For a busy mom of three, it was time to take back the family’s dark and dated den and create a space all her own. With designer Nicole Culler at the helm, she did just that—turning the room into a space that invites you to kick up your feet and stay awhile. And with a chic and well-stocked home bar, there’s no need to go anywhere on a cozy winter’s evening! Over email, Nicole told us a bit more about the project. (Just wait until you see the before pics!)

Tell us about this project. First, who is the client? What condition was the room in at the start, and what were her goals in the remodel?

My client is a successful real estate agent, wife, and mother of 3 grown children. The youngest is a sophomore in college. Now that all 3 children are out of the house, it was time to bring the family den into the 21st century. MooMoo, as she’s called, has reclaimed this room for herself. This dark paneled room has been well used and loved over the 20 plus years, the Councill’s have lived in this house. It was begging for some TLC. MooMoo’s number one must for this room was to make it brighter and feel like a retreat, a place to relax in and enjoy. Nothing fussy! The space also needed to be livable, easy to care for and tailored. At any time, one can kick up their feet on the cocktail table. 

When it came to the design, was there one element that was a “must have” that influenced the rest of the space? 

MooMoo is more of a “Tom Boy” at heart and gravitates towards greens and blues. Thibaut’s Cairo pattern in Green and white, with a hint of the lightest blue, was the jumping off point that played an influential role in how the design unfolded and morphed into what you see. 

This space called for performance fabric on the sofa and a pet friendly rug, to accommodate Oliver the family dog. Oliver rules the roost and has a favorite spot in the room on the sofa. He has already put both to the test. I am happy to say all has passed with flying colors. 

Could you “walk us” through the room and share a few of your favorite details?

As you walk through the front door of the Councill’s home, the den is straight ahead. You cannot help but notice Thibaut’s Cairo fabric used on the drapery panels against the freshly painted white paneled walls. This element of the design draws the eye into the space and sets the mood for the den. The white painted paneling brings the den to life, feeling so much brighter and inviting. Once you walk in you realize there is so much more to take in. Not only a beautiful sofa with a chaise to relax on but an updated bar for entertaining. 

I love the detail of the nailhead trim on the Vanguard sofa with its performance fabric that has the most supple hand. The Thibaut Grassmarket Check pillows reflect the more traditional side of MooMoo and add another layer that complements all the other elements of the design. 

The updated wet bar, with its granite countertop, sleek faucet, shimmery paper and glass shelves, is the final touch this space needed to complete the design scheme. It is unexpected when you first walk in. Its refined design and details, down to the door pulls, compliments every inch of the den. 

How long did the project take, and what did MooMoo say when she saw the finished space?

The project took about 3 months from start to finish. The installation took place right before North Carolina was placed under quarantine due to COVID. MooMoo loves her reclaimed space. She may or may not allow anyone in, were her words. 

She LOVES her new space. The downside is, so does everyone else in her family. I take this as one of the greatest compliments! Since installation I have gifted MooMoo a reserve sign to hold her spot on the sofa. 

Not one of of us ever thought we would face what we have over the past 2 years. MooMoo said, “the den was a life saver during lock down and could not have imagined a more beautiful space to quarantine in.” It’s space that truly reflects her style and personality.