Southern hospitality is famous for a reason, and these charming homes exemplify that welcoming vibe with big porches, comfy furniture and lovingly displayed heirlooms.
includes 10 projects by Georgia designer and author Arriving Home: A Gracious Southern Welcome James T. Farmer III, which illustrate how this decor style plays out not just in a columned Alabama mansion, but a farmhouse or mountain retreat, among other projects. Antiques mixed with new upholstery, collections and art displayed against pattern and textured wall coverings, punchy color, and layers of jute, sisal and wood grounding the floors are pillars of Southern decorating. Pour yourself a sweet tea, and let’s get the tour started!
This home is set in a wooded neighborhood very close to the hubbub of metro Atlanta. The dining room walls are covered in
Adam’s Eden by Lewis & Wood. A lacquered ceiling in a pale French blue hue reflects the room below, while caned-back chairs, along with upholstered-back host and hostess chairs, can easily be moved into the adjoining living room for after-dinner conversation. Colors from the antique Mahal rug are repeated throughout the room.
Hedging and a fountain soften the terrace’s hardscape, while
Janus et Cie custom outdoor furniture holds center stage. Perennial fabrics withstand the elements and provide comfortable seating for the lounging and dining areas. The bluestone is set as large pieces in an exaggerated running bond pattern.
The Oak Bowery in Auburn, Alabama, is set among oaks atop a gentle knoll. A suite of Schumacher fabrics and wall coverings give zest to the kitchen with fresh colorways of classic patterns:
Zanzibar Trellis is freshly printed in a vibrant green and pairs with the iconic Citrus Garden on the shades. The artwork is an antique piece of hand-painted wallpaper, and the lamps were fashioned from Portuguese majolica-style roosters.
In the principal suite, James mixed shades of pearly blues, grays and taupe. Monograms are well-loved in the South, as are the pops of color seen in the lamps and artwork. The bed is handmade, and the dresser is painted in a fanciful chinoiserie style.
Old homes lack contemporary bathrooms and kitchens, so often, other spaces are taken to create new bathrooms. Here, soothing tones of brown, an impressive chandelier and white marble create old-school charm.
The kitchen is the heartbeat of the Southern home and typically opens to the family living areas. This sweet kitchen was the catalyst for a stately South Carolina home’s renovation. Shaker-style cabinet doors, furniture-detailed kickboards and the beadboard ceiling are painted in a fresh coat of Benjamin Moore’s
Linen White, while the island’s muted green adds contrast. A large, butcher block island and rattan barstools are welcoming elements.
For clients just north of Atlanta, a farmhouse and weekend getaway means hunting, fishing and family gatherings set amidst longleaf pines, live oaks and pecan orchards. A statement wall of brown and white English transferware is arranged with Black Forest mounts and pottery lamps and supported by a lowboy console.
The vertical, butt-jointed paneling and open shelves add a nostalgic touch in the kitchen, along with the brass cupped pulls.
Riffing on tradition, this new home near Macon, Georgia, took inspiration from French country elements, with steep gables, eyebrow arched windows and clerestory dormers. The foyer greets people with a Chippendale-inspired fretwork railing which was inspired by an older porch railing at a nearby home. Framed prints from antique ornithology books create a grid of an architecture on the stairwell wall, while Grandmother’s chandelier infuses the spirit of generations that came before into this home.
Gray-green cabinets and open shelves nod to classic kitchens but are in sync with
today’s color aesthetic. A Brunschwig & Fils pattern in soft greens and blues serves as the window treatment, while a sturdy outdoor fabric is used on the barstools.
Author: Wendy Jacob
James T. Farmer III