Homeowner Melanie Chiera's Instagram account documents the transformation of the farmhouse where she lives with her husband and their two children in Canton, Georgia. "My husband and I designed every part of our home together, and watching everything come together was an incredible experience," she said in an interview.
When Melanie was deciding on how the house would look, she settled on a theme that's a mix of modern and French country farmhouse. For the color palette, she chose neutrals mixed with natural woods and hints of blacks and natural foliage.
When it comes to decorating, she tells others not to hurry. "The best advice I can give is to take your time decorating and do not fill your spaces because you 'need to.' You will find the decor that you love and that's meant to fit in your home. It can take days, it can take months or it can take years but once you find it, you'll know. It's a marathon, not a race," she said.
Melanie describes her home as "home sweet home." She shares, "We were renters for decades, and although this is the second home we have purchased, our farmhouse truly feels like home. We've put every bit of our hearts and souls into designing this home, where it's the first time it feels like we belong and are here to stay. "
The exterior of the house features Westhighland White by Sherwin Williams. The wood pillars and shutters are stained Dark Walnut by Minwax, whereas the double glass French doors are stained mahogany. The exterior brick is a whitewash brick that was laid around the bottom of the edge of the house as well as on the porch. Melanie chose black geometric light pendants to light her home.
The porch expands from the garage to the opposite end of the home. It is decked out with a custom bed swing as well as several rocking chairs. Melanie explains what it means to have a porch: "It was extremely important for me to have a sitting area outside the house so I could be present and comfortable, while my two children played outside."
In contrast to the exterior, which has a modern vibe, Melanie wanted to have a softer feel inside. A typical French country styled farmhouse served as her inspiration.
The main focal point of the living room is the fireplace. "We used the same brick from the exterior of the home to face our hearth while accenting the fireplace with a natural cedar mantle," Melanie notes.
They needed versatile and practical seating, so Melanie chose accent chairs and couches with slipcovers that could be tossed in the washing machine easily.
The dining room has been kept very minimalistic. The table is custom built and stained. On the other hand, the chairs, which are from the late early 1900s from France, came from a local antique shop. Melanie reupholdstered them with burlap.
Functionality, as well as the idea of having guests, were the two main factors Melanie kept in mind when it came to designing the kitchen. The open shelving was custom designed to match the oversized kitchen island. A set of cabinets in the kitchen stores the mismatching cups and kids plates.
"The master bedroom is one of my favorite spaces. My husband and I installed the shiplap on the back wall together," Melanie shares. All of the furniture came from different local shops. "It was extremely important for me to find furniture that wasn't too "matchy" but went well together," she adds. The builders installed double French doors toward the back of the bedroom for secure and private backyard access.
With its very modern patterned ceramic tile flooring and quartz countertops, the master bathroom has a distinctive look from the other rooms in the house. The extra-large two-headed shower is a special feature.