When many designers work on projects, they often start completely from scratch with their clients – everything from dishware to upholstery is bought new. But not in this case – Jamie Hamilton and Greer Nelson of Oliver Simon Design worked with their clients, a couple who were soon to be empty-nesters, to incorporate their beloved heirlooms into their newly purchased home.

“The existing home that they had been in was quite dark, so they wanted to make sure the new space felt light and airy,” the designers said. “This family came to us with a substantial collection of art and antique furniture that had been in the family for many years, we wanted to honor those pieces but needed to make sure that the new home felt open, airy and updated.” The first bold decision they made was to paint the dark built-in shelving in the living room white. They also selected a sophisticated color palette for the walls, including changing the living room’s black walls to white, and a warm grey in the master bathroom.

Jamie and Greer took time to gracefully incorporate the couple’s beloved antiques into the home. “It was a puzzle that took some thought and time to piece together,” they shared. “Reusing existing furniture is often more difficult than buying everything new.” They reupholstered the sofas, dining chairs, and armchairs in elegant but contemporary fabrics from brands such as Schumacher, Romo, Mark Alexander, and Thibaut. The artwork was reframed with protective UV glass by Chernoff Fine Art to give it a more updated look.

“The homeowners were thrilled – they had a fresh start and so did all of their antiques and impressive art collection,” Jamie and Greer said.