Located in Birmingham, Alabama, is a home that bridges past and present, its new interior design drawing its inspiration from the existing colors and materials to create a place for getting in touch with works of art and family objects. A modern farmhouse in style, the home has taken on a new charm thanks to the work of Still Johnson Interiors, a studio founded by Anna Still and Marguerite Johnson. After years of living in Brooklyn, the family moved to this small, attractive downtown area that buzzes with stores and restaurants, and is well connected to several parks by pedestrian walkways.
Art and color are both key elements of the project: “We immediately recognized that we had to find a more homogeneous palette for the home,” explains Anna Still, referring in particular to the charcoal exteriors, the white walls, and the original oak flooring. “We decided on the colors basing our choice on the existing architectural materials. We also used dark metals and metals with a bright finish. At the outset, the client expressed a liking for dusty colors, so we included these tones as well throughout the house through cushions and artworks.”
The designers used natural materials and neutral tones to give the building a timeless character. The oak and walnut of the furniture is softened by the natural linen of the drapes and upholstery. The collection of hand-me-down furniture and artworks are the focal point, forming the inspiration for the style of the new furniture while adding a sentimental touch to the family’s own pieces.
“The client’s father asked her if there was anything in his office she wanted to use in the home,” added Still. “She spotted an old coffee table with a geometric marble base and a square glass top. It brought back so many happy memories for her. The table turned out to be a collector’s item from the late 1970s.”
The house covers an area of 1650 sq.ft. (353 m2) on three floors. At ground level, there’s the living room, the master bedroom, and an open kitchen-dining room. At the back, a timber sunroom with large windows adds an extra space to the house that overlooks a huge garden with a swing set and a basketball hoop. The living room, at the front of the house, is a place for entertaining guests by a large stone fireplace.
At the top of the stairs on the second level is a large, bright, and colorful playroom. There are also three bedrooms, with each one decorated and designed differently for each child.
Finally, a multifunctional basement-level room can be transformed from a TV room and office into a guest room. The owner has also recently added a gym with a large glass door overlooking the garden.
A fusion of old and new is a characteristic feature of this home. Thanks to the input of Still Johnson Interiors, the interior design bridges past and present with new custom-made furniture that strikes a perfect balance with the artworks, memorabilia, and period furniture.
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Interior design: Still Johnson Interiors
Area: 353 m2
Photography by C.W. Newell, courtesy of Still Johnson Interiors