The ceiling in Shay Geyer’s home office/library features a coffered ceiling, which the designer painted black and white for contrast. An Ikat rug helps tie together the color palette, which was inspired by the framed Hermès scarf that hangs above the fireplace.
“Designing for yourself is always a challenge,” says Shay Geyer, designer and owner of IBB Design Fine Furnishings in Frisco, Texas. So, when she and her husband bought and remodeled their new home in a gated community in Frisco, Texas, in 2016, she had her work cut out for her. “I can honestly say I’m probably my toughest client,” Geyer admits.
The renovation was primarily cosmetic. Geyer focused on creating an environment that felt fresh and happy for her young family of four, with plenty of color balancing out the traditional look of the home. Taking full advantage of the ample square footage was important as well. “We wanted to design each space to function for our family, so that we truly utilized the whole home,” she says.
Geyer wallpapered the bookshelves with gold leaf wallpaper to allow her family’s collection of art, books, and mementos to stand out. The new acrylic sputnik chandelier is one of her favorite elements in the room.
Having a place where her daughters, who are 14 and 8, could spend time reading and doing homework without distractions was a must, so the home office/library was one of the first rooms Geyer completed. She began with a foundation of black and white with brass finishes, then added strong pops of color, with a framed Hermès scarf—a gift from her mother—providing a jumping-off point from which to pull in hues. She painted all of the wood paneling in high-gloss black paint, and wallpapered the back of the built-in bookcase in gold leaf wallpaper to provide a backdrop for their book collection, treasures from their travels, and family mementos.
With two children and three dogs, durability was a key factor in the design, as well as creating a room that would meet everyone’s needs. “Our whole family uses [the space]. Roxy, our Boxer, thinks the cobalt blue Chesterfield sofa is her guard dog post, and keeps a close eye on what’s going on in the neighborhood,” Geyer says. “I often do early morning conference calls in here before I go to the office. If my husband and I are working or paying bills at night, you’ll usually find our daughter Brooklyn coloring or painting on the other side of the desk, and our other daughter, Jaylie, reading on the sofa snuggled up with the pups.”
The room includes motorized drapery in black-and-white David Hicks fabric. The blue leather Chesterfield sofa is Geyer’s Boxer’s preferred place to perch.
To accommodate the entire brood, Geyer used a chic yet sturdy leather on the Chesterfield sofa. The glass-top sawhorse desk is large enough for two people to use at the same time, one on either side, and Geyer tucked a small ottoman under one side for additional seating (“It’s Brooklyn’s favorite place to sit,” she says). To add additional work space, she paired a small accent table with the sofa and another with a yellow quilted leather wing chair.
The room’s vibrant and welcoming feel continues throughout the rest of the house, with several colors from the palette incorporated into other spaces; the nearby master bedroom is designed in various shades of blue, and the foyer and formal living room have green, blue, and turquoise elements. As a designer, Geyer is always rearranging, editing, and adding to the bookshelves, and elements from her home occasionally make their way into her clients’ houses (she’s currently on the hunt for a new desk chair, having sold her own). Between her designer’s eye and her busy, fashion-minded and fun-loving family, the room will continue to evolve, but it’s safe to assume that a bold approach to color and the capacity to seat every family member—including four-legged ones—will always remain constants.