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Sewickley home tour showcases elegant design

| Friday, April 25, 2014, 6:40 p.m.
Guy Wathen | Tribune-Review
This home on Woodland Road in Sewickley will be featured on the 36th Sewickley House Tour in May.

The stately, 7,000-square-foot house in Sewickley looks like it could stand on a European hillside as a chateau.

The Tasha Tudor house is one of seven on the 36th Sewickley House Tour next week. It has two-toned bricks, European-style shutters, a bright red-painted wood front door, and gilded floral wallpaper. The house's owner, who has done a lot of international travel, has filled his home with many exotic collectibles, such as African safari figures in carved wood and Oriental figurines.

In the family room are high-tech modern touches, like a sophisticated home-movie system with a roll-down screen. A circular office filled with clown prints and figurines has a domelike ceiling painted in big-top stripes. The master bedroom suite in the house, renovated in 2011, takes up the whole third floor, with a bathroom the size of a studio apartment.

“The architecture of the house is interesting, even if (the house) didn't have anything in it,” says Suzanne Friday, of Friday and Genter Interior Design in Sewickley, which worked on this house.

“This one is called ‘Your Dream Home Tour,' ” says Emily Shipley, co-chair of the event with Kathe Barge. “We selected seven houses that have been recently renovated or added to or built straight from new.”

The houses' owners will show visitors how they made their dream homes a reality, and, hopefully, inspire people with ideas for their own homes, Shipley says. Those on the tour can drive from house to house, and three are within walking distance.

“It has been fascinating to go throughout the homes and watch the owners just glow as they talk about their homes, because they really have put in a lot of effort,” Shipley says.

People will get ideas for their own homes as they go on the tours and see really innovative decorating, she says.

“They will be looking at a lot of creativity and imagination,” Shipley says. “I think this is the best tour we've ever had. Each home is just stunning.”

The tour, which drew about 2,400 visitors its last time in 2012, benefits the nonprofit Child Health Association of Sewickley, a 91-year-old organization that funds grant requests to benefit children. Projects include helping to start school libraries, providing cultural-enrichment opportunities, and supporting the local YMCA and Samaritan Counseling Center.

Kellie B. Gormly is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at or 412-320-7824.

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