Rows of cute cottages, sidewalks bustling with young families headed for a scoop of ice cream, and gaggles of children playing in their front yards — for the Jackson family, there is no community better than Homewood. Patrick Jackson grew up in this charming Over-the-Mountain hamlet. After college, he made sure to return to his hometown, where he and his wife, Jenn, settled into a cottage of their own on Broadway in the Edgewood neighborhood.
Seven years later, with the addition of their two young boys to the family, their cottage started feeling a bit too small, and the family began searching for a home with more breathing room. They searched throughout their beloved neighborhood, and although the homes in the area are teeming with charm, they all lacked the space the family needed. When they happened upon a lot just a couple of streets away from their Broadway home, which had been sitting vacant after a house fire on the property in 2008, the Jacksons knew they had found the perfect place for their forever home.
The Jacksons were initially hesitant when their agent suggested they consider building their own home, but the opportunity to build a custom home perfect for their growing family seemed too good to pass up. As they began the process, the family had a few of their priorities set: they wanted the exterior to blend in as seamlessly as possible with the rest of the neighborhood, they wanted lots of open space for entertaining and they wanted the home to feel light and bright. “We wanted to create our forever home,” Jenn says. “We wanted it to be a place where our kids could grow up and where we could have lots of open living space for us to spend time in as a family.” They turned to architect Joe Ellis of DWELLing Architecture and Colt Byrom of Byrom Building Corp. to create the house of their dreams, and then worked with designer Alison Smith of Alison Smith Interiors to make the house truly feel like their home.
Jenn wanted the family’s new space to be unique, comfortable and inviting, and Alison’s emphasis on incorporating the family’s personalities was key in achieving that vision. “As a decorator, it’s important to develop not just a working relationship with your client, but a friendship,” Alison says. “The goal is to make their home a place where they love to be with their family, so it’s so important to really get to know the family you’re working with and work to find out what would make the house theirs.”
With Alison’s help, Patrick and Jenn chose to maintain a classic, timeless approach in the design of the home. “We wanted to think long term,” Alison says. “We didn’t want to buy things that are going to go out of style or might be trendy. We wanted to incorporate nice things that are going to last and style that is going to last. We tried to think about the future and really think about each item and how it would work for their family.”
In that effort, a practical, beautiful banquette is the centerpiece of the kitchen, and stools were upholstered in vinyl, which holds up well to daily wear-and-tear. The family room features a simple, durable rug, knowing the space would require a piece that would be practical for the young family, while a stunning antique Oushak runner in the foyer incorporates a touch of style. And most of the walls in the home are fairly neutral, save a modern, patterned wallpaper in the downstairs powder room. The children’s bedrooms upstairs maintain the neutral, classic feel of the rest of the home, while adding a few whimsical accents, providing each child with a room that can age with them.
Now, settled in the house of their dreams, Jenn can’t imagine living anywhere else. Nestled along a sweet street right behind the local elementary school — the backyard even has a hidden gate that the children can walk through to get to school — the Jackson home is absolutely picture perfect. “We just love living here. We can walk to all of the restaurants in downtown Edgewood. We can walk to get ice cream. We walk to the school. Everything we could possibly need is right here,” Jenn says. “And we love that our house is custom and we had our own thoughts that went into it. When someone comes in and says that they love it, it really means something to us because we actually had a lot to do with creating our forever home.”
We love how the Jacksons had fun and truly made this home their own. The result is nothing short of perfection!
Thank you to Beth Hontzas for today’s beautiful photography!
Designer: Alison Smith Interiors, Alisonsmithinteriors@
Builder: Byrom Building Corp.
Architect: DWELLing Architecture
Draperies: Alison Smith Interiors
Living room lamps & pillows: Richard Tubb Interiors
Dining table: Architectural Heritage
Dining room drapery fabric: Met Design Center
Coco tray: Made Goods
Kitchen stools: Hickory White
Custom antique doors: Southern Accents Architectural Antiques
Nursery wings: Stock & Trade
Nursery linens: Peacock Alley and Restoration Hardware Baby
Antique fishing lures: Scott Antique Market
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