Nashville AUTUMN 2018
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Welcome platform to elevate design discourse and the impact a united design community can have on our future. We are behind these women 100 percent, not only for their vision but for starting important conversations around inclusion, growth and intention in design. How do we want Nashville to progress? How can we have a part in improving it? The time to talk is now. Nashville is filled with all kinds of creative people — artists, writers, textile designers, musicians. And for many of them, their homes have to serve a double purpose of making art and escaping from it. For producer Lincoln Parish, it’s a place to settle in after years on the road. For Joana Magalhães it’s a place to make connections before moving on to the next adventure. For Wendy and Jack Silverman, it’s a place to soak up the light and make art happen. And for Vadis Turner, it’s for showcasing color and texture and making memories with her family.
All of their homes are filled with things that speak to the journey they took to get to where they are now. Lincoln’s first guitar. Paper airplanes scattered on the stairs at Vadis’ downtown home. Jack’s red bachelor chair.
ashville is changing fast. But that doesn’t mean it’s too late to try and be a part of the conversation about how and why it is changing, and what we can do to help it remain the place we all love. Everyone can agree there’s just something about Nashville that appeals, starting with the niceness of the natives — who made it a desirable place to come to from the beginning. We can’t blame people for wanting to be here. But once they do get here, they become partly responsible for making it a place people want to stay. Every city changes, and Nashville right now is going through a serious growth spurt. We can’t let the big picture get lost among the excitement of rampant development. That’s what makes November’s inaugural Nashville Design Week such an important event right now. The brainchild of Fuller Hanan, Kate O’Neil, Lindsay DeCarlo and Julia Dyer, NDW aims to establish a
6 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
What these people have in their homes is what all of us have in our homes. Mementos of life. Keepsakes of the journey. And in many cases, a link to our family’s past. For me, it’s a piano my grandfather gifted my mother when she was a little girl. He died shortly after, so I never met him — but I know him through my mother’s story of the gift. Now my mother is gone and my children, who never met her, know both of them through my story of the gift. It is in this that things become more than what they physically are. Finding meaning and purpose in everyday objects is a concept that drove Design Within Reach designer Sean Yoo to make furniture. And it was what drove Michael Dukes and Geoffrey Gill to open Royal Circus in Wedgewood-Houston. Filled with vintage and new pieces, all of them could be the part of a story someone tells about you someday. This Nashville belongs to all of us. Let’s make our design story the one our children are proud to tell, and that they want to return to and tell their children.
Hollie Deese Publisher
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Interiors AUTUMN 2018
Be sure to check out the
PUBLISHER | SENIOR EDITOR Hollie Deese
online edition of Nashville Interiors regularly for
SALES DIRECTOR Pam Harper
fresh content between issues, profiles, photos we
ART DIRECTOR Karen Cronin, Cronin Creative
couldn’t fit on our pages, style tips and trends, and a
ADVERTISING DESIGN AND SALES Jennifer Rapp
heads-up about events and happenings for the design-
COPY EDITOR Jennifer Goode Stevens, GoodeEdits.com
minded in town. Right: Restoration Hardware CEO Gary Friedman with Benjamin and Genifer Sohr, the husband-and-wife duo behind Pencil & Paper Co.
SOCIAL Follow Nashville Interiors on social media for updates when new content is posted online and for lots of behind-the-scenes peeks from photo shoots and insider events. Left: Connie Chornuk shooting one of the
CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Gieves Anderson Heather Byrd Connie Chornuk Gabe Ford Danielle Atkins Reeves Smith Julia Steele Sanford Myers Paige Rumore Ruby and Peach Photography Jim Bastardo Peter Hapak Mark Seelen Geinger Robinson Hill MAKEUP Justine Sylvie PRINTING Parris Printing, Nashville, TN
founders of Nashville Design Week, Fuller Hanan Hollie Deese
at Building No. 9 in the Arcade.
ON THE COVER Design Within Reach has come to Nashville and brought with them pieces from today’s new classic designers. In our feature, get to know a few of them and what they think of Music City.
8 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
Nashville Interiors is the premier interior design and lifestyle showcase of Middle Tennessee. We feature regional master artisans, designers, architects, builders, artists, collectors and retailers, and we bring you news of the area’s trends in building, design and development. We also showcase the inspiring spaces of our area’s eclectic group of residents. Nashville Interiors is published by Deese Media LLC. Nashville Interiors has been continuously in print since 2000. All editorial and photographic content is the sole property of Deese Media LLC and is not to be reproduced in part or in whole without the express written permission of the publisher. Nashville Interiors is available at select locations and events. For information on where to find a copy, visit the website or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To receive an advertising rate sheet contact Pam Harper, email@example.com. To request content reprints, suggest story ideas or notify with website or social media issues, contact Hollie Deese, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nashville CONTRIBUTORS Interiors CONNIE CHORNUK began her photography career in Seattle, Washington, with a concentration in film photography and darkroom processing. After moving to Nashville, she began working with renowned British photographer Alan Messer as an assistant. Several years later, she began her independent professional photography career. Connie specializes in portraits, on-set stills and street photography, and her work has been featured in documentaries, album covers and magazines. KAREN CRONIN moved to Nashville in 1993 and established Cronin Design — a one-woman design business delivering awardwinning work for a wide-ranging clientele that has included all of Nashville’s major record labels. In 2007, she and her writer husband, Peter Cronin, launched Cronin Creative, a full-service graphic design shop. A graduate of New York’s prestigious Parsons School of Design, Karen began her career in that city at Interiors magazine, where she rose to the position of art director. Karen’s role as art director for Nashville Interiors brings her full circle — leveraging her decades of design expertise to help create a world-class publication in America’s newest “it city.” She is a committee member of the Nashville chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners and serves as a judge for the Dove Awards Recorded Music Packaging category. Karen also volunteers her time reading to kindergartners at Eakin Elementary School. GABE FORD is a native of Columbia, South Carolina, whose photographs have appeared in Architectural Digest, Southern Living, Rolling Stone, NBC 10 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
Nightly News, Country Living, The Delta and Presbyterian College Magazine. He lives with his wife, Sarah Beth, and son, Coleman, off Nolensville Pike. A graduate of Presbyterian College in Clinton, South Carolina, Gabe has a music degree in voice and cello performance. His photography is inspired by his love of traveling — especially mountains and waterfalls — and his appreciation of good food. He proclaims a love of ice cream, fancy mustard, Kentucky bourbon and really spicy Thai food. SANFORD MYERS has been photographing life’s moments for over 20 years as both a photojournalist and commercial photographer based in the Nashville area. During this time his unique vision has been displayed in major newspapers, magazines, corporate websites, books and commercial projects. Sanford has always enjoyed the challenges of interior photography, the son of an interior designer. “In an architectural or interior shoot, the lighting conditions are always changing, and you must react to make the best images possible.” What hasn’t changed is the cornerstone of the art of interior photography — composition. “Composition is still the cornerstone, though digital photography has changed the way we shoot and process the images,” he says. REEVES SMITH moved to Nashville after a visit in 2010, teaching at Nossi College of Art and Currey Ingram Academy. He built his client list, which mostly consisted of builders, developers and real estate agents. His talent in photography was honed at Delta State University, then at The Bolivar Commercial newspaper in his hometown of Cleveland, Mississippi. He went on to earn an MFA at the Brooks Institute of Photography and became a photographer and photo editor for Disney-ABC Television in Burbank, California. In 2017, Reeves, wife Molly and daughter,
Luella, moved to College Grove, with two dogs and a flock of chickens. In 2018, Reeves started Altur Company, working with developers to market specific real estate projects. JULIA STEELE is a freelance photographer and photography professor based in Nashville. She has experience in many fields of photography, but architectural and interior photography are by far her favorite. Her formal training is from Savannah College of Art and Design, where she received her BFA in photography, and from the University of Georgia, where she received her MFA in photography. Julia also shows her photographs and teaches photography at Belmont University and Middle Tennessee State University. She lives in East Nashville with her husband, their 1-year-old daughter and 12-yearold hound dog. JENNIFER GOODE STEVENS is a freelance editor based in Clarksville, Tennessee. She arrived
in Nashville in 1992 as an intern for The Tennessean and has since had a fascinating view of the growth and change of the city from behind her keyboard. Over the decades her client list has grown to include major area universities, magazines, publishing companies, web content providers, advertising, marketing and PR firms, and independent authors. She lives in Clarksville with her husband, their two â€™tweens and their rescue dog, Sophie, whoâ€™s really the one in charge. JUSTINE SYLVIE is a Nashvillebased freelance makeup artist and wardrobe stylist who specializes in film, TV, print and live events. She has a keen understanding of market trends, visual composition and the art of aesthetic presentation. With over 10 years of experience, she has a strong eye for detail and for producing high-quality images for clients that have included such notable names as ATT U-Verse, Texas Roadhouse, Portlandia and Amazon.com. In addition, Justine has three years of experience working as a freelance product stylist in high-volume e-commerce photo studios. NI
NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 11
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Nashville CONTENTS Interiors
FINEST 20 FALL’S All the things we must have this season, all-Nashville
BALANCE 37 ART-LIFE Area creatives let us into their homes, which serve them in
art, life and work. And they do it so well.
a new kind of furniture store in Wedgewood-Houston.
living time. Here’s how to make the most of it.
CIRCUS OPENS OUTDOORS 60 INSPIRING 26 ROYAL A brand expert and young creative combine forces to open Middle Tennesseans have the luxury of extended outdoor GLITZ 34 CHRISTMAS Holiday decorating makes magical memories – and a big style statement. 14 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
MUSIC CITY FIRE 64 SPOTLIGHT: Steve Paladino took inspiration from a YouTube video and made a thriving business.
“Realizing a client’s vision of custom, one of a kind, hand crafted, folding screens, room dividers and wall art.”
Will Rhodarmer Master Artist/ Designer
Custom Designs for Versatile Spaces
Nashville CONTENTS Interiors
68 90 BY DESIGN 68 INSPIRED Four women teamed up to bring something that Nashville didn’t even know it needed – a common thread to connect all design creatives. Get to know the minds behind Nashville Design Week.
78 The home of the design – and married – duo of FeltusWHERE NATCHEZ MEETS NASHVILLE
Hawkins blends the best of both their Southern roots.
IN 90 FITTING A new build in East Nashville looks like it could have always been there, and that was the point. 16 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
COLLABORATION 98 CREATIVE Design Within Reach works with furniture designers to properly respect their aesthetic, then brings it all to Nashville.
DESIGN 104 HAND-DRAWN Architects and landscape designers put away the CAD to create something a bit more meaningful for their clients.
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DECEMBER 5 & 6
JAZZ AT LINCOLN CENTER ORCHESTRA WITH WYNTON MARSALIS
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MESSIAH DECEMBER 7
DECEMBER 13 TO 16
MICHAEL W. SMITH
Dave Barnes, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and The Oak Ridge Boys presented without orchestra.
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When Restoration Hardware opened the new gallery in Green Hills earlier this year, it was swamped with people who couldn’t wait to get a first-hand look at the retailer’s exceptional take on neutrals, like this Chesterfield Leather Daybed. Designers and cardholders get a special rate on all items too. $2,546-$5,395. restorationhardware.com
Craftsman Peter Fleming takes his background in interior design and combines it with millwork, cabinetmaking and furniture design to make one-of-a-kind mirrors, lighting and furniture, like this coffee table with a resin-covered photograph at Building No. 9, named after his O’More classroom. $3,800 at Building No. 9.
Hermitage’s Adam Cremona of Cremona Custom Built, makes furniture with architectural elements from raw responsibly sourced materials. With the help of wife and partner Sera, they create custom-built tables and more, even if they have to be built around nonnegotiable elements — like columns. Price upon request, cremonacustombuilt.com.
20 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
Nashville-based stationery, paper goods and art brand Wink Wink Paper Co. in Germantown is owned by graphic designer Holley Maher who partners with quality, domestic manufacturers and stocks wall art, greeting cards, gorgeous gift wrap and this Nashville print, $36 at winkwinkpaperco.com.
Springfield, Tennessee, furniture designer Caleb Woodard is a the son of a furniture maker, now crafting his own one-of-a-kind pieces that play on form and function in all new ways. His signed-and-dated Firmament chest of drawers, for example, has a hand-carved case and drawer fronts made from solid walnut, and a case made from grain-wrapped walnut with waterfall edge. $30,000 at theexchangeint.com.
Hip Hues is located at Track One, doing live screen printing since 2012 in addition to offering the prints available for purchase, including this Black and Gold framed Neighborhood canvas print. $110 at hip-hues.com.
Nashville designer Sarah Bartholomew first caught the eye of Pottery Barn thanks to her stunning Instagram account, which led to a collaboration with the iconic retailer the same month she opened her Green Hills boutique and studio, SB. Her SB x PB collab is all about the entryway, with benches, mirrors, hooks and trays all meant to make walking inside better than itâ€™s ever been. Prices vary at potterybarn.com.
NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 21
Our closets are infinitely more beautiful with this Ona Rex asymmetrical dress. Made with soft cotton twill and blackand-white dyed ostrich feathers, the look is typical of founder Nashvillian Ashley Balding’s desire to create looks that are opposite what her Southern upbringing dictated — instead it is all about interesting shapes and bold colors. $435 at onarex.com.
22 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
Timeless Design for Current Living
Margi's Chair & Chair Alike 2205 Bandywood Drive Nashville, TN 37215 615.463.3322 margischair.com
STORY BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANIELLE ATKINS
FUTURE HEIRLOOMS ROYAL CIRCUS STOCKS SOULFUL PIECES TO MAKE A HOUSE A HOME
t may have all started with an unrealized dream, but the end result is something that seems meant to be for the growing arts-andcreatives community of Wedgewood-Houston. Open since August, Royal Circus is the collaboration between Michael Dukes, 59, and Geoffrey Gill, 27. A furniture store with a global theme, the idea is to 26 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
provide thoughtful shoppers the kinds of things they would want to be a part of the story their family tells about them someday. But it was almost an Indian restaurant! Three years ago, Dukes and a chef considered opening a restaurant together. Dukes threw himself into the branding and the design, which led him into a rabbit hole of
antiques and textile mill labels from British India.
to chase music while doing freelance advertising work.
“To me there was a magic about that stuff,” Dukes says. “The colors were interesting and there was just a vibrancy to it, but there was also kind of some whimsy in there too. The same things that light me up about Wes Anderson and Tim Burton just kind of existed in all of that.”
Gill started off in visual arts, videography and production design, which is what brought him and Dukes together. Gill also builds and designs furniture, and he taught himself the ins and outs of woodworking and metalworking. Now he builds largescale fabrication jobs for architects, like big floating steel staircases. He also does large-scale art, with a 20by 30-foot installation at Burning Man earlier this year.
So the restaurant was out, but the beginnings of Royal Circus were in place. Dukes teamed up with Gill, and they began finding sources, eschewing big furniture markets for smaller suppliers unique to Nashville, possibly the region. Dukes’ background is in advertising as a writer and a creative director. He spent years making TV commercials in Los Angeles before moving to Nashville
The majority of their products are made new in very small batches by hand, in either India or Indonesia, and can take months to come in once ordered. “It’s not like there’s a thousand of something sitting in a warehouse in Atlanta,” Dukes says. “When we have enough stuff coming from India for example to fill a container, the order goes out and they start making those things.”
Together Michael Dukes and Geoffrey Gill have created a furniture store filled with things that look like there is some love and life behind them, and a story yet to tell.
NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 27
Grand Palace screen prints reinforce the brand and are available to purchase. Eventually the pair aim to design and create Royal Circus-branded pieces, leveraging the manufacturing relationships they’ve made over the past couple of years.
Pieces that can be custom made are near the front of the WeHo store, by the windows that spent the last few decades bricked over. The rest of the space is filled with pieces that are a mix of vintage and new, small-batch.
“Finding out how to connect people with your message or make them aware of you is one thing, but if we’re on a mission here, it’s the idea that things are tangible, human interactions, things that are made by people and not stamped out of a machine somewhere,” Gill says.
found a dresser in the weeds and the mirror on the top section was worth saving and looks amazing.’” That’s why creating a space that was worthy of becoming part of the story for that piece, and part of the owner’s experience buying that piece, was so important. And finding the location was not exactly easy in Nashville’s hot market. But when they found it, it was meant to be. “We feel like this isn’t just a good space for us, we feel like it is our space,” Dukes says. “We felt right about the neighborhood.”
At Royal Circus that could be a reproduction of a Tibetan cabinet made with the old techniques and materials in China on the Tibetan plateau, real antique Hollywood lights restored by a semi-retired photographer, or a custom leather Chesterfield couch from CoCoCo.
And while they can’t imagine it anywhere else now, it took a lot of forward thinking to visualize what could be when they first walked through. Covered with decades of dust and must, the large street-level windows that now allow light to pour in had been blocked off by concrete for 50 years.
It’s an understanding of how people acquire pieces — collected, gifted, commissioned, chased after — and all of it with a story behind it that eventually helps tell the owner’s story too. All kinds of stories.
“We wanted the store experience to be almost like an awakening,” Dukes says. “We wanted it to be a stimulating thing to come through here, whether you buy something or not. We aspire to have the kind of place, the kind of experience where if you come in and buy, I mean literally anything in the store, part of that experience is you came here and you bought it from Royal Circus.” NI
“Sometimes the story is ‘We were traveling in Istanbul and we found this light and we brought it back and it was huge pain because we had to protect it from getting crushed every step of the way,’ or maybe ‘I 28 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
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CHRISTMAS DÉCOR HELPS CREATE MEMORIES STORY BY HOLLIE DEESE
hen designer Tim Causey gets
don’t like to do exact colors,” Causey says. That
ReCreations, the store he owns
makes it easy for people to recreate themselves,
with Richard Epperson, ready
as long as they stay within shades of the color,
for Christmas, he gets about
or opt for a neutral like champagne to mix in.
20 trees ready for display — all different, all for holiday décor inspiration and all available to purchase as is. “We don’t even call it Christmas anymore
need to get on the schedule as early as July if they want Causey to handle their Christmas décor. And each year, the schedule fills up even
Whether whimsical and bright or more
faster as families get busy handling all the other
traditional, the décor all comes off as
details but still want their house filled with
elegant. And it starts with the ribbons.
“We used to do more on the trees when the trend was heavier, so we’re doing less of them now. But each tree will have three to four ribbons that coordinate. You could pick two if you wanted, you could pick all four.” Once the ribbons are collected, the tree’s theme is built around that color story. But it doesn’t stop there. A proper tree needs a whole-room refresh. “We don’t only decorate the trees as we theme them out, we change our furniture around to coordinate with that tree,” he says. Pinky-peach is a hot color trend this year, something he dabbled with last year to great effect. “People went crazy over it,” he says. And to go with this season’s fresh Christmas color, Causey recommends warm tones like chocolate-brown chairs, a neutral light-colored sofa and accent colors in a green-hued teal. “Then all the ornaments will go deeper and lighter, because we 34 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
professionals to do it for them, but they will
because it engulfs our life,” Causey says.
“We’re really big into ribbons,” he says.
This season a pinky-peach color is one of the hottest trends in holiday decorating.
Of course, they could always hire the
“That’s kind of what I think it’s all about,” Causey says. “You need to love your home, and it will make your Christmas so much better. You’re creating those memories.” NI
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F E B RUA RY 1-3, 2019 NA S H V I L L E, 36 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
T E N N E S S E E
C R E AT I V E S A T
H O M E
A BEAUTIFUL BALANCE A R T I S T S â€™ I N S P I R I N G S PAC E S T H AT W O R K F O R R E A L L I F E STORIES BY HOLLIE DEESE
ot everyone who works from home spends their time hanging out on conference calls or balancing spreadsheets. In Music
City, being a creative entrepreneur is a booming business, and more and more people are making it work by combining spaces at home with coworking options, cobbling together the kind of work-life balance that exemplifies Nashville now. From outdoor buildings to basement studios, hereâ€™s how some local artists and designers are getting it done.
NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 37
C R E AT I V E S A T
H O M E
VADIS TURNER R E T U R N TO N A S H V I L L E A CO LO RFUL A DVENTUR E PHOTOGRAPHY BY JULIA STEELE
ixed-media artist Vadis Turner and her husband Clay Ezell, co-owner of The Compost Company, are Nashville natives who both moved to New York. That’s where they met and realized that not only were they both from Nashville, they had gone to the same school. “But I’m four years older. I can proudly say that I was not checking him out when I was in the fourth grade and he was in the first grade,” she jokes. “But it was love at first sight when we met as adults.” She studied art at Boston University then moved to New York in 2000. She quit her full-time job in 2004 and started teaching part time at Pratt Institute. For ten years she divided her time between teaching and creating works of art. But the art was always her calling. “Art is something that we all do growing up, and then most people phase out of it for whatever reason,” she says. “It was something that was always with me. I was just too nervous to quit because when you quit, it gets really hard to start again. But it’s hard to decide what needs to be brought into the world and to trust your ideas enough to see them through sometimes.” After she and Clay married and had their first child, they began to talk about going home. They were ready to have a second baby and wanted to be near their families as they raised their children. And she really wanted a dishwasher. “I had no intention of ever moving back to Nashville, not that I didn’t have a great childhood here. I did. But Nashville, when I was growing up, didn’t have much to offer artists. Period,” she says. “Now there are so many people moving from other places and mixing it up and bringing their dreams here — it made it really enticing to move back home.” It’s been nearly two years that they have been back. Now they have that second baby — and the dishwasher — in a threestory building renovated by Nick Dryden of DA/AD. Finding their downtown home wasn’t easy, but once they did? There wasn’t any other option. 38 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
Architect Nick Dryden worked with the bones of the building but made it modern, including moving the kitchen to the opposite side of the house and adding a skylight. The light fixtures over the dining room table are from the artist Christopher Trujillo and are made from paper plates. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 39
Architectural and artists’ touches are everywhere, like the salvaged piece from Braxton Dixon’s collection above the bed, a banana chandelier made by Vadis and colorful works of art Vadis has traded her own pieces for over the years.
One very early morning she was in her pajamas on her couch in Brooklyn. She Googled “building for sale in downtown Nashville” and found their house. She called and made a date to fly in to see the place. When she arrived, the owner couldn’t meet her because of a sick dog—she had to go home without even stepping inside. She flew back a second time and this time got the house, which had been stripped down to its foundational elements. “It’s ‘second empire,’ which didn’t really mean a lot to me until I started to live here,” she says of their late 1800s abode. It has its original hardwood floors, exposed brick and confusing layout. “I pride myself on being creative and being able to do creative problem-solving, but I could not figure out how to do this,” she says.
“We were looking for a place downtown that could be altered so that we could live upstairs and rent out the downstairs,” she says. “We needed parking, but we wanted to be able to walk downtown. There just aren’t a lot of those spots.” 40 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
That’s when she turned to Dryden, who moved the tiny kitchen to the front of the house, created rooftop access for outdoor living that overlooks the city, and even added skylights to let in more natural light. Meanwhile, she has added color and personality by trading her art for the works of others. Architectural touches are everywhere, like salvaged doors and fixtures from the late Braxton Dixon’s
Colorful prints and unexpected layers have found a happy home here, like wallpaper from Nashville design duo New Hat.
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CHOSEN SHOES JEWELREY CLOTHING ACCESSORIES
2203 Bandywood Drive ● Nashville, TN 37215 615.818.0886 Chosen-Nashville.com
collection (architect of Johnny Cash’s Hendersonville home), gold tiger wallpaper in the master bathroom and custom tile Turner laid out herself, spelling out their initials. And they were right — Nashville now has so much more to offer artists than it did when they left. So they are here to stay. “I’m not a pioneer,” she says. “I came back after it was already cool. We definitely didn’t move here for my career, but to my great surprise it has been incredible for me. The opportunities that I’ve had because I live in Nashville could not be matched if I lived in New York.” NI
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In the master bath gold tiger wallpaper looks unexpectedly right at home with Spanishinspired tiles and a blue vanity.
C R E AT I V E S A T
H O M E
THE SILVERMANS OUTDOOR STUDIOS PROVIDE SPACE FOR ART, MUSIC, WRITING
extile and fine artist Wendy Silverman met her husband, musician and writer Jack, when a friend finally convinced her in 2010, after years of trying, to go see his band play at the now-closed Flatrock Café. The two exchanged Facebook info, started messaging and scheduled a first date a week after that show — which turned out to be the day of the flood that inundated much of Nashville. “I was in Franklin and had gone out to buy new shoes for the date. I’d never seen water like that,” she says. “I tried to cancel, and Jack was in Nashville where it really wasn’t bad yet. I think he thought I was
PHOTOGRAPHY BY SANFORD MYERS
just trying to get out of the date.” So Jack, former managing editor of the Nashville Scene, decided to scrap their plans to hit the art crawl and come to her instead. “We went to eat at the Red Pony, and it was starting to get bad,” he says. “The streets flooded in Franklin, but I made it home. The next day is when all hell broke loose.” After that auspicious start, the couple connected and moved in together a few years later — after Wendy’s son went away to college. And while they loved the NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 43
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Sun pours through the back room, one of the biggest selling points when they bought the house. Almost as big as the outdoor studio space divided in two, one side for her art, the other for his music. They have Brandon Vance of Design Build East to thank for the sun-filled space. He was the previous owner who put an addition on the back and made sure natural light was a star.
1925 bungalow they bought on McKinney Avenue, it wasn’t right for all their needs. It lacked the good light and dedicated space they both needed to create. “It was a great house, but it didn’t have quite the right space for her art and my music,” Jack says. They spent two frustrating years going to open houses and decided to just add on to their existing space. They got on a waiting list to meet with architect Lynn Taylor, but they decided to go to one more open house. “We walked in, and she went one direction, I went the other direction,” Jack says. “We met back at the middle of the house, and we just kind of looked at each other like, ‘hmm…’” The home was built in 1960 and was a little more than 1,500 square feet before the previous owner, Brandon Vance of Design Build East, put on a 500-square-foot addition in the back that now houses the den and master bedroom. “Both of them are just spacious rooms with tons of natural light, and that is huge to me,” Jack says. “I’ve always fantasized about those Frank Lloyd Wright, allglass walls, and this gets close to that for me. This NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 45
Wendy’s art hangs on the walls, and every place looks like the perfect spot to sit down with one of the many books throughout the house. Across, Wendy painted one wall black while Jack was out of town on a gig — it’s how she tackles many major design changes.
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house, just everything was exactly right.” Halloween will mark three years in their East Nashville home. It isn’t much bigger than their previous place, but the difference is the split studio space that is additional and separate from the main house. “It’s a game changer,” Wendy says. “Something about it being outside, walking out into a separate building — it just feels like you can totally focus. We feel very fortunate. We know that we’re lucky to have that space.” Jack uses his side for playing guitar and some home recording. And Wendy can hear him playing when she’s in her side working on her art and textile designs. Together, they love to entertain and host hybrid art shows and house concerts.
In Jack’s “California Corner,” plants and succulents and sunshine surround his most favorite red chair from his bachelor days — a piece that has grown on Wendy too. And, it never fails to get a compliment when guests come over.
In the main house, Jack says, Wendy has carte blanche with design. But, he adds, she makes sure his personality is represented, including his “California corner” filled with succulents, sunshine and, most importantly, his red chair from his bachelor days. “That chair has been a source of contention since the early days of our relationship, but it’s grown on me over the years,” she says. “And his favorite thing, when people come over, is that someone always walks in the door and immediately says, ‘That is a great chair.’” NI NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 47
C R E AT I V E S A T
H O M E
OF MIXEDESIGNS INTERIORS I N T E R N AT I O N A L F A M I LY M A K E S I N S P I R I N G STO P IN HENDERSONVILLE PHOTOGRAPHY BY REEVES SMITH
Joana sips espresso in the dining room that doubles as her workspace. Right, Maps line the hallway, significant of all the journeys she and her husband have taken. Below, End tables lose all seriousness when in the shape of sheep.
esigner Joana Magalhães and her husband, Pedro, both grew up in Porto, Portugal, but never met until they were both in Italy for school — she was studying architecture while he finished his engineering degree. They ended up renting rooms in the same house, and she says it was a true Italian love story. “Our friends used to say it was ‘il destino,’ which means it was destiny. We were meant to find each other.” After Italy they returned to Porto. Then a few years later, in 2003, she and Pedro moved to Madrid where her specialty was designing high-end homes and doing interiors on the magnificent mile of Madrid. “I worked in this super-cool studio, supervising a big spa in the Alps called Anticos, working with Rafael Moneo and other Pritzker Prize architects,” she says. “I got exposed to lots of different cultures, different people.” Pedro’s job next took them to California. At that point they had two children and spent six years on the West Coast. It’s where Joana started her own design business, MixeDesigns Interiors. It’s also where they had their third child. “Suddenly, I started working with furniture companies
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and consulting for a big local interior design firm, where I got to work with many famous names on several million-dollar houses,” she says. One of those companies was CB2, and the opportunity arose to move to Tennessee. They thought, “Why not?” “We had surfed the Californian waves,” she says. “Now we were ready to experience Southern hospitality. It was very different. The art is amazing. People are super-friendly, super-welcoming. Life is slower-paced but really rich and enriching.” Joana says working and being creative at home is a path that she was fortunate enough to grow slowly, and it has worked through all of their many moves. Plus, it gives her the flexibility to work on furniture design, interiors and a home accessories line with the California company Be Home. “It’s great because I get to do many different things,” she says. “It’s almost like you feel everything is possible.” She also gets to show off her family’s love of adventure through their own home’s design — a wall of maps, a wall-hung vintage motorcycle — including the pieces they have picked up right here in Middle Tennessee. The table where she looks at fabrics and samples is from Wonders on Woodland, a piece that she says she will always remember from this phase in their lives. Same with the Hatch Show Print on the wall, and the
Joana painted one large mixed-media art piece in the living room, a modernization of the famous “Las Meninas” masterpiece by the Spanish artist Diego Velázquez, after visiting a special exhibit of his at Museo Nacional del Prado.
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framed Johnny Cash lyrics in the bathroom. “I love Johnny Cash,” she says. “He has that dark side. It’s really in the roots of what Nashville is. That part I will take in my heart, for sure. We have had a wonderful three-year period.” She says “had” because the family is on the move again. They recently packed up their home in the city by the lake and moved back to Madrid — with no house lined up but open to any and all possibilities. “We will cross that bridge when we arrive,” she says of finding their next home. “It’s insane, but at the same time it’s exciting. We feel that our life is a path, and these changes, I think, are enriching. For us, sure, but also we want to transmit that same feeling for our kids. It all came together, and we said, ‘Do we jump, or do we not?’ We jumped.”
Top, Draped Edison bulbs make a dramatic light fixture in the kitchen. Art, sculpture and artifacts picked up from all of their travels tell the story of the journey they are taking as a family.
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But first they made a pit stop in Barcelona so Pedro could represent the USA in the field hockey over40 division Men’s Masters World Cup. All of these experiences add up to what they hope is a rich life for them and their children. “Now that they are older, I think they feel this path as their own as well,” she says. “They know that there will be the adaptation period, but they see all the good stuff that can bring. They see us as a cell. We see us as a cell. If we move together, we are okay.” NI
C R E AT I V E S A T
H O M E
PHOTOGRAPHY BY GABE FORD
PRODUCER SETTLING IN AFTER YEARS ON TOUR WITH CAGE THE ELEPHANT
Parish in his home recording studio. His last album with Cage the Elephant, Melophobia, was nominated for Best Alternative Music Album in 2015.
bout two-and-a-half years ago, Lincoln Parish, now 28, was ready to make a change. Settling down in a renovated home on a shady lot near Temple Hills might seem a little subdued for a Grammy-nominated musician in his 20s, but it was what Parish needed. More than a decade of musician life, which started before he even had a driver’s license, had taken its toll. When the Bowling Green native was 15 years old, Parish moved to London with the other founding members of Cage the Elephant — most of whom were nearly a decade or more older than he was. Overseas
for two years, he partied with the band as their star rose. By the time they came back to the USA, the steady fan base they built eventually exploded, and touring became the new normal. That life was hard for Parish, who hated the monotony of being on the road. So he left the band and made roots in Nashville. He originally bought a smaller home in Woodbine and housed his studio there, too. He loved the home, but the work/life combination just didn’t work out in that space. He began looking for a new home to live in while keeping his studio in Woodbine, or vice versa. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 53
Personal touches are important to Parish — old family photos line the wall above the couch, and his very first childhood guitar is framed on the wall. A blue safe he picked up at an antique store doubles as a place for his record player. Far right, The Nashville sign in the dining room was picked up at the flea market.
Ultimately it made the most sense to find a bigger place that could handle both. His mom ultimately found the right place. She sent him a link. “I knew instantly when I saw the pictures,” he says. He had his engineer walk the property to make sure it had everything for the studio, and with his okay and Mom’s thumbs-up, he bought it — sight unseen. Parish, who lives with his Husky, Lu, and is working on a novel based on his life, did all the decorating himself. He drew from a collection of items he’s picked up over the years, family photos and new pieces he buys occasionally. And if some rooms are a bit sparse, 54 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
it’s only because he’s so picky. “I went even a couple weeks ago and was looking to try to find some stuff and couldn’t. It’s like a tattoo to me — when I know something that is me, like, I have to get it. Right then.” His taste is eclectic, and art is important. And for Parish, it is almost as much about the hunt as it is the find. He has some painted cabinets from an antique
store in Bowling Green, and an old school safe painted blue from a nearby antique store. He loves the Nashville Flea Market and has lots of art amassed from touring, including one piece he got right off the walls of The House of Blues in Orlando. It wasn’t for sale, but since Cage the Elephant had sold out the venue they made an exception.
mom was a Realtor when I was growing up. She also worked for a builder where she would do all the interior design. I would, especially during the summer, follow her around a lot. And I developed a love for that sort of thing. I like finding things that look like they have a soul to them and aren’t perfect. To me, that stuff has more vibe.”
“I like antiques, and I always have,” he says. “My
Having his studio right downstairs has been great for NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 55
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As Parish f/t he is releasing singles from collaborations with different pop singers, including “What I Need” with American Idol alum Paul McDonald, and his latest, “Release” with Daphne Willis.
his productivity, too — he just has to roll out of bed, grab a cup of coffee and knock out a few hours before taking a break for the gym or breakfast, then getting back to it later on. “For how I like to do things, it seems to work really well. My last house was much smaller, so I think the good thing about having a place this big is it allows me to have some separation, which is the hardest part. Whenever I want to be done for the day, I can just go upstairs and not think about it.” In that downstairs studio, he has been working on music that’s as much a departure from Cage as his leafy suburban lot is from their London pad. Releasing music as Parish f/t, he gets to produce different sounds for different vocalists, stretching himself as a producer along the way. “Since I’ve left the band, I had a lot of opportunities to work with a lot of artists, different genres, and I really like that. It allows every day to be different. It’s almost, in a way, more conducive to how I like to do things anyway, because everything’s so different from one to the next.” And his place is always ready to transition from recording session to hangout session. “I love to entertain and have people over. I’m ready for fall because I’ve got a couple fire pits out back. Some bonfires.” NI
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LIFE AL FRESCO MIDDLE TENNESSEANS MAKE THE MOST OF OUTDOOR SPACE
hen fall means mostly mild weather peppered with the occasional 90-degree day, enjoying time outdoors is a big part of how Middle Tennesseans spend their time.
And you don’t need that much space to make outdoor magic happen. Seth Argo with Focus Builders says it all has to do with your total area — lot size, house size, garage placement and drive and parking space — and an outdoor space that boosts life at home can always be figured out with the help of some professionals. “It’s a fairly involved process that you have to go through, and it’s a team effort,” Argo says. “The landscape architect is involved, the civil engineer is involved, the builder is involved, and they all are looking at it together, trying to figure it out, trying to make it the best it can be. Unless you have a two-acre lot; then you can really do whatever you want.” Popular options are a combination of a screened-in porch with an outdoor kitchen, or perhaps a smaller screened-in porch with a patio, fire pit, or a bar — it’s all about the homeowners’ preferences. Current trends include the outdoor fireplace, especially if there’s a large-screen television hanging over it. Grills are a must, too, and if they’re built with a dedicated gas line? Even better. Argo says many people are adding Green Eggs, keg refrigerators and wine chillers. “I have many clients who will just hang out in the afternoon on a Saturday in the fall and watch football and drink beer and cook,” he says. When determining layout for an outdoor space, Argo says it’s all about knowing how to make life the most convenient: How far do you want carry that full plate of steaks back to your kitchen? Where will the smoker not smoke up the house? “It’s a matter of planning,” he says. “For $10,000 you can have a really nice outdoor cooking area without having to go with a large countertop, extended bar, refrigeration and coolers and kegerators. You don’t have to go that far to have something that adds great value to your home and makes life super-convenient.” NI
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BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY RUBY AND PEACH PHOTOGRAPHY AND PAIGE RUMORE PHOTOGRAPHY
Opposite page, a kegerator and minimal bar setup is a simple way to increase entertainment value. Above, a screened-in porch with kitchen takes outdoor cooking to new levels. Left, use your space to full advantage, adding televisions, comfortable seating and simple landscaping.
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Family Gamerooms of Distinction
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MUSIC CITY FIRE
uccess has not been an overnight story for Steve Paladino, though it may look like one. His firepit-music system company Music City Fire is having quite a moment — picked up by Costco, Lowe’s, Home Depot, Hayneedle and Wayfair, the systems are also available at Nashville Billiards. BY HOLLIE DEESE Music City Fire’s 12 South Trunk and Resonate models both come wired for sound and can be programmed to move with the beat.
The reality is Paladino started his business nearly five years ago after watching a YouTube video showing a physics experiment known as a Rubens’ Tube or a Pyro Board. “You take essentially a square burner, or custom-make one, and you fill that box up with propane,” he says. “At the bottom of the box you have the speaker, and as a speaker vibrates, it
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forces the gas out of the top. I’ve always been big on physics, so I was aware of the product, but seeing it taken to such extreme on the video and seeing all the excitement behind it? I said, ‘Okay, we’ve got to manufacture this.’” He started down the path replicating that product, but he soon realized it would never be approved in its original state. After all, it was, essentially, a bomb. “I could have just stopped right there, but instead I said, ‘We can go ahead and manufacture something that’s going to develop and produce the same results, but in a safer manner,’” he says. “In the long run it actually turned out to be a much better product.” After multiple iterations and variations and
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versions of the product, he arrived at the sound-
“I’ve always been big into engineering, robotics
reactive model he has now.
and physics,” Paladino says. “As a kid I wanted
“At the push of a button, it streams music from
to be a robotics engineer, to really take things
your phone or from your laptop or computer,
apart and tinker and do things and learn how to
and the fire can dance with the music,” he says.
solder and build things. I’ve been building my
“Push the button again and you can have the
own computers for
fire and music completely independent of each
years, and it just kind
other — you can have a regular fire and still have
of led into this.”
the audio system going.”
Plans for 2019 are
In his own backyard, Paladino has two synced
ambitious, too, with
together through Bluetooth. When he’s hanging
out with his boys, 6 and 3, he can have the fire
of Alexa integration
off but the music going.
caused Posterior Fossa Syndrome, which affects
indoor units and a
speech and motor skills. Ashton went through eight
months of high-dose chemotherapy while living at
collaboration with Rail
Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, and he just finished
“In this case it allows people to use it for so much more,” Paladino says. “We’re working on furthering the technology even more, using better amps and developing more speakers and
doing software integration that’s really going to
“For me it’s just
take it to the next level.”
creating,” he says. “I
A true entrepreneur, he does everything —
just like doing different
website code, product photography, video
things, and I like
editing and product designs.
hile Paladino’s business has been on the rise, his family has been facing heartache. Father
to Ashton, 6, and Grayson, 3, Paladino and his wife, Laurenne, were told on November 16, 2017, that Ashton had medulloblastoma, pediatric brain cancer. Ashton had four masses, the largest one the size of an egg, and the resection to remove those tumors
another six weeks at a hospital in Knoxville. Still learning how to walk, Ashton took his first steps again in September. “I know plenty of people would have stumbled, but it’s part of who I am. We have had our hard times, but we keep rolling. That is all there is to do.”
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BUILDING, DESIGN + DEVELOPMENT
DESIGNING A FOUR WOMEN KICK OFF A CONVERSATION ABOUT DESIGN, GROWTH AND INCLUSION n BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY CONNIE CHORNUK
hat started as a random thought on a Tuesday has snowballed into something much more — the idea that disparate design communities could come together to change the discourse around what a new and improving Nashville can be and could open the door for new voices to help shape how we grow as a city and community. In one week. Fuller Hanan, a project manager with Pfeffer Torode Architecture, knew Kate O’Neil, an architect and designer with Hastings Architecture, from their work together on various committees, including with the American Institute of Architects. So when Hanan called O’Neil to run the idea of starting a citywide design week, O’Neil didn’t hesitate for a second. Neither did Lindsay DeCarlo, a co-worker of O’Neil’s at Hastings, when she ran it by her at the office. “I was like, ‘100 percent, yes,’” DeCarlo says. 68 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
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JULIA DYER n
So the three of them, along with Julia Dyer, a merchandiser with VF Workwear, are pulling together the first Nashville Design Week for Nov. 8-15. It’s a multidisciplinary series of workshops, panels, discussions and site visits meant to give everyone — designers, architects, artists, makers and the public — a voice in the sometimes-difficult discussion around Nashville’s growth and how current design will affect what we leave behind. “I hear all the time people complaining about traffic, people complaining about tall and skinnies, but they have no concept of who they could even talk to about that,” Dyer says. “And I think that Design Week can provide that opportunity to make not just literal introductions, but to also introduce the concepts of design and the know-how to push back a little bit more.” The response to what they are trying to do has been overwhelmingly positive. Sponsors have signed on, dozens of volunteers have been organized and their call for events netted nearly 90 submissions — triple their best-case-scenario estimate. “We all thought we’d have to convince people that there was a need for it,” DeCarlo says. “But the design community has just welcomed us with open arms.” “Which is so Nashville,” Hanan adds. It’s a weird mix of scary and exciting, having the pressure on them not only to have the event live up to their vision, but also to make the right choices and be 70 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
open to input about how to improve on what could be a defining moment in Nashville design. All in their spare time from full-time work. “Everyone in the public should feel that it is a completely open event,” DeCarlo says. “This is the perfect moment to pause and think, ‘Okay, how can we create artist housing with all of this new construction? How can we make sure that all of the creatives that have been able to afford and live and work and grow small businesses here still have the opportunity to do that 10 years from now?’ And it’s not too late. We are at a moment where we can make change in that arena, and that’s, I think, why we’re all so excited to be doing this now.” To be clear, they don’t see themselves as the voice of design. They’re just holding up the microphone for all the different communities and introducing the public to resources of which they might not have been aware. The ultimate goal is to offer programming throughout the year. “These conversations have been happening, and the hope is that it’ll be taken to a whole different level during design week,” Dyer says, “where people get together that maybe wouldn’t normally be in a room together, in more of a relaxed atmosphere where they feel comfortable having conversations about tough topics. There’s only room for growth. There’s no limit to what we can be, while keeping our identity.”
JULIA DYER Julia Dyer’s family is from Cumberland County, Kentucky, but she grew up outside of Boston. Nashville was never a destination for her until her sister moved her interior design business here. Her parents followed, then Dyer after college. Dyer, 26, works at VF Workwear as a merchandiser. Before that she was with the Nashville Fashion Alliance, which is where she met Hanan through the NFA’s work with the Nashville Civic Design Center. Dyer could see there was an overlap in their audiences, so when Hanan brought up Design Week, Dyer was all in. She functions as the Director of Strategy and Operations for NDW, keeping all of the creative minds on track and out of rabbit holes. “We want to explore everything, but we need to keep on a path and have a way forward. My job is to balance letting us go for those blue-sky things we want while also wrangling us in and being like, ‘Okay, guys. What can we actually accomplish?’” For her, NDW needs to include of all the voices as neighborhoods struggle with identity and preserving culture in a quickly changing Nashville. “Nashville is becoming more diverse. We still have a ways to go, but being able to spotlight how different each neighborhood is, and what things those neighborhoods do well, is really important so people can understand what we can be doing in that neighborhood.”
FAVORITE BUILDING IN NASHVILLE? “It’s in Wedgewood-Houston, whatever the street is that crosses over the railroad tracks. It used to be a shop or something, that’s been redone. But I just love that it was so intentionally redone, and it just sits alone on this corner, nothing else around it, but all four sides of it now are just, like, something you want to look at and just interact with.” WHAT DOES NASHVILLE NEED? “There’s a lot of things that go into how we have become successful as a capital for tourism and a capital for music. Let’s become a capital for something else in the world, as well.”
FULLER HANAN Birmingham native Fuller Hanan, 32, moved to Nashville in 2014, which puts her in Music City longer than her fellow NDW founders. She left her job with Cooper Carry Architecture in Washington, D.C., when her husband took a job here and landed at Smith Gee Studio, drawn by their community-based design that focused on the public realm, like Ascend Amphitheater. It was a natural progression for her, then, to move to the Nashville Civic Design Center, where she spent two years as the community development manager. When Pfeffer Torode came to her with the kind of job that seemed made for her, she joined the architecture firm in April.
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n KATE O’NEIL
As Director of Programming, Hanan has been organizing the calendar of events and being sure to include people from all areas of design. It’s not an easy task to get everyone’s voice heard, especially about large-scale development that affects smallvoice residents. “We need to have influence from everyone that could touch those things, and so how do we bring people into the conversation who aren’t the most obvious and loudest groups?” she asks. “That’s something design can do with intention. It feels like a huge challenge but also a really important charge to undertake. As Design Week evolves, I hope we can keep that at the forefront of the conversation.” FAVORITE BUILDING IN NASHVILLE? “I actually like the Arcade. There is always something new to find.” WHAT DOES NASHVILLE NEED? “I would say preservation of place, whether that’s from residential standpoint or the downtown fabric. Not preservation for the sake of preservation, but attempting to breathe a new life into those spaces. Historic preservation is so needed and so necessary in Nashville, because otherwise we are going to just not have an identity.”
KATE O’NEIL Memphis native Kate O’Neil studied architecture at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and moved to Nashville right after school, taking a job with Hastings Architecture as an architect and interior designer. Her 72 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
first project with the team? The new Sounds Stadium. “It was a really cool, very fast-paced project, but I learned a lot and loved it,” she says. “Still love going over there. It was a very fun thing to be a part of.” She and her husband bought a home in East Nashville two years ago and have seen firsthand some of the growing pains that have come with being an “It City” that appeals to new residents as well as lots and lots of tourists. For NDW, O’Neil is operating as Director of Development, working to make sure sponsors are paired with the right programming and connecting the different disciplines in a way that facilitates the conversation. “I think there’s this bubbling kind of yearning for more focus and more attention to be on the people who live here and who are doing really interesting work,” she says. “If there’s anything that we can do to help shift that attention, even if it’s just for one week, and really lift each other up, we want to do that.” FAVORITE BUILDING IN NASHVILLE? “That’s hard. I’ve always really loved the Bridge Building. It’s something that actually attracted me to Hastings. Just the re-use and the history of it, I think was just fascinating, and the changes that the actual building itself has gone through since it was originally constructed and the way that they were able to respect that history.” WHAT DOES NASHVILLE NEED? “From a planning perspective I would love to see more of a
focus on public transit. I do feel like the growth and the literal knocking together of people in this one place, it’s really hard to just get around. And as we grow, continuing to think through how we move as a city is critical.”
LINDSAY DECARLO Lindsay DeCarlo, 30, was considering moving from New York to take a job with Hastings Architecture when her decision was made at the Tomato Art Fest. “I remember thinking, what is this place? And I think honestly saw an opportunity where I could make an impact in a way I didn’t feel like I could in New York. It was a change that I didn’t know I needed. Slowing down and being kinder on a daily basis — that actually feels really good.” Her dad is a woodworker and home builder, and architecture was a love from a very early age. Despite her family’s shared love of historic homes, her parents encouraged her to go to a liberal arts school and try other things before committing to becoming an architect. “So I studied art history and architectural history and museum studies. I thought I would go into the arts world for a while. I loved it but then realized there was no money in that world. That was a little scary to me, and so eventually I found my way back to architecture and design. I’m now doing marketing and communications for Hastings Architecture.”
It’s a good mix of creative and design that has translated well into her role as Director of Marketing for NDW, responsible for all things messaging and perception. She’s focusing on relationship-building and ensuring the message of inclusion is loud and clear. Plus making sure people outside of Nashville get an idea of what the city truly is. “Nashville is so many different things to different people. I think the outsider’s view of Nashville is so wildly different from Nashvillians’ and the way that people who live here think about the city,” she says. “I thought I knew what Nashville was, and then the second I was here and starting to meet people, it felt so different. Being able to bring everyone together, have design be at the forefront of the world’s perception of Nashville, is really important to me.” FAVORITE BUILDING IN NASHVILLE? “The Bridge Building and the pedestrian bridge. I think the city could do a lot more to hold onto its architectural history, and I very much appreciate those moments when it has been thoughtfully restored and considered and put to new use. I think adaptive reuse is something that we could be doing a lot more of.” WHAT DOES NASHVILLE NEED? “My kneejerk reaction is bike lanes. As we get more and more dense, we need to be thinking about how we move in terms of the pedestrian experience. I think that is often overlooked in our neighborhood.” NI
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where Natchez meets Nashville
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Right: David could not bear to see one of the original finials from the top of the restored Noelle hotel destroyed, so he had it moved to his yard.
hen Marjorie Feltus met David Hawkins on a commercial design project, the pairing was just the beginning of a work relationship that turned into a marriage — a perfect blending of their contemporary and historical styles into something truly special. And that was the goal when they built their West Meade home — to create a combination that reflected both their styles and upbringings — her from Natchez, Mississippi, and him from right here in Nashville. Together, they are bookends of the Natchez Trace. From the jib windows the couple throws open wide, so guests can spill onto their expansive front porch during their famous Steeplechase parties, to the mint straight from Mississippi that David muddles in the drinks, touches of Marjorie’s upbringing in Natchez can be found all over. The doorway was copied from Linden, Marjorie’s childhood home. Many people will find it familiar, since a facsimile of it was used as the front doorway of Scarlett O’Hara’s home, Tara, in “Gone with the Wind.” “There is a company that does moldings, and they have copied a lot of the historical elements from Natchez,” Marjorie says. “They also copied all the moldings of medallions around the lights.” The couple in life and work bought the property in 1994 and spent two years researching low-country
Clockwise from above, The main entry was intentionally left open to the back, with the staircase tucked off to the side of the house. A glass bar is where David muddles mint for Steeplechase cocktails, and the jib windows in the front room open out to the expansive porch and for breeze flow.
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“We do entertain because in Natchez, that’s all you do is entertain” – Marjorie Feltus style in South Carolina and Georgia and all along the Mississippi Coast — taking videos, photographs and measurements, sketching and discussing concepts.
says. “It was a total masonry building that had over 110,000 bricks in it. This is what was inside the walls. We went and walked through, and they saved it for us.”
“The most fun, though, was knowing that we really wanted to bring Natchez up here, because I knew I would never go home,” she says.
Of course, moving all that brick was easy compared to the crane he needed to transport one of the five original stone finials from the top of the Noel Place Hotel. David was principal architect on that restoration project, and while they were able to incorporate four of the finials into Noelle’s roof along Church Street and Printer’s Alley, the fifth was destined to be destroyed.
But not everything is exact — it was important to them to take what they loved and make it work for Middle Tennessee. “One thing about Natchez, Mississippi, is there’s no natural stone — everything’s brick,” David says. “But what they would do to make it look like stone, they would take plaster or stucco and score it to look like stone. That’s what we did here, to pick up that. We tried to marry the styles that you would see in Nashville, just stone and brick, and what you have in Natchez, which is woodwork and plaster and brick.” Nashville is just as lovingly represented in the home, starting with the exterior brick that was salvaged from The Jacksonian on West End when it was torn down in 1998. “Everybody remembers that it had a yellow brick on the front, but that’s just the face brick on the front,” David
In the library a restored player piano is ready for action, and the framework for arched windows is already in place underneath the bookcases, a compromise for David who is ready to make the change whenever Marjorie changes her mind.
And David just couldn’t have that. “It was made specifically for the hotel and had been sitting on the hotel since 1928,” he says. “Nobody wanted it.” So he had a crane lift operator pick up the 1,100-pound, solid Indiana limestone architectural element and set it down for transport. Now it’s in their yard. Inside, the grand entrance is expansive with clear sight lines to the back. That was also by design. “We knew we wanted a wide entryway, without any stairs, that leads you right to the back for entertaining,” she says. “We do entertain because in Natchez, that’s NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 81
Art is everywhere, and Marjorie likes looking for local pieces. Across, Color makes the dining room pop with personality.
Right, The front of the home was designed to emulate Marjorie’s childhood home in Natchez, Linden, which was used as the inspiration for the front of Tara in “Gone with the Wind.”
all you do is entertain. It’s only 25,000 people, and we have the New Orleans influence — so what else is there to do? We love it.” Their Steeplechase parties to benefit the Nashville Wine Auction’s charity are legendary, and David ends up muddling so much of that Mississippi mint that his arm is sore the next day. Across the hall is the library, with a Kemble player piano that belonged to David’s mother and a Phil Ponder original of the home’s elevation — an artistic project made meticulous by David’s attention to detail and insistence that it be exact. “I counted all the slats in the shutters,” he says. Inside Marjorie had more to say about the design — to some extent. “I was in charge of the outside, she was in charge of the inside,” David says. “And it wasn’t going to be a 82 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
problem until her inside didn’t fit my outside. The only real issue that we had after we finally started drawing was that I had to cut two feet out of her dining room to get the butler’s pantry in. She didn’t like when I cut that two feet out.” That has caused her to have to keep her dining room table at an angle. The other thing they compromised on was when David wanted windows on both sides of the fireplace, but she wanted bookcases. There are bookcases there now, but David already has it framed underneath for windows. Just in case she changes her mind. NI Left, Out back, they love sitting on the porch that is filled with architectural pieces David finds and can’t let go of, like some stone work from the outside of the Hermitage Hotel, bought from Scott’s Antiques in Atlanta. Below, The bed is from another Antebellum home in Natchez, Stanton Hall, which was the headquarters for the Pilgrimage Garden Club where Marjorie was a member as a child.
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Natural light pours into the hallway upstairs so that it can double as communal meeting space for the office. Windows help make the office more like a home than a place of business.
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BUILDING, DESIGN + DEVELOPMENT
Brick by Brick NEW BUILD REFLECTS NEIGHBORHOOD’S PAST
hen the three partners of Wagon Wheel Title and Escrow decided to build a new office next door to their East Nashville bungalow, they wanted it to look like it belonged there — a commercial project that fit right in with its residential neighbors. And Angie Lawless, Brandon Wilson and Steven Morris knew just who to turn to — architect David Baird with Building Ideas, with interior design done by his wife, Marcelle Guilbeau. Baird had worked on the business’s bungalow a decade ago and has since worked on the trio’s private homes. “They wanted the new building to have some patina to it,” Baird says. “When we were looking at types of architecture, exterior finishes, windowsills and scale and all that, we really only looked at East Nashville. We could have looked elsewhere. But, we really, really only wanted to concentrate on East Nashville.” The result is an urban infill project near Five Points,
STORY BY HOLLIE DEESE
PHOTOGRAPHY BY GIEVES ANDERSON
new construction that creates a sense of place and community while maintaining the identity of the neighborhood. “We’ve got a very active neighborhood over here,” Lawless says. “We’ve been here for 12 years. We love East Nashville, we’ve invested in it, and we wanted it to be something that people were proud of rather than saying, ‘Oh my gosh, they just put up a huge building.’” Luckily, to achieve the area’s look and to maximize space for offices and common areas, a box happened to be the perfect shape. Baird used a series of tall foursquare homes across the street as design models, and they created a Pinterest board filled with Frank Lloyd Wright projects. Materials were important, and together they must have looked at more than 60 samples of brick to find just the right orange-red blend. Miller jokes it was more like 300. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 91
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Above, Custom glass panels help the light shine through. Downstairs took on more of a residential feel with paneled fireplace and wallpaper from New Hat.
“We spent a lot of time driving the streets of East Nashville trying to find brick and mortar that was used in the early ’20s,” Baird says. “We found a lot of examples of the type of red brick, the texture of it, which is fairly smooth, together with a colored mortar that matches the color of the brick. If you look at a lot of historic houses in Nashville, the mortar matches the color of the brick. It makes the houses and buildings look a little monolithic.” Inside the 6,000-square-foot office, things are more contemporary, but still retain a nod to tradition. After perusing more than 30 wood samples, they settled on a floor by Josh Hitson of Hitson & Co. with a custom width, finish and edge. For contrast, they chose window frames in all the conference rooms and offices in black steel and glass. And while it is all business upstairs with offices and social zones, downstairs is more of a relaxing environment with exciting art and places to relax. The trendy touch of walls that are rounded off where they meet the ceiling softens the space even more. “We do real estate closings, and that can be a really NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 93
While employees are adjusting to having three times as much space as in their previous bungalow, they love the touches a bigger office allows, like a shower on site in case they bike to work and a kitchen for catering events.
stressful thing for a lot of people,” Miller says. “The goal is to create an interior environment that is very calming, that just makes you feel like you’re going into a home and not a strip mall office building.” The lounge behind the lobby has a homey vibe, inspired by luxury hospitality spaces like Rolf and Daughters, and is a comfortable place to chill and hang out for a little bit, with graphic wallpaper from local designers New Hat. “What they wanted in terms of an overall look and feel 94 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
was residential luxury,” Guilbeau says. “This goes back to their days in the smaller bungalow before. They love vintage and historic, but at the same time they were bringing in more and more clients from out of town.” The result is everything they wanted and more and reflects their love for the neighborhood they will continue to grow in. “That’s very much their heart and soul, is that they are really an East Nashville business,” Guilbeau says. NI
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BUILDING, DESIGN + DEVELOPMENT
NURTURING NEW TALENT DESIGN WITHIN REACH’S GULCH STUDIO FILLED WITH THOUGHTFUL DESIGNS
BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARK SEELEN, PETER HAPAK AND JIM
urniture retailer Design Within Reach has one goal — to make modern design accessible to everyone. Not reproductions, but authentic pieces like the storied Eames chair from Herman Miller.
In 1999, when DWR was founded, such things just weren’t accessible to the average consumer. The retailer has changed that by making innovative works from iconic designers available alongside pieces from current design up-andcomers and superstars.
Now the furniture company’s presence is growing in the Southeast, most recently with a 14,000-square-foot studio in Atlanta that opened April 2017, a pop-up in Charlotte, North Carolina, while they build out a space, and now the Nashville studio in the Gulch. “Nashville turned into such a hotbed of activity, more than it ever has been,” says DWR Southeast area manager Scott Miller. “A lot of things have been happening to where we thought it could be really good for us to go in and have a great footprint and bring the product to Nashville.”
In recent years Design Within Reach, which opened a retail studio on the Gulch earlier this year, has been the champion of new designers in recent years as it looks for modern pieces to license along with classics like Herman Miller.
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“We have Saarinen. We have George Nelson. We have Eames. But somebody like Sean Yoo builds a fabulous bed that just works beautifully with everything we have. He’s a cool guy, and his bed — that Matera bed — is exquisite. We have sold the daylights out of that.”
Sean Yoo was born in Korea, raised in LA and trained in Italy. His first piece manufactured by Design Within Reach is his Matera bed. Tasked with creating a modern version of a storage bed, his main goal was to make it feel lighter than the typically-heavy storage bed.
sophisticated when it comes to knowing their Eero Saarinen from their Lawrence Laske, and everyone from music managers to condo-dwelling baby boomers have been in, ready to unclutter their lives and invest in some modern pieces that mix well with their existing keepsakes, including from the new designers DWR champions.
SEAN YOO Designer Sean Yoo came to Nashville for the first time in June when the Gulch store opened, and while here he spent three nights hanging out downtown and 100 | NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM
shopping at the flea market. A huge Elvis fan, it was the only thing he had known about Tennessee before his trip. “I was very pleasantly surprised at the youthful energy,” he says. “Obviously the whole music scene has a lot to do with it. But I just feel like Nashville has this energy about it, and at the same time, too, this kind of traditional value. Almost like a Southern version of a melting pot. DWR has always been lucky with choosing the right location, so I think they probably came at the right moment in the right place … for Nashville.” Yoo has been working with Design Within Reach since 2005, one of the first designers DWR started working with under their own brand. After it was released in 2007, Yoo’s Matera bed quickly became one of the best sellers in the company’s history.
“I had a beachfront condo,” Yoo says. “I was driving an Italian sports car, but I was miserable. I just knew that this was not what I should be doing with my life. So finally, at the age of 27, I decided I can’t do this anymore. I was just about to go crazy.” So he sold everything — the car, the condo — and went to art school in Pasadena. Then he moved to Italy. “I went there without knowing a single word of Italian, and I just started knocking on doors,” Yoo says. “It was really difficult.” That is until he became the first non-Italian ever to win the Young Designer of the Year Award in Milan in 2002. “After that the doors started to open up,” he says. “But I didn’t think I was ready to come back into America yet. Then in 2005, Design Within Reach saw a chair that I designed for a Japanese company. They fell in love, and they just called me out of the blue. I almost crashed my Vespa when I heard the news.” That’s because when Yoo was in art school his dream had been to design for Design Within Reach. “Back in the days, I used to collect the catalogs,” he says. “For me, the DWR catalog was the most important
thing, because of all the measurements and all the little drawings and histories and things like that. And I always said someday, someday I’d like to design for them.” Yoo’s design style is influenced by his global upbringing, born in Seoul, raised in LA, career started in Milan, then five years designing in Mexico City. “I always say it’s Asian spirituality, American freedom, Italian flair, and Mexican loco,” he says. “As an immigrant kid growing up in East LA, I think it was natural for me to adapt and natural for me to pick up different elements and make them into my own. Ultimately, it’s the whole experience of always living in a different place and always being an outsider. I think that carries into my design.”
Industrial design is not Yoo’s first career though. At the age of 22 he was the youngest city planner Los Angeles had ever hired. Then he was inspired by a trip to the Noguchi Museum in Queens. He began to see meaning and purpose in everyday objects and made a total life change.
EGG COLLECTIVE The three women who make up Egg Collective — Stephanie Beamer, Crystal Ellis and Hillary Petrie — met when they were all 18-yearold freshmen at Washington University in St. Louis. They were instant friends studying different disciplines — art, architecture and woodworking.
She says those nine months were like a dream, before they actually had a company, designing in a small rental shop space, working out of an extra room at Ellis’ apartment to get the whole thing started. They knew that presenting at ICFF was a sink or swim experience. “Our work would resonate with somebody or it wouldn’t, and we could move on from there knowing that we’d at least scratched the itch,” Ellis says.
But they ended up winning Best New Designer that year. And it is also where they first met Design Within Reach.
“We sort of jumped into designing our first collection together with the goal of really seeing our first line of products in 2012 at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair.” Ellis says. “It took us about nine months to design and then prototype our first pieces, and we released our first body of work.”
Stephanie Beamer, Crystal Ellis and Hillary Petrie met each other as 18-year-old freshmen at Washington University. Designing as Egg Collective, one of their pieces with Design Within Reach is the Harvey mirror, named after Ellis’ grandfather.
Egg Collective, like all of the designers who work with DWR, designs, sells and manufactures their own work. What they do with Design Within Reach is designlicensed, so DWR has purchased the design rights to the pieces and then produces them. “We really love what they do and their commitment to emerging talent,” Ellis says. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 101
“...Nashville has this energy about it, and at the same time, too, this kind of traditional value. Almost like a Southern version of a melting pot.” – Sean Yoo
The Morrison credenza from Egg Collective is a multifunctional modern take on the traditional sideboard, featuring a solid marble top, soft-closing hardware and turned legs that can provide storage in many different places in the house, including the entryway, living room, dining room or bedroom.
Ellis says the Egg Collective takes inspiration from the world around them, creating a style they consider contemporary with a traditional craft.
around a lot longer than we will,” Petrie says. “We live our lives in and around these things, and they really do create memories.”
“We all were makers as well as designers, so the process of construction is extremely important to us. The level of craft is very important to us,” Ellis says. “We think a lot about materials in our combinations. You can really add a richness to a piece of furniture by the materials that you make it out of.”
When they came to Nashville for the Design Within Reach opening, they stayed pretty close to the Gulch the few nights they were in town — long enough to experience one of the area’s biggest phenomena.
Petrie agrees that it is their intention that the pieces they are manufacturing and putting out into the world not only stand the test of time from a design perspective but from a construction perspective. Plus, they evoke their own personal histories, like the Harvey Mirror, a nod to Ellis’ grandfather, aeronautical engineer Thomas Harvey. “We’re hoping and planning that these pieces will be
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“There was this overwhelmingness of the bachelorette party crowds,” Petrie says. “I was just blown away to be honest. But I wish we’d had more time to investigate because it seems like such a great city.” Petrie and Beamer also hit up the flea market on their way out of town, and Petrie had to hold herself back from buying a Native American mortar and pestle. “It was very expensive. I just couldn’t,” she says. “Plus it was going to be thirty pounds in my luggage so I needed to make good decisions.” NI
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ART + ANTIQUES
COMPUTERS AND ADD PERSONAL TOUCH WITH SKETCHES BY HAND
There is something so special and intimate about a drawing, and when it is of a house you are building from the ground up it can become a part of your familyâ€™s documented history.
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Below, Kevin drew his own house as a child as a gift for his mom and looking back enjoys the liberties he took with the architectural elements.
ranklin-based architect Kevin Coffey began drawing houses when he was 7 or 8 years old, and within a few years he had moved on to drawing floor plans, trying to match the elevations on the pamphlets they got when his family moved to St. Louis and was looking for homes. It was a childhood hobby that could not have been more indicative of his eventual architecture career. But he never really drew outside of sketching homes and really only applied the skill in that context,
Geinger Robinson Hill
Kevin Coffey before choosing architecture as a career, during school and then starting his own firm.
“I didn’t really get the drawing style I have now, which probably started in college,” he says of his relaxed style. “I don’t worry too much about the lines being exactly straight or parallel or anything like that.” When Coffey was in college, almost everything had to be done by hand — the only computers were the
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Apple 2s in the lab, and CAD programs were not yet widely used — so sketching and constructing models was the norm. And he never stopped. Coffey still does a preliminary sketch of just about every project on paper. He keeps the originals, but if the client asks he’ll happily give them copies or do a cleaned-up version for their marketing materials. Sometimes the original sketch matches the final, sometimes not — it depends on how much the scope of the project changes and if people choose to execute all of the lofty, idealized aspirations Coffey can dream up in a sketch. Either way, pencil and paper can be an accessible way to approach
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intimidating design elements. “I think the drawn sketch is not intimidating to a client,” Coffey says. “Most clients don’t respond to a computerized drawing, psychologically, the way they do to a sketch. There’s a romantic edge to the sketch that the 3D models don’t have.” And Coffey says he rarely spends more than 20 minutes on a drawing. “They’re about taking an idea and just going with it,” he says. “It’s not like there’s this humongous time investment to get a sketch, but it still communicates a lot of thought. That’s what I’m trying to do with the sketches.”
hen Joel Tomlin III was graduating high school, his father, owner of Landmark Booksellers in Franklin, gave him some sound advice. “My dad told me, ‘Find something you love to do in life because you’re going to have to work a long time. I believe that my dad and I are tight, and so I was on a mission to try and figure out something that I would like.” Tomlin had been an outdoors guy his whole life, camping and scouting, but he was also an artist and musician. He started studying outdoor recreation and park planning in Montana, but it didn’t seem like the right fit. He moved back to Nashville and began working for a company that designed and built
Joel Tomlin III
landscapes. Everything clicked, and Tomlin had found that thing his dad wanted him to. “I get to be an artist, and I get to design outdoor spaces,” he says. “What’s better than that?” The art comes into play when he is drawing plans. His school had just started to use CAD, but the great architects he studied never had a computer to work on. They just had their drawings. “I love the craftsmanship of design and creating ideas, so it’s not uncommon,” he says of drawing out his plans by hand, working on a drafting board with pencil and pen and different types of papers and colors — even watercolors. “Drawing a line takes just as much time whether you do it by hand or whether
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you do it on a computer. I’m also very visual, so I like to see it all at once. I don’t like scrolling in and out of a screen.” And when he’s finished, the homeowners have a beautiful piece of art to remind them of that place, even if they end up moving. “I just love the actual drawing, to try to do my best job and make something completely realized on paper into real life,” he says. “And then someone can understand that it’s beautiful in itself before it becomes real. That’s basically me taking that and then seeing the project through from beginning to end.” Tomlin says there is a good mix of styles in Middle Tennessee, though gardens have historically been pretty traditional. “It’s what they remember when they were young,” he says. “You see a little bit of contemporary, modern stuff here and there. But
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then you also have a ‘Nashville’ style. It is a city and country in one, a mix of the land and the city being close together, so you have a little bit of a country farm style going here.” Tomlin recently moved into a new house with his wife, Heather Byrd, and admits they both have plans for how to transform the landscape. But gardens are built over time, and he isn’t in any hurry to rush through something they plan on living with forever. One thing he isn’t touching though, are the 41 decades-old American Boxwoods that line both sides of the semi-circle driveway. “We inherited something amazing,” he says. “They have been kept in good shape, and they change the whole feel of our house. It’s a technique you used to see a lot on pre-Civil War mansions, and it’s got kind of a historic feel. I’m crazy about them.”
Mitchell Barnett A
rchitect Mitchell Barnett is a native Nashvillian who went to the University of TennesseeKnoxville architecture school, did an internship, and started his own company 35 years ago — as soon as he got his license. And it was then that he started doing hand-drawn sketches for his projects. Today, though, the computer is the standard, and he has noticed that fewer and fewer of the graduates he interviews for his firm have any hand-drawing skills.
“They all rely so heavily on the computer, it’s more or less becoming a lost art,” Barnett says. “I would say that maybe even as early as 10 years, maybe 20 years, from now, we’ll probably see very little or very few artistically done, hand-drawn architectural drawings.” It’s hard not to be sad about the disappearance of a practice that was once standard. “I think it loses a little sensitivity and a little artistry,” with technology, he says. “But that’s what architecture
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is. It’s art. It’s our living, sculptural art in the world. When you lose that one little aspect and it becomes so technical ... I don’t know, it loses a little bit of the character, a little bit of the emotion and sensitivity, that goes along with it. That just is not something you can do on the computer.” And it’s a skill that translates to the job site, too, when he can just take out a pen and paper and sketch out his intention for anyone to see. “It’s an immediate connection,” he says. Barnett took a trip with a group of architects years
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ago to Cuba. They took one entire afternoon and they left all cameras behind with the goal of just sketching all afternoon. “We all sketched everything we saw, everything we felt compelled to draw,” he says. “Then at dinner, we presented our drawings in front of the group. It was so much fun. It was so interesting how two people could see the same exact thing and have a different interpretation of it. It was marvelous. It was eyeopening from that perspective, when you realized how important the visuals and the graphics are.” NI
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