HOW TO “UNDO” A DATED RANCHER

When it came to giv­ing her 1980s ranch house a re­fresh, an or­ganic farmer turned to her roots—and her fer­tile 400+ acres—for earthy, airy dec­o­rat­ing in­spi­ra­tion. (Psst: You’ve gotta see the mas­ter bath.)

Country Living (USA) - - FIELD NOTES - writ­ten by RHONDA REIN­HART pho­to­graphs by BRIAN WOOD­COCK styling by PAGE MULLINS

Bloom where you’re planted. That was the motto of Lau­ren Palmer’s fa­ther My­ron, a land­scaper, and his words have shaped both Lau­ren’s ca­reer and de­sign phi­los­o­phy. As the farmer and owner of Smyrna, Ten­nessee’s Blooms­bury Or­ganic Farm (blooms­bury­farms.com)— named af­ter My­ron’s motto— Lau­ren built a thriv­ing 400-acre or­ganic pro­duce busi­ness from, quite lit­er­ally, the ground up. And when it was time to re­vive a seen-bet­ter-days 1980s rancher on the same prop­erty (a piece of land she’d saved from de­vel­op­ment), Lau­ren em­braced a sim­i­lar spirit and a pal­ette of earthy, un­der­stated hues to com­ple­ment the land­scape. “I grew up sur­rounded by the grays and browns of the earth,” she says, not­ing both her fa­ther’s in­flu­ence and her mother’s sim­i­larly un­der­stated de­sign aes­thetic. Be­cause the home was in “hor­ri­ble” con­di­tion—in ad­di­tion to old-school rem­nants from the “New Coke” era, there was spray paint on the walls and a deer head in the freezer—Lau­ren en­listed fam­ily, namely mom Teresa and sis­ter Abby, to help re­con­fig­ure the 1,500-square­foot space. First up: a more open and airy foot­print. Lau­ren re­moved the drop ceil­ings and trans­formed the dark and dirty car­port into a light, spa­cious kitchen over­look­ing the newly com­bined liv­ing and din­ing rooms.

The Palmer trio then brought in ma­te­ri­als that re­flect their re­strained— and re­claimed—aes­thetic. “You’re not see­ing a lot of color,” says Teresa. “We’d rather let the mix of woods, fab­rics, and nat­u­ral pati­nas tell our de­sign story.”

Pecky Cy­press Ceil­ings

With its stain­less steel fin­ishes (in­clud­ing the apron-front sink; franke .com), pre­dom­i­nantly gray col­or­way (Shak­er­style cab­i­nets, mar­ble coun­ter­tops) and con­crete pavers (pea­cock­pavers.com), this car­port-turned kitchen could veer cold. But the tex­tured pecky cy­press ceil­ing casts a warmth above the space— and through­out the en­tire home.

Large-Scale Light­ing

Both the kitchen and din­ing space fea­ture state­ment fix­tures (southof­mar­ket.biz) that lend warmth to the open floor plan.

The same goes for daugh­ter Palmer’s room, too (see page 61).

The re­con­fig­ured liv­ing space—with vaulted 13-foot ceil­ings!—stays com­fort­ably grounded with a thought­ful mix of gray, brown, and oat­meal hues. Prop­erly scaled fur­ni­ture, in­clud­ing five-foot-tall tufted ban­quettes, a tele­vi­sion­con­ceal­ing eight-foot painted cab­i­net, and high-back linen wing­back chairs (verellen.biz) keep the room from feel­ing cav­ernous.

TOP: In ad­di­tion to a gable roof and cus­tom sconces (theiron­ga­teon­line.net), the for­merly red-brick ranch got a crisp coat of Sim­ply White by Ben­jamin Moore.

ABOVE: Lau­ren and her daugh­ter, Palmer (age 5), smile among some of the or­ganic veg­eta­bles that Lau­ren and her team grow on the farm that she’s op­er­ated for more than 10 years.

The light-filled mud­room/ pantry is home to a charm­ing Dutch door, a built-in cab­i­net with scal­loped shelves, and a chipped an­tique bench (An­tiques on Hol­i­day; 850-837-0488).

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