Desiring a traditional house with plenty of land for gardens and landscaping, Chip Jones and Scott Lile sold their zero-lot home in Memphis, purchased a five-acre property in a quiet Roland neighborhood and built a Federal-style home filled with comfortable furnishings. Because Scott is a native of nearby Little Rock, Chip says the move was a long time coming. “The problem was that we were on the go all the time,” he remembers. “But we finally moved to the country to slow down and enjoy life.”
In addition to gardening, Chip has since discovered other ways to relax and enjoy life as a landowner. A floral and interior designer by trade, he believes that the key to a beautiful holiday home is using fresh elements, so during the winter months he takes long walks in search of foliage to incorporate into his décor. To complement the traditional style of his home, he looks for classic greenery such as pine and cedar and seeks fresh berries that will continue his holiday colors of classic red and green. This year he also added the occasional blue accent to keep things interesting. “It’s a very popular color right now,” he says.
Chip begins in the home's vaulted great room with a live 12-foot fir tree. He incorporates pops of color with a blue ribbon tree topper and contrasts his classic ornaments with white lights. While many of his ornaments are vintage treasures, he doesn't adhere to rules when collecting them or deciding where to place them on the tree, and he would gladly purchase an ornament at a discount store if it caught his eye. “Make it fun and choose what you like, whether it's expensive or not,” says Chip.
Natural elements extend to the entryway and more formal living room in the form of handcrafted garlands. Heavy layers of faux garland interspersed with twigs of live pine line the staircase banister in the entry. A similar technique appears on the fireplace mantle in the living room, where Chip weaves in white lights to highlight a cherished heirloom oil painting on the wall above the fireplace, adding to the traditional feel of the space. “It's a portrait of Scott's great-great grandmother, who lived in Hope, Arkansas, during the mid-1800s,” Chip explains. “It was the inspiration for the room when we built the house.”
Not to forget the exterior, Chip creates a welcoming sight for visiting friends and family by wrapping rustic-looking garland around the white columns and hanging wreaths over each of the windows. “I enjoy decorating because it is a season of pure joy, a time to come together with friends and family, many of whom you may only see this time of the year,” he explains. For him and Scott, the holidays are also a reminder of the reason that they decided to purchase land and build their house in the first place. “At the end of the day, we love coming home,” he says.
Builder, contractor Jett Ricks, Jett Ricks Construction, Little Rock
Interior design Chip Jones, P. Allen Smith Garden Home, Little Rock
Holiday decor Tipton Hurst, Little Rock
Artwork Marshall Clements, Little Rock
Carpet Abbey Carpet, Little Rock
China Wedgwood, Williams-Sonoma, Little Rock
Countertops House of Marble, Little Rock
Fabric Cynthia East Fabrics, Little Rock
Furnishings Pflugrad's Antiques, Marshall Clements, both in Little Rock
Lighting Bear-Hill Interiors, Little Rock
Stone, exterior and great room fireplace Bennett Bros. Stone Co., Little Rock
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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.