Lovely layers

Home + Garden

March 1, 2021

Family heirlooms and newfound treasures create a Myers Park home with heart.

by Cathy Martin  •  photographs by Dustin Peck

Three years ago, the Myers Park homeowner decided her home needed a reset. A mishmash of furniture accumulated over the years lacked a cohesive style, and the house she and her husband had lived in for the last decade wasn’t quite working for the busy family’s lifestyle.

“I cleared everything out,” the homeowner says. “It was just a matter of keeping the things with meaning and the family heirlooms and getting rid of the rest.”  

The couple had completed an initial renovation and family-room addition after they bought the home in 2007. Happy with their neighborhood and with ample room for three kids and a dog, they now sought to bring a little more of their own personalities into the space.

On the recommendation of a friend and neighbor, the homeowner turned to interior designers Nancy Targgart and Kim Moore of Cashion Hill Design. The longtime friends first teamed up in 2005 when they launched a retail business called Plum. Combing antique shows, estate sales and expos across North Carolina, they snapped up items that were carefully restored and then resold at biannual popup sales.

“We picked things that we loved — it could be furniture, art, light fixtures,” says Targgart, a Greensboro native who grew up in the furniture and design business. Plum wound down after the recession of 2007-09, but the partners’ passion for design and eye for well-crafted objects remained, along with their connections with local art and home-furnishings vendors. They officially launched Cashion Hill Design in 2020.

The homeowner was instantly attracted to the designers’ individualized approach to design that wasn’t “too matchy-matchy.”

“We always try to get our clients away from Instagram decorating,” Moore says. Instead of picking a look and trying to replicate it exactly, the designers encourage their clients to strive for a space that speaks more to their distinct personalities.

“We really feel a responsibility to help people discover what their own look and style is,” Targgart adds. Part of that is helping clients take a critical inventory of their current belongings before starting a new project. “We tell them, ‘Let’s edit out the unnecessary, and build back in the layers of personality.’”

The homeowners both grew up near the beach, so they wanted a palette that was inspired by coastal hues — pinks and plums from seashells gathered by the shore, green seagrass against blue skies — without the predictable elements typically found in beach-themed designs. 

“When we first walked in, the living room was very uptight and traditional,” Targgart says. “They’re a young, fun family,” who enjoy entertaining and supporting local artists. “We said, ‘How can we make this more them?’”

They began by removing some of the traditional elements that made the living room a bit too stuffy for the active family. Modern pieces such as a custom console from CHD Interiors and curved Highland House sofa blend with vintage finds like the Oushak rug, trio of rose mirrors, and alabaster and brass coffee table. A daybed by the front window has become a cozy reading nook that gets plenty of use by the homeowners’ three children, 15, 12 and 7. 

For the light-filled sunroom adjacent to the living room, the homeowners wanted to create a music lounge with a relaxed vibe for listening to their favorite vinyl records and for making their own music — two of the children play piano, while their father takes guitar lessons. Pillows covered in a bright tropical print accent rattan furniture that previously belonged to the homeowner’s grandparents, and a Moroccan rug adds warmth and texture to this fun and funky space.  

Much of the design inspiration in the family room stems from a large painting commissioned by Charlotte artist Ted Lee. Blush and plum accents and a reeded waterfall console from 1st Dibs add a subtle coastal flair. 

The dining room is anchored by a glass-top table that belonged to the homeowner’s mother. “When you have a piece like that, it’s so easy for us to build off of it,” Targgart says. The designers also kept the homeowners’ existing window hardware and vintage chandelier, updating the bulbs to make it feel more current. When the designers suggested a Schumacher wool fabric for the draperies, the homeowner was instantly reminded of a camel coat worn by her father when she was a young girl. A half-moon console displays another family heirloom, a silver set that belonged to the homeowner’s mother. The original artwork on the sideboard is another unique Cashion Hill find: Three vintage framed pochoirs — prints made with a stencil-based technique — by Edouard Benedictus were acquired from one of Cashion Hill’s preferred vendors on a visit to Atlanta’s biannual home-furnishings market.

While the designers were at work updating the interior, the homeowners also decided to give the exterior of the property a refresh. A sunken brick patio at the back of the house had become a breeding ground for moss and mold, so the homeowners tapped architect Greg Perry and John Bourgeois of Bourgeois McGinn Builders to design and build a new back porch. A seating area surrounding a fire table has become a year-round family gathering spot for TV nights, while a glass-top dining table and swing chair is a popular space for enjoying outdoor meals or simply relaxing.

Achieving a personalized, curated look requires patience, but the reward is worth the wait, the homeowner says. “I’ve learned it’s better to wait on that right, perfect thing that’s got a little more character than to open up the page in a catalog and say, ‘That one.’” The result is a carefully crafted space where nearly every detail has a special meaning or significance. 

“Everything reminds us of something, whether it’s collecting shells on the beach with my daughter, or some childhood memory,” the homeowner says. “There’s a story behind everything.”  SP

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