Text by Bethany Adams
When you step into the living room of this home in the Buckhead district of Atlanta, Georgia, the high ceiling, hand-carved limestone fireplace, and serenely romantic color palette may trick you into believing you’ve entered an estate home hidden away in France—which was exactly the effect designer Mallory Mathison wanted to achieve.
In the pursuit of that result, she established a light and elegant color palette largely inspired by the hand-painted Gracie wall covering the homeowner requested in the dining room. “That paper was kind of the catalyst for the whole design,” Mallory says.
The resulting background was perfect for the homeowners’ existing dining room furniture, complementing the celadon and ivory tones of the floral-patterned upholstery. Because the wall covering itself serves as artwork, Mallory and her team opted not to add more art, instead using the mantel to display a collection of ceramic pieces, to which they added gilt bases.
Influenced by the homeowners’ love for—and various trips to—France, the spirit of the home draws from the understated elegance and sophisticated simplicity of European style, finding its interest in unique detailing and one-of-a-kind ceiling designs. Various antique pieces, like a trumeau mirror and carved console table, serve as storied accents against a fresh backdrop that reflects the sunlight with a soft glow.
“The formal spaces all have a little bit of inspiration coming from France in them,” Mallory says, though she points out that even the more comfortable, family-friendly areas also take subtle cues from the design style. In the kitchen, a naturally aged custom copper hood tops the range, contributing, as she notes, a “Provençal feel.”
Cloud White by Benjamin Moore covers the cabinets and trim, offering a soft contrast to the subtlest of blue tones on the ceiling, and the resulting effect helps to highlight the darker details of the space. “It’s very pretty, very light, but also feels warm,” Mallory says, noting the granite countertop that she continued up the backsplash. Chosen over marble for its durability, the stone features variations of green tones ranging from a soft mint to a deep hunter green.
Another of the more formal spaces in the home, the breakfast room was designed to be, as Mallory describes it, “a little sister of the dining room.” The space revisits the dining room’s gardenesque charm with a blue-green grass cloth on the walls and Bennison’s Bird & Basket pattern on the window treatments.
For a visually interesting variation on the classic table and chairs, Mallory introduced a pair of Italian benches, which she paired with Louis XVI-style chairs. Overhead, the antiqued wood elements of the chandelier flow with the nature-inspired motif, while the seeded glass beads add a touch of shimmering opulence.
The design takes a bold turn in places like the bedrooms and the home office, where vibrant colors make the details pop. “I am a big fan of doing strong colors on trim,” Mallory says, referring to choices like the turquoise trim in one daughter’s room. Fun wallpaper selections also offer pops of personality, like the Tyler Hall print in the kennel.
Outside the home, everything from an outdoor kitchen to a bocce court offers a laid-back, comfortable contrast to the elegance of the home’s interior. But whether you’re inside or out, there’s no denying that this Southern abode captures all the enchantment of France.