What makes a Northeast Florida home? Is it the coquina-facade exterior? The concrete-block foundation of a home routinely located near, or even on, water? Is it the Florida room boasting regional décor like a conch shell bookend or a grinning, taxidermied alligator head? Or a combination of several elements—a house on stilts jutting up from a salt marsh?

Despite boasting some unquestionably Florida-centric attributes, the spaces featured in this issue actually make a case that, rather than superficial elements, it’s the distinctiveness of the individuals within that define a Northeast Florida home. From the mix of modern and rustic elements of artist Jenna Alexander’s St. Augustine home (“Lighthouse Park Bungalow” by Darby Moore) to the antique store’s worth of oddball trinkets within beaches renaissance man Tony Prat’s Mayport fantasy factory (“Warehouse Wonderland” by yours truly), the features herein apply a broad definition to this issue’s theme, Rad Pads.

Artist Jenna Alexander and fam inside their Lighthouse Park Bungalow, featured in the mag on p. 28. // Photo: Stefanie Kessler

Sure, the clean lines, minimalist furniture, high-ceilings, etc. of homes like that of artist Ty Williams (“The Blue Lego of Lincolnville” by Michael Adno) emphasize a diverse assortment of aesthetically pleasing architectural and interior design elements. But it’s the stories of the people who occupy them—artists and creatives, renaissance folks, environmental activists (“House of Tomorrow” by Amber Lake)—that lend these homes their unique character. 

Itinerant artist Ty Williams funky Blue Lego of Lincolnville found on p. 42 of our Rad Pads Issue. // Photo: Jason Gregory

Before you embark on your home tour, a housekeeping note: Every place, no matter how old, deserves some gentle refinishing or rehab. To this end, we’ve spent the last few months on a subtle renovation of a space we spend a great deal of time staring at; namely, the interior and exterior of our magazine. 

Grab an issue from a rack at one of more than 300 locations across the region and check out our improvements. We sincerely hope you enjoy our 2020 remodel. 

Welcome,
Matt

This feature originally appeared as the Liner Notes to Void Magazine’s January 2020 issue.