House crush

House crush

I love doing this blog and here’s a perfect example why. Getting to see the houses I’ve always loved.



I used to drive by this house and pine for it.  Even before it was renovated.

Turns out this tudor revival built in 1929 is considered historic in Forest Hills, featured in a book that documents various architecture from that time period in the suburb west of Nashville.


The current owners, Bond and Dana Oman, purchased the home nine years ago after designer Grei Hinson had done extensive remodeling to the house.

They have recently added a motor court to the front to make it easier for guests to come to their front door, and then be able to circle through and leave with ease.



Page Duke Landscape Architects was hired for the project.  Besides that graceful and welcoming feature is a magical back garden, pool, pavilion, fountain and upper rose garden also designed by Gavin Duke that would make you green with envy.


I must let the pictures tell the story of what collaboration between Duke and the home owners resulted in.





Along with great form is function, as in a kitchen in the pavilion. And a large fireplace for those chilly days and nights sure to come at some point this fall.








Pretty special, right?  Gavin Duke says the best compliment he received on this project was, “What did you do?”

The question indicated, of course, that the person felt like the gardens had always been there.  It was a seamless transition to walk from inside the home to the back.  It all ties together.  Or as Duke says, “it speaks in a language similar to what was already there.”

That is reflected in the entire project.  You feel like you’re in a European setting, so tranquil, elegant and romantic.



Going back around to the front of the home, you see and feel the connection, with more roses climbing on the wrought iron trellis.




Dana Oman was gracious enough to show me through the downstairs.  This is not the kind of house that could be easily duplicated. It has  plaster walls and what are considered Tudor arches.



Interior designer Mark Simmons worked with the family on furnishings, upholstery and rugs but also encouraged them to use pieces they already had that would still fit in.  He is known for classic and timeless design that also has a European flair.


Sumptuous fabrics, rugs and art enhance what is already there.  For a family of five with a dog, cats and chickens, this is elegant but very comfortable.  Just ask Roxy.



Then there’s the master bedroom which is very warm and soothing.   It has a masculine touch with antlers above the bed, yet retains femininity with fabrics.  The wooden headboard was made by Vintage Millworks which also did extensive work in the bedroom, adding a wall to make the room more cozy and removing European closets.



Even the short walk to the master bath is beautiful, again incorporating the detailed wood panels seen throughout the home.

Then there’s great light where you need it, yet privacy,  with a large vanity also made by Vintage Millworks.



This is the kind of home you just don’t find very often and because of that, I adore it. It’s like breathing history with the updates that make it work for a family today.

And whether they’re inside or outside, there’s comfort and a place for solitude wherever you turn.


Many thanks to the Omans for sharing this retreat with me.  Next time I hope to meet Dana’s chickens.


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