There’s a phenomenon that many home renovators encounter during remodeling. It’s been coined “the mushroom factor”: redo one room and the plans will mushroom into more and more projects. Such was the case when Mel and Sally Davis bought their 5,000-square-foot home in the Cammack Village area of Little Rock, and planned to make only a few changes.
“We really loved this house because it reminded us of the home we had built in Searcy,” says Sally, referring to the traditional white-brick, four-bedroom, four-bath home with hardwood floors and a circular driveway from which the couple was moving. In their new Little Rock home, the Davises thought they would simply reconfigure the master bath, enlarge a guest bathroom and convert a room used as an office into a closet for Sally. However, as Mel puts it, their renovation plans mushroomed. “The project quickly evolved,” he says.
“Initially, the plan was to refresh the home with a cosmetic makeover,” says interior designer Becky Charton of Table Setters Inc., who was called in to help the couple execute their ideas. “When we finished, we had touched all the surfaces.” Charton supervised the nine-month-long renovation project that included an extensive “to do” list: refinishing hardwood floors, installing new carpet and travertine tile in the sunroom and downstairs bathrooms, replacing doors and changing out cabinet hardware.
Decorative lighting was also revamped throughout the home. New granite was added to three fireplace surrounds and all the countertops. The master suite floor plan was completely redesigned to accommodate a new closet and a laundry room adjoining the master bath. “And did I mention that we completely remodeled the kitchen?” asks Charton.
But before the work began to mushroom, Charton gave the Davises a homework assignment to determine their decorating styles, providing Mel and Sally with stacks of magazines and asking them to tear out pictures they found appealing. “Sally pulled two tear sheets that I remember as stand-outs,” notes Charton. “She loved a picture of kitchen cabinets painted in a soft, cool color and another of a glass backsplash.
That was the point at which one thing began to lead to another. “The kitchen was not intended as part of the original remodel, but it turned out to be the gem of the house,” says Charton, noting that the remodeled room with pale blue cabinets and a glass mosaic tile backsplash set the tone for the color scheme used throughout the house. “We used a cool color palette,” says Charton, “warming it with accents.” Soft, neutral grays were contrasted with antique white walls and tan trim and molding. Coral and black were added through fabrics, and gold was worked in to the color scheme as well to complement brass accessories that the Davises already owned.
Charton admits that the home had good elements from the onset that streamlined the updating process. “The house was a beautiful home to begin with,” she says, “and the Davises worked with me to make it fresh and current.” Sally concurs that although the renovation took longer than expected, it was worth the wait. Now she and Mel hope that the only type of mushrooms in their future are the ones they’ll be cooking up in their remodeled kitchen.
Architect Yeary Lindsey Architects, Little Rock
Builder Stewart Homes, Little Rock
Interior design Table Setters Inc., North Little Rock
Accessories Tipton Hurst, Conway, Little Rock, North Little Rock; Vivid Designs, Little Rock
Appliances Metro Builders Supply, North Little Rock
Carpet Pro Builder Supply, Little Rock
Closet Closet Factory, Little Rock
Custom finishes Angelfish Studios, Little Rock
Fireplaces Bill Kerr’s Fireplaces, Little Rock
Furnishings Cobblestone & Vine, Nichols Furniture Company, Little Rock
Hardware PC Hardware, Pro Builder Supply, Little Rock
Lighting TEC Electric, Jonesboro, North Little Rock
Plumbing fixtures Falk Plumbing Supply, Hot Springs, North Little Rock; The Plumbing Warehouse, Little Rock
Rugs Martinous Oriental Rug Company, Little Rock
Tile Acme Brick, North Little Rock
Upholstery Chism Upholstery & Furniture Repair, Clark Upholstery Gallery, Little Rock
Window treatments Interior Creations, Searcy