A Home Built for ThreeHow one Oxford family transformed a lackluster home into one of the most spectacular in town
BY JAKE THRASHER
PHOTOS BY PAUL GANDY
Hidden away off North Lamar Boulevard sits a modern home that reflects the uniqueness of the family that built it. Anne Marie and Bradley Gordon met in Hotdog Records after multiple failed attempts by Anne Marie to book Bradley, then known as DJ Gordo, for a party she was hosting at her store, Cicada. Anne Marie booked DJ Gordo for her event, and then they began going on dates. The fun-loving quirkiness of the couple’s first encounter reflects the jovial marriage they now have.
When the young couple went to visit Anne Marie’s parents on Jefferson avenue, they would often go on walks and pass the home they now live in. The house was just a little red house that was rented out to Ole Miss students back then, but something about the house and location just drew in Anne Marie and Bradley.
After seeing the house on the market for three years, the couple decided to buy and renovate the house. With a baby on the way, Bradley and Anne Marie wanted a home to raise their family. The renovation of the house was a more daunting task than first expected. After finding black mold, the old house was mostly torn down except for the basic frame and foundation. Anna Marie and Bradley wanted to create an architecturally modern home which is a rarity in Oxford. Anne Marie’s concept for the house was “minimal, functional, and nontraditional” because she wanted the house to be an extension of her family.
The renovations were not completed before their daughter Genevieve was born, so the new family lived at first with Anne Marie’s parents and then in Bradley’s art studio in Water Valley. While caring for a baby is a challenge when you do not have a place to truly call a home, Bradley and Anne Marie knew the wait would be worth the house of their dreams. The renovations were finally done and the family moved in December 2016 and have been incredibly happy in their new home.
The house is built around an open kitchen and living room area which is tastefully decorated with art, rugs, and a mix of retro furniture with a hint of feminine decorations– giving the place a rustic-chic look. The house is filled with natural light thanks to the large windows that really open up the living space. The focus of the living room is a large painting by the artist and Bradley’s former painting professor, Jere Allen. Anne Marie said they decided that the walls of the main living area should be white so the art of different artists, including Bradley’s work, would really stand out. A vast collection of vinyls are on display in the living room showing that Bradley’s artistic taste is not only visual.
The Gordons built the house very resourcefully to get the most out of their money and stay on budget. The dark wooden floors were made from recycled wood from the original house, and the leftover scraps from the flooring was used to make the kitchen’s backsplash and the accent wall in one of the bathrooms. A lot of the furniture in the house is from the men’s clothing store that Anne Marie used to own. Anne Marie said “When I got pregnant with Genevieve, I had to choose between giving up Cicada, my men’s clothing store, or my children’s store.” She decided to give up the men’s clothing store and focus her time and energy on running Cicada and starting her family. Luckily, the vintage furniture from the men’s store fit the modern home’s style.
Bradley’s favorite part of the house is the screened-in back porch because of the area’s versatility. The open outside area can serve as an outside play room for Genevieve during the day, but it can also be used for afternoon cocktails with friends and a relaxed area to entertain guest. The screened-in porch allows the family to enjoy the Mississippi summer with shade and protection from the Mississippi bugs. The porch is in a secluded area with beautiful natural lighting. The patio furniture, TV, and sound system gives the back porch the perfect vibes for summer festivities.
All the bedrooms in the house are small because the family uses the bedrooms just for sleeping and would rather have more space in the common living areas. Anne Marie also said another reason for the small bedrooms is that larger bedrooms tend to become cluttered overtime, so with smaller bedrooms they can spend less time cleaning and more time being with each other. Even though the Gordons do not think the size of bedrooms are important, they were glad for Genevieve to finally have her own room when they moved into the house. When the family lived in Bradley’s studio, Genevieve was always drawn to a painting of Bradley’s that feature a colorful deer. Since Genevieve liked the painting so much, it is now the main decoration in her room. The bright playful colors of the painting reflect the happiness and silliness she radiates.
Anne Marie says that the location is perfect for the family, too. The house is not too far away from Cicada and is just far enough away from the square to not hear the hustle and bustle of Oxford’s nightlife. Bradley’s art studio is about a 20 minute drive from their house which allows him to spend time in the country away from Oxford. They are close enough to walk to restaurants like Snackbar, Jinsei, and Volta. They only live a couple of streets away from Genevieve’s grandparents so they get to visit all the time.
The Gordon’s plan to live in their home the rest of their lives. Everything about the house is perfect for them, even down to the house number, 712, which just happens to also be the Gordon’s wedding anniversary. They see the place as a representation of their lifestyle and personalities. Not only did Anne Marie and Bradley build a home together, but they also built the rest of their lives together.