Freshly Festive

A family room addition has been transformed into a holly jolly holiday spot.

By Melissa Mauzy

Photography by Anne Matheis


    Frannie and Paul Erker are igniting the Christmas spirit this season in their newly built family room addition. Warm and welcoming, the new space is ready to host family and friends. The addition was part of a larger overall home renovation spearheaded by their daughter, interior designer Mary Signorelli of Le Coeur Design. Working in conjunction with Mainline Architecture and Barron Construction, Mary says the addition was built to be the family space. “We wanted to create a space that is both entertaining and comfortable. Something that can flex between a couple people or an open house party,”Signorelli explains.

    The family room is a mix of modern farmhouse and casual traditional. The ceiling and floors are the same wood species. Barron Construction added a rough skip plank texture pattern on the ceiling planks and built custom corbels to create a rustic aesthetic.

    The main focal point of the room is the stunning stone fireplace. Stretching from floor-to-ceiling, the fireplace features an exposed woodburning stove. The mantel looks like wood but it is actually a solid concrete piece, making it more durable.

    The first Christmas in their new space was a fun opportunity to start fresh, both in traditions and décor, says Signorelli. Mom and daughter worked together to reimagine the holiday decorations. “Mary’s input was invaluable,” says Frannie. “She has a designer’s eye for staging and creating a story within the space.” Mary approached the décor with a more sophisticated and updated feel.

    A real evergreen Christmas tree kicked off the fresh look. Adorned with ornaments of 50 years past, the Christmas tree is the focal point and set in the middle of the room so it could be seen from other areas of the home. Signorelli also incorporated fresh tree trimmings dripping over the wagon wheel chandelier and on the fireplace mantel. On the fireplace, extra large poinsettias are paired with smaller plants on both sides of the hearth, which Signorelli says adds the main punch of seasonal red carried throughout the family room.

    The color scheme continues onto the tablescape. Real cranberries fill up the Waterford crystal glasses. “It was my mom’s idea to add the cranberries to the glasses as well as the sprigs of evergreen on the backs of the chairs and holly branches in the center vase, all cut from her personal garden,” Mary says. “She has always had an eye for detail.”

     The small details in the decorations finish off the festive family space. Mary incorporated glass and metals throughout the room. Her grandma’s silver candlestick holders on the piano and her silver bell ornaments on the chandelier add a sense of history, elegance and sparkle to the space.

    For the smallest holiday revelers, the Erker grandchildren, little pops of imagination and storytelling inspire the magic of Christmas. Christmas caroling mice sing festive tunes on the piano while a Christmas village on the storage chest features many familiar faces.

    This holiday season, the Erker clan will be celebrating the season in the comfort of their new family room addition, which is now festooned in merriment thanks to the help of Mary. “This room combines elegance, warmth and a little sparkle to make for a perfect holiday season,” Signorelli says. “An inviting space to cozy up by the woodburning fire, listen to loved ones play the grand piano and open up Christmas gifts under the tree. And maybe if we are lucky, a little St. Louis snow to make it all the more special.”



Woodburning stove: Fireside Hearth & Home 

Architect: Mainline Group Architecture 

Builder: Barron Construction 

Fireplace: Cottonwood Stone 

Furniture: Ethan Allen, Intaglia, White Rabbit 

Glass/Mirror: Intaglia

Interior Design: Le Coeur Design LLC 

Lighting: Pottery Barn, D Barx Rustic Lighting 

Window treatments: World Market 

Window/Door: Andersen, Wilke Window & Door