When David Kirkpatrick of Cabbage Rose Floral Boutique purchased his 1938 house in Little Rock’s Hillcrest neighborhood two years ago, he was drawn to its cottage style but wanted to add warmth. “It has good bones with built-in shelves, French doors and arts-and-crafts details,” says Kirkpatrick, “but I also wanted it to be a place of comfort.” So he decided to roll up his sleeves and get to work, weaving in layers of earth tones and his signature eclectic style to transform the space into a comfortable cottage hideaway.
Paint was Kirkpatrick's first priority, and he opted for natural earthy shades inspired by fall foliage. A golden yellow, which Kirkpatrick says creates soft apricot-hued shadows in the evening, makes a statement on the living and dining room walls. In the master bedroom, Kirkpatrick chose a soothing sage green that appears “to disappear at night,” he says. And in the bathroom, he chose to temper the stark white tile with a deep earthy brown paint.
The same earthy brown tones down the white cabinetry in the kitchen, where updates included tearing down old paneling and installing a washer and dryer behind closet doors. “I applied a darker stain to the door slats with a Q-tip to balance the white frame,” Kirkpatrick says. For additional warmth, he then sanded and applied a walnut stain to the home's originally blonde-colored hardwood floors.
Next came the furnishings, including a medley of English and French antiques, as well as the occasional Scottish or Hungarian piece, which Kirkpatrick has patiently amassed over the years. Rather than searching for new finds, he buys antiques that appeal to him the most and that transition with him from home to home. He also likes to adapt his collection of antiques to fit his comfortable lifestyle, having recently upholstered a bench with a worn tapestry rug. He notes that it's a great alternative to a coffee table, “because you can actually put your feet on it.” To cover his other furnishings, he chose muted fabrics and worn-in leather.
With neutral furnishings as a base, Kirkpatrick was able to spice up his home with interesting and colorful accessories. He has a particular fondness for architectural elements, such as shutters hung over the doorways, while his blue and white china collection complements the yellow living room. Art also appears prominently, including vivid Barry Thomas paintings and floral works by Kirkpatrick himself.
There's no denying that Kirkpatrick's new home maintains a cottage feel, along with the added benefit of personalized comfort. “I always considered myself an antique collector,” he says. “But when I moved into a cottage, it all took on a whole new atmosphere.”
Interior, floral design David Kirkpatrick, Cabbage Rose Floral Boutique, Little Rock
Accessories Fabulous Finds Antiques, Hamilton-Mayton Antiques, Little Rock
Art Barry Thomas, Arden Boyce, Little Rock
Furnishings Ellen Golden Antiques, Pflugrad's Antiques, Little Rock
Hardware Home Depot, locations statewide
Paint Sherwin-Williams, locations statewide
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At Home in Arkansas offers your first look inside the state's most inspiring homes in a range of styles. The magazine features monthly advice from the experts to help you plan your next remodel or redesign, entertain at home or find Arkansas' best kept secrets. It is your definitive guide to the state's finest homes and gardens, design professionals, fashion and entertaining essentials, and premier shops and showrooms.