Creating Southern Elegance: A Formal Living Room Makeover, Before & After

Braden's Associate, Catherine Cummings

Braden’s Associate, Catherine Cummings

Catherine Cummings, a Braden’s team member and associate, shares images of a recent room makeover she helped to create for a client of Braden’s Lifestyles Furniture.

Catherine shares that these photographs are from a home out in the country, where the homeowners originally used dark jewel tones, leather furniture and tan walls in their décor scheme.  When the couple decided to update the room, they knew they wanted a completely different look to mimic the various palaces and grand hotels they visited while traveling through Europe.

The client had an image that she used for inspiration (featured below), and she made it clear, that to her, family is central in the home and she wanted a design that was elegant and formal, yet livable.  Using her inspiration picture and keeping her goals in mind, Catherine and she came up with a look  that incorporated several of her existing pieces.  The design successfully updated the room’s color palette, and gave her a Southern elegance with a very fresh style.

Catherine explains that together they changed the wall color throughout the downstairs, opting for a soft blue in the foyer and a pale yellow in the living areas and kitchen.  In addition, they ended up integrating some washed wood looks that were distressed, and they opted for a gorgeous coffee table by Habersham.

The upholstered furniture used in the room is from Highland House, which included some very individualized details on the accent pillows and settee.  The settee, as you will see, has a contrasting seat pillow, and swivel chairs were chosen for in front of the fireplace.  The swivel chairs allow for more functionality when the family is gathered.  The French Country cabinet on which she is displaying her china and various dishes, is from Jonathan Charles Fine Furniture, and it’s such a unique piece that it’s only produced when ordered.

The two chests that are on the wall with the family photographs are from Sarreid, and they too are absolutely gorgeous!  The lamps are an antique urn style, but with silk shades that have contrasting colors.  She rearranged her family photos since she wanted to keep those hung and in the room, and we opted for a wool/silk blend Oushak rug.

View the Before and After Images Here


Knoxville Before4

Knoxville Before

Knoxville Before3

Knoxville Before2


Knoxville Before Inspiration


Catherine Knoxville After3

Catherine Knoxville After2

Catherine Knoxville After

Catherine Knoxville After4

Stay tuned as Catherine and other team members share more beautiful home makeovers from Knoxville and surrounding areas, as well as vacation locales!  Learn more about Catherine and the rest of the Braden’s team here.

Braden’s Lifestyles Furniture is a residential and commercial furniture retailer, as well as a full-scale design shop, that has been serving the Knoxville community since 1956.  We offer professional design services in Interior Design and Home Staging.  Email us with questions at!


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