Raised Center Hall
in a state of perpetual progress
One of my favorite architecture styles in New Orleans, the raised center hall. Constructed in 1873, two doors down from a dairy and currently on the National Historic Register. The hall itself can be so much more than just a hall or pass through. It can be an entirely different sitting room or office or even an extra dining space.
This project started with selecting key functional pieces of furniture to embellish the curated antiques the homeowner loves to collect. Home to 5 girls, 2 dogs, and a family on the go. We are constantly changing rooms, art, window treatments, the use of rooms, style as well as items. Now even status. When we started the girls were varying ages from elementary school to college. Now all are off to college, medical school residency or have graduated and married. Now they even have grandchildren. So the house continues to undergo a metamorphosis of sorts based on the family's needs and lifestyle changes.
It needs to seat, feed and entertain lots of people, so one room currently has 3 sofas! Two of the sofas can double as sleeping spaces due to their depth and modular adaptability. This was very important in the initial selection. Durability was also key as well as the overall look. Nothing too modern for this family. An eclectic, crusty, bit funky with a touch of old-world elegance thrown in would best describe their look. It sits on a large corner lot with a front and back porch, boasting the original iron fence, original weighted windows, heart pine floors, and a walk-out second story veranda. Due to the center hall configuration, it even provides a play area and space to create another bedroom in the hall upstairs making the large 4 bedroom 3 bath home into a 5 bedroom if the hall bedroom had a closet. The front and back porches provide a place for projects and dining as well as the center hall in addition to the dining and kitchen tables. Armoires provide additional storage space due to lack of downstairs closets while there are 3 walk-ins in the eaves upstairs.
Most antique items were procured from a friend’s antique shop. The main seating and sea glass entry chandelier were also procured locally, taking into account the input of the 4 girls still living at home at the time. The house boasts a library full of books as the entire family is avid readers. The farmhouse style kitchen is very rustic and comprised of antique furniture pieces topped with wood and painted with porch paint. The island is on casters for mobility during holidays and big gatherings. The variegated ginger is always readily available from the yard outside unless we have a harsh freeze. The guitar sits beside the secretary from a music lesson as all of the girls have had music lessons in addition to being avid readers and great students. At one time, the front bedroom was converted to a study room when all the girls were younger, and the fireplace was kept purposefully blank for focusing on studies. Only colored votives on the mantle tie into the stained glass windows adorning the space instead of art.
Spaces have been for sewing rooms, school projects, bunk beds to single rooms, playroom and even temporary wallpaper featuring frames for all of the family photos. It's a work in progress and continually changing as their needs and lifestyles change.