DECKING THE HALLS
The fireplace and pantry are two hard-working spots during the holidays. The Busenitz family finished theirs just in time for the holidays.
In this sixth part of our series on their dreamhouse project, the Busenitz family completes their fireplace and pantry, and talks design and material choices with us.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the farmhouse build in Social Circle, Georgia. We’ve been following along as Katie Busenitz from the blog The Rustic Boxwood, her husband, Ryan, and their two children have tackled building their dream home from the ground up. Now just in time for the holidays, they’ve got the fireplace wall (and mantel!) complete and the all-important pantry finished and ready to work hard for the winter. Here Katie shares how it all came together.
CB: The fireplace wall in the living room is truly stunning! Tell us about the design elements that help make it the focal point of the space.
Katie: This wall had to be grand in order to keep up with our tall, 17-foot ceiling and the large amount of space in this room. The brick fireplace was purposely built to be wide and tall, as well as the mantel, the extra-large wood-burning fireplace and the oversized hearth. The industrial-sized fan from Hunter Fan Co is huge and looks awesome in this big room.
CB: How were the materials that went into the design of the space important to achieving your goals?
K: I love mixing textures, so the white-painted brick, the tongue-and-groove shiplap, the greenery and the black hardware, along with the rustic beam as a mantel, complement each other and create one cohesive whole. Incorporating different textures and using a neutral color palette are important to me, and this wall does just that. Also, we recently had our concrete floors polished, and they look so much better. I had no idea the difference polishing the floors would make; Stewart Concrete Finishing, Inc. did a fantastic job with our flooring.
CB: Tell us about the great pantry design! What was your goal/vision in the beginning?
K: My goal was to make the pantry look really pretty, yet be very functional. Since I love a neutral palette, the challenge here was to keep everything within those parameters, yet still maintain a functional space. So all the notso-pretty stuff is behind closed cabinet doors. And then some of the food is in clear jars, such as instant coffee, popcorn kernels, sugar, flour, etc. Of course, the faucet from Elkay and the apron sink pop against the black cabinets. The gold hardware from Liberty Hardware gives our pantry a modern feel, while the beautiful shiplap from The Rustic Collection, along with the butcher block countertop from CraftArt, creates the feeling of true farmhouse style.
CB: What were your must-haves for the space?
K: We really wanted open shelving in the pantry and hidden storage, so that’s what we did.
Other must-haves were our faucet from Elkay and our apron sink that pops against our black cabinets. Of course, my go-tos for styling a pretty farmhouse pantry are white dishes and mason-jar glassware (both from Tuesday Morning), greenery, wooden utensils, chippy candleholders and grainsack-stripes. Some larger pieces that were must-haves are our gold hardware, the white shiplap from The Rustic Collection, our butcher block countertop from CraftArt Countertops, and our industrial light fixture from Capital Lighting. Another way we incorporated farmhouse style was installing Shaker-style trim (from Woodgrain) and using white primer and paint (from KILZ and Behr).
CB: What are some of the functionality tricks and designs that you incorporated?
K: For starters, I repurposed a grainsack-style shower curtain into cafe curtains for our pantry, and I love them so much. I already had this shower curtain, so shopping my house was a fun way to save money for this project. Another functional trick we came up with was to make sure all our windowsills were large. So now, I can keep pretty herbs in the pantry window to let the sun give them life, and we can grab some for recipes on a whim. Another trick we used to gain more space in the pantry was to use a pocket door instead of a swing door. We found this reclaimed slider from Greg Wyatt of Property Preservation of Georgia. He specializes in finding rare and unique pieces for both collectors and antique lovers. This chippy 9-foot door actually came out of an old general store here in Georgia, and it’s from the 1800s. (We’ve got the matching door, and it’ll hang in our master bedroom... Stay tuned for the next part in this series to see how it turned out.)
|ABOVE| ALL IN THE DETAILS.The white shiplap from The Rustic Collection and the butcher block countertop give the pantry its farmhouse foundation. Brass pulls add a moderntouch.
WALL MATES. A wicker rocker and The Rustic Collection’s shiplap wall coverings add texture and interest, which makes simple corners like this feel rich and full of interest.
|TOP LEFT| WARM UP. Katie filled the olive basket with creamand-black pillows for curl-up-by-the-fire coziness.
|TOP RIGHT| CRATE EXPECTATIONS. A classic wintry plaid throw is stored in a vintage wooden crate blending Katie’s penchant for creative reuse and classic accents.
|ABOVE| DISTINCTIVE STYLE. The reclaimed beam was high on Katie’s wish list for the mantel, to give the living room a truly rustic and unique look.