A Warm Welcome

A fusion of relaxed Charleston style and prim English aesthetics, the Werners’ East Brainerd home is a quaint and inviting retreat.

By Candice Graham  |  Photography by Med Dement
The Werners Clark and Sharon Werner

The Werners
Clark and Sharon Werner

Lush landscaping lines the yard of the Werner home, situated just off the picturesque Council Fire Golf Course. Hot pink azaleas, verdant evergreens, and an assortment of leafy plants sprout up around a trickling boulder fountain, and a shady cobblestone driveway winds its way to the front entrance. With peaked rooflines and a brick façade, the home has a mountainous, retreat-like quality to it – not unlike the couple’s previous home.

“Sharon and I raised our children in the country, but when they grew up we decided it was too much for us to manage,” says Clark Werner. “She had let me design that home, and it was lodge-like and rustic.”

This time around, Sharon felt that she would love more of an English-style home, so the two began drawing up new plans.

The finished product was this stately brick abode, which the couple has now lived in for the past 19 years. More recently, the home has been updated with the assistance of Bill Worley Construction and Classic Cabinetry, and it now shines with a new luster.

The foyer of the home is warm with buttery-yellow walls and rich Persian carpet. Marble floors, a staircase with oak handrails, and a cherry Grandfather clock add touches of stately elegance.

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To the left, the formal dining room is furnished in rich, saturated tones. Textured wine-hued walls lend a regal air, while a round crotch mahogany table allows for easy conversation. Along the back wall, a glass-front china cabinet displays treasured blue china passed down from Clark’s great-grandmother. A serving cart that once belonged to Sharon’s mother now displays antique crystal and silverware.

The foyer’s light yellow walls continue straight into the formal living room, which has a bright, sunny vibe with its high ceilings and large windows. The Werners drew upon a favorite vacation spot – Charleston, South Carolina – for the room’s design inspiration. The focal point of the room is an exquisite crystal chandelier purchased by the couple on one of their many trips to the locale. Built-in cabinetry flanking the fireplace displays family heirlooms, such as a sterling silver tea set that belonged to Clark’s grandfather. A tall antique cabinet on the opposite wall is filled with vintage wedding photos and keepsake quilts. Family crests hang on the wall near a glossy baby grand piano, rounding out the room as a true tribute to Clark and Sharon’s family.

To the left of the living room is the kitchen, in which cherry cabinetry from Classic Cabinetry and cherry ceiling beams lend a refined rustic feel. Granite countertops with burgundy veining complement a warm wood used for the center island and high bar.

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With assistance from Bill Worley Construction and Classic Cabinetry, the couple recently renovated part of the garage into a walk-in pantry. Outfitted with the same granite as the kitchen, it is both a functional storage space and a continuation of the kitchen’s aesthetic.

A six-burner stainless steel stove, a steam confection oven, a traditional oven, and a concealed double refrigerator and freezer make for easy preparation of family meals. Plus, two dishwashers – one in the pantry and one in the kitchen – make cleanup simple and quick.

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A connected den and dining area is painted an inky blue. The den is outfitted with plush furniture and rustic accents, making it an ideal place to cozy up with a book. A brick fireplace with flameless candles adds a glow without extra warmth on summer days, and a continuation of the kitchen’s ceiling beams gives the space a cohesive look. “We live in this room. It’s our everyday space,” Sharon explains.

A few steps off from the kitchen, the dining space is a go-to spot for everyday meals. A round, removable-leaf dining table has an intimate feel and is easily transformed to accommodate more guests. Light filters into the room through paned glass windows, and an  antique reproduction chandelier adds a cheery glow overhead.

The master bedroom, located in a quiet corner on the opposite side of the home, features an oval tray ceiling designed by Clark. From it hangs a glistening Schonbek mirror that reflects light against the room’s chocolate brown walls. Light blue drapes, bedding, and upholstery offer a cool compl
ement to the warm paint color. The attached master bathroom uses an array of textures, from grasscloth walls to leathered marble countertops. Hardwood floors add warmth to the room, while a two-level closet provides ample space for storage.

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