fbpx vie magazine subscribe button

A Full Plate and a Full Heart

By Jordan Staggs | Photography courtesy of Christopher Collection

As a nationally recognized, award-winning architect, Chris Reebals of Christopher Architecture & Interiors is a busy man. Between designing new projects, helping children through his nonprofit organization, and running a furniture and home decor retail mecca, his plate is pretty full, but that’s how he likes it.

The Homewood, Alabama, native says he was fascinated by design from a young age, loving that he could use it to express himself through drawing and sketching. He studied architecture at Auburn University, where he also played Division I football, so a robust schedule is nothing new for him. Reebals worked at a prestigious firm in Montgomery upon graduation, becoming a lead designer and project architect and learning from some of the best in the business. However, a call to serve others eventually led him to pause his professional design career for a few years.

“I took a hiatus from architecture and worked in vocational ministry with students and young adults, serving as a regional minister to high-security prisons and designing for inner-city housing projects,” Reebals explains.

After getting back into architecture and design full-time, he founded Christopher Kids, a 501(c)3 nonprofit that redesigns bedrooms and creative spaces for children and families with special needs. Its mission is to use the “power of design to improve the overall quality of life. By collaborating with children and their families, we can create the perfect space to foster imagination, hope, and joy.” This could mean designing a playroom where a child with cancer can relax and have fun with his family or reconfiguring a bedroom for a young girl with a neurological condition so she can more easily maneuver her wheelchair and perform daily tasks. The children and families served through Christopher Kids can enjoy their homes and live more conveniently—a blessing the team is thrilled and humbled to provide.

Helping others and forming meaningful relationships are not reserved for Reebals’s service projects. These are the foundations of his work with all clients and customers through the Christopher Collection interior design showroom in Homewood. “At Christopher Collection, we not only value luxury products and design; we also long to create lasting relationships,” he says. “Whether it is our existing clients, designers within the trade program, or new customers just stopping in, we truly believe in creating something beautiful together where, in the end, each person becomes an essential part of the Christopher family.”

Reebals is a member of the National Council of Architecture Registration Board and the American Institute of Architects, where he serves on the board of directors for Alabama’s largest chapter. He was also recently a finalist for the 2017 and 2018 ADAC’s Southeastern Architect of the Year and recipient of multiple AIA design and national HGTV awards.

As the president and CEO of Christopher Architecture & Interiors (CAI), Reebals has grown the firm from one to twenty-three professionals. Today, CAI is a nationally recognized, multi-discipline firm with offices in Birmingham, New York, and Los Angeles. “Serving clients with a collaborative methodology has established CAI as a premier luxury design firm being featured in local, regional, and national publications,” he shares.

My favorite part of designing a home is capturing the wants and needs of our clients through elevated and unique design.

We caught up with Reebals after his interview on VIE Speaks: Conversations with Heart & Soul podcast hosted by Lisa Marie Burwell to get more information on Christopher Collection and some of CAI’s projects in Northwest Florida’s coastal communities along Scenic Highway 30-A.

VIE: Tell us about your connection to the 30-A area and some of your favorite projects here.

Chris Reebals: Since the beginning of my architecture journey, I knew I wanted to design projects in the 30-A community. The area has a deep appreciation for luxurious design and has successfully established a presence that values elegant and thoughtful architecture. We are currently working on a few projects in the 30-A area, and our goal is to contribute to the beautiful design that has been developed there so far.

VIE: What is your favorite part of designing a home or curating for the Christopher Collection?

CR: My favorite part of designing a home is capturing the wants and needs of our clients through elevated and unique design. I want to make my clients’ dream homes become a reality while paying close attention to detail, materiality, and elegance that transcends time.

In the same way, when we source for the store, we have our clients in mind and always think of the best pieces to complete their homes. Whether through antiques that tell beautiful stories of the past or inspiring works of art that become the focal point of a room, our collection is curated with timeless pieces to complement our clients, their homes, and our brand.

VIE: How does the location or style of a home influence the decor? Would you say Christopher Collection has a signature “look”?

CR: Our goal at Christopher Architecture & Interiors is to have the architecture and design of a home seamlessly blend with the interior. As CAI has grown, we have created our signature look and design experience. This look led us to create our sister brand and luxury retail store, Christopher Collection, which opened in July 2021. The idea behind the Christopher Collection was to allow curated pieces found in our custom homes to be available to all who are drawn to our brand. The Christopher Collection signature look originates from over ninety-nine combined years of design experience of the CAI team.

VIE: Where can readers shop the Christopher Collection? What can they expect to find there (in-store and online)?

CR: You can shop Christopher Collection online at ChristopherCollection.com, or if you are in Birmingham, Alabama, you can visit our store at 2913 Linden Avenue in Homewood. Our store ranges from antiques, art, kitchenware, barware, bedding, and upholstery to lighting, furniture, gift items, jewelry, and more. We have it all!

I choose pieces that speak to me and evoke emotion. My goal is to find items that encompass the Christopher brand. It is the best feeling going online or walking into the store and seeing products that inspire me.

VIE: What do you love about antiques, and what do you think are some of the best ways to find them or incorporate them into a modern home?

CR: I love that antiques tell a story, hold a different quality than new pieces, and bring character to modern spaces. There is something special about finding curated pieces to add to a collection. At Christopher Collection, we have a great selection of antiques directly sourced from all over the world. We love sourcing from Europe, but in a pinch, we also enjoy sourcing from Round Top, Texas. Antiques hold a sentimental feeling that cannot be bought or created. They also help connect us to history and the people who came before us. Adding antiques to a modern home helps spread the patina throughout a space so that the juxtaposition between old and new is balanced and fresh.

VIE: Tell us about some of the photographers and artists you work with. Who are some standouts or best-sellers?

CR: Some standout artists and photographers we carry at Christopher Collection include photographer David Yarrow, sculptor Paige Bradley, and artist Simon Bull. All three of these artists are world-renowned for their work, and it is an honor to carry their pieces at the Christopher Collection. David Yarrow is best known for his black-and-white wildlife photography, Paige Bradley is best known for her unique sculpture technique using mixed media of bronze and illumination, and Simon Bull is best known for his bold use of color.

VIE: Do you have any fun events or collaborations coming up?

CR: We recently had the privilege of hosting a book signing with David Yarrow. It was a wonderful event with an artist we are incredibly honored to partner with. We were proud to have the Birmingham community celebrate his latest book of works.

Christopher Collection is also participating in several show houses—two in the Birmingham area and one in Atlanta. Each room has a different design aesthetic with products from our store. It is exciting to see art, furniture, and accessories from the store being used in various types of rooms and styles.

VIE: Thank you, Chris!

— V —

Visit ChristopherAI.com, ChristopherCollection.com, and ChristopherKids.org to learn more. Follow CAI’s projects and more on Instagram @christopherai and @christophercollection, and listen to his interview with Lisa Marie Burwell on VIE Speaks Episode #30 via your favorite podcast listening platform. Visit the Christopher Collection showroom at 2913 Linden Avenue, Homewood, Alabama 35209.

Read Responsibly

VIE Magazine September 2023 Jay Mercado
VIE Magazine - The Art & Design Issue November 2021
VIE Magazine January 2021 Special Commemorative Edition
VIE Magazine September 2020 Wanderlust Issue, Fancy Camps, The Idea Boutique
VIE Magazine August 2020 Art & Culture Issue, Nathan Alan Yoakum Art
VIE Magazine - Architecture & Design Issue - July 2020
VIE Magazine - Decor and Home Issue - June 2020
VIE Magazine May 2020 Entertainment Issue, Leslie Odom Jr
VIE Magazine - April 2020 Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine March 2020 The Fashion Edit, VONDOM, Alys Beach Fl, Digital Graffiti, Tres Chic, isidro dunbar Modern Interiors, Digital Graffiti Festival
VIE Magazine February 2020 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Travel Issue - January 2020 - Tanzania Safari Cover
VIE Magazine - Women's Issue - December 2019 - Tina Brown Cover
VIE NOV19 Goodness Issue
VIE Magazine, September 2019 Art & Culture Issue, Paul Hanninen
VIE Magazine - August 2019 - The Architecture and Design Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2019 - The Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - June 2019 - Fashion Edit
VIE Magazine - May 2019 - Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine - April 2019 - The Health & Wellness Issue
VIE Magazine - Special Entertainment Edition - March 2019
VIE Magazine February 2019 Luxury Homes & Technology Issue with Robbie Antonio of Revolution Precrafted
VIE Magazine - January 2019 - Southern Sophisticate Issue Cover
VIE Magazine - Special Anniversary Travel Edition - December 2018
VIE Magazine - The Goodness Issue - November 2018
VIE Magazine - The Art & Culture Issue - October 2018
VIE Magazine - Home & Garden Issue - September 2018
VIE Magazine - August 2018 Animal Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2018 Architecture & Design Issue - Subscribe to the magazine!
VIE Magazine - June 2018 Travel & Tech Issue
VIE Magazine - May 2018 Couture Issue
VIE Magazine - The Culinary Issue - April 2018 Cover - Chef James Briscione and Brooke Parkhurst
VIE Magazine - The Entertainers Issue - March 2018
VIE Magazine - February 2018 Destination Travel Issue
VIE Magazine - January 2018 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine, The Sophisticate Issue, December 2017
VIE Magazine - November 2017 Art & Culture Issue
VIE Magazine - October 2017 Home & Garden Issue
VIE Magazine | September 2017 | The Stories and Storytellers Issue
VIE Magazine - The Adventure Issue - August 2017
VIE Magazine - July 2017 - Art & Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - The Voyager Issue - June 2017
VIE magazine 2017 March-April Cover South Walton Fashion Week
VIE Magazine - January/February 2017 - The Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Nov/Dec 2016 The Sophisticate Issue
christian siriano vie magazine september october 2016 vie magazine
the modern minimalist issue
the culinary and couture issue march april 2016 vie magazine
the voyager issue alys beach vie magazine january february 2016
cultural issue vie magazine november december 2015
home and garden issue vie magazine september october 2015
the art and style issue vie magazine july august 2015
the wedding issue 2015 May June vie magazine
the food and fashion issue vie magazine march april 2015
the travel issue vie magazine january february 2015
the music issue vie magazine 2014 november december
The Animal Issue vie magazine september october 2014
the home and garden issue vie magazine july august 2014
the wedding issue vie magazine may june 2014
emeril lagasse food and fashion vie magazine
the men's issue january february 2014
the music issue november december 2013 vie magazine
the home and garden issue 2013 october september
the wedding issue vie magazine july august 2013
the artist issue may june 2013 vie magazine
the food and fashion issue march april 2013
the men's issue january february 2013 vie magazine
The Holiday Issue
the love issue july august 2012
the all american summer may june 2012
the entertainment issue march april 2012
the fashion issue vie magazine winter 2011
the home and garden issue vie magazine fall 2011
the anniversary edition vie magazine summer 2011
the wedding issue vie magazine spring 2011
vie magazine the holiday issue 2010 Dec
vintage swimsuits vie magazine 2010 Fall
judith march designer vie magazine summer 2010
wedding giveaway vie magazine spring 2010
holiday gift guide vie magazine winter 2009
emarketing explosion vie magazine fall 2009
tribute to mother's day vie magazine summer 2009
james and robert redford vie magazine spring 2009
zz top vie magazine fall winter 2008
project dreams vie magazine new york fashion week
Sign-up for VIEmail

Sign up for VIEmail