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Interiorssneak peeks

A Bright Nashville Home for a Stylist and Musician

by Lauren Chorpening

I’m looking forward to the day when I don’t have to think about renewing leases every year, the day when updating my kitchen doesn’t involve red tape, and the day when I can feel ownership over the place in which I live. Renting is great for now, but there is something unsettled about it to me. Mary Ellen and Jacob Arnold craved a more permanent address a year after moving to Music City. The process was challenging, but the result is a serene, gorgeous space that is absolutely theirs.

, a hair stylist, and , a touring musician, moved from Atlanta, GA to Nashville, TN in 2014. After living in a rental for a year, the couple wanted a place to settle into and call home that didn’t come with an expiration date. Mary Ellen and Jacob ended up house-hunting in a hot market, touring homes that were sold the same day they were listed for sale. The process was more intense and competitive than they had anticipated. Their real estate agent convinced them to look at a ranch home on a busy road since it had recently been flipped and was in their budget, despite the high-traffic road making it less desirable. The pair walked in the door and made an offer immediately. “I’m so glad it’s ours,” Mary Ellen says. “Buying a home was so hard, and this being our first was a roller coaster ride. I’m excited about all the memories we have made and are going to make.”

The Arnolds got to work immediately, personalizing the recently renovated space with their own style. “We wanted our house to be open and bright,” Mary Ellen shares. “I like the Scandinavian-style homes and wanted that minimal feel for our home. We also wanted it to be comfortable and cozy. I feel like it’s some sort of mix between minimal, rustic, whimsical and Art Deco.” The home is light and airy with a cohesive palette of whites, greys, pinks and wood tones throughout. Mary Ellen’s eye for detail and styling enhances each room’s charm. The Arnold residence is a place that Jacob loves to come home to after traveling abroad for shows, and it’s a place where Mary Ellen (and little dog Therman) can feel comfortable while Jacob is away. This unexpected home was worth the fight, and it’s theirs as long as they want it to be. –Lauren

Photography by

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The Arnold's home is layered with rich textures and a mix of furniture styles. They have made an aesthetic that is personal to them.
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Mary Ellen, Therman and Jacob Arnold in their bright, inviting living room.
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Light, airy colors are matched with bolder pinks and dark charcoals in the living room. The minimal, yet lived-in decor blends their love for Scandinavian design and southern style.
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Mary Ellen incorporates small hints of pink and brass in each room of the house. "The coffee table was an IKEA table that we refinished with reclaimed wood," Mary Ellen says.
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The front door contrasts with the living room stunningly. "The black doors and gold handles are probably one of my favorite things," Mary Ellen exclaims.
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The dining area is right off the living room and is connected to the open kitchen. They have decorated the space with natural wood tones and materials that balance the space with the modern design of the kitchen. "If I could, I would have one million plants and they would all be fiddle leaf figs," Mary Ellen says.
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Mary Ellen's styling touch on the dining room shelves keeps things light, cohesive and sentimental.
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Mary Ellen and Jacob at their dining room table, writing their "What I love most about our home is..." note.
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The finishes in the kitchen were primarily chosen by the flippers that sold the house to them. The couple has incorporated their own distinct style into the space, even in the kitchen.
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The kitchen opens to the dining room and leads into Jacob's work space.
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"The faucet in the kitchen was an early Christmas gift," Mary Ellen says.
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"eBay did it again with the rug in the kitchen," Mary Ellen says. The balance of old and new in the kitchen and dining area is perfect.
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This chair is a favorite element in the space. It is comfy and chic, which is a design goal that Mary Ellen and Jacob have for each piece they buy and decorate with.
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The pair added personality and function to an otherwise blank wall with a brass pantry.
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Jacob's music studio is right off the kitchen. When he is not on tour, Jacob is a freelance musician and works from home.
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"The drum room is my least favorite room, probably because it's not white. We have other plans for it, too, but for now it works for the space," Mary Ellen says.
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The master bedroom has the cozy, refined feel that the couple worked for. Therman approves of this room as well. "The pillow with our initials on it was made by my sister-in-law," Mary Ellen says.
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Mary Ellen's love for fashion shows up in the interior design of their home.
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The bedroom is calming and minimal with a mix of materials.
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"My office room, aka my closet, will hopefully be a nursery one day."
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"The desk in my office is an antique porcelain-top table that I bought with my mom," Mary Ellen says.
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"The next big thing we'll do will be building a second bathroom! Think floor-to-ceiling tile and petite fixtures! The funny part is that there was a second bathroom before we moved in, but the people who flipped our house took it out and turned it into a closet."
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Mary Ellen tries as much as possible to keep their home clutter-free. Even the linen storage is minimal.
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"The light fixture in the bathroom was an anniversary gift," Mary Ellen says. "Nothing says 'happy seven years' like a light fixture!"
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Hip moments are seen throughout the home in small ways, styled by Mary Ellen.
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The guest room is charming and sweet. "The Nashville sign was made by my sister-in-law," Mary Ellen says.
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Mary Ellen is a salvage and secondhand queen. Her ability to take unwanted pieces and turn them into beautiful moments is on-point.
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Their dreamy guest room is ready at a moment's notice for Mary Ellen and Jacob's out of state family and friends to stay.
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"What we love about our home is..."

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