As You Are
Logan Killen Interiors renews northshore house to reflect couple’s personalities and lifestyle
Designers Katie Logan Leblanc and Jensen Killen began to formulate design ideas for Kate and Carl Camp within minutes of meeting the couple.
“So much of our style direction was really based on our first impression of Kate,” says Killen, one half of the design duo the Camps hired after seeing their work on Houzz.com.
“She had Pinterest boards with lots of color and was so excited about bringing in cool crazy chairs,” says Logan Leblanc.
Kate is a veterinary surgeon with a love of rescuing animals and crafting, while Carl owns a compounding pharmacy and spends his leisure time hunting. Together with their 10-year old daughter Kelly they recently moved to a larger home to accommodate their growing pet family and hobbies. Rather than gut the somewhat-dated house and start from scratch, the designers and their clients settled on a course of refreshing the groundwork with paint, new surfaces and fixtures and then furnishing the house with a combination of elements that spoke to the Camps and reflected their lifestyle.
The designers say Kate has a vibrant, spunky, yet down-to-earth personality that informed the groovy traditional style. Using this style as a base, they layered in a bit of southern charm and masculinity for Carl by highlighting his taxidermy collection and going a bit moodier in rooms like the library and master bedroom.
Top, left: The traditional dining table was made by Fireside Antiques in Baton Rouge and paired with two different styles of chairs. End chairs from Villa Vici with Caroline Irving fabric and side chairs from Etsy with Nate Berkus fabric. Christina Foard painting from Gallery Orange. Top, right: Built-in cabinetry in the dining room and between the living and dining rooms houses the family’s glassware collection. Bottom, left: Logan Leblanc and Killen used grass-cloth walls and a toasty camel-colored drapery fabric to make the bedroom a cozy retreat. Desks used as end tables from Serena & Lily, baskets from West Elm, drapery fabric and fabric on Mitchell Gold bench, both Peter Dunham. Bottom, right: Instead of removing the built-in cabinetry (which the owners use for glassware) between the living and dining rooms, the designers painted it and added new hardware.
Logan Leblanc and Killen began with the living room, where the family spends the bulk of their time, using images from Pinterest, putting together an image board, pulling fabrics and paint colors to make sure they were headed in the right direction.
“We worked on the living room and breakfast room simultaneously because they’re adjacent and we wanted them to be cohesive,” says Killen. The look, as seen in both the original design board and the rooms themselves, is, in Killen’s words, “light, sunny and happy.”
A similar vibe reigns in the kitchen, where the designers whitened all of the maple cabinets and wooden surfaces. Rather than rid the kitchen of its existing granite counters, no longer in step with current kitchen trends, Logan Leblanc and Killen changed the look of the counters by adding a backsplash of Calacatta subway tiles and replacing the island’s counter with the same Calacatta.
“We were viewing the Santa Cecilia granite kind of like tortoise shell, so we brought in the Calacatta with gold tones to play off of it,” says Killen.
Left: The kitchen’s dated maroon walls and maple cabinetry were transformed with white paint. The designers lightened the existing Santa Cecilia granite counters with a subway tile backsplash and an island, both of Calacatta. Benches by Lee Industries through Villa Vici. Right: The library’s laminate floors were removed and replaced with wall-to-wall sisal. A rich hunter green and royal blue palette provides a backdrop for the couple’s art. Lamps, side tables and rug from Sofas & Chairs. Taxidermied animals from Carl’s collection add to the masculine feel of the room.
The same lightening and brightening approach was carried through to the bedrooms (of the six, two are used for the family, two as guest rooms, one as a craft room and one as an exercise room) and the bathrooms. Cabinets, layouts and the locations of fixtures were retained, while surfaces, plumbing and lighting fixtures, tile surrounds, bathroom floors and wall-to-wall carpeting were renewed. The two exceptions are the master bedroom, where grass-cloth walls and rich layers create a relaxing, slightly darker retreat within the home, and the library, where a more masculine aesthetic prevails.
In Kelly’s room, the designers worked to craft a more grown-up space than she’d had in the family’s former home and, as they had elsewhere in the house, found inventive ways of circumventing and concealing less-than-appealing surfaces and architectural oddities. An alcove beneath a dormer window that might easily have been wasted footage, became a desk area framed with cork walls for pinning images.
The one room that was gutted and reconfigured was the master bath, deemed unworkable due to an awkward layout that included a corner tub. The designers say the master bath embodies the look they were working to achieve.
Addressing the family’s entertaining needs was important to the renovation as the Camps have a large extended family and host gatherings for as many as 25 people at a time. To avoid repetition in the neighboring breakfast area and dining room, the designers opted for different seating arrangements in both. The dining room offers the more traditional of the two concepts, with a table and chairs that seat eight. The breakfast area consists of two matching round tables paired with an L-shaped banquette and a set of Windsor style chairs.
Top, left: A nook created by a dormer window in Kelly’s room was turned into a desk area accented by cork walls that serve as a pin-board. Quadrille drapery fabric. Drapery by Wren’s Tontine. Desk lamp by Schoolhouse Electric. Top, right: A subtle lattice stripe wallpaper by Farrow & Ball and green floral drapery fabric by Michael S. Smith for Templeton add pattern to the breakfast room. “It’s nice in a house this big to have some surfaces that aren’t painted,” says Killen. Prints by Leslie Peebles. Bottom, left: beadboard detailing topped with coral toile wallpaper by Cole & Son bring color and pattern to the guest bath. Bottom, right: An English antique from Fireside Antiques is used as a console in the entryway. Oly mirror, vintage lamps.
Because the home has such a large footprint and so many solid painted surfaces, the designers were keen on bringing in pattern with wallpaper and fabrics. They also added antiques and vintage pieces that convey a feeling of age, Bohemian elements, which are a mainstay of their eclectic approach to design, and worked with the couples existing art collection, comprised largely of folk art and art by locals.
“We love to add pieces that feel like they’ve been around for a while or were inherited,” says Logan Leblanc.
The result is a house that’s pleasing to both the design team and the homeowners.
“It’s always rewarding when you work with clients who trust you,” says Logan Leblanc. “It doesn’t mean they didn’t give their opinions, but they did let us make a lot of design decisions and in the end, they were really happy.”
Top: A custom valence and shades (Wren’s) disguise dated glass block windows. Morrocan-style Rug from Etsy. Calacatta marble from Triton Stone. Custom vanity. A pair of mirrors from Wisteria, ideally sized for the custom vanity, and sconces from Circa Lighting lend detail to the master bath. Bottom, left: A chest from Pottery Barn Kids with a vintage basket lamp from Etsy does double duty as both storage and bedside table. Bottom, right: A symmetrical arrangement in one of the two guest rooms: headboard from Serena and Lily, lamps West Elm, throw from Anthropologie, side tables from Etsy. Window treatments by Wren’s Tontine. Pillow fabric by Caroline Irving.