Text by Mary-Kate Tucto
Nashville real estate agent Lacey Newman was at a turning point in her life, and as one chapter ended, she was looking to start fresh with her two young children. She scoured the city for a home that would be the opposite of every house she’d lived in before. “I’ve had two new houses previously, and as a real estate agent I’m around new builds all the time,” Lacey says. “The appeal of finding something older was just really strong. I was looking for a house that had really great, solid features, but needed some freshening up.” When an old stone cottage in the Green Hills area caught her eye, she turned to friend and interior designer Julie Couch to transform it into the haven she’d been looking for.
“Lacey was one of my first clients about ten years ago, and we’ve worked on a few projects together since then,” Julie says. “With this house, I knew what she would be drawn to and what she wouldn’t like, so that made it easier.” Ditching the dark wood and red brick that had filled the large, grand homes Lacey owned in the past, the pair went for a light and bright scheme. “She told me, ‘I just want it to feel like me,’” Julie recalls. To create that feeling, Lacey wanted soft, feminine, and airy, so they went with white walls throughout the main areas and layered in neutrals. They avoided decorating with anything too precious or pristine, as she wanted it to be extremely livable—somewhere the kids can play and have a snack on the sofa without worrying.
Thanks to large windows dressed with thin custom white linen panels that allow plenty of natural light to filter in, the living room feels larger than its square footage. Gray and white floor poufs added to the well-appointed room help keep the atmosphere casual and kid friendly, while hints of color creep in through deep navy and green throw pillows, a bright pink watercolor painting mounted above the fireplace, and a smattering of fresh flowers and greenery.