“I grew up in a Tudor-style house, similar to this one,” Katharine says. “I like what older homes offer, but they do present a few challenges.”
Both grand and quaint, the house has a comfortable sense of space with plenty of the charming nooks that are a specialty of old homes.
Katharine’s sense of style often leads her to change up a piece’s original state, and is reflective of her innate sense of style and vision for the overall personality of her home – a brightly colored table might better suit the space she sees it inhabiting painted white, for instance, or a bland chair or couch might be reborn in a lively print.
“I grew up with this couch in my parents’ home,” Katharine laughs. “It went with me to college; it’s been recovered four or five times. The blue and white chair in the living room came from my parents’ house; it’s been recovered multiple times, too.” Other chairs were sourced from a trip to South Carolina, where her sister lived for several years. Favorite items throughout the house were purchased while traveling (another hallmark of Katharine’s decorating style) and the art above the mantel is from an Arts Festival visit.
• In the kitchen, countertops and floors were replaced with marble and manufactured granite, and new appliances were brought in.
• Azure touches against the neutral palette of the floor and walls’ muted taupe give the living room points of color reference while still keeping a sedate atmosphere. This color-infused, fun-tinged sophistication is a theme through the whole house, as is Katharine’s habit of mixing old and new furnishings, and fun finds with fond memories.
Illustrating her knack for adapting furnishings to a room’s needs – and her decorative vision – Katharine had a round top made for a table base purchased at Bebe’s, her mother’s Nichols Hills shop.
“The shape of the room required it,” Katharine explains. “I wanted the bar positioned in a particular place … it was one of the first pieces I bought … and the round table helps the flow of the room accommodate it.”
While the charming architecture that allows for the breakfast nook’s comfortable banquet seating is an original feature of the house, the rest of the kitchen was the beneficiary of an extensive makeover. Modernity gets a nod in the form of the stainless steel Dacor stove and the Liebherr refrigerator, whose two generous drawer freezers individualize the fridge in more ways than one.
“I don’t mind the extra height,” Katharine says, “We like it – I’m tall and I like having the taller refrigerator.”
(clockwise from left)
• A golden table, found in family storage, serves as an out-of-the-box bar; John Derian plates provide offbeat artistic flair for the area, along with a unique branch lamp (both from Bebe’s).
• The white buffet was acquired during a trip to South Carolina; its geometric meander is gently reflected in the creamy rug (from Moorman’s). Hurricane lamps and an antiqued mirror from Bebe’s add interest without overwhelming, and white lamps from Williams-Sonoma Home anchor and illuminate. The Venetian glass chandelier – a find from Katharine’s parents’ storage – gives the room’s clean lines an elegant touch.
• A neutral background plays host to vibrant touches, with the gray floors and crisp white table and chairs offset by the bright greens and yellows in the seat covers and window treatments. Katharine and her sister Carter Fellers (of Carter Fellers Design) collaborated on the living room and kitchen interiors. Impeccable style obviously runs in the family.
If there’s an overriding décor personality present in the Regens’ home, it would be an easy marriage of form and function, and an acknowledgement that while a home should be a comfortable venue for entertaining guests, its ultimate purpose is to be a haven for its inhabitants, and their preferences should dictate how it’s decorated. At the end of the day, Katharine and her family value comfort, but she also enjoys having something pleasant to look at, too.
“I like fun,” Katharine says, “But with a sophisticated look. I managed my mom’s shop for a while, and I do love decorating – maybe it’s genetic! The main thing is, I do want it to feel welcoming. But I also want, when I come home, with my husband and two year old, to be able to just plop down on the couch … and have something pretty to look at.”
• A leftover from the room’s days as a grown up TV-watching retreat, the playroom’s comfy couch gives Mom and Dad an adult-sized place to relax during play time. The fun Jonathan Adler rug under the play table picks up the bright hue of the kitchen set, and the black-and-white striped teepee (LittleMeTeepee) has a fun complement in the pirate hat.
• The combination of cool neutrals and fun color splashes may have its ultimate purpose in a child’s room; the same tone that graces the walls of all the upstairs rooms – Benjamin Moore’s Wickham Gray – creates a calm, nap-friendly ambiance while still maintaining an atmosphere that lends itself to play. The shade also acts as an almost perfect medium for whatever tonally-related accessories it’s partnered with, picking up a range of colors from blues to taupes with ease.
Bed is from Pottery Barn, chair and elephant are Serena and Lily. The blanket was a gift from Katharine’s mother, brought home from a trip to India, and the colorful mobiles were baby gifts, with one traveling all the way from Paris
• Neutral walls, furniture and floors pair effortlessly with splashes of color in the master bedroom; cheerful coral, lime and robin’s egg blue accent brightly without making the room overly busy. Pillows and Roman shades are custom; bedding is from Leontine Linens in New Orleans. Lamps, side tables, dressing table and chair are all Bungalow Five, from Bebe’s.
• Even diehard fans of old homes have to admit that one of the biggest challenges they present are the bathrooms. The Regens’ master bath was no exception. “It had the little, standard 1930s tub,” Katharine explains. “I’m tall, my husband is 6'2" … we needed a shower.”
A generous glass shower replaced the tiny tub, and the quaint pedestal sink gave way to an option (from Designer Hardware) with a little storage space, and more modern lines.