Historic Charm and Modern Details in a New Orleans Shotgun

In New Orleans Reno, contractor and designer Holly Baker focuses on restoring the vintage gems and historical details of homes around New Orleans. See the incredible updates to this traditional New Orleans shotgun home, conceived and executed by Holly herself. 

By: Jessica Galliart

New Orleans Reno

With the help of a team of builders and her husband, Sean, contractor and designer Holly Baker transforms New Orleans homes while keeping their historic charm and architectural details. 

Neglected Exteriors

For this project, Holly works on a double shotgun house built in 1885. Though many architectural details of the house are still in tact, much of it is considered a total rebuild. 

Front Porch Facelift

Haint blue is a traditional color for New Orleans porch ceilings that is said to ward off wasps (and evil spirits). Holly also added gingerbread brackets, a staple in New Orleans architecture, to the front of the home. 

Plaster Paneling?

Much of the interior walls was covered in plaster panels that date back to before World War II. But original details like pocket doors, greek key detailing around the door frame and heart pine floors were in excellent condition. 

Lovely Living Spaces

Keeping these historic details of the space and adding details like the light pendant and bright white paint create a simple and clean living space. 

Lovely Living Spaces

Modern furniture pieces add comfort and style to a historic and classic space. 

Building a Brand New Kitchen

Traditionally, kitchens in shotguns can be found in the back of the house. Holly planned to move the kitchen in this build to this former dining room or bedroom to allow for maximize entertaining space. 

Maximum Potential

While the fireplace will stay, Holly has much work to do to get this room in shape to be a kitchen, including moving plumbling lines and removing the large closet next to the fireplace.

The Party Room

The fireplace is not the only focal point in the room, now: The custom island with a waterfall edge is perfect for a gathering spot in the new kitchen. A bar cart designed and built by Holly herself now stands in the place of the former closet. 

New 'Vintage' Pieces

The mint green fridge and rustic shelving combine to create a sleek, clean and practical vibe in the new kitchen. 

Modern Details

Gray countertops also add a bit of weight to the room, Holly says. 

The New Master Bedroom

With a tight space filled with doorways, windows and even its own fireplace, Holly addressed the challenge of having only one practical place for the bed with creating a dramatic headboard from scratch.

Tight Weave

Holly and Sean hand-built -- and hand-weaved -- this custom headboard with a diamond pattern to create drama in the new bedroom. 

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