JobSight: Growing All Natural

“We did have a budget to work within,” she stresses. “So, instead of doing 13” door-frame moldings, we went to 10”, which was still massive enough for the doors. And, in some areas, instead of using solid stone, we did a veneer application and made it look like solid stone.”

That’s fairly typical for every project she does, Davis adds. While many clients step back from using the material structurally, the Letos’ project embraced it. For instance, most of the columns –done in the company’s light-colored Macedonia stone – are weight-bearing.

200_Bella Duraauto court fountain MacedoniaClick photo to enlargeOther uses of the stone are more-traditional. For instance, each of the home’s fireplaces has a limestone mantel; the challenge, Davis says, was the clients’ decision to go with Heatilator® gas fireplaces rather than masonry fireboxes.

“I had to proportion the scale and incorporate design elements to make them look more- natural,” she says. “I didn’t want them to look like little cookie-cutter slices out of the wall.”

Another area of concern were the floors. With Bella Dura’s Macedonia stone used extensively throughout the home for flooring, Davis looked for ways to both lower its cost and provide additional visual interest for the Letos.

“Over the past 10 years, the design industry has gone to using larger-sized stone tiles that are both thicker and more expensive,” she says. “I worked with smaller tiles and different floor patterns that would change and shift and – at times – be delineated by different colored stone.”

The flooring also tied in with the wainscoting appearing in areas such as the dining room, foyer, staircase, and the main kitchen. Naturally, the area around the stove and the backsplashes in the kitchen are also limestone.200_Bella Dura Mary Kay DavisRobert Day Front FountainClick photo to enlarge

Davis’ creative abilities really came into play outside the front door of the home. The driveway ends up in an auto court paved with the Macedonia limestone, and set off by a Davis-designed fountain.

“This is probably one of my very favorite fountain designs,” she says. “I gave them two different styles to choose from, partly because the fountain came near the end of the project. I knew what the Letos liked, where they’d been and what their eyes had probably been exposed to.”

The fountain is 10’ in diameter, with a 2’ high exterior ring and – in the middle – a raised octagon from which the water flows. Davis describes the end result as “just exquisite,” although she adds that the design is helped greatly by Mark Leto’s decision to properly light it.