French Coastal Cottage

Once upon a time, a southern belle with a love for New Orleans and a coastal Carolina gentleman married. Settling down in the upstate, the two wanted to combine a home design that is reminiscent of their two heritages and welcoming to guests. The design concept: French Coastal Cottage.

The existing open floor plan of their home is fitting for an breezy coastal concept, but a dark kitchen island and the green and red walls were bold and made the spaces visually heavy. Painting was the first step toward creating a light and airy feel. Beginning with Sherwin Williams “Useful Gray” throughout the house, the new color brightens the rooms drastically. Choosing a slightly deeper greige for the dining room, the picture frame wall moulding is accentuated. Eyes move upward with a fresh and subtle sea glass on the elegant high ceiling. Throughout the home, splashes of aquas, mints, and peacock layer on beachy neutrals to exude a waterside feel.

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A soft and antiqued rug paired with a crescent wall table give the first impression as visitors enter the front door. The one-of-a-kind table features substantial scrollwork brackets with a custom painted top that began as salvage yard treasures. A large mirror flanked by architectural metalwork are topped with an artisan sign crafted from reclaimed painted lumber. The words “Faith, Hope, Love” invite guests into the essence of this home.

In the living room, vibrant lamps and sea-foam colored side tables lighten the space. A multi layered finishing process renewed the homeowners tables. A larger area rug brightens the warm hardwood flooring. Two blanket ladders to the left of the tv to bring height into the space. Natural arrangements contained in the couple’s pottery camouflage tv cords. A light paint color updates the tv console.

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A beautiful stained glass window above the mantel is the new focal point. Originally created for a local mansion in 1924, this amazing artwork takes center stage in this design. Since this is such a prominent piece, we kept the surrounding decor simple.

 

     

 

The adjoining dining room needed a bit of a “make-under.” Following the dramatic color shift of the walls, gauzy custom curtains incorporate cool hues. Blue-gray burlap serves as the new sheers. Time-worn columns fill the corner of the dining room. Vintage wrought iron pieces are proportioned perfectly to fit the picture frame moulding. Chippy black paint reveals an underlying silver color that stands out against the newly painted wall. An antique, patinaed copper water urn holds the table centerpiece.

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Small changes in the kitchen make a big difference. Refreshing the kitchen island along with the kitchen cabinet trim and distressed finishing give the kitchen a livable sophistication.  Stools for the island were transformed with soft gray chalk paint as well as new upholstery. Displaying larger pieces of the homeowners’ pottery on top of the cabinets give prominence to the homeowners’ significant found treasures. Glass door cabinets display carefully selected, meaningful family heirlooms. Sprinkling in some cottage charm, a three tiered white washed cake stand holds potted plants, a eucalyptus wreath, and fresh cut hydrangeas from the couple’s garden.

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The kitchen parlor brings in some whimsy. The dining room table previously resided here before the design switch.  The new space invites visitors to sit, have coffee, and chat with friends. Cream ceramic lamps sit on freshly painted side tables a crisp gray. New window valances and a fun rug relax the style in this niche. Commissioning local carpenters, new display shelves are crafted from beautiful shutters the client had discovered. This substantial display features much of the homeowners pottery collection.

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this home filled with fleur de lis and fresh air! And best wishes of “happily ever after” to this lovely belle and southern gentleman of this French Coastal Cottage!

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