interior designInteriorssneak peeks

In Utah, A Family Home Inspired By Guatemalan Heritage

by Tawnee Madlen Walker

After falling in love while traveling in Europe, it’s no surprise that Ali and Jeremy Hynek’s home is filled with treasures from around the world. Jeremy works as the director of North America for a software company called Isograph, and Ali is the founder and creative director of Nena & Co. Together the couple enjoys their home in Highland, UT – a town right outside of Salt Lake City – with their three beautiful triplet babies!

The Hyneks made the move from Southern California to Utah two years ago. Knowing that they’d be spending much more time at home with a family, the couple wanted a space with a lot of natural light, the living area on a single floor, land, and an open feeling to it. Besides a much needed kitchen remodel, the home they found had everything the couple was looking for.

Fortunately, the couple was able to do a large part of their home’s remodeling before having triplets – two identical girls and a fraternal boy. Their home came well built and carefully maintained by the original homeowners, but was a little too “pretty in pink” for the family. “The walls were pink, carpet was pink, cabinets were pink and tile. Wherever you could put a color, you better believe it was pink,” Ali recalls.

Both Ali’s work life and home decor is largely inspired by her heritage. Nena & Co., Ali’s company, is a project born out of love for her Guatemalan heritage and works to employ textile artisans to make beautiful products while celebrating and preserving Guatemala’s craftsmanship. “My Central American heritage and love for travel has a very strong influence on the way I decorate my home,” Ali explains. “I needed my home to feel peaceful and relaxing but I also love texture, patterns and color.”

In the end, it’s easy to recognize that Ali and Jeremy’s home is a reflection of the most important things to the couple: a love for family and heritage. –Tawnee

Photography by Becky Kimball 


Breakfast Nook
Pendant: C. G. Sparks
Fruit basket: International Folk Art Alliance
Purse: Nenaandco.com

Family Room
Couch: Restoration Hardware
Rug: C. G. Sparks
Poufs: Humble Dwellings
Pillows: Picked up at Utah Arts Festival
Pillows with tassels: Canary Lane
Rocker: Overstock
Wall art: commissioned work and poster from Paris, France flea market
Couch: Restoration Hardware

Formal Dining Room
Chairs: Overstock
Table: Restoration Hardware
Mini Stool: Vintage from Guatemala
Plates: Bought in Morocco and Turkey
Woven wall hangings: Huipils or traditional Maya shirts from Guatemala
Plants: Cactus & Tropicals

Formal Living Room
Couch: Restoration Hardware
Chair: Cost Plus World Market
Brass Reading Lamp: Restoration Hardware
Skull: Gifted to Ali by a hunter friend
Pillows: Nenaandco.com
Pouf: Humble Dwellings
Couch: Anthropologie
Wall Art: Bought in Sevilla, Spain
Couch: Restoration Hardware
Brass Lamp: Restoration Hardware
Buffalo Skull: Long Beach Flea Market
Entryway rug: From Morocco
Formal living room rug: Turkey
Chandelier: Overstock

Barstools: Restoration Hardware
Vintage Runners: Canary Lane
Pendants: Tom Dixon
Built-in Refrigerator: GE
Custom Cabinets, island and wood shelves: Rose Tree Cabinets

Master Bedroom
Bed: Restoration Hardware
Mirror: Restoration Hardware
Frame collage: Amazon
Fair Trade Quilt: West Elm
Rug: Bought in Morocco

Dresser: Shop Newport Cottages
Swivel rocker/recliner: Babies R Us
Cribs: Shop Newport Cottages
Sheets: Oilo Studio
Wallpaper: Hygge & West
Rug: C. G. Sparks
Curtain rod: West Elm
Blackout Curtains: West Elm

Chair: Restoration Hardware
Chair: Craigslist
Desk: Sundance Outlet Store
Record Player: Urban Outfitters
Coat hanger: Humble Dwellings
Bags: Nenaandco.com
Doors: Antique doors from Guatemala

Ali and Jeremy's goal was to create a home that facilitates family time. "Our most favorite thing in the world is to just be together! Being in a home that we want to be in all the time is so important to Jeremy and myself and that is my main goal when I decorate," Ali shares. In the photo above the couch, you can see a bull and matador. It just so happens that Ali and Jeremy fell in love on a trip to go running with the bulls.
Once you walk through the front door, the house immediately opens up and is filled with light.
"When we got engaged, we had the amazing opportunity to have our engagement photos taken by the talented [photographers, Russ and Reyn]. We flew out to NYC to create our editorial style photos. It seemed a little overboard at the time, but now I cherish these photos so much and they are such fun memories for us!" Ali shares.
"I’m not a big fan of formal living areas, and this house was built to separate the dining area from the kitchen, so we made a doorway to connect the two. Whoever is cooking doesn’t need to be hidden from guests and it makes things way more social," Ali explains. "My favorite thing in this room are the wall hangings that I commissioned to be made from women I work with in Guatemala."
This is Ali's favorite chair in the house. It was the most comfortable seat in her house when she was pregnant with triplets.
"This is our favorite place to eat since it’s a part of the kitchen and family room. We can easily cook dinner and eat while keeping an eye on the babies!"
With three babies in the house, the Hyneks needed a rocker, but they didn't want it to look too "granny." They bought this grey rocker because it was a little more modern than your typical rocking chair.
"We probably spend most of our awake time sitting on this couch right here or playing with the babies on a blanket on the floor."
"When we moved in we decided that we could either remodel all the bathrooms at once or remodel the kitchen," Ali begins. "I felt that we would spend a lot more time in the kitchen and that it needed to be remodeled stat!"
Before the remodel, there was a door where the back windows are now, which now allows for more cabinet space. The island used to be diagonal with a sink and the cabinets were all pink (as was the majority of the house).
This is the view from the formal dining area to the kitchen. The colorful cabinets make a huge impact when paired with such vibrant textiles.
The dark stained wood island alludes to a vintage piece made modern with minimalist hardware.
The morning sunlight floods the couple's master bedroom every morning. "Nothing feels better than waking up to the morning sun and sometimes a giggling baby," Ali shares.
"What you can’t see in this photo is there is a cozy nook that has a large window that sits over a white couch and crib. Having triplets, you can’t expect all of them to want to sleep at the exact same time. So we put a crib in our room for a baby that is crying so they don’t wake the other two."
"It was so hard to find a rug that I really liked that was big enough to fill the whole room, but you just can’t go wrong with a vintage overdyed rug. And these colors just make my heart sing. It really is a relaxing place for the babies to be in, and the wallpaper is starting to entertain them!"
"I had to include a photo with my babies actually in their cribs for you to get the full effect of all the baby love we have here!" Ali shares. Putting up the wallpaper was scary at first, but it soon became Ali's favorite part of this room. "As far as the cribs go, I really wanted something gender-neutral and high-quality since it’s a tradition in our family to save their crib in hopes that my children can use their same crib for their children."
Ali found these playful honeycomb shelves on Etsy. They add a fun geometric pattern and extra storage for items they want displayed.
"My office used to be a room that I would close the door to because I didn’t like the way it looked. But after painting the traditional brown [shelves] white and updating the hardware, I leave the doors open all the time!" Ali and anyone she could enlist to help her wrapped each book. "I am so happy with the look of our home office, but wrapping books is something that [takes] time. Man oh man, it takes time. Plan to log into Netflix or download about 10 podcasts and dig in," Ali warns.
Ali shipped these green doors from an antique store in Guatemala. "I was never really sure what to do with them and placed them here in my office. I’ve thought about moving them, but they add a nice pop of color in a colorless office."
What Ali loves most about her home is the people in it.
The Hynek Family's home is 6,080 square feet with the majority of the living area on the first floor: 2 bedrooms, 1 office, formal dining room, formal living room, a family room, breakfast nook, kitchen, and 2.5 baths. The basement has 3 bedrooms, 1 office, 1 great living room, and 1.5 baths.

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  • Man, it seems crazy to me to cover all your books in plain paper. How would you ever find anything? Might as well just get rid of the books altogether.

  • This is such a gorgeous home! Although not my typical style, it made me wonder if I should switch. So lovely!

  • I love everything about this house! Colorful and welcoming without being cluttered. Nice work!

  • Inspiring. I struggle to bring femininity into my home. The balance of your home is my new goal! I hope the green doors are secured to the wall.

  • I have the same exact Guatemalan huipils in the same colors hanging at either side of my bed, which is sort of spooky to see someone else have, but I obviously approve. Wow! And that kitchen is such a dream kitchen, ye gods.

  • Love this.. I am also interested in your cabinet color if you are willing to share? I have been trying to find the perfect teal green.

  • Love to see a beautiful home that can be filled with babies too. It’s definitely to be admired! The nursery is gorgeous, those cribs are incredible.

  • Several people are asking for the color that you used on the kitchen cabinet lowers could you please let us know we all are waiting to hear your reply. Like E.F. HUTTON CURIOUS MINDS NEED TO KNOW!

  • I think the lower kitchen cabinet color is Castile, would you be willing to verify if that is correct? please and thank you very much

  • It brought me so much joy to look through these pictures. Inspiring in many ways. And that Kitchen is just fantastic.

  • Like everyone else, I’m dying to know the color of the cabinets! that green has the perfect amount of blue to it, LOVE IT!

  • Oh goodness, add me to the list of those who are dying to know the color of the kitchen cabinets – it is such a gorgeous green!! The textiles are lovely!

  • That kitchen is amazing! It’s inspiration for my current remodel, do you know the green color of the cabinets?!

  • I would LOVE to know the greenish/teal color of the lower cabinets! I am considering it for our vintage 1950’s metal Hotpoint kitchen cabinets!! Thank you!!

  • What a fresh look! Can you please share the color of the kitchen cabinets (both white and green paint colors)?

  • Pleeeease, oh please, could someone tell us the kitchen cabinet paint colors? We’re in the middle of a kitchen remodel and would love to get this look!

  • I also want to know the paint color of the bottom cabinets!! It reminds me of Joanna Gaines’ point color called Weekend, but the cabinets seem a touch bluer and more vibrant.

  • Has anyone come close to that teal color? Just about heading to the paint store and wondering has anyone heard back about what this lovely color is? Thanks!

  • I also am in love with the colour of your lower cabinets. It is the perfect shade. I have been on the hunt for just that colour and would love if you’d share.

    • After scouring ideas for our kitchen remodel I fell in LOVE with your color combination and the clean simplicity of the white subway all the way up. we ended up doing the same bluey green on the lowers and I love it every time I walk in! We live in upstate NY with months upon months of cold gray weather… I needed a happy place with a pop of the perfect color that made me smile, thanks for the inspiration!

    • I went over and over colors for a match, I came up with Sherwin Williams Cape Verde, and I love it!

      • Do you have a pic using Sherwin Williams Cape Verde?! I’ve been trying to find a match for these cabinets for weeks 😩