Nashville Interiors 2023 Vol. 38

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Nashville 2023 VOL. 38





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You won’t find them in ordinary kitchens. Or at ordinary stores. Sub-Zero, the preservation specialist. Wolf, the cooking specialist. Cove, the dishwashing specialist. Find them exclusively at your local kitchen specialist.

5410 Harding Pike, Nashville, TN 37205 615-352-5174 Monday—Friday: 9am – 5pm

4015 Armory Oaks Dr, Nashville, TN 37204 615-256-8686 Monday—Friday: 7:30am – 4:30pm

3201 Powell Ave, Nashville, TN 37204 615-385-3054 Monday—Friday: 9am – 5pm Saturdays: 10am – 5pm

531 Lafayette St, Nashville, TN 37203 615-843-3300 Monday—Friday: 8am – 5pm Saturdays: 9am – 5pm

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Nash Pendant Light

PDI SHOWROOM 4277 Sidco Dr., Nashville, TN 37204 • (615) 490-8316

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Atwell Wall Mount Sconce

Walker Wall Mount Lantern

Scan to make an appointment at our Nashville Showroom

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Spas of Music City & the Upper Cumberland

Middle Tennessee’s Wellness Headquarters since September 2003

HotSpring Spa - Limelight Flair

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TylöHelo Custom-Cut Sauna Both Commercial and Residental Applications

Commercial Custom-Cut Sauna / Photo Credit: Brandon Stengel -

Live in the moment. Step into the sauna for reflection, relaxation and well-being!



Residental Custom-Cut Sauna

Is it time to upgrade your masterbath with a TylöHelo Custom-Cut Sauna? Middle Tennessee Showrooms: Crossville


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Murfreesboro 615.684.8868

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Welcome esign doesn’t happen in a vacuum, and a lot goes on between the “before” and “after” pics. Not all of it is pretty, or easy, but the process is a lot smoother with good people working on the client’s behalf. If those good people are collaborating to create the best possible outcome for everyone involved? Even better. And that’s why for this issue’s cover feature, we shine a spotlight on the team at Ferguson Kitchen, Bath & Lighting — they really care about the people they work with and about ensuring that they have the best items for their project. This year, as they celebrate 20 years in Nashville, it is only fitting to celebrate why they have built something so solid: It isn’t about the money, it’s about the people and relationships — and, of course, the design.

EXPERIENCE DUCHATEAU'S HARDWOOD FLOORING AT THE 2023 SOUTHERN LIVING IDEA HOUSE We are honored to partner with Hatcliff Construction, Jeffco Flooring and Supply, and Laura Hodges Studio, who selected our Signature Riverstone Sava hardwood flooring for its warm, rich golden brown tones. To learn more about DUCHATEAU’s product lines, see the Southern Living Idea House or visit



It doesn’t end there. Many of the features in this issue focus on collaborative efforts within the design community, like the renovation project on Page 60 that is the beautiful result of architect and designer working together from day one. Because they bounced ideas off of each other and made sure they were always on the same page, the client reaped all the benefits of their efforts. And a new wine bar in East Nashville was the end result of a number of local makers coming together to create a truly special space with Nashville’s creative fingerprints all over it. So let’s end 2023 by celebrating the people behind the design. Their vision, drive, talent and knowledge make special spaces happen — and publications like this one possible.

— Hollie Deese Publisher


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Your locally-owned & award-winning architectural design studio, offering thoughtful solutions in a relaxed & collaborative setting.

176 Thompson Lane, Suite 202 Nashville, Tennessee 37211 (615) 431-3664 www.4SQUARE.DESIGN

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Nashville Interiors

OWNER/PUBLISHER Hollie Deese SALES DIRECTOR Pam Harper DESIGN Tracey Starck COPY EDITOR Jennifer Goode Stevens,

2023 Vol. 38

CONTRIBUTORS Sam Calderon Anthony Romano Allison Elefante William DeShazer Lindsay DeCarlo Read Ezell Daniel Meigs Victoria Quirk Joe Morris Caroline Allison

ARTS EDITOR Robert Jones Nashville Interiors is the premier building and design guide 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 To receive an advertising rate sheet, email Pam Harper, To request content reprints, suggest story ideas or notify us with website or social media issues, email Hollie Deese,

ON THE COVER For 20 years, the team behind Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery have built the kind of reputation in service that has earned them respect — and an ever-growing business — in helping consumers and designers find the right fixtures and finishes that honor their style and budget. Featured on the cover

Visit our new showroom in Franklin

are the company’s President’s Club winners, some of the top Ferguson salespeople in the country: Katie Kiedrowski, Emily Kramer, Ann Landis, Laura Moss, Tommy Williams, And special thanks to Radnor Lake State Park for the beautiful natural backdrop for our 38th cover.

Allison Elefante

Cody Sellers and Kelsey Jones.

256 Seaboard Lane, Ste. C-103, Franklin, TN 37067 Open Tuesday - Saturday | NASHVILLE INTERIORS 2023 VOL. 38 | 13

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Nashville CONTRIBUTORS Interiors JOE MORRIS | WRITER Joe Morris is a freelance writer based in Nashville. He writes for a variety of local and regional print and online publications in Tennessee and beyond, covering everything from tourism and hospitality to economic development, historical preservation, small business profiles and sometimes even politics. For this issue of Nashville Interiors, Joe wrote about the Herend china pattern, available locally at Corzine & Co., that is being used as the graphic inspiration for the upcoming Antiques & Garden Show.

DANIEL MEIGS | PHOTOGRAPHER Daniel Meigs is a commercial and editorial photographer based in Nashville. After graduating from Hallmark Institute of Photography in 2006, he began assisting under photographers like Frank Ockenfels III, Art Streiber and Andrew Eccles. His clients include ABC, Apple, Walmart, Martin Guitars, HCA Healthcare, Paste Magazine and The Hollywood Reporter. For this issue of Nashville Interiors, he photographed the creative team and inspiring spaces of Bad Idea, a wine bar in East Nashville, in collaboration with Nashville Design Week.

ROBERT JONES | ARTS EDITOR/WRITER Robert Jones is a London-born fine artist who has been based in Nashville since 2010. He is the owner of Overton Arts, a picture framing, installation and arts consultation company in the Germantown neighborhood. An active member of the arts community who is regularly involved in organizing community-focused arts initiatives in the city, Robert serves as an on-site building manager at the 100 Taylor Arts Collective and is on the board of the North Nashville Arts Coalition. He is also the co-owner of Tay.St, an arts-focused sandwich cafe at the 100 Taylor Arts Collective. For this issue of Nashville Interiors, he profiles the local sculpture artist Andrés Bustamante.

ALLISON ELEFANTE | PHOTOGRAPHER Allison Elefante is a Nashville-based interior and architectural photographer who has become a mainstay with local designers, builders and artists. She is classically trained in photography and graduated from the Art Institute of Philadelphia. Allison developed a passion for interiors over the past several years and is genuinely excited when she walks into the rooms of her clients. Her work is widely published on social media and in local magazines, and she has shot multiple covers for Nashville Interiors, including this issue’s cover of the Ferguson team at Radnor Lake State Park. When she isn’t behind the camera, she enjoys time at home with her husband and three young children.


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Nashville CONTRIBUTORS Interiors ANTHONY ROMANO | PHOTOGRAPHER Anthony Romano is a portrait photographer based in Nashville. Specializing in creative portraits, branding and headshots, he has a keen eye for capturing unique and striking images. His background in graphic design, along with his experience as a marketing director, add to the creative arsenal of services he provides to his clients. Anthony brings a creative and artistic approach to his work, resulting in portraits that not only are technically excellent, but also truly capture the essence of his subjects. For this issue of Nashville Interiors, Anthony photographed the duo behind Fort Houston.

TRACEY STARCK | GRAPHIC DESIGNER Tracey is a graphic designer who has designed ads and editorial layouts for several local publications, including Nashville Arts magazine, Your Williamson magazine, the Nashville Scene and Nashville Interiors. She earned her bachelor’s degree in communication arts at the University of Texas at Austin and worked as a graphic designer there for years before moving to Nashville. Tracey has also donated her design skills to animal rescue organizations such as the Austin Humane Society and Austin Greyhound Adoption. She has provided a home to shelter cats, as well as a few retired racing greyhounds. This is her first issue taking on the editorial design of Nashville Interiors.

WILLIAM DESHAZER | EDITORIAL AND COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHER William DeShazer is an editorial and commercial photographer based in Nashville. He spent 12 years working at various newspapers, including Memphis’ Commercial Appeal and the Chicago Tribune. He’s a regular contributor to The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. His work has appeared in magazines from National Geographic, Plate, Golfweek, ESPN The Magazine, O – The Oprah Magazine and Runner’s World. His interior photography has been used by Holiday Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, Whiskey Advocates Magazine and Davis Jewelers. William has been recognized by Photographer of the Year International and the National Press Photographers Association. For this issue of Nashville Interiors, he photographed sculpture artist Andrés Bustamante. William is enjoying time with his wife and new baby.


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MEET THE JL DESIGN TEAM Meet our dynamic group of professional designers, equipped to help you bring your next dream project —big or small —to life. Each member of our team brings a unique skill set that ensures our client’s vision becomes a reality.

DESIGN | BUILD | FURNISH Established in 2005, we are a full-service design firm creating spaces that are a true reflection of each client, guiding each individual to tap into their own personal style.

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Interiors tailored to your life and style. 231020B_C1017956_DeeseMe_TXT.indd 19

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Creating Beauty for your Home

We create designs that embrace your style while elevating it beyond your dreams. Mary Forsythe is an ASID Award-Winning designer, who is creating beautiful interiors for homes in Tennessee; from kitchen and baths, to primary suites and every room in between.

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Book Your Appointment Today! 831 Fesslers Parkway • Nashville, TN

SOLID, SAND & FINISH | PRE-FINISHED & UN-FINISHED ENGINEERED | LUXURY VINYL 615-726-3301 | | Instagram: @jeffcoflooring Builder: Stonegate Homes | Architect: Chapman Residential Studio | Designer: Julie McCoy Interiors

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53 28

50 36


60 FINDS 28 FEATURED All the home and design products we are putting on our Christmas wish list

OF DESIGN 36 DECADES Celebrating 20 years of design with the team behind the local Ferguson Kitchen, Lighting & Bath

FOR A QUEEN 50 FIT A Herend china pattern drives the inspiration behind the next Antiques & Garden Show

BY SPACE 53 SPACE A look inside the forever home of designer McLean Barbieri as she transforms a 1930s structure into so much more, one room at a time

REINVIGORATION 60 RANCH The design team of Monarch Lane teams up with architecture firm Four Square Design Studio to renovate a ranch into a space that was meant to be

BEGINNING 66 AJanNEW and Chip Smith bring their family history with Smith’s Furniture Galleria back home to the Lebanon Square with the design store Square Market


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Luxury Homes Starting in the Upper $1 Millions

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80 36



86 92 REALISM 72 CELEBRATING Noted contemporary realists Juliette Aristides, Alan LeQuire and Richard Greathouse come together with a collection of new work and a discussion at LeQuire Gallery

76 Sculpture artist Andrés Bustamante uses creativity to make ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: ANDRÉS BUSTAMANTE

IDEA, GOOD DESIGN 86 BAD A new wine bar in East Nashville features the work of local makers

HOMAGE 92 EVELYN’S The Hutton Hotel’s new restaurant honors iconic hotelier Evelyn Sharp in style and design

impactful statements on pressing social issues

HOUSTON’S EVOLUTION 80 FORT The evolution of the large-scale fabrication company from Ryan Schemmel and Josh Cooper that started with a big idea, a small grant and the desire to help local makers find success 24 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS 2023 VOL. 38

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Lighting Design / Control

Electrical Contracting / Landscape Lighting



Technology Systems Design / Installation

Smart Security / Entry Systems / Surveillance

Nashville Design Collective 510 Merritt Avenue • Suite 207, Nashville (615) 261-9930 •

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You might saY wood is ingrained in us

At Bark & Burl we build our furniture using a combination of traditional and modern techniques to ensure your furniture will be enjoyed for generations. Whether you select from our store or want to craft a custom piece of furniture, we will work with you every step of the way to make sure you are absolutely satisfied.

1010 4th Ave. S, Nashville, TN

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To schedule an appointment call


7108 Crossroads Blvd, Ste 304 Brentwood, TN 37027

a o .

a y . Cabinet Designer: Kym Alayne Heaton | Photographer: HomePixMedia

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Renowned architect Arkan Zeytinoglu chose Ceramica Fondovalle to dress the floors, walls and furnishing accessories of Scheiblhofer THE RESORT — and we cannot get enough of these images! Ceramica Fondovalle used concrete-effect porcelain stoneware tiles of the Portland collection to furnish various areas of the resort, including a spa, indoor pool, fitness area, bar and restaurant. We love that the resort embodies the values of sustainable architecture, protection of the natural environment and energy conservation. The design even includes a garden, where everything grown is used in the kitchen, and a “wine trail” to connect the hotel and the environment. Ceramica Fondovalle has created an elegant, comfortable and contemporary space for those interested in traveling to Austria.

Surrealist Paul Delvaux was known for the spirit of his paintings, and it is those feelings that inspired Malabar to create the La Joie Mirror. Made to attach to walls vertically, this oval mirror plays with the creation of reflections and light in a handmade, polished brass and aged bronze mirror. If you’re looking for something contemporary and ornamental, look no further than this fashionable must-have. Available at

Museum-quality, archival inkjet Sam Glankoff SGW Collection Edition prints provide an elegant touch to any workspace. Designer Kevin Dumais, favored by up-andcoming sophisticated New Yorkers, recently added two of these prints to his own home and studio. Each work comes with a hand-signed certificate of authenticity. Available at


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Cooler weather means friendly outdoor gatherings, so serve your friends and family on this colorful Bodum Kvartett Outdoor Drinkware from the MoMA Design Store. Each drinkware set comes with cups in four translucent colors: blue, green, pink and yellow. All drinkware is made in Portugal from lightweight plastic and is freezer- and dishwasher-safe. Prices start at $19 for a set of four at

The latest light fixtures from the team at Luminaire Authentik capture the cultural richness, beauty and complexity of Mexican cacti and rock formations, as well as the colors and textures of the land. The Nopal Collection is further renowned for its asymmetrical shape, which gives the light fixtures an avantgarde appearance that is perfect for any home looking for a statement piece. Available at

The nautically inspired Henley collection by Atelier Purcell is getting two additions: the Henley Bar Stool and the Henley Counter Stool. Both stools take inspiration from classic racing boats, and their rounded and upholstered backs create stunning silhouettes and comfortable seats for any home. Either stool can be custom-framed in walnut or oak, and you can find these stools and other items from the Henley collection at


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Utilizing vibrant colors, sensuous curves and organic patterns native to the region, Pratesi has created an eye-catching experience with their latest Marrakesh, Paolina and Tre Righe linen collections. The Marrakesh collection brings to life the legendary splendor of Moorish palaces in a sateen-appliquéd and ogee curve motif inspired by Byzantine and Islamic architecture. These linens are available in scarlet, sterling and white colorways on a pure white Angel Luxe Egyptian cotton base. Paolina is one of Pratesi’s most treasured archival designs, reborn and embroidered on pure Egyptian cotton percale. The palmette and stylized palm fronds are a symbol of eternal life and one of history’s most enduring decorative motifs. Finally, there’s Tre Righe, the world’s most iconic luxury linen collection, which was originally commissioned for Coco Chanel’s 1927 Paris home. Available at

If you love spending time in the kitchen, a premium butcher-block cutting board from Fifth & Cherry is a perfect accessory. Each cutting board is handmade and serialized, with high-quality safe cutting surfaces. Fifth & Cherry’s boards come in three standard sizes, each with a lifetime warranty and free refinishing. Starting at $299 at


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For those who love a simple, clean design in their bathroom, we recommend checking out the new Riobel Nibi Collection by House of Rohl. This collection offers simple faucet heads that will take your bathroom to the next level. The collection is inspired by the conical and tapering form of lighthouses, which is expressed in the straight geometry of the collection. Even the rounded bases of these faucets take after the rounded base of the classic lighthouse silhouette. This collection caters to a modern, industrial aesthetic with all of the elements of a complete bathroom: faucets, bathtub faucets, shower solutions and matching accessories in four colors. Available at

Celebrate the green revolution with these Mycelium lamps. Taking inspiration from this “new biomaterial,” CarbonShack has used the patterns of this fungus to celebrate its beauty and its crucial role in nature. These lamps take a layered wood-veneer interpretation of these usually unseen lattice structures, creating a unique visual of organic beauty and a reminder of our environmental role in nature. Lamps are available as a floor lamp, flush mount and sconce. They use LED illumination and have bases available in a variety of finishes, including veneers, bronze and 3D printed nylon. Available at



@duboisrugdesigns • TO THE TRADE • 954-232-1783


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Antiques & Garden Show of Nashville A celebration of fine antiques, landscaped gardens and horticultural events. J A N . 1 2–1 4 , 2 024 | M U S I C C I T Y C E N T E R , N A S H V I L L E , T E N N . A N T I Q U E S A N D G A R D E N S H O W. C O M

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TAT E We specialize in creating distinguished works of art.

Tate is middle Tennessee’s premier Porcelain fabricator. We have an elite team with the experience required to fabricate and install porcelain projects. Visit our showroom and let our designers help bring the “wow” factor to your space.

TATE SHOWROOM 418 Industrial Drive White House, TN 37188 6 1 5.8 1 3. 5 93 9

*fireplace material shown is Daltile Zebra Calacatta Porcelain

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o matter how big Nashville grows, your name still means something when you’re doing business, dealing with people and providing a service — especially when you are working on something as personal as someone’s home. And that’s probably why Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery is celebrating 20 years in Nashville. Sure, the overall company has nearly 1,500 showrooms nationwide, but they seem like a family-run business in the best ways. Before she started working as a rep with luxury appliance company Fisher and Paykel in 2018, Amanda Waring was a showroom consultant at Ferguson for 10 years. “It is a family environment, and the appreciation they have for taking care of their customers, the services that they’re able to offer to customers, it was just a great company to work for,” Waring says. And now that Ferguson is one of her customers, she loves that she can go into the showroom and reconnect with her Ferguson family. “You don’t meet many businesses that are like that,” Waring says.

One-stop shop Customers and designers have always loved that they can get almost everything at Ferguson, Waring says, including lighting, appliances, plumbing and hardware. “It just gives the NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 37

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customer the capability to go and focus on what they need for their whole house, in one stop.” Designer Rebecca Robinson of Monarch Lane Interiors appreciates that she can get so many things for a project in one showroom — something she took advantage of for the renovation of an Oak Hill ranch that is featured in this issue. “Absolutely everything is from Ferguson, from the plumbing to the sinks to all the appliances,” Robinson says of the Granny White project. “They are amazing, and they show appreciation to designers for trusting them with our projects.” That can mean educational trips, team building events and even the occasional cooking demo in the showroom. And those trips aren’t exactly boring — they have been to Napa, New York and a bunch of places in between. “Carla has done a really great job organizing designers to come in,” says Cara Highfield, who manages the Nashville showroom with Billy Toungette. Carla Medlin, who’s in designer sales for Ferguson, runs a great program that focuses solely on designers and catering to all aspects of what they might need. Left, a showroom display. Above, Fisher & Paykel appliances 38 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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“It is a family environment, and the appreciation they have for taking care of their customers, the services that they’re able to offer to customers, it was just a great company to work for.” Left, a display of faucets from Kohler. Above, a tub from one of Fergusons’s vendors, MTI

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“We have the tools and resources that designers need to stay relevant,” Highfield says. “She organizes events, takes them on trips so that we’re always connected.” And, of course, she makes sure the showroom is up to the highest standards. “A lot of our vendors have chefs on staff, and they can cook on the appliances — one design firm at a time — because there’s no better way to sell something than having used it or learned to use it,” she says. “And if we have a huge home that’s coming in, and they want to use Sub-Zero and Wolf, we’ll bring them in and do a cooking demo. I think having a live showroom, where customers can interact and have a better experience, sets us apart from everybody else.”

Listening and changing From early Zoom adoption to an upcoming shift from paper tags to digital, Ferguson is always trying to offer the latest, greatest and most streamlined service, with the goal of being a little bit more user-friendly for the end user. “They really cater to understanding their customers, and they value the feedback they receive,” Waring says. “They really try to make the shopping experience, whether it’s a remodel or new construction, a pleasure. From the beginning of the sale all the way to well after, they follow up and ensure that their customers are taken care of.” Left, lighting from Visual Comfort, available at Ferguson. Below, Fisher & Paykel appliances.


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Now that she is on the dealer side of things, Waring appreciates that end service even more; it shines the best possible light on her line’s reputation. “The way they handle their customers, it really is their goal to make the customer happy. And typically, they achieve that,” Waring says. “They really care about all of their people.”

Team Ferguson Chances are if you have been to the showroom at any point over the past 20 years, especially if you are a professional designer, you will have met trade representative Carla Medlin. Stansell Dye, the area showroom manager, has been around almost as long, and there is a pattern of longevity among Ferguson employees in Nashville. “It has progressively grown leaps and bounds,” Medlin says of Ferguson’s local presence and of the company as a whole, which now also owns “I mean, we started with just one person in a showroom.” That original showroom was off of Elm Hill Pike — so much smaller than the space they have now off Powell. And that one person was Dye. Now they have 18 salespeople, six outside salespeople and about 30 people who work out of the showroom in support, sales and management, including another longtime worker, Noland Noffsinger, who helped build residential sales for Ferguson. Today he is senior director of residential sales. They have grown in reach over the decades, too, covering Alabama, Tennessee, the panhandle, Florida, Kentucky, a part of Georgia and Arkansas, becoming the No. 1 sales showroom out of nearly 1,500 showrooms, for the entire company for the past nine years.

“Obviously we are blessed and live in this community, a boom town,” Medlin says. “And maybe we’re a little prejudiced, but we have the best salespeople in the market. And I think relationship building is such a key part of it, and so important in Nashville.” Some of those salespeople include the cover models for this issue: Katie Kiedrowski, the No. 1 inside sales consultant in the United States; Emily Kramer, the No. 1 outside salesperson in the United States; Ann Landis, Laura Moss, Tommy Williams, Cody Sellers and Kelsey Jones. Area Sales Manager Ryan Meade helps round out a stellar team. “Most of our salespeople have been with us through college, because after college Ferguson has a great career-building program — College of Ferguson — where they’re trained. Some of our top people, including one of the girls that’s on the cover, came all the way through Ferguson’s program, and you just don’t see that anymore,” Highfield says. Ferguson knows when you invest in people, they feel it. Employees feel cared for, and designers feel appreciated. And that is how you grow and improve a business without losing that family feel. “We add value to their life and invest in them and their career,” Medlin says. “We have great leadership, we have a great sales team, we have great support, and everyone is equally important. You have to have really strong leaders that have foresight. You have to have managers that can implement the dream. You have to have support to do the work. “And Ferguson has it all.” NI


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Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting knows it takes a village, and it isn’t just their salespeople, designers, support staff and customers who have made them such a success for the past 20 years. It is also their vendors who provide them with the best products on the market, the tools they need to sell, and the follow-through after the sale to make sure everything is top-notch every step of the way. To celebrate 20 years in Nashville, Ferguson wants to give special thanks to Fisher & Paykel, Kohler, MTI and Visual Comfort for helping them provide the best service and products to their clients.



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celebrating 36 years in business

2133 Bandywood Drive • 615-352-4041

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A new era of interior design. Create an authentic home that inspires, comforts, and delights.

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Co-Chairs Caroline Cook and Susan Weathersby hold pieces from the inspiration for this year’s Antiques & Garden Show. 50 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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fit for a Queen — and a Game day Buffet BY JOE MORRIS | PHOTOGRAPHY BY WARNER TIDWELL isitors to Nashville’s 34th annual Antiques & Garden Show will be treated to many beautiful items, including pieces from Herend’s Queen Victoria china pattern, an iconic design from the well-known china maker’s catalog. And if the team from Corzine & Co. has anything to say about it, visitors will come away from the show without a “look but don’t touch” feeling when it comes to high-quality place settings. “Fine china shouldn’t mean ‘This must be locked away,’” says Samantha R. Price, vice president, who co-owns Corzine & Co. with sister Ashley R. Tomichek, president. “I’d rather something get broken because I had friends over for a fun evening than it just sitting on a shelf or breaking because the hutch got bumped. China is meant to be used and enjoyed.” The Corzine team worked with Antiques & Garden Show co-chairs Caroline Cook and Susan Weathersby on ways to integrate the legendary Queen Victoria pattern into various aspects of the show, inspired by this year’s theme, “Welcome to Beautiful.” Corzine & Co. has a long history with Herend, and so Price and Tomichek were able to leverage that relationship into presenting the Queen Victoria pieces at the store. The store, which founder Michael D. Corzine opened in 1971, introduced imports from around the world to Nashville — Herend early among them. Elegant and unique items included an extensive collection of china, crystal, silver, distinctive gifts and accessories, alongside antiques for the table. The store quickly became a destination for brides, including the current owners’ parents, Dudley C. Richter and Charlotte C. Atwood, who eventually took over the operation from Corzine. “Herend has been at Corzine’s since the beginning,” Price says. “Michael Corzine was my

godfather, and my parents were his first bridal registry. My mother’s pattern was Queen Victoria, so we go back with Herend for a very long time.” Price and Tomichek took over the business in 2005 and quickly began developing their own approach to how china — and other quality items — should be thought about. They believe that loving china, and collecting it, should also mean using it.

IF YOU GO The Antiques & Garden Show is scheduled for Jan. 12-14 at Nashville’s Music City Center. This year’s keynote speaker is legendary cookbook author and television host Ina Garten. Standard tickets start at $30; discounts are available for students, seniors and active military. Kids 12 and younger get in free.

“We encourage brides and anyone who’s starting to collect a pattern to have some fun with it,” she explains. “Your whole approach doesn’t have to be white linen hem-stitched napkins, or your greatgrandmother’s lace tablecloth. If you have those beautiful things, great, but you can also put fine china out on a woven mat with a cool napkin and a fun napkin ring. Eat pizza off it! The point is, if your friends are over to watch a game, what do you have on your table? If your favorite people are around the table, don’t take it so seriously. Dress this china up or dress it down — make it something you love to use and love to grow with. That’s our emphasis.” That ties nicely into the Queen Victoria pattern, which they both grew up with and which is easily recognizable, even if someone doesn’t know the maker, she adds. “Caroline and Susan really get our approach, and their excitement has been contagious,” Price says. “We’re all on the same page with our love for beautiful things, whatever they might be, and finding ways to bring friends and family together to use and enjoy these beautiful items. The Queen Victoria pattern is great because it’s something that is so recognizable ... Working with Caroline and Susan to highlight this beautiful china has really been fun, and the show is going to be a wonderful time.” NI NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 51

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SPACE by SPACE FOR DESIGNER MCLEAN BARBIERI, A DREAM HOME EMERGES ONE ROOM AT A TIME BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY CAROLINE ALLISON McLean Barbieri, owner of the design firm Annali Interiors, is a Nashville native who left Middle Tennessee for a while — only to return 13 years ago with her husband, a newcomer to the area. At the time they bought a home in 12South and loved it, but three kids later they needed more space, and a major renovation wasn’t something they wanted to take on. And while the house served its purpose in many ways, Barbieri always knew it didn’t have some of the key pieces she needed to make a forever home, like a big dining room or a garage for her husband’s beloved 4Runner. Still, she wasn’t in the biggest hurry to move, and only would if it was exactly right. Which is why she gave her Realtor friend the strictest of specifications — just 10 homes within a two-block radius.

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“And as those things sort of go, once you put it out into the world, especially if you’re not actually in a hurry, it seems to come quicker than you even imagined,” she says. Because it wasn’t long before one of those homes was about to hit the market. And in 2019, they made the move.

Making change, one space at a time The home was built in 1930, and there are many things Barbieri wanted to change, update, renovate and build from the moment they moved in — and four years later she has a number of unfinished spaces in the home. But that only proves that perfection doesn’t have to be achieved all at once, and adjustments can be made all along the way. “It is also just a common problem to know what you want, but you don’t have the money to buy what you want so you would rather wait,” Barbieri says. “One piece we know we need to redo is the kitchen. There’s some functional issues with it, but we came in and just painted the cabinets to give ourselves another five to 10 years to save for the kitchen. Kitchens are expensive.” Because of that small change, Barbieri is able to enjoy the aesthetic of a space she spends so much time in. “You can do small things and live with it and learn the space better and prioritize what you’re going to use the most,” she says. “What’s going to bring you the most joy?”


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Starting with an outdoor oasis Working on the pool house was one way to see a major project through to completion while the older main house goes through a slower metamorphosis — though her husband jokes with her that as soon as she does get it done she will just start all over again. “I enjoy this process, but I’m hoping at one point I really do get it done — because we don’t have any intention of ever leaving. It is just going to be a continued project.” The pool house is a completely different style than the older home. A new build designed by Nick Dryden of Dryden Architecture and Design, Barbieri says they took such a big design departure in part because of her struggle with the mismatched brick of the main house. So when it came to working on creating change in her own home, Dryden was a natural fit because Barbieri had worked on many projects with him and knew his process of guiding people to what they truly needed. “I love working with Nick,” she says. “He is very collaborative in terms of talking through how people want to use the space, and what’s happening within it. And we really went back and forth — it being my personal space obviously means that I have a lot more understanding of exactly what it needs to accomplish.”

“You can do small things and live with it and learn the space better and prioritize what you’re going to use the most. What’s going to bring you the most joy?”


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And even though she is in the field, and knew what she wanted, Dryden’s expertise was key when it came to guiding her in the best outcome. For instance, they put a room on top of their garage. In discussing that project, Dryden stood in their bedroom and saw that they would just be looking at the roof from that vantage point. He then guided them into creating a roof deck that will eventually be a rooftop garden. A stunning standout of the pool house is the marble slab Barbieri bought from Triton Stone, a company that has a policy to not ship sight unseen. So during COVID she took a solo road trip to Little Rock, Arkansas, and created an even more meaningful story than just choosing a standout piece. “I was so excited to drive to Arkansas alone,” she says. “Everybody made fun of me for it, but then I ended up driving to Texas and going to Round Top as part of my solo trip. It was pretty glorious.” So not only was the time alone worth it, the slab was the starting point for everything that came after. “We didn’t have the color palette before that slab,” she says. “Everything started from that piece of stone. And I had seen that done before, clearly, but I think sometimes our world produces some of the best artwork I’ve ever seen. And this was a piece of natural art that just blew me away.”

The pool house bathroom carries that green color through in the console, and with tile on the floor, on the walls and even on the ceiling, it’s stunning to look at as well as completely functional as a bathroom that dripping wet swimmers always use.

Embracing the existing One space in the home is covered in wood paneling, the product of a renovation done in 1991 that expanded the kitchen, incorporated a great room and added closets and a covered porch that leads to the pool. And Barbieri never plans on painting it, especially now that it’s the kind of luxury design detail that people spend a lot of money to add. “It just feels so right in the house,” she says. “It has a certain timelessness and certainly a wow factor.” One of her must-have spaces on the to-do list is a formal dining room. When they moved in, she jokes, the color scheme of the home was “Under the Tuscan Sun” — a lot of gold, brown and deep red, and everything had texture. The dining room was brown, with a sandy texture in the paint. Now, it’s teal. “Even if the dining room isn’t done, I want it to be fun,” she says. “But once it’s done, it won’t change much. One of my


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notions with the dining room is that it’s a space I am looking forward to growing old with the house, with big family meals that will eventually include my kids’ kids. While some of the spaces that we live in more fully will probably change — I’ll get bored in 10, 15 years and change it entirely — something like the dining room, I really just want to do it once and build those memories.” She even admits that for several years for family gatherings she would just put out plastic party tables with cloths over them until her parents donated their old dining room table to Barbieri. It’s the right size for the space, and it isn’t plastic — but it also isn’t her style.

“I was always thinking that I would get rid of it, but now that it’s been in there, I might keep it just because of sentimental reasons,” she says. “I have a lot of nice memories of meals and family events that have occurred at this table, and maybe I’d prefer to keep it and play around with other modern elements.” The great thing is, with no plans of ever moving she can work on projects at any pace she wants — and redo them anytime she wants. “Because this … this house is my forever home,” she says. NI


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THE DESIGN TEAM OF MONARCH LANE TEAMS UP WITH THE ARCHITECTURE FIRM FOUR SQUARE DESIGN STUDIO TO UPDATE A RANCH TO ITS FULL POTENTIAL BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALLISON ELEFANTE Design doesn’t happen in a bubble. Getting to the end stage of a project can be a struggle, so being able to collaborate with trusted partners can make the ideas flow better and the process go smoother. Andrew Heideman has been with Four Square Design Studio since 2016, and together with founder Brad Sayers, he says being able to partner with a designer like Monarch Lane Interiors’ Rebecca Robinson can be a real game changer in getting through a project with minimal hiccups. “If we had our ideal scenario, on every single project, it would be a magic triangle of architect, designer and contractor — all on board from Day One,” he says. “Does that always happen? No. But the next best thing would be to always work with the interior designer as early as possible because they are so specialized in what they do, and they have such a deep pot of information. And vice versa.” For a project in Nashville’s Oak Hill, Robinson knew the planned renovation would benefit from the help of a trusted architect; she reached out to Sayers and Heideman. “She knew they were going to be doing an all new kitchen and breakfast area, bathrooms, and they also wanted to open it up because it was a little dark and dreary when you walked in,” he says of the 1950s Granny White ranch, which had been modified a number of times by various owners. Heideman, Robinson and the owner converged on the house to talk through ideas together before any work was done. And because he was there with them, Heideman was able to suggest things they might not have thought of — while keeping their expectations in check. “There was just this capacity of being able to throw crazy ideas out there to see what would stick,” he says. “And if I can’t do it, I don’t even want to suggest it to a client,” Robinson adds.

From left, Brad Sayers and Andrew Heideman of Four Square Design Studio teamed up with Rebecca Robinson and Alyssa Weardon of Monarch Interior Design to work together on a ranch renovation on Granny White Pike. The two design firms moved into an office together last year. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 61

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Design by committee What they all ended up agreeing on was taking out the ceiling and roof above the living room and adding a giant dormer, both to match other houses in the area and to open the space up. This turned a one-story room that barely got any sun into a two-story space flooded with light. In the newly expansive main space, they were able to accentuate the staircase and add tons of great molding. “There is a whole beam structure in place now. While he was working on that, we were working on the kitchen remodel, again, tearing down walls and opening up the back end of the house,” Robinson says. The homeowner wanted an island in the kitchen that functioned as the main eating space, so at one end Robinson placed all the chairs so it would to act like a table and not be just for people sitting in a row. “I thought it was a pretty kitchen before, but I didn’t realize how much opening things up and having the island function as the table would make it feel more like a space to hang out in — as opposed to having a breakfast nook that just felt disconnected,” she says. A laundry room was moved, and that space was turned into a teen hangout area. Fun elements like dog portrait wallpaper in the powder room spoke to the homeowners’ quirky sensibilities that still had one foot in tradition. Left, the island features a special seating area at the end so family can eat without sitting all in a row.

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“You don’t want to confine yourself to a box and not throw out crazy ideas, because if you do that, you might not actually get the result you want.”


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Quirky wallpaper in the teen space and powder rooms adds a fun element.

Of the owner, Robinson says: “She’s a high-end Realtor, so she sees a lot of homes. She wanted it to be very clean and still traditional because their roots are very in the South. They love the Southern charm. So they were looking for classic hardwood floors, which are not trendy, but she added those unique, fun touches when she could. And she’s got such a fun personality that it just works.”

Client reaps rewards of collaboration Other than the obvious benefit of everyone working together to throw out their best ideas, everyone asking “what if” during a project can push a team further than each member might have gone alone. “You don’t want to confine yourself to a box and not throw out crazy ideas, because if you do that, you might not actually get the result you want,” Heideman says. “But the less-obvious benefit, in this particular case, was that they were already Rebecca’s client and Rebecca had a very healthy relationship with them. So when she brings me in — and I’m new and they don’t know me from a stranger on the street — having her

be the liaison brings instant trust.” For the homeowner, having someone they trust bring in their best resources adds a level of security. They know they don’t have to be so hands-on, or worry so much about the job being done right — especially when it’s something like the roof getting ripped off. “Rebecca is the glue, in a way,” Heideman says. “There are a lot of people, a lot of ideas, and she makes it all stick together. She had all her ducks in a row with the kitchen and cabinets and stone and working with Kingdom Builders. And that’s the definition of collaboration.” After that Oak Hill project, the design firms decided their personalities were such a good fit that they moved into a space together so they can work together even more. “And that fit may actually be the biggest reason that we’ve been successful with Rebecca and her team,” Heideman says. “Our personalities just all fit.” Robinson agrees: “They are awesome, and so honest — salt of the earth, the best people.” NI


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Fresh Start for Square Market A FAMILY BUSINESS EVOLVES AND THRIVES IN DOWNTOWN LEBANON BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY SAM CALDERON hey say timing is everything, and for Jan Smith, taking over ownership of Square Market in downtown Lebanon was nothing but divine. The result is everything she had dreamed of — and more. In 1947, her husband Chip’s grandfather founded Smith’s Furniture Galleria on the Lebanon Square. Chip’s father, Max, eventually took over the business and built a new building. Then when Chip was 16, he and his best friend Mike Langford began making deliveries for the family business. Jan and Chip got married in 1993. Mike bought Smith’s Furniture, and Chip owned two Firestone businesses. Jan worked with Chip for years at Firestone, ordering and billing, cutting close to 400 checks a month — all while raising their five children. But she always found time to work on their family home. “I never worked Saturdays because we had five children, and Chip was never surprised when he would come home and find the whole house rearranged,” she says. “He might even find his dresser in the kitchen.”

Family ties come full circle In 2018, Jan and Chip sold their Firestone businesses, and Square Market was up for sale at about the same time. Jan wanted it — it was her favorite store — but the timing wasn’t right. So Paula McDonnell purchased it from the two sisters who founded it in 2016. 66 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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“We don’t want to get huge. We want to just stay right like this, with whatever our warehouse can handle. It’s me and Chip, and I’ve got three perfect ladies that work with me. It’s a dream fulfilled.”

“Anytime I needed anything, I came here,” Jan says of Square Market. “I even bought a sectional from Paula, but Mike didn’t know that. Before then I got everything from Smith’s Furniture.” She eased her desire to own the store by running a booth at The Painted Tree in Mount Juliet, and Chip noticed how devoted to it she was. So when the opportunity came again to buy Square Market, Chip was behind Jan 100 percent. “He saw the desire never left my heart,” she says. “He said, ‘I can see you really want to turn on the Open sign every day.’”

But Chip had just one problem — telling Mike that his wife was going to be competing with his family’s old business. So in August 2022, just as Jan was getting ready to close on her dream, Chip finally called Mike. Divine timing took over: Mike also had some news that he had been afraid to share — that he wanted to retire and Smith’s Furniture Galleria was going out of business. “In 2018, it wasn’t divine,” Jan says. “2022 was divine.” So Chip and Jan bought what they could from Mike — the box truck, for example. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 67

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That made their plans even more meaningful, and there were no hard feelings all the way around. And though Chip and Jan had not intended to work together so closely at Square Market, it just kind of happened. The original Smiths were back in business. “We’ve worked together our entire marriage,” Jan says. “For 30 years, that’s all we’ve done is work together. So once Chip knew Mike was out, we picked back up our old lines. It’s just been a blessing. Neither of us was ready to retire and do nothing.” Today, Chip works with Jan on the furniture side of things, and he even assists with market shopping and choosing items online — when he’s not selling real estate. He helps with deliveries and moving things from the warehouse, which also is open for sales on weekends. “This is kind of giving him new life,” she says. “It has been fantastic and overwhelming all at the same time.”

A dream fulfilled Today Square Market is filled with furniture and rugs, art and lighting, warmth and laughter — all of the things that are necessary to make a home. “This was my home decor,” Jan says. “My lamps, my art, all my little knick knacks, all my accessories.” And now that the store is actually hers, she loves setting up little

vignettes to show people ideas of how to decorate. “People need that help.” They sell items straight off the floor and replace them instantly from the warehouse, constantly keeping the space changing, just like she did at home on those Saturdays she didn’t work at Firestone. “We are everything home décor — from ceiling to floor,” Jan says. Rugs, draperies, furniture and more, along with interior design services, are offered at Square Market. Their website has distributor links for lines they work with, including Bassett and Kincaid. Customers can shop all of them and then order though the store for the best service and price. “You can shop from your couch at home, see what the options are, and we can price it and get it right to you,” she says. “They don’t have to wait on their furniture unless it’s custom, and now it’s a quick turnaround,” she says. “We sell right off the floor, and if we don’t have it, we can order it.”

Historic details, high design The building itself, which was a cafe in a former life, is filled with the kind of historic details that add character designers love. A spiral staircase winds up to the second floor, while metal stars on the exposed brick walls show where the 68 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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building is bolted to the next one to keep them together. “Back in the day when they were built, it was like a big clamp to keep the buildings from pulling apart,” she says. One thing she did change when she took over — other than cleaning and brightening and opening up some unused areas — was replacing all of the lighting and making sure every lightbulb matched, which is more difficult than people might think. Even the slightest change can alter the look of a room or even the color of a lampshade. Chip built shelving storage for all of the pillows, and they added a custom rug display. Square Market is in just one of many restored historic buildings

on the Lebanon Square, and the area’s expanding vibrancy only helps the Smiths’ business grow — more restaurants mean more shoppers, which means more businesses want to come to serve the community. A slow burn has picked up so much momentum that what was once a destination stop for a few select stores has become a bustling shopping district. And the Smiths continue to be a part of it all. “We don’t want to get huge,” she says. “We want to just stay right like this, with whatever our warehouse can handle. I’m not trying to have that big store like Smith’s was that consumes all my time. It’s me and Chip, and I’ve got three perfect ladies that work with me. It’s a dream fulfilled.” NI


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N ov e mb er 2 - Jan uar y 2 8 4 304 C h arlotte Ave nu e N as h v il l e, T N 372 09 w w w. le q u ire g alle r m

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hree leading artists in the contemporary realism space will share physical space at the LeQuire Gallery beginning Nov. 2. An artists’ reception and discussion will open the show, which will run through Jan. 28.

The exhibit, Contemporary Realists: Juliette Aristides | Alan LeQuire | Richard Greathouse, marks the first time that Aristides, LeQuire and Greathouse have exhibited together. Greathouse will moderate the artists’ discussion, which will be Nov. 2 at 7 p.m., following the free and open to the public reception from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. that same day at the gallery at 4304 Charlotte Pike in Nashville. “It’s going to be wonderful,” says Seattle-based author and artist Aristides, a winner of Fine Art Connoisseur’s 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award and someone deeply committed to the atelier movement. “It’s a mix of sculpture, art and figure drawing, and a mix of subjects between what we are doing. It will give a wonderful comparison of three top painters and sculptors in this tradition and see how all that work can be brought together. That doesn’t happen much.” The three are seen as uncoverers of trends in the art world based on theory, such as continuum of knowledge, atelier and skill as a foundation, which can be seen as time-honored, as well as trending, movements in contemporary art. “Someone who works as a figurative painter is working from something live or referencing something that’s live,” Aristides says. “The realist movement differs from that classical, or traditional, style in that these are people working from contemporary sources vs. a nod to art history.”

Left, Caryatids by Alan LeQuire, bronze; above right, Taos by Juliette Aristides, pastel and charcoal on toned paper; below right, Submerge by Juliette Aristides, charcoal on blue toned paper heightened with white. Male Torso by Richard Greathouse, oil on canvas.


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Aristides says she is excited to be sharing space again with LeQuire, having done a show with him here where they exhibited a combination of drawings and sculpture, as well as with Greathouse, with whom she operates and teaches in an atelier program. They also recently taught together at Italy’s Florence Academy. “It’s rare for a gallery show to have drawings along with sculptures, because they tend to be more subtle, a little less emotional,” she says. “The work we are all showing here is a fun spinoff of all that, with bright colors and the different mediums. We all know and respect each other immensely, and this show brings all our worlds together a bit.” The LeQuire Gallery opening will be joined by an exhibition for Aristides and LeQuire at Customs House Museum and Cultural Center, at 200 S. Second St., in Clarksville the same week. RSVP to the artists’ discussion ($20 entrance fee) at: or 615-298-4611. NI


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Erin Elise Laughlin paints abstracts and tables accented with gold in acrylic and resin mediums. She offers commission work and has a gallery in Germantown. Gallery at 100 Taylor Street, B13 | |

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Artist Spotlight ANDRÉS BUSTAMANTE BY ROBERT JONES PHOTOGRAPHY BY WILLIAM DESHAZER eptember’s Artville festival in the Wedgewood Houston neighborhood was a great showcase for art in Nashville, and one of the major standouts was Andrés Bustamante’s Sol Naciendo (Birth of the Sun). An abstract expression of human experience and the power that grows from it, the sculpture reflects Bustamante’s experiences as an immigrant and refugee from Colombia. “I was raised by my grandparents in Colombia. My parents struggled with their mental health, and my dad struggled with addiction and homelessness,” Bustamante says. “When I was 10, my mother moved us to the U.S. to build a better life. It was tough because we experienced housing instability and other trauma. But despite our many difficulties, I learned the resilience of my creative spirit.” From the very beginning, Bustamante’s work has embraced the subversive aspect of creative expression. “A friend and I stumbled upon a film named Bomb the System,” he says. “It was about graffiti writers in New York City navigating their way through adolescence, finding meaning and purpose in life. It really opened a pathway in our minds. “What was sad and silly was that we started painting in Franklin, Tennessee. Franklin is not really known for graffiti,” Bustamante says. “We were called the Franklin Graffiti Kings.” He got into some minor trouble as a teenager, and he realized that his rebellious nature could be an impediment. He began to focus more directly on developing his art. “I thought, what if we could create rather than destroy? I would take expired paint and throw junk I found in my studio — bits of shoelaces, used candy wrappers — I would use these pieces as the glue within a sculpture or a painting. NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 77

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ARTISTS + MAKERS “I realized that instead of painting graffiti, I could create temporary street art installations that wouldn’t necessarily ruin architecture. If someone disliked it, they could just remove a couple screws or bolts. That’s where my interest in installation and public art unfolded.” Bustamante’s artistic ability led him to study at Watkins College of Art, where his creativity and curiosity were encouraged. “I had two professors in particular who really inspired me — Brady Haston and Joy McKenzie. They are both wonderful humans who really helped to encourage my creative journey and endless curiosity.” But the barriers he faced as a refugee would cut his program short. “As a political refugee, I have been denied FAFSA, financial aid and student loans. Even if I wanted to be neck-deep in student debt, it wasn’t allowed. If I learned anything from this experience, it was that I needed to continue studying on my own terms.” Bustamante has used his experiences as a refugee to guide and strengthen his artistic voice. “I realized that creativity gave me a voice, and I recognized the power in that,” he says. “It gave me the catharsis of screaming and saying: I Am Here! I Am Alive!” In 2018, Tennessee passed HB 2315, which included a number of measures designed to discourage municipalities from declaring themselves “sanctuary cities” for immigrants. Bustamante says his current immigration status is a kind of limbo: “‘Withholding of Removal’ status is not quite being a refugee. It’s more like, ‘You can stay here for now, but you have no path toward citizenship, you’re on the list for deportation. You can work and you still need to pay all of your taxes, but you aren’t eligible for any government services.’” That imposes shadowy limits on his freedom of expression. “I feel helpless,” he says. “Protesting out in the streets is dangerous for me because of my political status.” Instead, he channeled his frustrations into forming Persona Contemporary — a communitydriven initiative with the goal of using art to engage, activate and inspire communities in Nashville, with an emphasis on Latinx and underserved communities. “I’ve been given opportunities to lead workshops that touch on art, creativity and meditation

in schools, as well as workshops to address diversity and equity in corporate settings,” Bustamante says. “I think about 10-year-old Andrés, growing up in consistent survival mode. I think about the youth in Nashville growing up in Antioch who may never step foot in a gallery, and the impact that creativity can have in that situation.” While Persona Contemporary has grown into an important resource for the city since its founding in 2018, Bustamante keeps working to create art that makes impactful statements on social issues.

Artist Andres Bustamante’s piece Sol Naciendo was one of the stars of Nashville’s Artville festival at the end of September 2023. He says he drew inspiration for the work from his life experience as an immigrant and refugee from Colombia.

Fresh off the success of his participation in Artville and in the Museum of Contemporary Art Nashville group exhibition Up in Arms, Bustamante will feature in the Design for Compassion workshop at Shelby Bottoms Nature Center on Oct. 30 for Nashville Design Week, where he will also have work on display. Andrés Bustamante can be reached at and on Instagram at @andresbustm and @personacontemporary. NI


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A salute to 90s Country! BENEFITING


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Schemmel transferred to Belmont and their friendship blossomed. Josh was in a band called Flora Shakespeare, and Schemmel got involved, but Cooper changed focus completely toward the end of college at Middle Tennessee State University and moved to New York to learn woodworking.

They kept in touch long distance, but it wasn’t long before

“That is kind of where the Fort Houston journey starts,” Cooper says.

yan Schemmel first met Josh Cooper back in 2007 when some of his friends in Knoxville took him on a little road trip to Murfreesboro to hang out with their old crew back home. Josh was living in the house they visited, and the two 19-year-olds hit it off immediately, bonding over their mutual desire to be in the music industry.


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In New York, Cooper studied at a large-scale educational makerspace, whose business model was not the typical artist co-op, but membership-based: makers bought memberships, but also taught classes to help pay their dues. He loved the experience, and the concept, and kept talking about it with Schemmel whenever he returned to Middle Tennessee. “We started hatching the plan,” Cooper says. Schemmel, who is not a maker and does not participate in the building of things, was excited by the idea of building a maker-membership business in Nashville. His father worked for the Grand Ole Opry for many years, but then left the stability of that company to start his own business when Schemmel was in high school. “So I had always known I wanted to do something entrepreneurial,” he says. “I didn’t necessarily know what it was.” Music management seemed like a natural fit, but hearing Cooper talk so excitedly about this makerspace, he got a little obsessed with the idea of launching something similar in Nashville. It was a great idea, but with no history in business, working out the financials was what the pair needed the most help with to get started. “We had big ambitions back then,” Schemmel says.

Below, Caleb Cooper works on a fabrication project for Fort Houston in their Trinity Lane location. Across, Whit Gilbert takes a break from welding at the Fort Houston space.

“We wanted to see if we could push this, and if no one bites, we’d just move on,” Schemmel says. “We were meeting with anyone who would listen, arbitrarily calling it the Brick Factory, pitching it as a big facility, throwing a bunch of tools in there, with people purchasing memberships — which incubates the business — basically pitching it as an entrepreneur center for makers.” Their idea caught the interest of Butch Spyridon, the nowretired CEO of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp, among other respected community leaders, who began to help them connect the dots. “They basically sent us out with homework assignments, and we’d come back and update them every couple of months,” Cooper says. In December 2011, one of their supporters, local artist Zach Duensing, made space for them in the basement of Cummins Station the same day Spyridon offered them a $5,000 small business grant. “We literally walked from Butch’s office to Cummins Station to a meeting with Zach, and I think his exact words were, ‘Butch is a tough nut, so if he’s buying in, I’ll get you guys the space,’” Schemmel says.

Activating spaces While they were still building their idea, now in a brick-and-mortar location, they soon realized the way to get more backers was by activating the space they were in, attracting creatives to a part of town that needed it — which Cummins Station was 12 years ago. In February 2012 they had their first art opening to raise awareness of the space, an “after-art crawl” drawing people from the Arcade downtown. And they began to give Cummins Station an identity that was more than just daytime office space. “From there we decided our best strategy was to say yes to most anything like that,” Schemmel says. Next was a mobile art gallery they called the Nomad. They would set it up around town wherever they could, with a note about the space they were trying to start and asking people to sign up if they wanted to learn more. Within a year they collected 5,000 email addresses.

Getting off the ground Cooper moved back to Nashville, and Schemmel began talking about the idea to his network. And at age 22, they had just the right amount of money and bravery to make a go of it full-steam ahead for six months.

They reached out to those people with newsletters, sharing updates on the makerspace and soliciting things they needed. Very quickly the studio space was filled with tools, and they needed to grow to accommodate their initial vision of a woodshop and metal shop. “That’s when we were introduced to the Turner Family Foundation,” Schemmel says. “They loved what we were about, and they liked supporting the arts, but we weren’t a nonprofit back then, and we had no clue how that world worked.”


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“It’s creativity by osmosis, which is just the idea that you’re so much more likely to succeed once you get into a room with other people who are doing what you want to do, right now.”

Because their business model existed in this “in between” of nonprofit and for-profit, the Turners could not give them a grant. Instead they extended a line of credit — enough to expand into the Wedgewood Houston neighborhood and into 500 Houston St.; the building now houses SoHo House, but at the time it had been abandoned for years.

large American elm tree on the lot. Today, that tree is still protected and is behind the pool at SoHo.

The move brought new problems to solve — problems with codes and permits and zoning and Metro Planning. After a year in limbo, they were classified as light manufacturing — a classification that didn’t previously exist — to be able to operate.

Now they were doing what they had initially dreamed, and makers were signing up and using the space. Work was coming in, and they began to incubate within what was now Fort Houston — using the members to work on jobs, referring gigs to each other, and becoming a springboard between maker and development. And their rent was only $2,600 a month.

“It was a new concept for old Nashville, but old Nashville wanted to become new Nashville,” Schemmel says. “We were bridging the gap.” To even get that classification, the category the city gave them was “vocational school” — which meant they were required to have at least 50 parking spots. That was only possible if they paved over the space where the garden and pool at SoHo House are now. They fought to get a variance that would allow them to forgo the parking AND to save a

“Some big conversations have happened under that elm tree,” Cooper says.

Evolving again

As these things often go, their existence, and the creatives they brought to the area, drew the attention of developers, and their beloved Fort was sold to make way for what was next. They moved to a new space at Eighth and Wedgwood avenues, where their rent skyrocketed to $30,000 a month. “That’s when we thought maybe we should figure out how to get this thing community-funded,” Schemmel says. “Because NASHVILLEINTERIORS.COM | 83

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once the neighborhood took off, it very quickly became apparent that we had an issue. And that issue was that we had to pay more for the square footage that an artist occupies than the artist is able to afford.” It was the “new Nashville math,” and the equation no longer made sense. They began to think beyond Nashville, to smaller, blue-collar communities that could benefit from an educational makerspace and retaining a creative economy. City leaders from places like Independence, Missouri, would visit Fort Houston and realize the business model was basically the intersection of economic growth and entrepreneurship — something that could provide a springboard for young creatives to get on their feet locally instead of moving away after college.

Word of mouth began to spread, but those projects still weren’t enough to cover the rent. And Cooper and Schemmel were being pulled in too many directions, managing the makerspace, working on community development and doing fabrication work. Something had to give. “This was a community asset, but we were going into debt supporting other people’s workspace,” Schemmel says. “At the beginning, it felt like a family. But after a few iterations, and it’s not anyone’s fault, but they’re showing up and paying into a business and we needed to provide a service.” In 2018, one of their members, a woodworker who was also a lawyer, helped them do the paperwork to become a nonprofit. That changed things, because they could then ask for grants to sustain their organizational model. But Copper and Schemmel were feeling burned out and were at a crossroads by the time COVID-19 hit. They still believed in the mission, they just weren’t sure they were the guys to keep leading it. So they handed over the business to its board, letting fresh eyes take over, and exited Fort Houston, taking with them the name, the fabrication company and the equipment they brought in before they became a nonprofit. The makerspace and education part became known as The Forge and moved to a space on Willow Street. ‘It’s just bittersweet,” Schemmel says. ‘But we wake up with a lot less stress.”

Fort Houston today

“It’s creativity by osmosis, which is just the idea that you’re so much more likely to succeed once you get into a room with other people who are doing what you want to do, right now,” Cooper says. Schemmel began to travel to these smaller towns, speaking to chambers, while he and Cooper kept maintaining Fort Houston. But the higher rent meant that membership sales didn’t cover the bills, so they began to rely on contract fabrication work to offset the cost of the space. Eventually, they became the go-to guys for conceptual projects no one else knew how to do, like large-scale sets for Bonnaroo or stage shows. “No one was coming to us to build the conference table,” Cooper says. “They wanted large conceptual art installations, large-scale sculptures, LED work — things like that.”

Today, Cooper and Schemmel run Fort Houston exclusively as an experiential design and fabrication company, working with clients like Coca-Cola, musicians like the Grateful Dead, hotels and bars — basically anyone who needs full-scale work to create experiences and items for events. “Our biggest challenge is when you’re building physical things, you need physical space,” Cooper says. They currently are set up in a space on Trinity Lane. Schemmel has spent a lot of time in LA recently touring fabrication shops, finding clients and drumming up work that costs a lot less for companies to have made in Nashville than in California. Cooper holds down the fort in Nashville, working with makers to fulfill the work. “We’re a place where people can come to us without knowing what they know they want yet,” Cooper says. “They know they need something, they have the inspiration and then we’re able to take that and create a concept.” NI


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From Imagination to Installation

We’ve got you covered! 2919 Sidco Dr. | Nashville, TN 37204 | Main 615-777-3344 231020B_C1017956_DeeseMe_TXT.indd 85

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n 2021, as the pandemic forced the hospitality industry to reevaluate its priorities, Alex Burch decided to open a restaurant.

Given the timing and the state of the restaurant industry, it was hard not to think that it was a bad idea. That fact became a tongue-in-cheek rallying cry for Burch, and today it is the name of his new restaurant — opened in a beautifully reborn former church in East Nashville. Bad Idea isn’t just a restaurant. It is a celebration of wine exploration, an expression of Nashville’s design talent and a testament to creative collaboration. After managing the wine lists at Nashville favorites Bastion and Henrietta Red since 2016, Burch set out to create a restaurant unlike anything else in the city. As a sommelier, he knew Nashville lacked a wine-focused restaurant, so he sought to emphasize great wine and wine education while making it fun and approachable. Together with Chef Colby Rasavong, Bad Idea features an evolving menu designed to complement its ever-changing wine list. This community focus started with the way Burch funded the restaurant. Rather than traditional investors, he turned to the community he’d built in Nashville, opening a campaign on

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Standing: Keith Bush of EOA Architects, left, and Alex Burch of Bad Idea Seated, left to right: Jesse Brown, Lauren McCloud, and Abi Spear of Design Object, Lindsey Laseter of Lasso Studio, Dave Meaney and Elizabeth Williams of New Hat Projects

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the equity crowdfunding platform Wefunder to raise capital. Today, more 150 neighbors of the restaurant, former colleagues and Nashville community members and collaborators are investors in Bad Idea. Burch, in turn, invested in collaborations with some of Nashville’s most talented designers to bring his vision to life. While he was at Bastion, its Big Bar hosted events for Nashville Design Week, including the Calendar Launch Party in 2019. Such events exposed Burch to the deep design talent in his home city.

I always thought it was a bad idea to open a wine bar in Nashville. The design collaboration on Bad Idea began with motion branding shop Lasso Studio. Long before the restaurant was funded, Burch reached out to Allen and Lindsey Laseter, the husband-andwife team behind Lasso Studio, to create a brand identity for Bad Idea. “Alex was drawn to the work we did for the Nashville Design Week 2021,” Lindsey Laseter says. “With Nashville Design Week, we were given total creative freedom and leaned into our own approach and style, so it felt great that Alex responded to something that was truly ‘us’ and trusted us with the same freedom.” “Alex falls into the camp of founders who know what speaks to them. He had a clear vision — thoughtfully bringing in the partners needed, and trusting the creatives to do what they do. Alex is steadfast, and that shows in the project.” “We worked to create something quirky, toeing the line of irreverent,” Lindsey adds. “I remember Alex saying, ‘I always thought it was a bad idea to open a wine bar in Nashville.’ That just really stuck with me. The name is irreverent, so the challenge was to create a brand identity that was too.” Lasso’s system for Bad Idea confidently exercises type, illustration and color. Much like the space, the brand is at once playful, elevated and relaxed. “It doesn’t have to be rigid to feel unified and impactful,” Lindsey says. A more artful approach felt right, with bold brand illustrations leading the

“With an atmosphere as eclectic and lively as the wine selection, guests are welcome to come as they are and break bread over their favorite bottle.” 88 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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way to represent how Bad Idea’s approach to wine and food is joyfully unexpected.

This is not the first time wine has been served here “With Nashville’s rapid growth, it’s difficult to find a distinctive space with character, especially in a great location,” Burch says. But he found it in a former church nearly destroyed in the March 2020 tornado. The building at the corner of Russell and South 11th streets was redesigned and revived by EOA Architects with a team led by Principal Tracey Ford and Senior Project Architect Keith Bush. “It was a rare opportunity to get to work with such a unique space, especially one in reconstruction. I feel incredibly fortunate to go beyond restoration and create something new and distinctive with such fantastic local talent,” Burch says. For the interiors, Burch engaged Design Object, a design firm led by Jesse Brown, Lauren McCloud and Abi Spear. Design Object took on Bad Idea’s interior design as one of their first projects as a new studio. “In a place with a storied past,


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this is not the first time wine has been served here,” Brown says, “with an atmosphere as eclectic and lively as the wine selection, guests are welcome to come as they are and break bread over their favorite bottle.” “Bad Idea offers a unique experience, taking risks with bold color and contrasting modern forms against a historic backdrop,” Spear says. “Whimsical details, sophisticated patterns and laid-back furnishings create an unexpected spirit of self-assured playfulness.” Design Object brought in art and design studio New Hat, a former Nashville Design Week brand partner and an expert at pattern play. “It takes a lot of vision to do something different without overcomplicating it. Design Object had the creativity to see that the patterns and compositions we design transcend wallcoverings and invited us to do something entirely new here,” New Hat founder Elizabeth Williams says. New Hat wove inspiration from the building’s window frames, an eye motif, a droplet and elements from Lasso’s brand identity to create an avant-garde composition that is reflective of the building and playful in approach. The design comes to life with a millwork wall and printed pattern acrylic “cloud” that floats above the bar. New Hat and Design Object

worked closely with local furniture and millwork fabricator Mesa to print and fabricate the bar cloud. The space was brought to life by general contractor The MCR Group, who oversaw the construction of the breathtaking space, and Aberdeen Studio, who fabricated the center bar. “There aren’t many people as stalwart as Alex. We are all independent small business owners and identified with Alex and what he is doing with Bad Idea,” Williams says. “The amount of great practitioners working on this project is evident in the results. All of us really believed in Alex and his vision.” NI

IF YOU GO Bad Idea is open at 1021 Russell St. in East Nashville. Follow Bad Idea on Instagram @badideanashville and book a reservation at Nashville Design Week is a weeklong citywide series of events Oct. 30-Nov. 3. The show was founded in 2018 to showcase emerging design talent, make space for creative and critical conversations about design, and open studio doors to broaden and strengthen Nashville’s design community. Follow on Instagram @nashvilledesignweek, and see the 2023 calendar of events at 90 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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Every holiday season, Gaylord Opryland becomes a winter wonderland of fun, including our dazzling attraction ICE! featuring The Polar Express™, endless hours of festive family fun, delightful dining, and more. Tickets and packages are on sale now. Book a room night or package and receive exclusive benefits for overnight guests. NOV. 10 - JAN. 1 THE POLAR EXPRESS and all related characters and elements © & ™ Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

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Evelyn’s Homage HUTTON HOTEL’S NEW RESTAURANT HONORS ICONIC HOTELIER EVELYN SHARP BY HOLLIE DEESE PHOTOGRAPHY BY VICTORIA QUIRK Evelyn’s, the latest hotel dining destination in Nashville, opened inside the boutique Hutton Hotel in September — serving Americana-inspired breakfast, dinner and weekend brunch dishes. But the restaurant’s most shining quality is the tribute it pays to one of the country’s most influential arts philanthropists. In style and design, Evelyn’s honors Evelyn Sharp, the iconic hotelier, investor, interior designer, socialite and art collector — a true female pioneer in the hospitality industry. As an art supporter and Manhattan native, she dedicated her life, money and passions as a philanthropist of music, dance and arts education. 92 | NASHVILLE INTERIORS | 2023 VOL. 38

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Evelyn attended the Columbia University School of Journalism, where she met and married her husband, real estate investor Jesse Sharp. He had built a number of hotels, including the Stanhope Hotel across from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. When Jesse died in 1941, Evelyn took over his holdings, sold a number of them and then added her own, including the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills and the Ritz Tower, The Carlyle and Beaux Arts Apartments in Manhattan. Eventually, she sold most of her properties so she could devote her time and money to charities she was passionate about, as well as to growing her art collection. Inspired by its namesake, the inviting and artfilled Evelyn’s restaurant offers a seasonal menu featuring a modern take on nostalgic American recipes. Infused with the flavors of the South, the menu items are as visually enticing as they are delectable, highlighting the bountiful local ingredients and purveyors of the Nashville region. Menu items include shareable snacks and small plates, including steak tartare with farm egg, caper berries, cornichons, red onion and grilled sourdough; a burrata tartine with heirloom tomatoes and basil vinaigrette; and roasted artichoke hearts with whipped ricotta. Larger plates include Nashville hot fish and chips made with hot beer-battered cod and served with remoulade and malt vinegar, and baby carrot ravioli with ricotta, lemon, coriander and pea shoots. For dessert, there is drop biscuit cobbler or s’mores chocolate cake. The restaurant’s interiors feature fine art reminiscent of Evelyn’s personal collection and

The restaurant’s interiors feature fine art reminiscent of Evelyn’s personal collection and design details that showcase contemporary inspiration applied to the midcentury modern aesthetic, just one more way to honor the woman behind the name.


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design details that showcase contemporary inspiration applied to the mid-century modern aesthetic, just one more way to honor the woman behind the name. Notable artwork on the walls includes pieces from Sarah Awad (Salvia, 2022), Mason Saltarrelli (Louis & Bix & Basses, 2021), Gonzalo Lebrija (Veladura, commission, 2023), Sara Kate Eberhart (I am Wilderness, 2022) and Lizzy Love (Evelyn in Paris, commission, 2023). The restaurant design itself was done by the awardwinning hospitality interior design firm, AvroKO, giving the dining room a welcoming, comfortable and thoughtfully curated feel that exemplifies Evelyn’s passion for hosting and hospitality, with a moody bar that allows for the perfect place to socialize over a drink. Stepping in from the historic West End neighborhood, guests can enjoy the breezy outdoor terrace, along with two intimate private dining rooms available by reservation only. “The grand opening of Evelyn’s is not only a celebration of culinary excellence in our food-forward city, but also an authentic tribute to the best of the American spirit — the positive impact of hospitality, art, food and connection,” says Monte Silva, general manager of Evelyn’s. “We couldn’t be happier to share our thoughtful concept with both natives and visitors of our great Nashville.” To make reservations or to inquire about private dining opportunities, visit NI


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At Eurstone we offer Cabinetry and Countertops with the best customer relations in Middle Tennessee. We pride ourselves in craftsmanship and an all-inclusive experience. Let us have a hand in bringing your visions to life! We offer one on one selection consults, on site measurements, 3D images, free estimates, and full installations. Let’s bring your kitchen and bath dreams to reality, from Inspiration to Installation! Give us a call at 615-462-6998 or visit our beautiful showroom located at | 615-462-6998 807 NW Broad St | Murfreesboro, TN

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