In the once dilapidated Dozier House in Franklin, Tennessee, some of the original details weren’t salvageable, but great care was taken to preserve the ones that were. In the photo below, the damage caused by years of neglect is clearly visible. You can also see the original circa 1904 stained glass window Kathleen Evers, of K. Evers Interiors, used as inspiration in her design of the Living Room in the 2014 O’More Designer Show House.
The archway between the living room and dining room was widened and squared to open up space to the dining room.
To the left of the window, you can see the original fireplace mantle was in still in good shape, but the tile crumbled during renovation.
Kathleen used clean-lined marble tile to update the surround, allowing the architectural mantel to shine. She used a gray and blue base for her color palette, and chose the beautiful new Belvoir Chandelier from Circa Lighting to add glamour, without taking attention away from the historic details in the space.
Kathleen paid tremendous attention to detail, tying in the stained glass and chandelier by curating a sparkling collection of crystal decanters on an exquisite marquetry tray.
In a previous post, I mentioned designers were only given a historically accurate palette of six Sherwin Williams paints to use as a jumping off point for their spaces.
I’ve toured a lot of houses where designers try too hard to make a statement…hot pink, black lacquer and feathers anyone? The possibility of a disjointed feel between the designs of 26 people with differing aesthetics was huge but, like last year’s house, there is a sense of continuity and flow as you move from room to room.
The combination of quartz lamps, a mirrored console and contemporary art creates a beautiful moment in the space.
A tiny powerhouse of talent (in addition to her design degree, she holds a BFA from Vanderbilt), Kathleen is no diva. During installation, she could often be found on the floor, making sure the rug was ‘just so;’ with a steamer in hand, she smoothed out wrinkles in drapery and upholstery; and, using her impeccable eye, gave a quick fluff to the pillows and polish to the accessories.
Beautiful design doesn’t happen in a vacuum, but does include a vacuum cleaner and a designer who knows how to wield it!
A quick reminder of the Living Room before Kathleen worked her magic:
And the elegant After:
On Monday, the only day it is closed to the public, I toured the home in a rare quiet moment. The feeling I walked away with is one I consider paramount in good design: I could picture myself living there, as is.
It is a testament to the sense of place created by a merry band of alumni who are connected by the idea of living a beautiful life and a love for the small arts college that taught us how to bring the Magic. That it’s located in the No. 1 Small Town in the south is a bonus.
Here are a few takeaways from Kathleen Evers’ highly livable Living Room design:
- Start with a solid, quality neutral base.
- Don’t forget about the Fifth Wall. Pay attention to the ceiling!
- Add accent colors in accessories that can easily, and often inexpensively, be changed when you tire of them.
- The right crystal and reflective accents can add glamour without being precious.
- Mixing contemporary with traditional or historic elements helps keep a room feeling fresh.
Does Kathleen’s design speak to you? If it’s the ‘special voice’ talking again, you may want to keep that on the inside, but everything else is welcome in the comment section below. It’s not a conversation if I’m the only one talking, is it?
Here’s to restorative pursuits,