Chris & Tyler's Sense of Stewardship

Chris & Tyler's Sense of Stewardship

Dabney Frake
Oct 2, 2012

Name: Christopher Brenner and Tyler Olsen
Location: Compton Heights, St. Louis, Missouri
Size: 5400 square feet, 5 bedrooms, 3 ½ bathrooms
Years lived in: 6 years, owned: – 3rd owners in 113 years.

If you were only the third owner in the 113-year history of a historic house, what level of responsibility would you feel for it? Tyler & Chris' home is one of Saint Louis' many huge, old brick mansions that are marvelously preserved. We always drive by these classic Victorian manors and wonder what they look like inside. You can imagine how thrilled we were when Tyler and Chris opened up their doors and let us photograph their lovely home.

Thankfully Chris Brennan and Tyler Olsen have a healthy appreciation for their home of six years and decided to honor its roots. Using archival photos passed on to them by the home's two previous owners when they purchased the house, they were able to recreate their grand home's past in addition to adding modern-day comforts. They began a full-scale rehab and one year later, Tyler and Chris inhabited their dream home.

As you wander through the home's elegant 5400 square feet, you are struck by how incredibly warm and livable the space actually is. From the elegant entry hall to the bright, lovely kitchen, it's evident that it is indeed possible to live comfortably surrounded by history.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Traditional with a simple gracefulness and a touch of color for a hidden treasure

Inspiration: [I'm inspired] whenever I see an uncomplicated, elegant, well-designed item. It could be a beautiful flower arrangement or a clean-lined chandelier or a wonderfully-textured stationary.

Favorite Element: I love to work with stone, and textures on any surface, and even better if you can combine the two, like brushed granite counter tops. An item may appear to have one element, but by adding a texture, it makes the element three-dimensional and makes you want to touch it and gives it a new perception.

Biggest Challenge: To keep the design simple and knowing when to stop.

What Friends Say: Your house is well-designed but livable.

Biggest Embarrassment: You think I am going to reveal that?

Proudest DIY: Creating my botanical print wall grouping on a $100 budget.

Biggest Indulgence: Original paintings. When I buy a piece of art I want to know why the artist did what they did. I want the piece of their soul they did to make the work.

Best Advice: Find a theme and a common element to your design, whatever it is. This will make the house flow and give a sense of welcome.

Dream Source: To be able to channel the late great Gianni Versace.

Thanks, Chris & Tyler!

(Images: Ann Manubay, Dabney Frake)

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