Nashville-based interior designer Robin Rains was exposed early to the art of creating beautiful spaces. Her father was a contractor and for Rains it was clear from the start that she would pursue interior design. For nearly two decades as proprietor of Robin Rains Interior Design + Antiques, Rains has created timeless, liveable sanctuaries. Her visually stimulating oeuvre is a joyful celebration of domestic comforts.
In 2018, Rains and her team were approached by two long-standing clients. They commissioned her to transform the Pope-Robeson building in the historic district of downtown Franklin, Tennessee from an impersonal, commercial storefront into a warm, vibrant home meant for living and entertaining. Erected in 1899, the 1,000-square-foot structure is now a house with one bedroom, one bath, kitchen, living room, foyer and a combined bar and dining area. The brief for this modest project on the historic registry of Williamson county, was whimsy, play and respite. By incorporating unique lighting fixtures into the home, Rains and assistant designer, Kate Ladd Chlebowski, elevated it from its commercial character and infused it with warmth, creating moments of visual interest and illuminating the space. For Rains, “Lighting is everything.”
Two armless, 70’s orange-leather chairs with chrome bases face one another in the foyer, exemplifying how vintage pieces can enliven a space, and how a pop of color can add an element of aesthetic drama and intrigue to a space. The core of her design work is to highlight the classical while integrating modern elements. Rains prefers antiques to new pieces for their craftsmanship, patina and the stories that they carry. “These pieces offer a lot of opportunity for play,” she concludes.
Photography by Leslee Mitchell.
Architecture by Scott Wilson, LLC.
For more like this Tennessee home be sure to check out this Victorian mash-up with a modern twist.
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