An Enchanted Artist's Bungalow
July, 2013 - Issue #105
Sometimes I walk into a client's home and feel a profound sense of grace and warmth because the house is a true reflection of the family that inhabits the space. Such is the case with two of my favorite clients, Molly and Kevin McCarthy. A walk through the McCarthy's enchanting home is a treat for the eyes and food for the soul. Molly and Kevin's Southern hospitality totally charmed me.

The McCarthy's hired me to design draperies throughout their charming one-story home. My design inspiration came from Molly's casually elegant, Southern design style. Four rooms and nine months later, I learned a lot about design from some true Southerners and made new friends.

The home itself is lovely, but what makes the house "sing" are Molly's original paintings. Molly painted many of the pieces, while some are inherited from her father's collection. I sat down with Molly to learn a bit about her unique Southern design style.

You relocated to be near your daughters and grandkids. Do you miss the South?
We think of moving to a new place as an opportunity for a new adventure in marriage. When a job has led to a move, we didn't want to find a neighborhood or a house just like the one we'd left. Life for us is about taking advantage of new experiences. In Marietta, Georgia we raised our kids within walking distance of the quintessential Southern town square. In Mississippi, as empty nesters, we found a fun neighborhood on a beautiful fishing lake. In Houston we had the big house with a pool. Yes, things really are bigger in Texas! When we moved to Santa Clarita we considered a condo but decided living without a porch would be too much of an adventure. It's a "Southern thing!"

Your father was a painter. Did you learn about art and design from him?
I didn't start painting until I was an adult. I actually developed my style from both my parents. They taught me that unique pieces such as antiques and art co-mingle gracefully alongside affordable finds.

In a small house, it's wise to have rooms serve dual purposes. Tell me about the dining room.
For a tiny space, the dining room gets a lot of use. During the day it works as a nice place to sit and look at magazines and work on projects on my laptop. When the grandchildren drop by it is transformed into a place for Lego building, puzzle making, playing with the dollhouse my father made and, once the table is covered with a festive plastic tablecloth, it becomes their art room.

Did you know this was "your home"
the minute you saw that amazing kitchen?

When we saw this house with the red tile roof, Saltillo tile floors with coyote footprints, French doors leading to a patio and of course the incredible open space and beautiful kitchen created by the previous owner's remodel, we felt like we'd found our California bungalow. We are having fun making it our home.

What is the story behind the
"We Live On Vacation" sign outside?

While living on Lake Caroline outside of Jackson, Mississippi, friends often asked Kevin what it was like to live on the lake. The 20-minute drive in absolutely no traffic just seemed so far out of town to people from Jackson. His response was always the same: "We live on vacation." On a typical workday, Kevin would walk in the front door in his suit and tie, kick his shoes off, take his tie off, grab his fishing pole, roll up his shirt sleeves, ramble to the backyard and go fishing.
Tami Smight Interiors, a full-service Santa Clarita interior design firm established in 2004, specializes in distinctive window fashions. 430-0127
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