Modern Love

Kay Williams had lived in New Mexico three different times for a total of 27 years. Joe Thompson had been in Las Cruces for almost 15. If not for modern technology, their paths may have not crossed. “We met on four years ago,” Kay remembers. “We would never have met each other otherwise.”

The two clicked immediately. When it came time to move in together, they briefly looked for a new place to call home, but ultimately decided that getting everything they wanted meant transforming her home into their home. With plenty of ideas gathered, they called on McGinley Construction to help pull it all together. From styling to process, the remodel turned out to be just as modern and effortless as the way Kay and Joe met.

When Kay originally built the home in 2008, she favored a more traditional style. “In the process of looking for a new home, we realized we liked a more contemporary look,” she explains. “When we knew we were going to remodel, we got a lot of ideas online, especially from Houzz. We bought many of our accent pieces and fixtures from sites like All Modern. We started with furniture and then worked around the pieces we’d bought.”

The couple spends most of their time in the large, open kitchen, living room, and dining space. The floor plan remained the same, but the finishes received an ultra-modern facelift. Kevin McGinley worked with Tony Harris of Antix Inc. to replace the kitchen’s dark, 30-inch wood cabinetry with sleek, 36-inch, slab-style cabinets in a creamy off-white color. In lieu of granite, they visited Kitchen Kraft and selected eco-friendly, white quartz countertops inlaid with recycled bits of turquoise glass and shell. A gleaming glass tile backsplash pulls the whole look together.

Kay says the small touches that Kevin recommended—roll out shelves, pop-up outlets, self-closing drawers, a light in the pantry, a touch faucet, and under-cabinet lighting—made a big impact. “The layout is the same, yet the kitchen is so much better,” she says. ”Before, it wasn’t useful.”

The kitchen island was straightened, enlarged, and lowered.  “There wasn’t much counter space. There was no under-cabinet storage, just decorative nichos. There was a lot of wasted space on both ends. The surface space is huge compared to what it was. Just lowering the island and making it all one level, really made a huge difference,” Kay explains. “We never sat at the bar before because it was too high up. Now, the only time we sit at the table is when we have company.”

Carlos Garibay, McGinley Construction’s painter, helped select the vibrant blue that gives the entire space a cohesive feel, yet it was an oversized world map from IKEA that provided the inspiration. Kay remembers, “Joe said, ‘Let's get that map out.’ We held it up and I looked at the turquoise rivers and thought, ‘We need something like that.’ We ended up with this blue and this high-reflective white that really brightens up the space.”

To update the living space, the existing fireplace was completely refaced. Antix constructed the trim and mantle, but when they couldn’t find the exact color of stacked stone they were envisioning for the surround, the couple once again turned to modern technology.  “Joe found this product online,” Kay says. “It’s actually a very light-weight polyurethane and it’s fabulous. It’s seamless. It’s a very cool product and we’re happy with how it turned out.”

In the foyer, an expanse of geometric-patterned glass replaced the standard white entry door, and half columns were pulled out to create an archway with clean, contemporary lines. Spherical lighting fixtures finalize the modern vibe.

Since retiring from the Coast Guard, Joe has taken up painting as a hobby. His colorful depictions of harbors and other places the couple has visited in their travels provide most of the artwork in the home. “He’s done many of them just since the beginning of this year. He’s been on a roll, but of course he has a nice place to work now,” Kay notes.

The master bathroom got it’s own modern upgrade. Pulling in some of the design elements from the main living area, Antix mirrored the slab cabinets and glass tile backsplash from the kitchen, but this time in warmer blue hues.

The entire project pulls the home together seamlessly, and the process itself was just as smooth. From the countertop samples to the porcelain flooring and the artistic light fixtures, Kays says she and Joe were simply on the same page. “Over and over and over again, we just gravitated towards the same things. It really made it fun and easy. We recently had our reveal party and people really seemed to enjoy the final product. We are just thrilled with how everything turned out.”

--Photos by Kelly McGinley