The Contemporary Craftsman

Architect: Jay Caughman, Caughman + Caughman Architects


As Jay Caughman of Caughman + Caughman Architects explains, “This home is both contemporary and craftsman. It shows more craftsman features on the exteriors and more contemporary elements throughout the interiors, but it carries both styles well.” With sleek lines, deep earthy colors, and a thoughtfully flowing layout, this home has a unique identity executed to perfection.


By Katie Faulkner  |  Photography by Philip Slowiak

Showpiece Staircase

“This staircase is like a piece of jewelry. It highlights some of the best features of the home, and it’s on display from almost anywhere in the main living spaces,” Caughman says. Not only is it on display inside the home, the two-story wall of windows also shows it off from outside the home. The contemporary staircase floats just off the wall, supported only by its steel frame. It had to be brought into the house in pieces by a crane. Wrapping the dining room, it makes an impactful impression for dinner parties, and just to the right of the front door, it immediately sets the tone for the rest of the home. It shows the home’s boldly designed contemporary flair front and center.

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Continuing into the house, the kitchen and living room open up to each other. Rich colors on the walls mingle with the home’s materials. Rift and quarter sawn white oak flooring builds an aesthetic foundation with a warm golden honey hue, while tan and rust red furniture continue the same ambiance. The fireplace wall is centered as the focal point, with a deep burnt brown tone melting seamlessly into the poured and polished dark concrete hearth. The linear, sleek, and contemporary fireplace is framed in copper trim with sliding glass doors, and the artwork above the mantle echoes the same copper touches. This room is a cozy entertaining area, with large picture windows that look out to woods behind the house and sliding doors that access the large outdoor living area.


Fireplace surround: Stone Source, Inc.
Trim and interior doors: Interior Trim & Supply, Inc.
Windows and exterior doors: East Chattanooga Lumber & Supply Co.
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In the kitchen, lavish materials create a sleek, contemporary aesthetic. Solid walnut cabinetry with flat panel doors and straight dark hardware shines in its simplicity and rich colors. State-of-the-art appliances and a well-thought-out layout make this kitchen ideal for cooking and entertaining. It’s open to the rest of the main living spaces, and the curved island provides additional seating. The large slab of quartzite on the island is unique with gray to green veining in impressive patterns. Cut-glass tile backed in gold leaf creates a retro-contemporary backsplash that gently pulls in the gold-tinted pendant lights over the island. A walk-in pantry is found behind the cooktop’s wall and features stainless steel countertops for appliances to be used and stored, while being out of the way.


Appliances and plumbing fixtures: Ferguson | Countertops and tile: Stone Source, Inc. | Lighting fixtures: The Lighting Gallery
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In the master bathroom, specialty features were blended into the home’s streamlined style. “The homeowners wanted a hammam, which is a Moroccan steam room they had experienced on vacation,” Caughman explains. In response to this request, Caughman and a team of other craftsmen developed a custom-cast shower sofa, with curves modeled after an outdoor lounge chair. The sofa’s concrete runs continuously through the shower’s glass wall and into the surround of the neighboring soaking bathtub. “The geometries on this sofa were precise. It took a lot to make all these shapes work together, but it’s so well crafted,” Caughman says. The sofa is heated with radiant heat, and multiple showerheads make this steam shower a luxurious retreat. The soaking bathtub tucked into a corner provides another luxury while being out of the way of the modern styled vanities. The streamlined look of this master bathroom fits in perfectly with the home’s contemporary styling.

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Craftsman elements are found throughout the whole home. Features such as flat, wide millwork and natural wood accents carry the style delicately through the interiors. However, the exteriors are where this style really shines. Stained posts and a vaulted portico entryway are enhanced by traditional craftsman materials like stone and fiber cement siding. Only a touch of contemporary can be found in the modular front door which was imported from Germany, hinting at the bold styles of the interiors.


outdoor fireplace and seating area on patio of contemporary craftsmen home by caughman + caughman architects in chattanooga


An inviting outdoor living area is arranged with multiple seating areas and a place to eat. The large stacked-stone fireplace elegantly incorporates local sandstone. The vaulted, wood-planked ceiling and stamped concrete patio floor are enduring selections, helping the area to feel established and solid.



contemporary craftsman home streamlined layout and viewpoint in chattanooga home by caughman + caughman architects


From special focal points to streamlined layouts and warm materials and colors, this home blends craftsman elements with contemporary styling in a fresh new way.


Other Suppliers:
Artwork: Deede W. Gram, Alex Birghenthal
Cabinetry and stair treads: Shawn Freed
Custom painting: Core Painting
Fireplace: Set in Stone, Shawn Freed, and Southern Hearth and Patio
Flooring: Stein Wood Products, E. D. Martin Hardwoods
Furniture: The Great Backyard Place and Chattanooga Bar Stools and More
Glass enclosure and mirrors: The Independent Glass Company
Pantry countertops and staircase: Steel Hammer Designs
Pocket door: Push Hard Lumber Company
Shower seat, vanities, and sinks: Set in Stone
Stone: Lopez Hardscaping
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