This article, by journalist Riley Bunch, was published by the Eagle News on February 22, 2017 in their Progress & Innovation section.
Located at 55 Albany St. in Cazenovia since 2012, architectural and interior design firm JD Hunter/home welcomes all to their overflowing establishment where style and comfort prevail.
For the past 30 years, John David Hunter and Bob Winston have combined their talents as co-owners of the business and have built their reputation as innovators of home design; and have had their work published in dozens of shelter magazines such as House Beautiful and Architectural Digest. Hunter, an award winning architecture and interior designer attended Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal before moving to New York and solidifying his career at companies such as Bloomingdale’s in their interior design heyday of the 70s, and subsequently working for private clients throughout the country and abroad.
Their projects range from complete structural redesign of existing homes, interior redesigns and the creation of “smart kitchens” for those who truly do use them to cook. They pride themselves on collaboration with their clients to create living spaces that don’t only embody core principles of design but the wants and needs of the people who will be living in them.
No project is too large for the duo: a full service in-house back-up team for all design services allow a complete transformation of houses into homes with minimal effort on the part of the client. Careful attention to detail and accommodation of the desires of the client has built their reputation as both innovative and practical.
Drawn away from the lifestyle of New York and Connecticut, where they were previously located, JD Hunter/home found its new place in the village of Cazenovia, where they say, the positive attitude of the people surrounding fosters creativity.
“We interpret the needs of clients and execute them with good taste; it’s completely different from client to client,” said Winston. “We’re not one trick ponies. If you want ultra-modern we can do ultra-modern, if you want traditional we can do traditional, if you want monochromatic we can do that too. It’s a meeting of the minds, we don’t impose on anybody.”
While utilizing the existing characteristics of the houses they work on, they refuse to be different for the sake of being different. Sensibility of design with an emphasis on comfort for successful collaborations
“Interior design has to be sensible,” said Hunter. “In a family full of little kids you don’t give them a ton of breakable stuff. It’s listening and then designing what’s right.”
The pair is currently working on four full houses in Central New York and Canada as well as dozens of smaller projects, and are frequently called back to Connecticut and New York City, as well as across the country, to work their magic. Winston’s business background allows a smooth flow of logistics while Hunter handles the creative aspects of their work.
Hunter and Winston foster close relationships with their clients in order to make their homes both stylish and easier to live in; often becoming life-long friends – even taking up the next generation’s needs.
“We check our egos at the door,” said Winston. “It’s their home not ours.”