“I don’t like a lot of ‘stuff.’ I do feel sentimental about things but I try and edit every house we move to. With three kids and pets, I feel rested in a simple space,” says interior designer Caroline Sain, whose minimalistic yet warm design approach allows her home to feel clean, airy and calming. It’s also the family’s fourth home in Homewood. “This has always been one of my favorite houses in the neighborhood. It is so simple and modern in design for a home built in 1936.”
Interestingly enough, Caroline finds designing her own home easier than designing her clients’ homes. “I know what I like pretty quickly, and usually my gut is right. I still have to ‘sell’ my ideas on my hardest client: my husband,” jokes Caroline. “But it’s always a process. Certain decisions are easy but some have to be made as you live in a space.”
Nestled in the quaint Mayfair section of Homewood, which some people refer to as “Mayberry,” the home has no formal or unused space — and that was Caroline’s goal. While her artistic inspiration and eye for color, texture and pattern are what people immediately see in her beautiful spaces, her brilliance in design lies in her constant attention to the functionality of each room. Spaces with movable furniture offer versatility, while wicker baskets, canvas cubbies and wooden chests are peppered throughout the home for easy de-cluttering and organizing — all allowing Caroline’s three active children, two dogs and husband to take center stage in the space. For instance, in the kitchen, Caroline has created a cabinet-and-chalkboard area to streamline the family’s traffic and daily needs. “The chalkboard and cabinet are kind of our mudroom and ‘Grand Central Station,’” says Caroline. She uses the chalkboard for the family schedule and family meal plans, as well as motivational sayings or Bible verses, while shoes and backpacks go in the cabinets below.
“We eat every meal at the table in the middle of the kitchen. It’s a little snug but that’s how my family likes it,” she says. “I cook every night and my husband usually takes over on the weekends. My kids are not typical eaters, so it’s fun cooking for them.” Caroline always has her family’s personality in mind when it comes to the home’s design. “All of my kids’ rooms look like them to me,” she says. “As with the rest of my house, I buy things that I love or that I know they would love.”
Caroline loves that her home perfectly befits her busy brood’s personalities and functional needs, with a calming and inviting ambience and lots of natural light. “My favorite room has to be ‘the big room,’ as we call it, but the windows are definitely my favorite thing about the home,” Caroline says. “I love bright rooms!”
Thank you to Beth Hontzas for today’s beautiful photography!
Designer: Caroline Sain
Kitchen tile, faucet and counters: Triton Stone
Paint: Benjamin Moore
Green couch: Anthropologie
Blue metal kitchen table: Blu Dot Strut Collection
Refrigerator and range: Sub-Zero and Wolf Appliances
Den light fixture: Restoration Hardware
Boy’s woven headboard: HomeGoods
Master bedroom oak sideboard table: Scott Antique Market