popping aubergine and persimmon palette. “A client who wasn’t afraid to use color was refreshing,” Walker says. Neutral white walls provide a foil for the architecture, while color comes in through the soft furnishings. “Just because you have white walls, doesn’t mean you don’t like color,” she says. No beige box, the interior is “fun modern,” as Walker describes it, with low-profile furniture, stainless steel accents and durable yet luxurious fabrics. “The children were a huge factor in the material selection,” she says. Together, new and custom-designed furniture, and a few existing pieces outfit the home in comfort and style.

“Our projects are like our children,” Stocker says. “I love to drive by and see how they’re doing after they’ve left us. This one is respectful, unique and it’s a joy to see.” No doubt; this home certainly has good bones.

—Heather L. Schreckengast