Go With the Flow
Cottages and Bungalows|April - May 2021
A designer shares her secrets for creating a cohesive yet interesting look for an open floor plan.
By Meryl Schoenbaum

Greg and Christy Leimone had worked closely with the builder on the architectural details of their new home, and they wanted to give the same attention to detail to its décor. The Leimones hired Melissa Lee, principal designer at New South Home (newsouthhome. com), a referral from friends and neighbors, to add functionality and dimension to the 2020-built home’s open floor-plan design.

THE FRONT DOOR OF THE HOME. The pastel watercolor artwork balances its heavy appearance. “The open modern console grounds the foyer without placing a large bulky piece of furniture in the hallway,” Melissa says.

“After reviewing the inspiration photos and architectural plans provided by Greg and Christy, our first impression was that it was going to be comfortable and casual, even though it was a larger home based on square footage,” Melissa says.

Located in a suburb of Greensboro, North Carolina, the home has five bedrooms. The architectural style is a mix of modern farmhouse and Craftsman. “The different exterior textures used—such as stone, architectural shingles and board and batten—were selected by the builder and the homeowners to create dimension with their desire for a clean, neutral white exterior,” Melissa says. “We consulted on final color and material selections for both the interior and exterior of the home.”

The homeowners had certain design goals in mind that they asked Melissa to execute. “They were looking for a comfortable and casual home that would be family friendly and practical for Greg’s tall stature (6 feet, 4 inches),” Melissa says. “They wanted a navy-blue kitchen island and liked a neutral color palette with hints of blue, so we kept a consistent palette of these colors throughout the home. Their inspiration photos had a mixture of texture and neutral colors with clean and simple ‘unfussy’ furnishings.”

Melissa makes sure to take into account a homeowner’s lifestyle when assembling her design elements. “We always keep the family and pets in mind when making selections for any client’s home,” she says. “Christy and Greg have a 12-year-old son and a dog. Our main focus is to ensure that the main living areas are functional and comfortable for everyone—we never want a room where smaller family members feel like they can’t go in because it’s ‘too fancy.’ We always use performance fabrics and leathers for upholstery in the family areas for peace of mind for our clients, as we did in this home. We even usually had a custom dog blanket made for the sofa out of matching upholstery fabric so that our clients can use it for their dog’s favorite napping spot.”

OPEN FLOOR PLANNING

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