Newlyweds traded in an empty room and a pair of leather recliners for a den that meshes both of their styles.
Meet the Hassingers
It was five years ago that Erynn and Will Hassinger were introduced on the sly at a friend’s Cinco de Mayo party. What transpired over chips and salsa led to first and second dates and eventually a wedding.
Since then, the couple has had ample time to work out the kinks that are common to all newlyweds. For instance, Will lives and dies for sports, whereas to Erynn, sports are just “background noise.” Will is a natural-born night owl, while Erynn is much more of a morning person. Still, one hurdle didn’t appear until the Hassingers bought their first house together. “I know how to combine text and images for a page layout that makes sense,” says Southern Living Senior Designer Erynn. “But furniture layout is another story. I didn’t even know where to begin.”
Meet the Mediator
Associate Decorating Editor Anne Turner Carroll was one of the first people Erynn called after moving into her new home with Will. The two colleagues held an impromptu den meeting, and within minutes, Anne Turner began finessing the room’s flaws into solutions. “Every decision we made was in response to their wish lists,” she says.
It helps to have an inspiration board of fabrics and finds such as a flea market chair, a sectional sofa, and even a wreath.
His and Hers
Clean lines. Will’s first place, a townhouse he and Erynn shared for the first year of their marriage, had a mostly modern feel.
Nothing too girlie. Will was cool with accommodating his wife’s color request, as long as it didn’t veer too far toward pink. A big TV over the fireplace and a comfy seat to watch it. “I’m about 6 foot 5, so I need a big, deep couch,” Will says.
Even before Anne Turner arrived, the TV was already above the fireplace. “A ginormous TV was our first joint purchase,” Erynn says. This was fine with Will. However, the big screen drew attention to the uneven wall at the fireplace. Anne Turner’s solution got unanimous approval: Flank the fireplace with built-in bookshelves. Carpenters took the shelves’ height to the ceiling and made their depth flush with the fireplace. “The bookshelves were a necessity in terms of adding a sense of symmetry and giving the room more character,” she says.
Get the Look
Wall paint: Dix Blue (82) by Farrow & Ball.
Trim paint: White Heron (OC-57) by Benjamin Moore.
Ceiling paint: Divine White (SW6105) by Sherwin-Williams.
Paint on backs of bookshelves: Brown Horse (2108-30), also by Benjamin Moore.
Decorative white books (in shelves): Parchment Series from E. Lawrence Ltd..
White vases (shelves and mantel): Various styles all in white by Middle Kingdom.
Console: Dutch Industrial Console table by Restoration Hardware.
Baskets (console): Bailey Baskets, Pottery Barn.
Floor lamp: Ari Floor Lamp by Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams.
Wood bin: Suzanne Kasler Zinc Harvest Basket from Ballard Designs.
Wreaths: White Lacquer Magnolia Wreath by The Magnolia Company.
Stylish and Durable
A sectional sofa covered in a khaki Sunbrella sailcloth gave Will his sprawling landing pad and solved the seating arrangement challenges by floating perfectly in the center. Plus, the Sunbrella fabric won’t fade and will easily shed stains. Durable Sunbrella fabric allows the couple’s dog Madison to enjoy the sofa, too.
The sofa’s neutral color, a woven jute rug, and neutral bookshelves provided the ideal platform on which to layer Erynn’s gotta-have-it colors—which came with the ikat fabric draperies, pillows, and accessories.
Get the Look
Chair fabric: Fez Background Brown on Tan Linen by China Seas through Quadrille, available through Decorative Center Services; 713/961-9292, ext. 1320.
Chair trim: Vintage Link Jade by Kelly Wearstler through Lee Jofa, available through DCOTA; 954/921-7575.
Reupholstery: Leonard Upholstery & Furniture Repair Shop; 205/251-3021.
Pillows in chairs: Pink Ikat from Madeline Weinrib.
Side table: Mandara Side Table by Roost.
Rug: Round Jute Rug in Natural, Pottery Barn.
Pouf: Handmade Moroccan Pouf from John Derian Company.
Sofa: 4800 Sectional by Lee Industries.
Sofa fabric: Sailcloth Sahara by Sunbrella, also available through Calico Corners.
Pillows on sofa: Collins Ikat, also from Madeline Weinrib; Ikat Stripe in blue, red, and yellow from Kathryn M. Ireland Textiles and Design. Seville Tile in Saffron/Baby Blue by Galbraith & Paul. Fez II Brown on Tan Linen by China Seas through Quadrille, also available through Decorative Center Services.
Coffee table: EXPEDIT by IKEA.
Made by Southern Hands
One of the couple’s favorite touches is the custom artwork (at left) by Amy Catherine Wilson. The Birmingham artist will create mixed-media art on canvas or wood panels according to your specifications. “Clients will typically bring me samples of wall colors or fabric swatches,” Amy says. “Then I’ll create a small sample of what I have in mind and we’ll go from there.”
Love It? Get It!
Painting: custom art by Amy Catherine Wilson; 205/410-6188 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who knew there were so many options for curtains? “Curtain designs are endless,” says Anne Turner. For the Hassingers’ den, Anne Turner chose a fan pleat design and installed the curtains at ceiling height to create the illusion of taller windows. Natural-fiber blinds mounted outside the windows’ molding, finished the look.
Love It? Get It!
Window shades: Provenance Woven Wood Shades in Charleston fabric, Ashley River (#WWCH-743) by Hunter Douglas.
Curtains: Custom Fan Pleated Draperies in Khandar Jewel, from Calico Corners.
Hardware: Wood Trends Classics 2" smooth poles, 21⁄2" rings and 31⁄2" return single rod brackets in Hazelnut (827) by Kirsch.
On the wall opposite the curtains, shallow ledges display art the Hassingers have collected. “I wanted to incorporate our art,” Erynn says. “We found most of it together, and it reminds us of all the places we’ve been.” And just like that, these newlyweds had the den of their dreams.