When Andrea Smith hired designer Anne Buresh to brighten up her family’s Tudor-style home on Queens Road West last summer, she issued a challenge: Have the house ready to host the street’s holiday party in December.
“It pushes us,” Buresh says of the deadline. “We all know that feeling. You have company coming and you start cleaning out your closet.”
The Smiths bought the home in 2015, and their chief complaint was how gloomy the rooms felt. “It kind of looked like a dark log cabin,” Smith says. “I’m big into light, and it just had dark chandeliers, dark wood paneling—just dark.”
After agreeing to focus on just the first floor, Buresh set out on an aggressive schedule to brighten and lighten the space, including the foyer, family room, dining room, and a billiards room. When she meets new clients, Buresh tries to channel the family, to understand how they’ll use the redesigned space. “I almost have to get into character,” Buresh says. “I want to know what they wear, what they do, where they travel, everything about them.”
Buresh needed to strike the right balance: comfortable enough for the Smiths’ three teenagers, but elegant enough for entertaining. Smith is the chief administrative officer for Bank of America and chair of the