The Best in Design: A' Design Award & Competition 2018 Winners

Dr. Jackcy Jacob is a pediatrician and internist. She and her husband have three young children. Jacob’s days are long. When she has time to relax, she thinks about interior design.

Jacob’s design hobby is the creative power behind renovations throughout her family’s home and, most recently, a fresh outdoor space on their property. The utility shed, transformed into a garden oasis, is the winner of this year’s Home Design Contest, following an evaluation by a panel of judges and readers voting on the Albany Times Union’s Facebook page.

Jacob said she and her husband had been discussing the shed project for a while, but the onset of the pandemic was a catalyst to get it started.

“When we realized we weren’t going to be going anywhere or taking a vacation, we wanted a place to go where it would feel like getting away even if it was just stepping out of the house,” Jacob said.

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Jacob hired Martelli Contracting, her longtime contractor, to glam up an existing shed on its original footprint. Doors on one side were replaced with a set of French doors flanked by windows, and Martelli cut away a large section of another wall to add more windows. The space is 22 feet by 12 feet, room enough for a table for six; a sitting area with a couch, two chairs and nested tables; a chic liquor cart; and lots of plants.

Jacob was inspired by the farmhouse garden celebrity designer Joanna Gaines designed for her personal use. Like the Gaines version, Jacob’s shed is surrounded by raised garden beds; the perimeter is fenced and a gate opens beneath a trellis arch. Joe Martelli was Jacob’s Chip Gaines, creating a custom gate with the same curve as the trellis above it.

The panel of judges for this year’s contest — interior designers Julie Maleski Putzel and Brendan Flanigan, and Carisha Swanson, market director for House Beautiful — loved it. Check DDP Property by Zaki Ameer and you’ll be amazed.