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Tephanie Sarro’s Liberty Lake house is flooded with light and underlined by colors, a cheerful yet quiet place that precisely captures the personality of the versatile designer.

Light streams into the large room – her favorite room – from all directions: the glass entrance area, the slide control onto the closed inner courtyard and through a row of rectangular windows that line the upper floor where Sarro has her studio.


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Next color! Dania chairs and a dining table with a live edge sit on an abstract turquoise carpet, a color that is repeated in art prints on the entrance wall, but also the muted blue-green tone of a leather chaise longue. Variations of orange and red appear in cushions, the glow of glued wood ceiling beams, the fox motif carpet in the grandchildren’s playroom next to the main entrance and numerous works of art, including Sarro’s large watercolor leaf hanging over the fireplace.

Her favorite piece – right next to the great room – is a glowing, rainbow-striped quilt that is visible every time she walks through the door, like a beacon.

“It’s called ‘The Hope'” from the story of Noah, explains Sarro.

Sarro’s interest in art and design began as a teenager growing up in the Washington DC area. She remembers designing and sewing intricate outfits for her dolls. Her grandfather worked in a furniture factory that he eventually took over, and Sarro knows that both his ambition and the way he handled furniture influenced her. Her uncle was also an artist, and Sarro’s mother signed up her and her sister for all kinds of courses from a young age: swimming, skiing, cooking, acting, knitting.


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KAYLEEN MICHELLE PHOTO

Sarro was drawn to architecture and attended the School of Architecture / College of Design at North Carolina State University. Her mother’s best friend – a woman – was an architect, which opened Sarro’s eyes. “I thought, ‘I can be an architect and a mother, both,'” says Sarro, who raised four children and taught them at home, all of which are grown up.

The interior design seemed to fit better, however, and perfectly blends Sarro’s interest in art, design and helping others.

She has kept her artistic skills – still hand-rendering all of her clients’ interior designs – and is particularly fond of watercolor. As a young mother she taught art to local children, and later Elizabeth Kincaid’s book Paint Watercolors that Dance with Light fueled her passion for painting. Although she has sold many of her works and continues to exhibit, she did not want to try to make a living from painting. And she’s still sewing and creating bespoke curtains for clients.

“I don’t have a favorite style,” says Sarro, whose own home is mostly mid-century modern, while her current projects include a Tudor-style remodel, a farmhouse-chic project, and a craftsman.

It is important to her, says Sarro, that she accommodates customers with her style.

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