MEET THE DOVER DESIGNERS: Home Design & Remodeling with Leslie Alton
July 14, 2021
Meet the Designer: Leslie Alton
In this special blog series, you’ll meet Dover Home Remodelers’ talented designers: Enjoy a glimpse at their work, inspirations and beautiful home remodeling project highlights.
Blend a trained artist, an interior design junkie and a genuine people-person, and you get the ultimate resource for creating uniquely fabulous living spaces in your home. Meet Leslie Alton.
A Blending of Art + Home Design
Leslie grew up in the business – her parents owned a residential construction and distribution company. She also worked as a freelance interior designer for 20 years after earning a studio art degree from Kent State University. It’s the meld of those two worlds — art + home design — that make Leslie so good at her job.
How to Master the Perfect Home Remodel
While each home remodeling project has its unique scope of work, there are a few tried and true rules that Leslie embraces as she approaches a home renovation project.
Seek out design inspiration.
Like many people, Leslie uses Houzz and Pinterest to gather home remodeling ideas. She reads design magazines and tunes into HGTV and other channels for inspiration. But she also takes cues from her environment and recommends that clients do the same. Leslie advises people to snap pictures and save items from their travels. She says these items can help create a clear vision for a homeowner’s style, even if they can’t articulate it themselves.
Work with what you’ve got.
Leslie often sees homeowners get stuck on a particular look or concept that they want to replicate in their homes without considering the composition (or restraints) of their existing living space.
Example: Creating an open-concept space in an older home that has load-bearing walls might be cost-prohibitive. Instead, she advises you to make the most of what you do have in your living area. For homes with higher ceilings, Leslie likes to stretch out the lighting and mirrors to use more of the wall space. This makes the room feel larger, accentuates the high ceilings and makes a dramatic design statement.
Think function first.
We’re all guilty of falling in love with a beautifully designed space. But Leslie suggests that homeowners start by planning their remodel based on how they’ll actually use their space, not merely by aesthetics. Here’s what she means:
In the kitchen, consider your workflow space. Do you have two cooks in the kitchen? Do you need a large prep island? Does it need seating? What types of storage do you require?
In the master bathroom: Do you want a soaking tub? Do you need a seated makeup area? Make your “functionality” list first, and then dress it up with appliances, colors, fixtures and finishes.
Her award-winning Kitchen Designed for Family Living remodel shows how to create a home that not only looks great, but is functional too.
Avoid themes and trends.
While we all want our home renovations to look fresh and current, Leslie advises against going full-on trend. Instead, incorporate elements of trending styles into your home renovation for a more curated look that’s up-to-date and reflects your style.
Don’t sweat the small stuff.
Most remodeling projects comes with a bit of inconvenience. Construction will disrupt your everyday routine for a little while. Leslie advises to be flexible and stay focused on the prize; the result will be worth the hassles along the way!
For Leslie, the most rewarding part of her job as a designer at Dover Home Remodelers is the people. She enjoys meeting homeowners, learning their personal stories and then helping them create spaces that uniquely reflect their style and taste. Building those relationships is what makes her job most worthwhile.
If you’re interested in connecting with Leslie, call Dover Home Remodelers at 440-777-7555.