Drees partners with Instagram sensation to design a room for a deserving military family

The room off the foyer of Erik and Mary Tue’s home used to be a toy room and, as Erik lovingly puts it, a place “where socks go to disappear.” Mary, a veteran, and Erik, who currently serves in the Army, had been living in their Drees home with their four young sons for about a year when they decided they wanted to transform the space into a home office. 

Drees and Newland, the developer of Embrey Mill, teamed up with online woodworking sensation Sam Ryan to design a room for the deserving military family. 

Instagram woodworking sensation Sam Ryan paints Drees home for deserving Washington D.C. military family
Sam of Sam Ryan Designs
Instagram woodworking sensation Sam Ryan prepares new furniture for a deserving Washington D.C. military family living in a Drees home

Sam, the founder of Sam Ryan Designs, started woodworking in 2015 when she wanted a new headboard but couldn’t find the desired look within her budget. With the help of her grandfather, she built her first piece of furniture. Six years and 147,000 Instagram followers later, Sam sells custom furniture and offers interior design services while documenting her projects along the way.

Sam and her mother/business partner, Susan, met with the Tue family to get an idea of what they wanted the room to look like. The Tues decided on bohemian design elements and earthy colors; they wanted the space to exude peaceful and welcoming vibes. 

The mother-daughter duo then spent several weeks designing the space, building a desk and custom cabinetry, and shopping for the décor. Sam, Susan and a couple helpers loaded a U-Haul truck on a Friday and had the family’s room completed that Sunday. 

“We painted, hung wallpaper, installed picture molding, the cabinetry and decorated,” Sam said. “Even though the cabinets were built in the shop, there is a lot of work preparing and installing.”

When Sam revealed the new home office to the family, they couldn’t believe it was the same room. Mary got teary eyed when she saw photos of her sons on the walls. Erik joked that he was going to leave the blinds open so his neighbors could see the newly-designed space. 

Washington D.C. military family reacts to home office makeover by Sam Ryan Designs and Drees Homes
The Tue family reacts to their home office reveal.

“We had no idea what to do with our empty room. Now it is filled with beautiful decor in a functional working space,” Erik shared. “We wouldn’t change a thing, and we are grateful for this wonderful opportunity!”

Slide to see before and after shots of the space.

Sam said she was honored to complete the room makeover for the military family. 

“It’s so rewarding to take someone’s dream and turn it into a reality. I love giving back to the community, especially to the ones who have served our country,” Sam said. 

Woodworking Instagram sensation Sam Ryan designs home office for a military family living in a Drees home

A special thanks to Sam Ryan for pulling the Tue family’s vision together in one incredible room transformation!

Washington D.C. military family reacts to home office makeover by Sam Ryan Designs and Drees Homes

Ready to design your dream home?

From Instagram inspiration and Pinterest pins to your final floor plan, Drees makes it easy to bring it all together. We know your home is more than a dwelling. It’s an expression of who you are and what you value. Designing a custom home is a very personal endeavor, and we want to be here to help you every step of the way.


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