Summer's in full swing at chiropractor Kathryn Allen’s beautiful house in historic Newnan, GA, where you'll find plenty of sun-soaked porch hanging, grilling, and impromptu dance parties. We sat down to hear all about how Katie found her dream home full of charming architectural details—you’ll love the glance at her dreamy office and how she styled her Rio Sofa.
Hi, Kathryn! Could you give us an introduction?
Hello! I’m Kathryn Allen, a Georgia native living in the beautiful, historic town of Newnan. It’s one of those towns where people come to visit and are charmed into staying. We live close enough to the downtown square to walk, grab a coffee at Leaf and Bean, and shop the local boutiques.
I was introduced to Newnan when I was offered a job here after graduating Chiropractic School in 2010. In fact, just six months prior to taking the job, I moved to Los Angeles and finished up my internship as a Doctor of Chiropractic working in a Holistic Wellness Center in beautiful Santa Monica. Despite the differences of living in a big city near the sea versus small suburban life, this place has captured my heart and really is home. I reside here with my husband, Kevin, our 8-year-old son, Smith, our very feisty 5-year-old daughter, Emery Kate, and our 10-year-old mut, Lucky.
What's a typical day for you like? Are you a homebody or more of an out-and-about person?
We are finally in summer, so our routines are much different than the typical school year. I happily welcome the slower mornings and days at the local pool. Even though we have a more relaxed schedule right now, I continue to observe a morning and nighttime routine, as I have found that keeps my body and mind balanced.
I wake up at about 6 a.m. to have coffee with my husband. He writes his daily goals and tasks for work in his daily planner and I write personal goals and intentions in my 5-minute journal. This helps us to stay connected and best support one another through the day. My kids wake up at about 7 a.m. and it's off to the races with my kids and their activities. In the evening, after we read a book with each child, I take some time to wind-down from the day. This often includes peppermint tea, dry brushing and a hot shower.
What's an ideal day for you at home or in your neighborhood?
We have a wonderful neighborhood filled with kids riding bikes down oak-lined streets. My husband and I would drive through this neighborhood before we moved here and envision raising children here one day. Six yearsx later here we are living our dream. We have become great friends with some of our neighbors—we even travel together on occasion. The summer is especially fun because we spend most of our days running back and forth between neighbors’ houses, going to lunch on the Square, and ending the day by grilling and sharing a glass of wine with friends. We really feel fortunate to have great neighbors.
Let's hear about your home. When'd you move in?
We moved into our cute bungalow in 2016, when my son, Smith, was just 18 months. Before we lived here, we lived in a ONE bedroom & "shotgun" house we purchased and renovated. It was a great starter home, but things were TIGHT. We searched for many months before our current home popped on the market, and there were many offers on the house within a few days of it being listed. We, however, decided to include a personal letter to the owner in our offer.
Low and behold, the owner of the house was a chiropractic patient of mine when I first started practicing. She recognized my name and was thrilled to sell to someone she had a connection, with a family who would love and appreciate the home like she did. Our house was originally built in the 1940’s. Thankfully the house was well-kept and still has many of the original architectural details that really make it so special.
And how about your adorable home office in the back?
This will be where I will be seeing future patients, actually! After the birth of my daughter five years ago, I became quite ill and was unable to work. I was diagnosed with a nervous system disorder called dysautonomia (many people know this as POTS disease). It affected my ability to stand, handle stress (like light and sound), and it even affected my digestion. Fortunately, my difficult journey back to health opened doors to other opportunities to grow and learn.
One of my biggest achievements during this time was that I became an Integrative Health Practitioner. I will be funneling this new knowledge into my practice in order to serve patients holistically. I hope to create and design my office space in a way that evokes a sense of retreat. A place that is down to earth and yet inspires one to get back to the basics. We’ve created a lush landscape, doors that open as windows so you can get a nice breeze, and the smell of essential oils to diffusing to energize the spirit.
How would you describe your design aesthetic, and how do you cultivate it?
Over the past few years of being home, I really fell into a more minimalist lifestyle, and it reflects in my design. I started to value my life and what it means to fully live. We bought a small, non-toxic camper, the Taxa Mantis, during the hardest season of my life. I found that spending time in nature improved my symptoms! This was a game changer for me, because it majorly shifted my mindset on functional living and reducing the clutter in my home.
I would say that I am inspired by nature and use function and meaning as my guidelines. I also consider the person living in the space. I ask, “What is useful and meaningful that will inspire them in everyday life?” For example, in my son’s room, He loves adventure, building Legos and playing the drums- so you will see these things that are important to him reflected in his space. Using sustainable and non-toxic furniture and products are very important to me and my family.
What was your approach when you started designing your home? Did anything change from your original vision for the space?
Definitely. As we are growing, we're getting rid of some of the used, hand-me-down pieces and choosing what actually functions for our household. Of course, there are some heirloom pieces that I will not part with because, as Marie Kondo would say, “It brings me joy!”
Do you have a favorite room in the house, and if, so, what makes it your favorite?
I would say our back porch is my favorite space. It's where we eat dinner most nights, gather on the sofa to watch outdoor movies, and just enjoy listening to the birds chirp in the mornings.
I love to look out on the old stone fireplace that was built originally as a part of a detached garage “mancave”, long before the back porch was added.
What made you choose Medley furniture for your home, and what drew you to your Rio Sofa?
Have you seen the Rio Sofa!? It’s simply beautiful and the design is timeless. We found Medley Furniture when we were searching for a company that focused on clean and eco-friendly materials.
Medley was so easy to work with and answered all of our family’s questions. They sent us sample materials and walked us through the design process.
How about a favorite object?
This is a hard one. I have a few. I would say that one of my favorite objects is my dad’s old cowboy hat that hangs by my bedside. He passed it along to me about a year ago. I enjoy imagining him young and all of the adventures he and this hat traveled together. It makes me smile.
What’s a silly memory you’ve made in the house?
I would say there is a ridiculous amount dancing happening all the time! We love music and always have something playing on the speaker.
How about a very favorite memory in the house?
I’m not sure there is just one favorite memory, however, I would say cooking with my kids most days may be the one I hope they remember the most.
Any recent or upcoming projects in your home you'd like to share?
Yes! We are going to be adding a garden pool and sauna in the backyard this year! Not anything too big or fancy; just something to relax in and support healing. I would love to add a garden with organic food and bushes as well. If you can imagine a cottage garden full of lavender lined walkways, the glow of garden string lights, and small sitting spaces- that is the vibe I am going for.
If you could sum up the feeling of your home in a few words, which would you choose?
This house has seen a lot of ups and downs through the years: laughter, tears, doubts, and fears. We’ve mourned life that was lost and celebrated life that was found. Grateful sums up the feeling.
Photos: Chastity Posey Photography
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