Modern Traditionalism

Builder: Ben Hagaman, Hagaman Construction Company
Interior designer: Catherine Fore 

Residential home designer: Jon Greenfield, Greenfield Design

Minutes from downtown, builder Ben Hagaman has crafted a quaintly nostalgic, colonial-style home. “I was going for that very classic and idyllic, Father of the Bride type of house,” says Hagaman. Picturesque and traditional architectural elements blend with modern features for a beautiful, family-oriented twist. Open floor plans, monochromatic walls, sleek counters and cabinetry, and fully-equipped smart home features create a modern hybrid of a traditional colonial home.

By Katie Faulkner | Photography by Philip Slowiak
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Welcome Home

The six-paneled front door opens to a traditional foyer, wrapped in minimalistic wainscoting and flanked by two very conventional rooms, each with a refreshing interpretation. To one side is a modish take on a formal dining room and to the other side is the office – the only room downstairs that can be closed off from the rest of the space by a door. “Many people these days are deleting their dining room or asking us to put doors on it to turn it into an office. But in this house we put in both a dining room and an office,” says Hagaman.  See more from Hagaman Construction Company at

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“A traditional dining room is a space you usually only use a few times a year, so we tried to use the room in a smarter way,” says Hagaman. “I really only wanted this room to be big enough for its purpose.” The round, pedestal leg table and curved seating are another modern touch, complemented by the sleek brass candle chandelier. Traditional elements still lead the tone in this room, though, with wainscoted walls, wide-plank white oak floors, and two-piece crown moulding that highlight the room’s 10-foot ceilings. The cream, tufted upholstery of the seating, accentuated with brads, also carries the traditional tone in a modern shape. 

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Cabinetry: Scarlett’s Cabinetry  |  Cabinetry design: Daniel Waddell, Scarlett’s Cabinetry
Countertops and backsplash: The Tile Store |  Lighting and plumbing fixtures: Ferguson


In the heart of the common space, alba vera marble kitchen countertops partner with a beveled porcelain, crackle-finished subway tile backsplash to maintain crisp white hues with the custom cabinetry. Extraordinary detail work in the paneling of the cabinets gives a sturdy look of thicker, period construction while retaining a clean aesthetic. Vintage-inspired lanterns and a shaded pendant light continue the traditional styling. Daniel Waddell of Scarlett’s Cabinetry says, “The combination of the white painted cabinets on the perimeter of this kitchen with the historical blue-gray tones of the island makes for a strong classic feel.” Blues are carried throughout the home as a timeless color option. “The casual eating area allows all of the family spaces to be connected. The living room, kitchen, and breakfast area all open to the side porch to facilitate family togetherness,” Hagaman explains. “It’s a large enough house to be able to get away, but this main level is all about being together.”

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Art: Gallery 1401
Furniture: The Furniture Shoppe
Trim and interior doors: Interior Trim & Supply, Inc.

The adjacent living room boasts sturdy, traditional construction elements. “In this space, the thick walls are more evident. We chose to go with thicker walls to create an appearance of an older house,” Hagaman explains. One of two wood-burning, masonry fireplaces is featured in the living room, with recesses to either side, which are ideal for built-ins if ever desired.

The main level of the home is complete with a smart system. “The downstairs is wired for sound, cable, television, whatever you want, through a central control unit,” says Hagaman.

(above) The office is a traditional space with a modern style. Monochromatic from floor to ceiling, a rich, slate blue color is relaxed but focused, lending a sense of sophistication. “While we wanted to use neutral colors throughout, adding a bold-colored room helps keep things interesting while simultaneously anchoring the home with a strong accent color,” says Fore of the impactful choice.

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Tile: Louisville Tile

(above) Also on the main level, the master bedroom is a serenely simple retreat. A tufted, cream bed blends with the pale walls for a dreamy, calming color scape. Twin gray-blue bedside lamps rest on mid-century end tables with brass pulls and carry the home’s affinity for blue tones into the master suite. Light fixtures also cultivate a traditional tone throughout this home. “Incorporating lanterns, brushed brass, and wrought iron tones in the light fixtures really reinforced that historic feel,” Fore says.

The master bathroom features an interesting and traditional layout, with a functional approach to shared spaces. Two sided master baths are a common feature in homes from the era this house is modeled after. “We did a ‘his and her’ style master bathroom to facilitate the reality of how difficult it can be to share this space when everyone is trying to get ready at the same time,” Hagaman explains. “With this walk-through shower, everyone has their own stylized space. ‘His’ side is more masculine, while ‘Hers’ is more feminine with the soaking tub and larger closet.” 

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Windows, exterior doors, and shutters: East Chattanooga Lumber & Supply Co.

Craftsman shutters carry the blue hues outside and trim the home in refreshing, classic charm. “The location of this house is fantastic. From almost anywhere inside you can see the park, the tennis courts, the golf course. You’re minutes away from the country club. You could watch your kids play from the windows or the side porch. You always have somewhere beautiful to go for a walk. And honestly, the extra-large garage and ample street parking allow this home to have plenty of people over even on this smaller lot,” Hagaman says. A Bevolo gas lantern lights the entry portico, while boxwoods in wooden planters round out the charming and nostalgic styling. And as Hagaman notes, “White houses are just classic. They never go out of style.”

Other Suppliers: Flooring: Kenworthy Hardwood Floors
Floral arrangements: Lines Orchids and Summerfield Studio Floral Design
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