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A Publication of Renaissance Publishing LLC Printed in USA 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Ste. 123, Metairie, LA 70005 (504) 828-1380 New Orleans Homes and Lifestyles, ISSN 1933-771X is distributed four times a year and published by Renaissance Publishing LLC, 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005; (504) 828-1380. For a subscription visit on line at Periodicals Postage Paid at Metairie LA and Additional Entry Offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles, 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005. Copyright © 2020 New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the publisher. The trademark New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Magazine is registered. New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photos and artwork even if accompanied by a self-addressed stamped envelope. The opinions expressed in New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the magazines’ managers or owners.




P. 20

P. 12

Down to the Wire Envy Interiors transforms an Uptown Home in one week with eye-popping results 34

Borne Again Robin and Scott Borne Convert a church into an urban aery for their family of four 42

STA N DAR D S Editor’s Note + Design Diary Sweater Weather 10

Style Pillow Talk: Textile designer Becky Vizard of B.Viz Designs shares her must haves for the well-traveled home and luxe lifestyle 12

Get Organized

P. 26

Neat Nook: Carve a casual niche in your kichen 14

Artist Profile Jeff Pastorek 16

Bon Vivant Party People: Navigating Entertaining Etiquette, Pandemic Protocols and ‘Pods’ 18

P. 58

Gatherings Ready, Set, Roast: Chef John Bel’s Dijon roasted chicken 20

For the Garden Planting Seeds: Mentoring, support and inspiration for first-time gardeners 22

Home Renewal

Expert Advice

Paradise Found: Vibrant bird of paradise is a New Orleans staple 24

Home Checklist: Keep up with these items throughout the year to save on costly repairs 56

Colorways: Bold meets beautiful in stone, tile and flooring 62

Masters of Their Craft

Inspiration Board

Bohemian Dreams: Liz Kamerul’s work spans the realms of styling, design 26

Cozy Corner: We all need a nook in our homes where we can retreat 58


Price Mix

Go Bold: No need to skimp on color or pattern winterizing pillows and throws 28

Impressed: Coffee purists reach for a press to get the best out of the bean 60

Home Grown

Last Indulgence Electric Light: Crystal chandeliers lend illuminated beauty to contemporary spaces 64


The Mid-City home of Robin and Scott Borne combines sophistication with playfulness, creating a heavenly haven for the couple and their two children. (p. 42) PHOTOGRAPH BY SARA ESSEX BRADLEY





inspiration words or theme, as we navigate the pandemic. Soft throw blankets and hot chocolate have dominated many of my days and evenings lately and I’m not alone in my pursuits. As I skim through my Instagram feed (follow me at @melaniewarnerspencer), I’m bombarded by a steady stream of steaming cups of tea, layered beds, fuzzy slippers, flickering candles and hearty meals. We’ve even had a few days in New Orleans chilly enough to slide into a sweater and build a fire in the fireplace or pit. As the world swirls around us, the one constant we can rely upon is that the season will change and bring with it the foods, rituals and holiday traditions we all look forward to and cherish (though they will look intimate and a lot more safety-forward this year). This issue leans heavily into comfort vibes with breakfast nook ideas in “Get Organized,” cheery pillows and throws in “Trendwatch,” two seriously chic, yet welcoming homes and in “Inspiration Board,” our suggestions for everything you need to create the coziest corner for reading, meditation, journaling or whatever else helps you relax and refuel. Our homes have always been our safe havens, but never more than now. We hope this issue inspires you to nest, rest and reset into winter mode feeling more at ease as we alternate between cold-weather hibernation and seasonal celebration. Cheers!

P.S. The Preservation Resource Center’s 45th Annual Holiday Home Tour is going virtual this year. On Dec. 12-13, attendees can view six, exquisitely designed private homes, all decked out for the holidays via video tours with PRC Executive Director Danielle Del Sol who will offer history and detail about each house and its corresponding neighborhood.




Since 2004, the International Architecture Awards — presented by The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design; The European Center for Architecture, Art Design and Urban Studies; and Metropolitan Arts Press, Ltd. — have honored the best significant new buildings, landscape architecture and planning projects designed or built around the world. This year, locally based Trahan Architects, which also has an office in New York, won three International Architecture Awards for The Betty and Edward Marcus Sculpture Park at Laguna Gloria Arrival Garden and Moody Pavilions in Austin, Texas; the Julia Street Mixed-Use Development in New Orleans; and the Ochsner Center for Innovation in New Orleans. LUXURY DESIGN, OH MY! Spruce — known for its luxury wallpaper, fabric and design offerings — recently became a wholesale showroom for The House of Scalamandré in Louisiana. A 90-year-old heritage brand, Scalamandré offers a vast array of fabric, wallpaper and passementerie with everything from essential plain designs to intricate brocade designs (and everything in between). Members of the trade are encouraged to call in order to establish an account. LGD WELCOMES NEW MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT The Stables is a new commercial real estate development in the Lower Garden District that will be home to design, real estate, technology and engineering companies; an event space; and food and beverage, fitness and retail concepts. Locally based design, build and architectural millworks company Inhab Group is constructing three thoughtfully designed buildings that will complement a previously revived structure on Annunciation Street. Tenants include Inhab Group as the anchor, architecture and interior design practice Farouki Farouki and modern lighting studio Sazerac Stitches. Additionally, there is a planned woodfired pizza concept as well as a beer and wine tap house that will be part of the project. — COMPILED BY MISTY MILIOTO




Get to know the person behind the pillows. Textile designer Becky Vizard of B. Viz Design shares her musthaves for the well-traveled home and the luxe lifestyle. PRODUCED BY MARGARET ZAINEY ROUX



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1. Unusual Containers and Vases Flowers and plants are gifts from nature and they deserve to be showcased in really special vessels. I’m especially keen on bold and whimsical ceramic pieces made by artisans in Italy. Sud,



2. Funky Eyeglasses Sporting funky eyeglasses is the only good thing about having bad vision. There are so many wild options out there today, like Eyebobs and the Bob Sdrunk glasses I picked up in Italy. Art & Eyes,

3. Design Books There is no better way to spend a dreary winter day than to nest in place with an exquisite coffee table book. My all-time favorite is “One Man’s Folly” with drool-worthy images from local photographer Paul Costello and delightful prose from our beloved writer, [the late] Julia Reed. Garden District Book Shop at The Rink,

4. Nespresso Creatista Stainless Steel Coffee Espresso Machine by Breville Besides making the best cup of kitchen coffee in America, it’s as easy to operate as it is good looking! Williams Sonoma,

5. Hand-Stitched Suzanis The amount of time and talent involved in producing a handstitched Suzani is mind-blowing and, sadly, it’s almost become a lost art. These colorful crafts bring depth, warmth, and a sense of tradition into a room when strewn across a bed, hung on the wall, upholstered onto a headboard, or simply draped across a sofa back. B. Viz Design NOLA Atelier,


TIME WILL TELL Wall art can be critical to bringing this space to life as it offers an engaging or relaxing focal point. Your favorite painting, hand-crafted tapestries or an heirloom quilt might be the perfect touch. Or hang a beautiful clock such as this one from Derby Pottery.

TABLE TALK To add elegance and much-needed leg room, a tulip table can be the perfect option.


Neat Nook Carve a casual niche in your kitchen Even for those who find mornings challenging, a well-organized and well-appointed breakfast nook can be the perfect place to launch one’s busy day, the comfy corner to lazily brunch on the weekend or the oasis to wind down after that busy day with a buttery chardonnay. Let’s face it, a formal dining room can feel too fancy and stuffy for everyday use while a breakfast nook is meant to be cozy and inviting. Unlike expansive dining table sets, the breakfast nook is relatively small and casual, made for the kitchen or other informal area where the family might gather for breakfast or a relaxed lunch. Designing for a breakfast nook is much like designing a powder room, as it gives you an opportunity to use a small space to make a big impact and clear design statement. It can be sleek and sophisticated or intimate and charming. A breakfast nook injects a dose of your unique style while maximizing and streamlining your kitchen space. Whether it’s a place to read your morning paper, to help your children with homework or to munch, this small space can be the heart of your home. — BY PAM MARQUIS

Illuminate the space with a light fixture that glows with your aesthetic such as this one from Julie Neill Designs.



No nook is complete without table settings that delight the senses such as these tin plates from Hazelnut New Orleans or stoneware from Potsalot.

FORM + FUNCTION Using a built-in bench or banquette seating makes the most of often-unused spaces and provides plenty of casual seating for meals and more. It can also add useful storage. Be sure to add cushions and pillows that add visual interest and color.



obscured by a mask, artist and attorney Jeff Pastorek’s work offers a welcome window into the range of emotions faces communicate. His colorful grids of mask-like human and animal visages examine human behavior, illustrate the similarities and differences between creatures, eras and historic events and provide a context for today. “I’m excited about working on human expression and animal expression and what can be conveyed through that,” Pastorek says. Having drawn as a child, Pastorek obtained a BFA from Loyola University and worked as an illustrator and print maker, but found it challenging to make ends meet as a full-time artist. He then graduated from Tulane with his JD and began a career in law, continuing to develop his art during his free time. His early artworks com-



bine cartoon depictions and humor (his interest in the latter also led him to dabble in stand-up comedy during college). As his work evolved, he turned to working with gouache on paper, exploring such themes as hurricanes, germs and other “invisible threats,” set against New Orleans backdrops (a skyline or French Quarter building for instance). “Germs” depicts New Orleanians in 19th century garb recoiling from a menacing group of floating heads representing ghosts of the past. Two other pieces, “Hurricane” and “Crime,” show locals fending off an onslaught of disembodied heads as well. “Time Management” references Medieval paintings and the “memento mori” (a Latin phrase referring to an object that serves as a reminder of death) theme of transience as a means of illustrating Pastorek’s own grappling with the demands of work, art and parenthood. An avid reader of deep history, which takes humanity back to its origins, Pastorek brings prior events forward in order to understand the present. “We tend to be caught up in the immediate,” he says. “We need to hold two things in our heads at once, the things that feel immediate and also things that were important ten or a hundred or a thousand years ago.” His most recent works, which grew out of his own contemplative reaction to the slow down and social distancing required by Covid, have veered from the more haunting nature of the invisible threats. Each is a large, whimsical and ultimately optimistic painting of an oversized individual lazing on the grass, pondering the clouds above. “I feel like we’re living in some of the best times in history right now,” says Pastorek. “I agree with that point of view much more than I agree with the point of view that we’re headed to hell in a handbasket.” — BY LEE CUTRONE





PARTY PEOPLE Navigating Entertaining Etiquette, Pandemic Protocols and ‘Pods’


restrictions and friend and family “pods” (groups of people who have agreed to follow the same safety protocols so they can socialize without social distancing), party people are eager for do’s and don’ts. We are all making it up as we go, but using the mandates set forth by the government and medical professionals, as well as traditional points of etiquette, I’ve cobbled together a few things to consider if you are hosting or attend-



ing a gathering. Head Count: As with any party, pandemic or not, determine your guest list. Check current phase mandates for indoor social gatherings, including parties, weddings and funerals at to determine a maximum number. Consider the size of your space and plan for safe social distancing among your guests. This means whether the gathering is inside (which experts caution against) or outside (which is safer), those not in the same

household or pod need enough room to remain 6 to 10 feet apart. Communication is Key: Give guests the information needed to make the best decision for themselves and their family. Include the number of people attending and who will be present. Normally, a host wouldn’t provide the guest list, but in times like these, information is power. Offer your safety protocols, or the things you plan to do to ensure everyone is safe. This can vary person-to-person and household-to-household and can mean everything from requiring masks and social distancing parameters to asking households to provide certain items for themselves. This is important so guests can make informed decisions and so they know what’s expected from them. Finally, give everyone an escape hatch. Make it a point to say if they have second thoughts a day or two before the party, it’s OK to cancel. It’s generally bad form to cancel last minute, but again, we are living in weird times. BYO … everything?: Again, under normal circumstances a host would provide everything for his or her guests, but these are not normal circumstances. It’s fine to ask guests to bring everything, including food, drinks, dishware, utensils and cups. That said, if you are providing everything, be open to guests who would like to bring their own supplies. It’s all about making them feel comfortable. Safety Police: It’s certainly not going to be fun for anyone if you are constantly correcting guests for safety protocol violations, but at the same time, it’s important to set boundaries and follow the rules you set forth for guests. Some most certainly accepted your invitation based on assurances that safety would be paramount, so it’s up to you to keep your word. Find a balance that includes feeling empowered to pull guests aside and gently remind them of the ground rules if they are getting too laid back. Attitude of Gratitude: Take the opportunity, whether you are a host or a guest, to say thank you. Everyone is going through a lot right now and the comfort of being with loved ones is more important than ever, so if you’ve provided that for the people you love or they have for you — express your gratitude. I’ve said it many, many times, but etiquette is about being kind and making others feel comfortable. As we continue to find ways to move about, gather and simply live our lives, I hope we can all tap into our most compassionate and empathetic selves. We are all in this together. (Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story published at – BY MELANIE WARNER SPENCER







Ready, Set, Roast. Get slow-cooked flavor lickety-split with Chef John Bel’s Dijon roasted chicken PRODUCED BY MARGARET ZAINEY ROUX

DIJON ROASTED CHICKEN 1 3-3.5 pound chicken broken down into 8 pieces (or your favorite cuts of chicken) 1 pound Yukon gold potatoes cut into wedges 2 medium red onions, sliced 10-12 whole cloves garlic 1 red bell pepper, julienned 1 bulb fennel, julienned ⅓ cup Dijon mustard zest and juice of 2 lemons ¼ cup olive oil ½ teaspoons Herbs de Provence salt and pepper to taste 1. Preheat oven to 375 F. 2. In a small bowl, combine Dijon, lemon juice, zest, Herbs de Provence and olive oil. 3. In a large bowl, toss vegetables, season with salt and pepper and add olive oil (to taste). 4. Arrange vegetables on a sheet tray in a single layer. 5. Using the same bowl used to toss vegetables, add chicken, season with salt and pepper and coat evenly with the Dijon mixture. 6. Place chicken pieces on top of the vegetables and roast for 40-55 minutes. 7. When chicken is done and vegetables are tender, remove from the oven and let rest 5-10 minutes, then serve.

About the Chef Chef John Bel, previously of the recently-shuttered Meauxbar, supports several kitchens in the in the LeBlanc + Smith restaurant group. . While traveling Europe, he fell in love with different styles of cuisine and learned that exceptional food need not be expensive. Bel thinks of himself as a “throwback chef” creating dishes with his heart and soul, living for the joy and camaraderie of cooking and dining with friends and family.


PLANTING SEEDS For the HortiCulture founder offers mentoring, support and inspiration to first-time gardeners


was a plum tree. At age 6, she planted a plum pit in the corner of her yard. “My mom told me that it was pointless to plant it,” she says. “Years later, on a nostalgic whim, I drove past my childhood home. In the same corner that I planted the seed, I could see a plum tree growing in my old backyard. It made me smile.” Gardening continues to make Sims-Cameron smile. She takes pride in growing nutritious food for her family. It is one of the many reasons she was inspired to help others cultivate their first gardens. “I wanted my community to feel the same autonomy that I have, knowing that they have some of their basic needs covered through their gardens,” she says. In July 2020, Sims-Cameron founded “For the HortiCulture,” a fiscally-sponsored project restoring the culture of backyard growing for Black families in New Orleans. Its goal is to cultivate resilience in the communities most impacted by food insecurity and food-related health disparities. Sims-Cameron began the effort with a small crowdfunding campaign, hoping to raise money for building materials for 25 small, recycled pallet gardens. She asked for $2,500 and ended up raising more than $20,000.



This community support gave Sims-Cameron the opportunity to expand her vision. She now builds different garden types for families based on space, time and financial resources. Considered a national expert, Sims-Cameron recently made an appearance on the Martha Stewart’s new show, “Martha Knows Best,” to discuss her organization and offer gardening tips. “For the HortiCulture” also provides the community educational and mentoring support to ensure that each gardener reaches their full potential. “Gardens should not be bound by privilege,” she says. “It is time we reclaimed that part of our culture. We need to show our elders that working the soil can be better and brighter.” Sims-Cameron tip: “Container gardens can be a viable option for small spaces. It allows most anyone to garden and grow food for their families. I’ve started vegetables in buckets and pots and baskets so that I can show my community that the only limit to growing their own food is their imagination. Recycling plays a big role in my garden. Milk jugs can be mini-greenhouses. I use plastic soda bottles for drip irrigation and I repurposed storage tubs to become self-watering containers for herbs and tomatoes.” – BY PAMELA MARQUIS





Paradise Found Vibrant bird of paradise is a New Orleans staple BY PAMELA MARQUIS

1 WHAT? Known for its stunning tropical flowers, the bird of paradise is a staple in many New Orleans courtyards, backyards and patios. The vibrant flowers nestle among thick green leaves and look as if cranes are delicately perched in the foliage.

2 HOW? The plant grows slowly in clumps as its underground stem divides. The flowers are produced in groups of one to three on long stalks and mature plants can produce up to 36 flower spikes a year.

3 WHEN? When transplanting, dig a hole that is three times the diameter of the root ball taking care not to disturb the roots. They prefer rich, well-draining soil. If the bird of paradise is planted too deeply, this may delay flowering. Water regularly during the first six months.

4 WHY? The bird of paradise represents faithfulness, love and thoughtfulness — making it the perfect romantic gift. Fun fact: The bird of paradise is the official flower for a ninth wedding anniversary.

5 LAGNIAPPE Birds of paradise are best known for bright orange and blue colors, but flowers can also be white and blue and completely white.




BOHEMIAN DREAMS Liz Kamarul’s work spans the realms of styling, design and art, as well as walls, floors and ceilings


designer and artist. She’s also a blogger with a healthy Instagram following of 126,000 followers. Kamarul gets a lot of inspiration from fellow Instagrammers and describes her style as Bohemian. She says, “I’m a follow-no-rules, go-with-your-gut, designer and stylist.” She’s also a thrift shopper and is always looking for a bargain or that one-of-kind-thrift store find that can instantly turn a room around. “I recently bought an old heavy mirror off of Craigslist for $10 and a pink coffee table from Pelican Furniture and Thrift,” she says. “I also like to get sample pots of house paints for $4. It’s a great way to explore color options.” Her playful personality is reflected in all of her work. Recently, Kamarul’s inspiration has come from design books from the ‘60s and ‘70s. “Then I spin them in a new modern way,” she says. Originally from Idaho, Kamarul attended the University of Idaho graduating with a major in clothing design and a minor in interior design. She spent the years after college traveling to different parts of the world which is how she met her Australia-born husband Tim. Kamarul then spent three years in Portland, Oregon where she developed her love for design as a home stager with OnStage, a Pacific Northwest home staging company. Next, she and her husband took on an exciting project and an engaging adventure. “In 2017 Tim and I, with our two dogs Cudi and Bo, spent five months



traveling across the USA in our renovated 1982 Winnebago,” she says on her website. “We renovated the RV to create unique home-on-wheels.” Though the renovation took longer than Kamarul thought it would, she thinks the many months of work paid off. “We did all the work ourselves and YouTube videos were very helpful,” she says. You can read more about the RV at Dwell, see a home tour of the RV at Apartment Therapy and listen to a podcast interview for Flea Style where she talks more about the adventure. Kamarul also paints murals. Last year she painted a commission at Le Voyage, a retail business that curates handmade artisanal goods, which recently went online only. She recently did a residential project for Nomita Joshi-Gupta, architect, interior designer and owner of Spruce wallpaper and fabric. Kamarul murals have enhanced the walls and doors of offices and homes and range from vivid abstracts to scenes filled with green luscious plants. She recently posted a video/tutorial sponsored by Crate & Barrel on how to paint an arch above a door. “I always start my murals with a basic plan on my iPad so I know the direction I want to go,” she says. “But when I look around and I am in the space that plan always evolves.” She takes pride in her design skills and creativity, but just recently began calling herself an artist. “I’ve finally allowing myself to call myself an artist as I am actually getting paid for my artwork.” – BY PAMELA MARQUIS




Go Bold No need to skimp on color or pattern winterizing your home for the season with cozy pillows and throws. Keep things cheery even if the weather is dreary. BY ANDY MYER

Whimsical black and white striped ball pillow, double-sided black and white eye pillows featuring inverted colorways and embroidery stitched Eye of Horus, the ancient Egyptian symbol for royalty, good health and protection, knobby brown Moro Orb Cushion in Jacquard cotton, linen and wool blend, and faux Siberian fox fur throw with velvet lining, available at Eclectic Home,; Painterly Brocade pillow in black with splashes of silver and gold (available in a range of sizes), through West Elm,; handmade grey cotton dandelion Designs by Masue pillow, printed with eco-friendly, water-based inks, The GOOD Shop,


November Collection patterned pillows in soft velvet, by local designer Courtney Marse in Idonia, Osta, Cotard and Laodice prints, Marse, marse. co; solid round Copper and square Eucalyptus crushed velvet pillows, West Elm,; light blue baby alpaca throw with tassels, woven using a highly sustainable process, available through Sotre,



Rectangular block print pillow with tassels (top shelf) and Creative Co-Op throw blanket with pom poms in Marigold, Hazelnut, hazelnutneworleans. com; CSAO “Paris” and “Bonheur” pillows embroidered by hand in Senegal on traditional African wax print cotton supporting area female artisans and craftspeople, burgundy Fibre by Auskin sheepskin rug, Sotre, sotrecollection. com; vibrant Turkish ikat pillows, handmade in lush silk velvet and available in a wide range of colorful, mix-and-match patterns, Elysian by Emily Morrison,











By Lee Cutrone Photography by Sara Essex Bradley

A large abstract by artist Tony Mose hangs behind the sofa. The palette of persimmon in the living room was chosen because it reminded the designers of Kristin and is carried through to the keeping room, foyer and powder room. The painting above the mantel, by Beth Allee, was a surprise for the clients; the fabric of the window treatments was chosen for its retro midcentury modern feel.


hen homeowners Kristin and Chris Smith hired their friends Marsha Baker, Stacey Davis and Stacy Johnson of Envy Interiors in Baton Rouge to give the Uptown house they’d recently purchased a ground-floor refresh, they agreed to move out so the designers could move in. “We did the install in a week,” says Baker, noting that the move-in agreement also included babysitting the couple’s two lovable German Shorthaired Pointers. “It was down to the wire, and yes, there was wine involved.” Of course, three to four months of prep work went into the makeover. Having renovated their previous house, Kristin, a personal trainer and Pilates instructor, and Chris, vice president of PIMCO Investment Management, had a good idea of what they wanted, so Kristin presented a few images to get the ball rolling. She requested a mix of classic and funky, easily changeable pops of color and a bold powder room with a New Orleans flavor. Kristin also wanted to avoid prints that would compete with their art collection. “We both really love original art and wanted our art to be the focal point of our home,” says Kristin. The Envy team texted Kristin with choices of items to further zero in on her aesthetic, but the majority of the design work was done behind the scenes with the owners’ blessings. “They totally trusted us,” says Baker. “They were full in.” When the time came, the designers lined up painters, movers, sanders, electricians, wallpaper hangers, and carpet installers and the Smiths decamped to the Virgin Islands. Working over the din of the sanding being done upstairs and all the way through the afternoon of the Smiths’ return date, the designers placed every element of the redecoration, from window treatments and wall color to rugs and accessories. “Having to do so much in such a short amount of time pushes you,” says Baker, who shopped local sources for finishing touches such as plants. Due to flight delays, the late-night reveal was done via FaceTime. But none of the drama was lost. “I cried,” says Kristin, who loved the result. “Kristin has a great eye, but Marsha and Stacey and Stacy brought what

Top: Murphy James and James Jr. in the living room. Bottom: The colors and abstract strokes of the statement rug are similar to those in the painting behind the sofa. Stacey Davis hand-installed all of the chandelier’s etched glass pendants. Furniture, rug, chandelier, all through Envy Interiors. Facing page: The keeping room’s terrazzo floors are original to the space, which were added in the 1950s. The antique doors were added by a previous owner. Midcentury style table and chairs, and chandelier, through Envy Interiors.

Facing page: In the dining room, the designers highlighted a single wall with a metallic gold-accented wallpaper and added drapery of metallic linen and an organic crystal wand branch chandelier. Table, chairs and other furnishings through Envy Interiors. Left: A willowy figure titled “Fury” by Mississippi artist Rod Moorhead, a gift from Chris to Kristin, occupies a corner of the bar. Stacy Johnson hand-applied the gold leaf behind the shelves. Right: A persimmon and metallic gold damask-patterned wallpaper adds old world glamour to the powder room.

she envisioned to life,” says Chris. The Smiths say they kept every single accessory used to stage the house for the reveal. Originally built in the 1920s, the house had classic bones and a traditional layout. There is a formal dining room and a living room unlike many of today’s new builds where living spaces are combined. In the 1950s, an addition in the rear of the house incorporated classic midcentury modern details such as exposed beams, clerestory windows and terrazzo floor. Wide casement openings, an updated kitchen and baths, and an elegant lap pool were also part of the house’s appeal, leaving the Smiths to concentrate on décor only. The color palette was inspired by the clients’ art, which is prominently displayed and includes works by David Harouni, Tony Mose, Louis DeAngelo and Moffitt Aycock. The dining room is the exception. Rather than painting over its deep chocolate walls, the designers highlighted a single wall with metallic-accented paper and added custom drapery of metallic linen.

“In the dining room, our goal was to complement the gorgeous wallpaper with equally regal drapes,” says Johnson, who specializes in window treatments. We chose a gold metallic linen for the classic pinch pleat panels and to give them the perfect Midas touch we added an exquisite metallic beaded trim.” As they did throughout the house, they also added a dramatic light fixture — in this case an organic crystal wand branch chandelier. Other standout features include a persimmon wall in the keeping room, a persimmon and metallic gold damask-patterned wallpaper in the powder room, and a bar room that the designers created out of an awkward transition area between the keeping room and living room. The Smiths love to entertain and use it frequently. “We often do jobs piece by piece, but this was so much fun because it was all done at once,” says Davis. “It’s the house I’m probably most proud of because I think we went out on a limb and we made them so happy.”

Top: Matching sofas were placed back-to-back in the keeping room to create separate seating areas. Furnishings and accessories through Envy Interiors, painting by David Harouni. Bottom, left: A modern brass chandelier and a cowhide rug, both from Envy Interiors, complement a pair of abstract paintings that already belonged to the homeowners in the foyer. Bottom, right: Graphic black-and-white patterned carpeting up the stairs echoes the diamond pattern of the wrought iron rail. Figural painting by Tony Mose. The black-and-white console under the stairs plays off the runner and is mixed with antique brass stools upholstered with persimmon velvet.

Kristin and Chris Smith on their back deck.

The amber color of the sofa in the living room was drawn from the stained-glass windows. The end table is one of a pair that belonged to Robin’s grandmother and the lamp on the table is vintage. Midcentury modern style chairs were purchased in the Bywater. Pillows and coffee table through Logan Killen Interiors.



hurch jokes and references pepper the conversation when Robin and Scott Borne talk about their MidCity house, which was once a Lutheran church. For instance, the couple affectionately call their residence the “Borne Again Church.” They moved the church’s altar to the existing back house (once the church rectory) where they use it as a bar when entertaining. There’s the strikingly appropriate coincidence that some of the furnishings came through their interior design team’s local store, which happens to be called the Sunday Shop. There’s also the fact the church-turned-residence still receives mail that includes catalogs of clergy garments and supplies for Bible school. But far from denigrating the church’s history or the couple’s beautiful light-filled aery, the Bornes’ good-natured stories are shared in an effort to sing the building’s praises and explain how they took it from a dark, vacant space to an inspired, conversation-piece of a house. The couple, who lived just four blocks away and love their Mid-City neighborhood, had walked past the church countless times before ever viewing its interior. When they found it listed as a commercial property, they purchased it as is: carpeted in red; filled with pews, an altar and gorgeous stained glass; home to an outdoor full-immersion baptismal font, a separate rectory — now called the “Wrectory” and used as rental upstairs and party space downstairs — and a deacon’s cottage also used as a rental. A two-year project from design to completion followed. The Bornes hired architect Ken Gallen of Metro Studios, Brandon Construction and interior designers Katie Logan LeBlanc and Jensen Killen of Logan Killen Interiors. “There wasn’t much to demo because it was a wide-open space,” says Robin. The church was originally built in the 1920s. “Our vision was to create modern living in an old space and to keep the feel of the church and still make it a house. It’s a lofty space. We wanted it to feel grounded and not so high in the rafters; lighter, airier, more approachable and less severe.” Gallen and Logan Killen shared the vision of respecting the origins of the structure, but also making it edgy and contemporary enough for a young, urban couple whose lives are steeped in music and a love of entertaining. Scott co-owns a record label called Sinking City Records and Robin, whose background is in restaurants, recently started a clean desserts business called ReBorne Bakery. The duo never misses a New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, which is within walking distance, and often hosts visiting musicians.

Top: Millie reads at the top of the stairs that lead to the children’s play area and bedrooms. Bottom: Tropical wallpaper and a pendant light fixture in the powder room. Facing page: A loft space above the master bedroom houses Scott’s record collection. The gallery wall includes pieces by Hunt Slonem, Walter Sibly and Zack Smith.

Top, left: The entry hall contains a pew from the former church. Top, right: Leafy, vintage-inspired wallpaper in Millie’s room. Custom headboard by Aaron Maras of Maras & Son Cabinetry. Bottom, left: The custom window seat in the record room was built by Brandon Construction, pillows by Logan Killen Interiors. Bottom, right: Curtains from Wren’s Tontine drape the windows behind the bed in the master bedroom. Leather chandelier from Eclectic Home, lamps from Fireside Antiques in Baton Rouge, pillows from Logan Killen. Facing page: Scott, Robin, George and Millie, with dogs Goldie and Wally on the screened porch.

A wooden table that belonged to Robin’s mother was repurposed as a dining table and paired with repainted bentwood chairs from Robin’s mother’s high school cafeteria. Built-in cabinets divide the living and dining areas and provide storage. The kitchen is where the altar once stood. Painting in living room by Ashley Longshore.

The renovation called for turning the altar area into a sleek kitchen and camelbacking it with a second story loft that houses two bedrooms for the kids, 6-year-old Millie, and 4-yearold George. On the opposite end of the house, a second loft space was designed for Scott’s record collection and for hanging out. The record room accesses the original bell tower, now a screenedin porch where the family likes to take in the natural beauty of a full moon or of weather rolling in. Dark beadboard near the ceiling was sheetrocked to lighten the space and the remaining wood was painted white to highlight the dark support beams of the double height ceiling. With help from Logan Killen, the couple then turned their attention to interior design. The designers brought in appropriately scaled furnishings, took their color cues from the architecture and worked with the couple’s existing pieces. They drew the earthy amber of the sofa for example from the stained glass of the windows. They also had a table that had once been on Robin’s mother’s back porch sanded and lacquered for use as a dining table and paired it with repainted bentwood chairs from Robin’s mother’s high school cafeteria in Lockport. Color and pattern were added with wallpapers (a Logan Killen trademark), tile work and art that the couple had collected, including an emoji-and-lipstick-emblazoned pop art image of Our Lady of Guadalupe by local artist Ashley Longshore. Jennifer Shorto’s Pink City wallpaper, a surreal cityscape featuring multicultural architecture and large oranges wraps the walls of the foyer like a mural and is complemented by a black-and-white marble tile floor. In the children’s rooms, wallpapers take center stage. A blush, peach and chartreuse floral brings a vintage vibe to Millie’s, while a geometric insect-patterned paper was chosen to grow with George. Origami beetles (made out of photographs) from Martine Chaisson Gallery are placed on the wall outside of his door as if they’ve emerged from the wallpaper. The overall effect is church-meets-urban loft: warm wood floors, rustic rafters and stainedglass rubbing elbows with industrial iron stair rails, modern cabinets and lighting, and contemporary art. Of course, there is the Bornes’ prolific church-related humor when describing the unique character of the house. “I call the bathtub in the master bath, my Holy Water,” says Robin of the soaking tub that resides below a beautiful stained-glass window. “It’s my peaceful sanctuary.”




Demoran Custom Homes

Campbell Cabinet Co.

504/810-5346, 985/788-7857,

220 Hord St., Harahan, 504/733-4687; 4040 Highway 59 Mandeville, 985/892-7713,

Doorman Designs

Exterior Designs, Inc.


Beverly Katz, APLD, Landscape Designer 504/866-0276,

Classic Cupboards

Kelly Sutton Design LLC

5809 Ricer Oaks Road South, Harahan, 504/734-9088,

3800 Dryades St., New Orleans, 310/975-4088,




Tyson Construction 504/905-1042,

M L M Incorporated 1400 Distributors Row, Elmwood, 504/322-7050, 985/231-0233,


Legend Interiors Kitchen & Bath • Design & Remodeling 432 N. Anthony St., Suite 301, New Orleans, 504/324.8080,

 10356 River Road, St. Rose, 504/275-6617,

Renaissance Doors LLC

Stafford Tile & Stone

1000 Edwards Ave Suite B, Harahan, 504/344-6994,

5234 Magazine St., New Orleans, 504/895-5000,






Abigail Reller Art

Louisiana Custom Closets

Nordic Kitchen and Baths Inc.


13405 Seymour Meyer Suite 24, Covington, 985/871-0810,

1818 Veterans Blvd., Metairie, 504/888-2300,

Shotgun Design Group

Fiber Seal

Ruffino Custom Closets

4404 Saint Peter St., New Orleans, 504/233-4442


111 Campbell Blvd., Mandeville, 504/252-9884 985/809-7623,





Palatial Stone and Tile, LLC.

Eclectic Home

1526 Religious St., New Orleans, 504/567-9000, 2052 Paxton St., Harvey, 504/340-2229,

8211 Oak St., New Orleans, 504/866-6654,




HOME CHECKLIST Keep up with these items throughout the year to save on costly repairs


many responsibilities. Some parts of upkeep and maintenance are easy to remember. For example, if you forget to mow your lawn, you’ll notice it when the grass becomes overgrown. But there are many things homeowners should remember to do on a regular basis that are all too easy to forget about in the hustle and bustle of our daily lives. For at least a couple of nights every spring, New Orleanians are reminded that there are a lot of termites in the area when the flying insects swarm. The strong termite presence in the Crescent City is why homeowners should pay for an annual pest control and treatment. “Termites can enter a home and sometimes only damage a small area, or if the problem persists and goes unchecked, they can literally eat through some or most of the wood inside the home from walls to ceiling joists to roof rafters. Lots of times you don’t find out [the damage is there] until it’s too late,” said Zachary Tyson, owner of Tyson Construction. Tyson added that these repairs can sometimes cost tens of thousands of dollars. Hiring a professional to

56 WINTER 2020

check your home for termites will only cost a few hundred dollars a year. Machi Medrzycki, founder of MLM Incorporated, said one telltale warning sign of termite damage is mud trails up the support piers or the outer foundation of your house. These trails are often no wider than a pencil or straw. New Orleanians don’t need to be told they live in a volatile weather climate. There is extreme heat and humidity, plus significant amounts of rain annually even if no tropical storms land in the area that year. Homeowners should get their roofs inspected by a licensed roofing contractor every five to 10 years. “Sealing around roof penetrations, checking to make sure your roof and attic ventilation is working properly, along with sealing any exposed nails and securing shingles will help keep your roof in the best condition possible,” Tyson said. If you’re adventurous enough to inspect your own roof, Medrzycki said one warning sign with roofing shingles is if they seem to glitter or sparkle in the sunlight. This means the shingles are losing lamination and will be easier to uplift during a storm.

Medrzycki said houses’ HVAC units should be serviced twice a year, once before the summer season taxes air conditioning units and once before the winter strains heating units. He added that air conditioning filters should be replaced every month. If filters aren’t replaced, dust can jam the air conditioner’s moving parts. Tyson said you should inspect your windows and doors and any other area that might require caulking once a year. Updating weatherstripping around windows can seal out hot or cold air. Caulking windows and doors can prevent leaks, which can potentially save homeowners hundreds of dollars in repairs due to water damage. Another important piece of regular maintenance is cleaning your gutters. If leaves, pine needles and other debris are allowed to clog gutters, the water can back up and seep into your house. Water damage from maintenance issues is not something a homeowner’s insurance will cover. “It’s something a lot of people keep forgetting about,” Medrzycki said. At the end of the day, Medrzycki said many homeowners forget to make these checkups because they’re not glamorous or exciting. Redoing a kitchen, a bathroom, or a living space can be fun and produce results you will see and appreciate every day in your home. However, many of the most important checkups are about issues that are either invisible or unnoticed. But they can cost homeowners a lot in money and headaches if ignored. “People want to spend money on stuff that’s pleasing to the eye,” Medrzycki said. “Aesthetic stuff should come second, but more often than not it doesn’t.” – BY FRITZ ESKER


Cozy Corner We all need a nook in our homes where we can retreat. It can be small but it must be cozy, with plush furnishings you can sink into while your worries melt away.

Bubblegum Lady in Burgundy from perchneworleans.


“Lotus” wallpaper by Farrow & Ball from

Scissor Wall Lamp from

Dark Rose sheepskin pelt from

Jaclyn settee from

Table by French artist Jean-Pierre Viot with painted ceramic top and wooden legs from

58 WINTER 2020




Impressed Coffee purists reach for a press to get the best of the bean

CHIC, SLEEK AND CLASSIC, FRENCH PRESS COFFEE MAKERS ARE COFFEE CONNOISSEURS’ favorite way to brew their morning, afternoon or post-dinner cup. French press makers do not employ paper filters, thus letting the natural oils and flavors of the coffee bloom in every brew. Plus, no waste means it’s better for the environment.

Win-win! Simply place your favorite local medium-coarse or coarse ground coffee into the carafe, cover with hot, filtered water and let steep for four to six minutes. Slowly depress the carafe’s filter plunger and enjoy right away for optimal flavor. Here are our favorite selections for your next at-home café experience. - BY ASHLEY MCLELLAN



To purchase fresh, local coffee beans and blends, plus find tips on how to best brew at home, visit frenchtruckcoffee. com/#brew-at-home-section.

$40, $50



CLASSIC BLEND Bodum’s Chambord French press is based on the original concept created before WWII by Italian designer Attilio Calimani, and perfected in the 1970s, ‘80s and ‘90s. Decades of innovation have created a classic French press that will stand the test of time. Chambord’s heat-resistant glass carafe is accented with stainless steel or copper and brews a generous eight cup batch. Revelator Coffee, stainless steel, $40, copper, $50,



From French cookware and bakeware legend Le Creuset, this stoneware French press combines classic style with function. The carafe’s non-porous stoneware keeps servings warm and brews 34 ounces (4.25 cups) plus, it comes in 11 collectible Le Creuset colors to match any breakfast-nook décor, including black licorice, orange flame, clean white and Marseille blue.

Espro’s coffee and tea brew innovations, created by an MIT engineer and fuel cell car designer, are top-of-the-line and cutting edge, with a sleek, modern profile. The P7 model features a double micro-filter that eliminates grit, and a stainless steel, double-walled carafe keeps coffee hot and fresh for longer. The P7 is available in stainless steel, black and white finishes, and holds 32 ounces of freshly brewed coffee.

60 WINTER 2020


ad ver tising direc tor y Abigail Reller Art 504/491-5675 Bell Architecture 755 Camp St., New Orleans 504/596-2355 Campbell Cabinet Co. 220 Hord St., Harahan 504/733-4687 4040 Highway 59, Mandeville 985/892-7713 Classic Cupboards 5809 River Oaks Road South, Harahan 504/734-9088 Demoran Custom Homes 504/810-5346 985/788-7857 Derby Pottery & Tile 2029 Magazine St., New Orleans 504-586-9003 Doors of Elegance 3100 Kingman St., Suite 107, Metairie, 1-877-893-0057 in Mandeville 504/887-5440 Eclectic Home 8211 Oak St., New Orleans 504/866-6654 Entablature, LLC 8438 Oak St. Suite C, New Orleans 504/322-3822 Exterior Designs Beverly Katz, Land. Design New Orleans 504/866-0276 Fiber Seal 504/866-2273 Floor & Decor 2801 Magazine St, Ste A, New Orleans 504/891-3005

H. Mathews Interiors 504/339-4003 Home Bank 1600 Veterans Blvd., Metairie 504/834-1190 Kelly Sutton Designs/ Sutton House-To The Trade 3800 Dryades St, New Orleans 504/302-2547 Kim Starr Wise – The Flower Shop 2036 Magazine St., New Orleans 504/390-0563 Legend Interiors 432 N. Anthony St. Suite 301 504/324-8080 Louisiana Custom Closets 13405 Seymour Meyer Suite 24, Covington 985/871-0810 M L M Incorporated 1400 Distributors Row, Elmwood 504/322-7050 South Shore 985/231-0233 North Shore MULLIN 10356 River Rd., St. Rose 504/275-6617 Nordic Kitchens & Baths Inc. 1818 Veterans Blvd., Metairie 504/888-2300 Palatial Stone and Tile, LLC. 1526 Religious St., New Orleans 504/576-9000 2052 Paxton St., Harvey 504/340-2229 Picardie 504/587-9194

Renaissance Doors 1000 Edwards Ave., Harahan 504/344-6994 Ruffino Custom Closets 110 Campbell Ave., Mandeville 504/252-9884 Russells Cleaning Services 3704 Robertson St., Metairie 504/832-1546 3401 Tulane Ave., New Orleans 504-482-3153 Shotgun Design Group 4404 Saint Peter St., New Orleans 504/233-4442 Sleep Number 4852 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Ste A, Metairie 504/443-4777 metairie/4852-veteransmemorial-blvd.html Stafford Tile & Stone 5234 Magazine St., New Orleans 504/895-5000 Tuscan Stone Imports 720 S. Galvez St., New Orleans 504/837-1511 7150 Pecue Lane, Baton Rouge 225/753-5870 Wendy Wiltz Realtor® Licensed in Louisiana 504/327-6235 Wren’s Tontine Shade & Design 1533 Prytania St., New Orleans 504/525-7409 •

Poydras Home 5354 Magazine St., New Orleans 504/323-9051




Terrazzo, porcelain, and cement materials at Stafford Tile & Stone.

COLORWAYS Bold meets beautiful in stone, tile and flooring


over the last year on the reemergence of color in home design, as all white rooms give way to bolder looks. And with all the recent time spent at home, some homeowners are growing tired of sterile environments and are ready to shake things up. This season, we’re asking the experts if this trend toward color and texture extends from the walls and furniture to stone, tile and flooring. “I can’t tell you how exciting it is to see more color and pattern introduced into the interior mainstream,” says Penny Francis, principal designer and owner of Eclectic Home. According to Francis, kitchens are becoming darker and moodier while color and pattern are prevalent in tile chosen for bathrooms and kitchen backsplashes. Francis notes that the main flooring in homes — whether wood or tile — continues to trend on the lighter side, but patterned floors in kitchens are creating dramatic appeal. “Green and black are being utilized in the cabinet finishes, and splashes are becoming more dramatic backdrops while the countertops remain neutral,” says Francis. “White countertops continue to be popular because of the contrast to the splash and for maintenance and cleanliness.” At Palatial Stone & Tile, co-owner Paul Romain says that while white subway tiles are still popular for old New Orleans homes maintaining that “old world” look, geometric patterns that incorporate color are more often sought for kitchen backsplashes. Textured stones and 3D patterns are popular as well. As a stone fabricator, Romain also sees a declining interest in all-white

62 WINTER 2020

slabs as people opt for bolder vein colors and large format pieces. Recent jobs have included blue hues as well as light blush. According to Romain, the technology involved in making quartz has gotten so sophisticated that dramatic movement and veining are convincing to the eye and drawing much of buyers’ interest. In Kenner, Stone Interiors recently opened a new 20,000-squarefoot showroom with full slabs on display. There, owner John Cognevich says he is still selling a lot of white countertops, but they differ lately than plain white and gray. Instead, people are searching for whites and grays with streaks of gold or tan. “More people are doing change-outs since Katrina,” he explains. “For years, everyone wanted white and gray, and that’s great if you’re building new or gutting. But if your cabinets are light cream or your walls or floors are tan, that look doesn’t go — you’ve got to have blushes.” To that end, he recommends quartz colors that resemble marble like Silestone’s Lusso and Calacatta Gold. At Crescent City Countertops, Sally Cousins, a sales associate, agrees that while color is an emerging trend in countertops, it’s not trending there as quickly as it is with cabinets or paint. She echoes other stone sellers’ observations that homeowners are remaining somewhat cautious with countertops and getting more adventurous with the tile in the backsplash. “The other trend we’re seeing almost 50 percent of the time with new homes is putting the countertop material all the way up the backsplash.” These installations often have warmer tones with attractive veining cus-

tomers want to see continued on the walls, she says. Popular examples include the Taj Mahal and Cristallo colors of quartzite, which are subtly warm but with translucence and depth. People are also playing with texture in stone countertops, at times foregoing the polished finish for a leathered one. Different than a honed matte finish, the leathered look has a texture that gives the stone a natural earthiness, according to Cousins. Using a leathered finish on quartzite like Taj Mahal is a growing trend. Customers seeking bolder looks with dramatic veining benefit from technologies like Crescent City Countertops’ automated fabrication shop, which allows for photographs of chosen slabs to be overlaid on project CAD drawings and show the exact effect of a slab’s veining and movement on a specific room. This helps customers achieve the look they want for their stone centerpiece. “Nothing makes me happier than sourcing a unique and colorful quartzite,” says Hailey Mathews, owner and designer of H. Mathews Interiors. “It is essentially artwork in the most natural form and the perfect way to ensure your clients have one-of-a-kind pieces in their home.” Despite Mathews’ enthusiasm for countertops, she often chooses to start a kitchen design project with floors and cabinets first. She notes that flooring manufacturers have really expanded options in recent years. “From different, brighter colors, to fun patterns, it makes selecting the flooring my favorite place to start and then guide the rest of the design,” she says. Once she selects flooring and cabinets, she then takes samples to use in selecting a specific stone slab. For Mathews, the complementing backsplash often comes last. Eclectic Home’s Penny Francis has a different process — she finds

it easier to start with the backsplash if it has pattern, then move to the countertop and see how all elements complement the finish of the cabinet. Both designers agree that flooring and tile in smaller spaces like powder rooms and laundry rooms are a fun place to be bold and experiment more with color. Mathews says these are some of the best spaces for letting your creativity run wild. At Stafford Tile & Stone, owner Peggy Stafford says there many new options for pattern, color and texture in tile, and most are appropriate for indoor and outdoor flooring. Terrazzo, porcelain and cement are three materials that offer versatility. “Terrazzo has been a popular choice with a variety of different aggregates and colored cements to offer a fresh feel,” she says. Meanwhile, technology has changed the look of porcelain, which is available in mosaic and large format, increasing variation and interest. Stafford says porcelain is a good choice for sleek and modern or rustic and textured aesthetics. “Cement is an Old World material but now has a modern take,” says Stafford. “It is a very cost-effective way to introduce vibrant colors and patterns —a natural product that wears beautifully over time.” With all three materials, pattern is not only found in square formats but can be created with various shapes such as hexagons, pickets and scallops. For bathrooms, Stafford has noticed a rising popularity in green and blush tones. The consensus among our experts this season is that bold is the new trend. Inviting color, texture and movement into your design will add interest that keeps a fresh feeling for years to come. - BY KELCY WILBURN




Esteracae by Schonbek, starting at $7,015, available at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, fergusonshowrooms. com and Lighting Inc.,

ELECTRIC LIGHT Crystal chandeliers lend illuminated beauty to contemporary spaces


chandeliers with notions of a traditional aesthetic. However, like various timeless trends, chandeliers have evolved into the world of contemporary design. Of course, New Orleans has its share of historic, traditional homes, but mixing in contemporary pieces allows for a perfect balance of design paradigms. Plattsburgh, New York-based Schonbek — a beloved 150-year-old lighting company — released its new Iconics Col-

64 WINTER 2020

lection this summer, which includes the Esteracae (reminiscent of the rounded midcentury modern sputnik chandelier) in a new black finish. “The flowering, crystal blooms that erupt across the spherical form is a glam interpretation of a trend that [we] like to call natural elements,” says Shea Bowers, showroom manager at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery. “This light fixture is a stunning work of art that perfectly mixes modern and traditional elements. When you add a beautiful chandelier, it becomes a statement piece.”