Skyscrapers and suits are what probably come to mind when you picture the office of a bunch of financial planners. That’s not the case for a women-led group in Athens, Georgia, which bought an actual four-story townhouse in Atlanta as it expanded its business. After acquiring ownership from architectural group Historical Concepts, the client hired Gordon Dunning’s design team to overhaul the interiors.
“We got to work painting every space, adding new lighting throughout, updating the plumbing, adding wallpaper, refreshing the kitchen with new counters, paint, hardware, as well only specifying all new furniture, artwork and window treatments, etc.” says Cate Dunning, who runs the company with Lathem Gordon. Which is to say that now the office looks like a real house.
In some ways, it also functions as such. On the third floor, there’s a one-bedroom apartment with kitchen and bathroom, “for visiting clients and outside staff,” says Dunning. Elsewhere, two conference rooms, a shared open workspace, a coffee bar (essential!) and a rooftop terrace that encourage productivity and collaboration. The decor skews traditional with a twist. “We tend to attract customers who like grounded but fresh interiors,” says Gordon, “with a bit of funk to throw off the balance a bit.”
First floor conference room
“The lower conference room serves as a first impression for new clients,” says Dunning. “We screamed when the client approved a risque olive animal print for the Roman Shades. The fabric adds a cool factor to an otherwise formal room.”
Roman shades: Schumacher fabric. Artwork: Ashley Hizer. Ceiling light: Éloïse Pickard. Table: Woodbridge. Carpet: Surya. Painting: Windy Sky 1639, Benjamin Moore.
A simple fabric skirt hides the plumbing and creates storage under the vanity.
“The office is located in a neighborhood that prioritizes green space, so it made sense to reflect that in the interiors,” says Gordon. “Rebel Walls wallcovering hides acoustic panels while making the room appear to be surrounded by lush forest.”
Wallpaper: Rebel Walls. Painting: Foxhall Green, Sherwin Williams (offices) and White Dove, Benjamin Moore (walls). Pendants: Circa Lighting. Lamps: Abbaye Robert.
Paint: Green Foxhall, Sherwin-Williams. Wallpaper: Thibaut. Artwork: Fred Cox, Ornis Gallery.
What Gordon and Dunning call a “mini-renovation” involved purchasing new countertops, tile, plumbing fixtures, and cabinet hardware.
Countertops: absolute black granite in leather. Lighting: Currey & Co. Faucet: Ferguson. Wallpaper: Thibaut. Sofa and armchairs: CR Laine. Dining table: four hands. Pillows: Schumacher.
Pillow: vintage textile. Over bed and bedside artwork: Brittany Smith Studio. Printed vintage eggs: Nostalgia Fine Art. Rugs: Annie Selke/Dash & Albert. Rocking chair: Safavieh.
Hardware: Home of Antique Hardware and Etsy. Lighting: Approx. Carpet: vintage.
4th floor conference room
“Furniture had to be hoisted out of the windows,” Dunning recalled. “Installation was quite a workout for our team and the delivery team, going up and down the four floors.”
A grasscloth wallcovering provides texture behind the built-ins.
A variety of seating options make meetings and long breaks between them easy.
Amanda Sims Clifford is the editor of Beautiful house. She oversees content creation for the brand across all platforms. She previously held editorial positions at Architectural Summary, launching the brand’s millennial-focused Clever blog, and at Food52, where she served as founding editor of the design department. She is based in New York.