Tucked into Downtown Summerville, a small home is rich with attention to detail.
In the oft-instagrammed world of hygge—a Danish and Norwegian word that reflects the mood of coziness, wellness, and contentment, minimalist interiors are regularly eschewed for homes that feature blankets, books and baskets galore, among other things. But at Jessica and Benjamin Maier’s home in Downtown Summerville, purchased in 2018, minimalism and hygge overlap; here, there is not a single item in any room that shouldn’t be there: everything has its place, and every room feels like the epitome of coziness.
At 1400 square feet, the Maier’s home is an efficient space; the type of space that, were it not for the couple’s eye for good, clean design, could feel small. But in the talented hands of Jessica and Benjamin, the home shines to its fullest potential. An interior designer who works for Laura Jones and Company, Jessica’s thoughtful choices around the home speak to her skill. The place abounds in neutrals, and touches of wood and natural fiber lend an organic feel to the space. Windows in each room let in beautiful light, and plants dot the space. In the kitchen, a vintage-inspired refrigerator sits against a floating wall adjacent to the dining area; a wall that is mirrored between the dining area and the living room space. With walkable space on either side of the walls, the arrangement feels breezy and the perfect kind of simple. One wall is painted black—a statement wall in a house full of neutrals—and large artwork opposite serves to make the space feel even more dramatic. All around the home, the creativity and eye for design of its owners is clear.
An avid cook and baker, Jessica’s favorite room in the home is the kitchen, which she calls her “happy place.” Whether she is baking bread or making homemade ice cream, Jessica is always challenging herself with new recipes and techniques. As for Benjamin, his favorite spaces in the home are the dining room and their 4-month-old daughter Amelie’s room, which he says has spectacular morning light and includes small, handmade embroidery art created by Jessica. Their next project is the exterior space; currently, they are tending a small but beautiful garden, and they want to enhance the features outdoors.
When the couple first laid eyes on the home, they were looking at a listing on the real estate website Zillow, and came upon the house along with its floor plan. Benjamin, an architect and realtor, quickly fell in love with the place alongside Jessica, and once they saw it in its full glory, they were sold. Now, the couple has a side business working together to create floor plans for real estate listings, a feature that doesn’t come standard in the United States. Another element of the home that the pair fell in love with is the proximity to Downtown Summerville; they can easily walk or bike to the historic district, and are a stone’s throw away from Rollins Edwards Community Center and Doty Park.
With their young daughter Amelie, Jessica and Benjamin make a fantastic team, and the pair is clearly off to bigger and better adventures in the future. Maybe such adventures will come while riding around in their too-cool vintage car, named “Hattie,” maybe they will happen from the cozy comfort of their little home in Downtown Summerville. Certainly, one such adventure will be Jessica’s foray into the magazine world through none other than Azalea Magazine, where she now serves as our Style Editor. In her new gig, she will scout interesting houses, keep us up to date on current design trends, and curate locally-made products and other inspirations from nearby creatives. Here, near, and far, one thing is for sure: wherever their adventures take them, the Maier’s life—and everything they touch—is sure to be beautiful. AM
by Jana Riley