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A Designer Turns a Tiny Cottage Into a Truly Stylish Space

April 10, 2020

At just over 1,600 square feet, this adorable Atlanta starter home became picture perfect in the hands of a talented designer.

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Photo: Josh Vick

Small + Stylish

This circa 1946 bungalow in Atlanta's charming Peachtree Hills neighborhood is just 1,600 square feet with two bedrooms and one tiny bath. But that didn't stop designer Catherine Branstetter and her colleagues at Carter Kay Interiors from turning this sweet cottage into a shockingly sophisticated space built for cocktail hours and gatherings.

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Photo: Tina Rowden

Designer in the House

Now based in Nashville and working with Rachel Halvorson Designs, designer Catherine Branstetter made her mark on her Atlanta starter home with a mix of traditional, vintage and eclectic elements that gave her home its unique character.

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Photo: Christina Wedge

Don't Fear Granny Chic

"A lot of people my age are scared of antiques" says Catherine. But, antiques don't "have to feel old ladyish" if they are mixed, like this nailhead console, with funkier elements like the vintage metal artwork on the wall and the retro chairs flanking the console. Catherine recommends young collectors invest in a few timeless pieces that you will want to move from house to house, "pieces that will work in any home."

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Photo: Christina Wedge

Designer Advice

Catherine recommends homeowners decorating their first space take it slow. "I know people are eager to be done," she says, but don't rush into filling every nook and cranny right away. Instead, take the time to hit antique stores and consignment shops to find the perfect pieces for your new home. Catherine found the $25 rattan coffee table base in her living room at Atlanta's Scott's Antique Market and had a piece of glass cut to fit.

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