Deconstructed style

Deconstructed style

If you’ve seen the movie, “Under the Tuscan Sun,” about a woman who starts over by moving to Italy and renovating an old villa after a relationship breaks up, then you’ll understand the sentiment behind this home purchased in 2014 in Nashville by a woman wanting a fresh start.

Several friends had suggested that I call Julie Hays Gaglione to see if she’d give me a tour of her Nashville home and a few days ago, it finally happened!!! To my utter delight, I walked into an historic home on what was once a cattle farm and is now a chic, unique house full of treasures mixed together with loads of light pouring in.

Julie purchased the home in 2014 from the Strayhorn family. Ruth Starr and Alfred Strayhorn lived here many years and were known to be lovely people who according to Ruth Starr’s obituary, “delighted in opening their home to new friends as well as those fostered over many years of vibrant life in Nashville. ” Julie got to know Ruth Starr after buying the house. She had been an interior designer before turning to her favorite medium, painting. A painted border she did remains on the floor of this room full of personality.

Julie worked with her designer friend Tracy Smith to make the house her own and reflect her love of a mix of vintage and sleek. She describes the huge painting seen below as chaotic. No doubt it’s a strong colorful piece that makes a bold statement. They added the white tulip table and an upholstered bench with folding bamboo chairs in the middle of the room, close to the fireplace with its original tiles.

A painting of Julie’s daugher by well known artist Murat Kaboulov hangs above the fireplace and behind it is scrap wallpaper she found while unpacking a box! She’s crazy about wallpaper and really loves the deconstructed look.

Unframed art and raw edges are her forte. Julie has peeled back wooden paneling and other wall coverings to reveal what’s underneath. She doesn’t believe in rules when it comes to decorating her home, and won’t pigeonhole herself.

That deconstructed look is even more pronounced in this room off her kitchen that includes a very large old mirror that once hung in the original Nashville courthouse and later in her boyfriend’s Aunt Beulah’s home! She loved it and it works so well in this space. You can also see some of the underlying blue wallpaper peeking through, reminding you someone else used to live here.

I think my mouth was hanging open as I moved from room to room. It’s just so creative the way Tracy and Julie mix things, paying homage to the past while incorporating some of the new. A perfect example is in the kitchen with what Julie describes as a sputnik light fixure towering above the primitive long table.

They added the beams, tile, and Julie bought the sink at an antique show in Lebanon, Tennessee. Other additions include a zinc counter plus a stunning Italian range made by Bertazzoni.

And there’s much more! A sun drenched room that runs the width of the house in the back is so welcoming with its wall to wall windows, beams and long long farm table, another find from an antique show in Lebanon. Julie is about to change the floor color to pink!

In her back hallway is evidence of her love affair with wallpaper. She says it’s her “porn,” along with design pages on Instagram!!! This wallpaper is designed by Swede Joseph Frank.

Julie’s reading room is more subdued with soft pink chaises, stripped walls, family photos and momentoes.

Aren’t these floors beautiful?

Her bedroom has the same deconstructed quality with its edgy walls that were sandblasted.

And the bathroom!!!

That is wallpaper that’s jumping out at you!!! What a statement. Tracy suggested they have the bathtub feet removed, and use wood under it instead. Then there’s a sleek faucet, so again, the new and the old mix. And speaking of that, take a look at the vanity, a former workbench she found at Gas Lamp Antiques in Nashville.

This home is so original and I love Julie’s respect for who came before her, living their lives between these walls. Her project manager’s wife had a special quote framed for her that hangs by the front door. Julie had found the saying at a restaurant in Georgia and took a picture of it.

Such a lovely sentiment honoring the past residents and those who will come after.

Thanks so much to Julie for opening her doors to Stylish Retreats.

  • Terri Merryman
    Posted at 09:58h, 26 January Reply

    Thank you for sharing! LOVE it!

  • Cindy Waggoner
    Posted at 08:09h, 26 January Reply

    Amy, your write up nailed the history and aura of this treasure. I’ve been to Julie’s home and was overwhelmed by her creativity and original expressions of how she artfully surrounds herself with what brings her joy. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Sharon Harper
    Posted at 07:58h, 26 January Reply

    I always look forward to your wonderful stylist retreats! Well done♥️

  • Dana Oman
    Posted at 07:38h, 26 January Reply

    Wow! Tracy and Julie are very talented. They also happen to be very sweet and wonderful people. Well done Amy!!!

  • Elizabeth Scruggs
    Posted at 07:35h, 26 January Reply

    WOW! I love it!

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