Ben and Erin Napier Tackle Their Most Dramatic Renovation But
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erin and ben napier

Erin and Ben Napier on the porch of their most dramatic renovation but.

Frank Frances

Leaving your small city to pursue your goals is a traditional transfer—however returning dwelling will be much more fulfilling. After an upbringing in Laurel, Mississippi, three dispersed siblings discovered themselves craving a house base nearer to their father, the place their children may expertise the neighborhood that formed them. Collectively, they bought a crumbling Victorian home in-built 1900 for a worth befitting of its raveled state: $14,000.

The constructing wanted a serious overhaul—not simply so it could be livable, however to amplify its historic appeal and make it useful for big household gatherings. So the siblings referred to as on the perfect recreation round to resurrect the property: Ben and Erin Napier, the renovation wunderkinds (and well-known locals) behind HGTV’s HomeTown.

Spanning 2,000 sq. toes, the two-bedroom, two-bathroom dwelling had been uncared for for a few years. The inspiration, siding, and flooring have been all rotted. Dilapidated entrance steps, peeling wallpaper, and a dank kitchen rounded issues out. “We actually have been pondering that somebody would, in the future, purchase and tear it down,” Ben says, noting that might’ve been “a disgrace as a result of Laurel would not have an enormous assortment of Victorians.”

“You must think about, What’s the 2023 model of 1900 and the way do you pay tribute to that?” —Erin Napier

The owners—siblings Pam Paulsen Danielson, Tom Paulsen, and Jennifer Paulsen Thornton, who vary from their late 40s to early 50s—agreed on most design choices and compiled a $178,000 price range for the undertaking. However every had particular requests: a hovering kitchen ceiling, wallpaper galore, and distinct Victorian accents. With Ben’s woodworking expertise and Erin’s design experience, the husband-and-wife group has tackled a spread of difficult initiatives on their present—however this was the primary time they’ve had three owners to please for one renovation.

“The entire objective of this undertaking and the way in which we renovated it was to revive it and return it to what it was—what we have been suppose it was,” Erin says. They set to work on the outside, front room, eating room, kitchen, and laundry room addition.

The house’s quintessentially Southern showpiece? A welcoming wrap round porch with a gingerbread railing and ornamental higher brackets, and outfitted with rocking chairs for alfresco chats. “I’ve by no means completed any type of gingerbread work, nevertheless it was wonderful how easy it was and what a huge effect it had,” says Ben. Siding painted Rookwood Jade and porch flooring in Renwick Olive, each by Sherwin-Williams, make the house replicate the pure panorama.

Past the entrance door, a “welcome mat” parquet design was constructed into the wooden ground, changing a rotted patch of oak boards. Unique pine trim and wainscoting, stained a darkish chocolate brown by the previous homeowners, is now shiny with a gloss varnish that preserves and reveals off the distinctive grain sample. “Most individuals wish to paint their historic trim,” Erin says. “I feel it is an enormous mistake 90 p.c of the time.” “When you paint it, you possibly can’t return!” Ben added.


Shared childhood reminiscences between the artist Shelley Bolton and the owners are scribbled underneath the painted canvas. “Once they noticed it, they cried,” Erin mentioned. Bench and pillows: Southern Antiques. Throw blankets: Tuesday Morning. Wallpapers: York Wallcoverings.
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On the coronary heart of the house, by way of French doorways, is the eating room—and central to that house is a customized, expandable desk constructed by Ben and the group at Scotsman Basic Retailer & Woodshop. Manufactured from maple wooden, it rotates, collapsing or increasing to suit as much as 10 folks. Within the center, there is a star design—manufactured from salvaged wooden from a basketball courtroom on the College of Mississippi, the Paulsens’ (and the Napiers’) alma mater. “As a woodworker, I do not wish to simply construct one thing as a result of it is stunning,” Ben says. “I would like there to be a narrative there.”

To make the kitchen a spot the place households would truly wish to spend time, the ceiling peak was raised and the seven layers of flooring have been eliminated to disclose the unique pine beneath. Shaker cabinetry with steel fretwork inserts on the uppers, painted Restoration by Sherwin-Williams, match the home. A granite countertop provides just a little texture and heat. “I am so uninterested in seeing slabs of white,” Erin says. “It might really feel actually out of sync to place a countertop like that in a home from 1900.”

Artwork brings the entire house collectively: A framed piece of the house’s authentic cheesecloth wallcovering hangs within the kitchen. And a portray of the road the place the siblings grew up, a fee by a neighborhood artist and their longtime good friend Shelley Bolton, greets guests on the door. Because the renovation, the Paulsens’ father has handed away, however the home nonetheless stands as a testomony to the household it introduced collectively. Every little quirk and nuance is well known: “Imperfection is an indication of the expansion and evolution of a home in historical past,” says Erin, “not one thing we should always cowl up and be ashamed of.”

Watch the Napiers repair up this home on Season 7, Episode 3 of hometown, “New-stalgic Restoration.”

Dwelling Room

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Frank Frances

New wallpapersFernwater Cranes from York Wallcoverings, brightens the once-dark house.

Sofas, pillows, and armchairs: Southern Antiques. Espresso desk and shades: Shotgun Design Group. Quilts: Laurel Mercantile Co. Desk lamp: Targets. Material: Wayfair. wall artwork: Caron Gallery.

Eating Room

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Frank Frances

“I wished it to really feel like this very intimate and comfortable hug within the middle of the home,” Erin says.

Wallpapers: Cover in Sage, York Wallcoverings.desk: customized, Scotsman Basic Retailer & Woodshop. Chandeliers: Lark Manor. Eating chairs and sideboards: Southern Antiques. rug: Metropolis House Heart. Desk lamp: The Laurel Leaf. Shades: Shotgun Design Group. Material: Wayfair. wall artwork: Caron Gallery.

A easy gloss varnish preserves the previous millwork. “In case you tried to sand this, it could flip into gum,” Ben explains. Consoles: Shotgun Design Group. Desk lamp: Tuesday Morning.



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“Historic home equipment have been usually enameled, so our Vikings vary is a nod to that,” Erin says.

Paints: Delicate Suede (partitions) and Restoration (cabinetry), each Sherwin-Williams. Ceiling and trim paint: White Dove, Benjamin Moore. Counter tops:Stoneworks. Backsplashes: Anatolian Tile & Stone. Sink: Kohler. Cupboard {hardware}: Wayfair.

Breakfast Nook

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Frank Frances

Tucked right into a nook with home windows, the breakfast nook is sort of a hug in the home. It is excellent for watching each the dawn and sundown. The chandelier, present in the home, was repurposed with linen drum shades. “Anyplace you eat ought to really feel intimate, the place you possibly can have nice conversations,” Erin says.

desk: The Remnant. Curtains: Targets. Pillows: Southern Antiques. Eating chairs: European Vintage Auctions.



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The Napiers performed up the house’s Victorian roots with a gingerbread railing and ornamental brackets for the brand new porch. Rocking chairs from Sam’s Membership set an inviting ambiance.

Siding paint: Rockwood Jade, Sherwin-Williams. Flooring paint: Renwick Olive, Sherwin-Williams. Trim paint: Creamy, Sherwin-Williams. pendants, sconces, and ceiling followers: Sunbelt Lighting, LLC. rug and pillows: Lowe’s. Wicker desk: Southern Antiques.


Frank Frances

French doorways off the lounge lead out onto the wraparound porch. “The porch makes this home,” Ben says. “With out it, the home was bland and insignificant.”

desk: Wayfair. rug: Walmart. Wicker chairs: Southern Antiques.

“You’d spoil it by attempting to make it excellent, so why make it excellent?” —Ben Napier

You like stunning properties. So can we. Let’s obsess over them collectively.

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Affiliate Editor

Kelly Allen is the present Affiliate Editor at Home Lovely, the place she covers design, popular culture, and journey for digital and the print journal. She’s been with the group for practically three years, attending business occasions and masking a spread of subjects. When she’s not watching each new TV present and film, she’s shopping classic dwelling shops, admiring resort interiors, and wandering round New York Metropolis. She beforehand labored for Delish and Cosmopolitan. Observe her on Instagram.