A Small Guest Suite Is a Modern Take on Victorian

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Name: Kelly Jackson, my husband Drew, my two kids (Lucy, 2, and Dylan, 5), and our low rider dog Walter, who also has a beard!
Location: Grant Park Neighborhood — Atlanta, Georgia
Size: 800 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year, owned

Our house is located in the Grant Park neighborhood of Atlanta, Georgia. It’s a really beautiful community that is surrounded by craftsman and Victorian style homes. Our home was built in 1890 by the Buchanan family. We fondly call the house the Buchanan House. It’s an Eastlake Style Queen Anne Victorian. This apartment in the rear of the home was created as a “mother-in-law” unit (guest suite) that can also be opened up to be a full part of the home. It connects directly through the music room of the main floor of the home.

The project of renovating this space was CRAZY. There were two, that’s right I said TWO, faux fireplaces, side by side on an entire wall of slate, which went all the way up to the 10-foot ceiling. It was so dark and gross. We worked with a preservation specialist to help us make decisions on how to best restore the space to what it would have originally been.

We worked carefully to remove all the slate and faux fireplaces and found the original fireplace and the 130-year-old tiles preserved underneath. It was amazing. We restored the trimwork throughout the space and updated the bathroom, while keeping the original clawfoot tub to the house. I live here (Kelly Jackson) and I am a marketer and designer, my husband is Drew Jackson and owner of local brokerage Park Realty. Our two kids (Lucy, 2, and Dylan, 5) live here as well, along with our low rider (part Basset Hound, part Labrador) dog Walter.

If you could magically change something about your home, what would it be? I wish that more of the period details had been preserved, but we have been working hard to add them back or uncover what was covered.

Any advice for creating a home you love? If you really love an object, a piece of furniture or a piece of artwork, get it! A home should be filled with things that give you a feeling or remind you of something special. Once you find those things you love, then go more simple with the other stuff, so that your attention is drawn to where you want it to be.

I love walking into our house and seeing things like the exposed fireplace. It’s very special to me because it reminds me of my husband and I working carefully to uncover it. A home is the memories you make, I think.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: A modern take on Victorian.

We had the tub restored and penny tiles added to the floor. Lastly, we converted what was previously a small dark closet into a bright open kitchenette with a separate entry from the back.

What is your favorite room and why? My favorite room in this space is the bathroom. It’s so light and bright and nothing beats soaking in an oversized clawfoot tub.

Thanks, Kelly!

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