A Birmingham Retreat... (Part 2)

Yesterday, I posted about a Birmingham condo owned by John and Janet LeGrand that I had the privilege of staying at last weekend. The space is so wonderful, I wanted to share even more pics today...

The dining room is located in the center of the home, which until I saw this layout in person, I realized is actually a very cool thing. As the dining room is the communal space to share food and stories and laughter, I love that it is in the very center of things. John built the table from white oak and made the top with white Portland cement. John smoothed it out to give it a whitewash look, then stained and distressed it. The rug is from Bungalow Classic in Atlanta. 

From the dining room, you can access the guest bedroom. From the living room, you can access the master bedroom. Then both bedrooms share a bathroom, which is a very smart use of space. Janet found both the table lamps and headboard for the master at Bungalow Classic. 

The bathroom is a wonderful mix of whites and grays with a heaping dose of natural light. I love the tile work...and the shower curtain, via West Elm. The lovely mixed media wooden artwork is by Rachel Austin of Portland, Oregon. 

The kitchen is truly a work of art, recently remodeled by Janet and John. Last year, I posted all about it. See the entire post, which includes before and after pics, here. 

What makes the condo even more special is how it is situated in this beautiful courtyard, just steps from Mountain Brook Village. I could eat, drink and shop 30 seconds upon leaving the front door. During my visit, John informed me that he's currently working on a greenhouse and root cellar for his farmhouse. He showed me a few pics of the project and it looks incredibly cool. I'm crossing my fingers I get a chance to blog about that too. A big thanks to John and Janet for letting me stay at their incredible Birmingham retreat. I feel so lucky...


Photos and Content: Sweet Peach

A Birmingham Retreat... (Part 1)

Last weekend I had the pure pleasure of visiting Birmingham, Alabama for the first time. And what made it even better was having the keys to this incredible condo, right in the heart of Mountain Brook Village. It's owned by John and Janet LeGrand, who spend about 5 days a week at their farmhouse in Northern Alabama, then head down to their city retreat for the other couple of days. Dreamy. Even dreamier, I spent two nights here...

This condo is meticulous. Every square foot has been given much thought and care. John is a self taught carpenter, Janet is an architect and together they know design. Gus the Goat hangs to the left of the archway and is actually a mountain goat from Mongolia that Janet's father shot. It was a passion of his and Gus now stands guard.

The living room painting is by Jinni Thomas, which the couple recently found at the Karan Ruhlen Gallery in Santa Fe. John immediately felt a connection to it, which is an important factor when choosing any piece of artwork. Wanting something with a pattern, they bought the yellow chairs at Lee Industries in North Carolina (as well as the couch) to help tie in the yellow and golds of the painting. 

The entryway had me at hello. As John and Janet create masterful works with upcycled wood and paint (they're currently taking a break from the shop), you'll find their absolutely stunning, modern art pieces throughout the condo (It's impossible to pick a favorite). There is a small dish at the entryway filled with the best smelling potpourri (via Saks Fifth Avenue) I've ever had the chance to experience. John wanted that first moment you open the front door to be a good one. It is.   

What may be hard to convey through these pictures is the incredible layout of the condo. There are no hallways and it's all a bit unexpected and charming. The sunroom is one of my favorite rooms as it's an inviting space, not to mention flawlessly put together. 

John was inspired by a lamp he saw at CB2 and set out to make his own version. He glued together some pieces of pine and added red cord and paint. The lamp shade he had custom made by Fenchel Shades

I love these Merino wool blankets I had read about but had never seen before. John and Janet have one in their living room, another here in the sunroom. They are from Nordt Family Farm in Virginia. And the pretty pillows are from Thomas Paul. 

John continues his craftsman domination with this wonderful coffee table that is the perfect scale for the small sunroom. He had one antique milk crate already and found a matching one on Etsy. Next, John cut blue stone to the dimensions he wanted and rigged it all together, painting and distressing to his color preference. The zigzag rug is via West Elm. 

John and Janet bought this rope pendant from Bungalow Classic in Atlanta. As the sun fills the room each morning, no extra light is needed. It's a pretty special place to begin the day...

The bowling pin lamp on the desk was found in an Atlanta shop and the desk itself John made from Ipe wood, then paired it with custom legs he had made by Modern Legs in Erie, Colorado. 

The bookcase leads into the sunroom where my eye was immediately drawn to the custom made lamp. John used collected driftwood he had found in Oregon and paired that with some leftover scraps of wood. Then he painted and sanded- his usual magic. The bookshelf itself John carefully crafted from sinker cypress wood, which John informed me are found logs that have been sunk- common in Louisiana. Sigh, it's all just so good...

Please be sure to check back in tomorrow for Part 2 of the Birmingham Retreat. 


Photos and Content: Sweet Peach

Janet and John's Kitchen Remodel

My friends Janet and John LeGrand of the truly fabulous Etsy shop, Paint Square in northwestern Alabama, recently remodeled their kitchen. With a butler's pantry and a tight space of just 8' 6", they tore down an entire wall, removing the pantry and opening up the kitchen to a much more workable 12'.

What a gorgeous job they did. They hired a contractor to overee construction but John is a handy guy and helped build many of the key features of this kitchen. The building is from 1930 so they used white penny tiles for the floor with dark gray grout to give it a historic yet modern feel.

John built this gorgeous recess wine rack. Each shelf is on a four degree slope so the wine bottles don't roll off. The lithograph print is Charlie Harper's Ladybug, a perfect complement to the space that plays well off the gray and white floor and the 'pop of red' Janet and John have created. 

Behind this curtain is a washer and dryer. Janet had a seamstress sew the curtains from a singular curtain found on sale at Restoration Hardware. As Janet explains, "John used plumbing pipes for the base of the table and the shelves and applied a unique process finish to get them the coloration that they are."

I think this bar cabinet is my favorite feature of their new kitchen. John built this out of scraps of wood and an old crate. Recessed lights were added that are on a touch pad dimmer. I just love the idea of taking something found and incorporating it into a more modern space. It adds instant character and personality to the room. Beautiful job Janet and John, thanks so much for sharing. I'll be posting about their Etsy shop again soon but if you get a chance, check out some of their new creations.


Photos: Janet and John LeGrand     Content: Sweet Peach 


Geometric Goodness

These delightfully pleasing and one of a kind works of art come from husband and wife team, John and Janet LeGrand of Peckerwood, Alabama. After deciding they wanted to create a cost effective handmade product to sell on line, Janet was inspired to create something with stripes that also had a clean, modern look. John suggested accomplishing this with wood, to which Janet replied, "that's awesome." I'd have to say their final result is exactly that. This Complementary Set of Three would look lovely in my someday office.

Their art best complements a design aesthetic that is minimal, modern or rustic. Much of their wood is found at the local sawmill, often in piles of 'waste wood' that are full of pine and white oak. They also utilize some heart pine timbers that John's dad acquired, a type of wood once commonly seen in the flooring of Southern homes. Peruse their shop to pick your favorite and learn more about their process here.

To diversify their look, John and Janet created these very cool giclee prints accented with clip art. Click for the Cow or Seven. So uniquely, perfectly lovely. I want one of everything... 


Photos: Paint Square   Content: Sweet Peach