Historic Hideaway Revival

By Christina Davenport

Photography by Jimie Luangrath/ Creative Revolver

Mary Beth and John Bode weren’t looking to move when they stumbled across an early-1900s home north of the river. The couple lived just a few streets over and has always adored the area. “We were fine where we were and we had plenty of room, but when we saw this home for sale it just seemed like a neat thing to do,” says Mary Beth.

Over the course of the next several decades, the Bodes spent a considerable amount of time and effort restoring the home to its former glory. The walls were replastered, the original floors were reinstated, central air conditioning was added, and the majority of the hardware was taken off the property where it was cleaned before being brought back and used once again.

“It seems like there’s always work to do. We would get to a place where we could stand the disruption of another home improvement and undertake a new phase of restoration,” says Mary Beth. “But that is also the most rewarding part. It almost feels as though, with each project, the house is coming back to life.”

Upon approaching the home’s exterior, it’s easy to see why the Bodes fell in love with the property. The white colonial revival home is punctuated with two charming dormer windows and a suite of black shutters. A crape myrtle rises above the roof line and adds another vibrant color to the landscape, while a brick walkway and radius step leads to the front porch where two ferns flank the front door.

dining room

After stepping inside, guests find themselves in the foyer. A stately staircase directly ahead leads to the top floor of the home, and a formal dining room is situated to the right. Six slipcovered chairs surround an oval wooden dining table. Complete with hand-painted portraits, a silver tea set, and cloud white millwork, this room emulates a sense of opulence.

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Meanwhile, by taking the first left off of the foyer, visitors can gain access to a formal living room. Here, four upholstered armchairs and a light sofa encapsulate a mirror-top coffee table, and their narrow spacing promotes intimate conversation. The neutral color of the furniture, along with the walls, allows for the Bodes’ eclectic art collection to garner the attention it deserves.

“When it comes to art, we buy pieces based on what strikes our fancy,” explains Mary Beth. “We have some traditional pieces and then some that are more abstract. Someone told me once that if you like a piece of art or décor, it’ll work with the other stuff you like.”

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On the top floor of the home, a tranquil master suite offers up the perfect respite. Neutral linens are expertly paired with wood furniture and several botanical influences for an earthy but airy atmosphere. An armchair rests next to a cozy fireplace with white brick surround and makes a great spot for enjoying a cup of coffee while reading a book. The spacious en-suite makes a statement with its elegant marble basket weave flooring.

A his-and-hers furniture-style vanity repeats a similar material and rests under a set of picture frame mirrors, while steps away a footless soaking tub doubles down on the opportunity for relaxation.

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Back on the main floor, the kitchen is a space fit for the most enthusiastic of home cooks. Pale mint green walls are broken up with white cabinetry, some of which feature glass-front doors in order to showcase an impressive suite of barware and serveware. An apron-front sink and white subway tiles continue the color selection, while paneled appliances effortlessly fade into the background. Slabs of honed marble top the counters for a refined touch.

“I love the warmth and timelessness of marble,” says Mary Beth. “As with most rooms in the house, I want the aesthetic to be classic, but at the same time cozy and comfortable.”

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white home with greenery

“This home is not a grand property, but it is quirky and comfortable and has been a labor of love,” says Mary Beth. “It’s been an honor to serve as this home’s caretaker for just a portion of its existence, and I’d like to think there will be another young and foolish couple who will someday eagerly take over its care and cherish its charms as much as we do.”


John and Mary Beth BodeJohn and Mary Beth Bode

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