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Design ideas
A Southern Style Story
This Tennessee home is revamped to suit a young couple’s love for entertaining, family life and all the good things that come with Southern living.
Written by Autumn Krause
Photography by Bret Gum
Styling by Scarlett James
  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Living room.

    “We wanted the living room to be kid-friendly but still feel sophisticated,” Scarlett says. She covered the floor with a vintage Oushak rug and had the ceilings coffered to add architectural interest. “We also added about 12 feet to the space so it could accommodate a large group,” Scarlett explains.

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Entertaining station.

    The wet bar, which is located in the family room, allows Raj and Lee to serve drinks without having to walk to the kitchen. “Since the kitchen has the navy pendants, we wanted a navy reference on this side of the house,” Scarlett says. “We used a navy grasscloth to wrap the spot and it feels like a little exclamation point.”

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Kitchen.

    The original kitchen was completely gutted. “Function was a huge priority,” Scarlett says. “We wanted timeless beauty and texture.” An oak floor was the perfect stage for the all-white cabinets and the honed Calcutta Michelangelo counters and backsplash. But challenges were discovered in the form of a support beam that could not be moved but obstructed the plans for a range. “It turned out to be a happy accident,” Scarlett says. With a little ingenuity, she came up with the idea for a plaster range hood that could be molded around the beam while adding depth to the kitchen. The finishing details were Blue Rejuvenation pendant lights that give the kitchen a pop of youthful color and white counter stools that are both fashionable and practical. “They are totally wipeable, which is key for three children eating most of their meals at the counter,” Scarlett says.

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Breakfast nook.

    The breakfast area was bumped out to create an appealing little nook. “All of the neighborhood kids can pile in around the rustic table,” Scarlett says. “We used ottomans instead of chairs to maximize the walkway between the table and the island.” Slipcovers were custom made from an African mudcloth found at an antiques market in Atlanta and give the space fashion-forward appeal.

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Scullery/Butlers pantry.

    “It’s the hardest-working room in the house,” Scarlett says. With a focus on functionality, it features a coffee bar, fridge drawers where the kids can easily grab a juice, and a microwave and toaster oven. “The mom can easily make lunches here and leave it messy if need be,” Scarlett says “and the kitchen still looks perfect.”

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Dining room.

    “We made it really comfortable with the host chairs and loveseat,” she says. “It’s a nice spot to work, do homework or have friends over for coffee.” The round shapes on the cabinetry, echoed in the rug (which Scarlett had cut from a carpet by Myers Flooring), give the room a pleasing sensibility. “The large-scale patterns work really well with the fabrics and art in the space,” Scarlett says.

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  • The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.

    When it comes to renovating a home around the needs of a family, style must meet function in a synthesis of beauty and form. Such was the case with Raj and Lee Patnaik, a young couple with three children, whose suburban residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, was in need of an update. The family had bought the 1981 house six years ago and occupied it long enough to see the ways it needed to change to fit their lives. They hired Scarlett James, the principal designer at The Mix Interiors, along with a builder and architect to reimagine the home around two main focuses: opening up the existing spaces for hosting while also fulfilling Raj and Lee’s other priorities. “The couple loves to entertain, so we wanted to create room for both parties and everyday life with three children,” Scarlett says. “The home had a fantastic lot, location and good bones. It just needed the updates for modern life.”

    Master Bedroom.

    A hide-shaped rug was used to break up the symmetry of the room, while the light and mirror incorporated the brass notes from the main living area, giving the home a unified aesthetic.

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