JT brought us the story of Buffalo Soul, but Misti Fahr of Design Hive brought the look. She had a vision for our story that she helped execute in our brand identity design, then integrated into our built environment. Without Misti there would be no Buffalo Soul so this Buffalo Blog is dedicated to the woman who helped turn an idea into very beautiful custom-designed reality.
KASEY: Here we are, at the opening of Buffalo Soul! It's been so amazing working with you! What was your favorite room in the house to design and why?
MISTI: Thanks, Kasey! It’s been amazing working with you, too! Each room is so distinct, it’s hard to pick a favorite! The inspiration for the brand in general centered on the southwest setting of JT’s father's logo blended with a modern Nashville vibe. The living room is the first impression when you enter Buffalo Soul, so it was important for it to capture and express your brand immediately. It also functions as a chill room, tv room, meeting room, and entertaining room all in one so every detail had to make sense…from comfort level to acoustic value to a layout that allows for flexibility and multiple viewpoints. The black high-gloss Baldwin piano, distressed leather chairs, buffalo skull, and phonograph are some of my favorite pieces in that room, and the custom watercolor wall covering in that space is definitely one of my favorite features in the house! Like Buffalo Soul, it’s sophisticated, but a little funky at the same time, and it provides the perfect backdrop to set off the coloring and materials used in that room. Whether you’re gathering for a Grammy viewing party or a live performance, the living room will be the go-to spot to gather for sure!
And the Kitchen "AFTER" . . .
KASEY: Buffalo Soul was built in 1927 with that comes very unique historic features and challenges. What's your favorite part of this "old house" and what was the most challenging part?
MISTI: One of the funniest moments during install was when we placed a rolled up rug at the end of a room while we were moving some other things around to lay it out. The rug began rolling on its own and unrolled all 14’ of itself completely open! Maybe you had to be there, but it was hilarious to us because we had been dealing for months with the quarks and imperfections that a historic home brings…including the uneven and very, very sloped floors (it was also almost midnight and we had been working there since 8 that morning, and you know…there’s beer on tap and sugary snacks in the kitchen and whatever…don’t judge). I doubt there’s a true right angle anywhere in the house, but the architectural detailing and stories in the walls make all those imperfections worth working around. The exterior of Buffalo Soul is where you can initially appreciate the historic value of the home. The limestone façade, ionic columns, substantial trim work, and Tudor architecture draws you in as soon as you see it from the street.
KASEY: Our main floor is shared space, did you design differently with that in mind?
MISTI: Absolutely. Each room has to function in a variety of ways, so flexibility was key for layouts, selections, and privacy options. We left most of the existing doors in place and incorporated track doors in several locations to maximize floor space while allowing the option to close off specific areas as needed. It was also important to me that the design aesthetic for each room, while remaining unique and specific, was consistent throughout the main floor.
And the Living Room "AFTER" . . .
KASEY: Buffalo Soul is more than a bed and breakfast, it's a feeling, an experience and a brand. How did that play into your process?
MISTI: Without doubt, that was at the center of the design approach. When I was first introduced to you, JT and Todd, I immediately felt your enthusiasm and energy, and I felt fully included and embraced from day one. In all honesty, you all could make a run-down shack feel like a place everyone would want to hang, but I was happy to have the opportunity to try to make that feeling tangible at Buffalo Soul by adding pieces of your personal stories, elements of music history and the music community, and setting up spaces that are conducive to you all doing that thing you do and making everyone feel welcome!
KASEY: If Buffalo Soul were a celebrity who do you think he or she be?
MISTI: I think Buffalo Soul would be the coolest, kick-ass collaborative band gathering at the end of an infamous music festival…including but not limited to Bonnie Raitt, Patty Griffin, Keith Urban, Stevie Nicks, Bob Dylan, The Beatles, Wynona, Carl Perkins, Janis Joplin, The Eagles, Emmylou, and of course, JT Hodges ;)
KASEY: Do you still like Todd, JT and I or are you sick of us - don't answer that :)
MISTI: I will always love you with all my heart and buffalo SOUL!
"Room to Rest" AFTER . . .
KASEY: We had some great craftsman, builders and friends helping us with this project, here's your chance to talk about them . . .
MISTI: Like they say, it takes a village. So many people put so many hours and a lot of sweat and tears into this project from designing to building to furnishing.
Michael Condon and Danny Johnston brought their expertise and led the building efforts. What started out as a little bit of paint and new tile turned into everything from custom cabinets to a full basement remodel.
Michael’s skills and contributions can be seen throughout the house, but his nationally recognized woodworking talents are evident specifically in the execution of the custom cabinets in the kitchen and bar as well as the trim details in the sunroom and cedar shake siding on the exterior of the sunroom. His attention to detail and willingness and ability to work collaboratively through intricate design elements makes him an indispensable treasure. That amazing kitchen would not have been possible without him!
The day-to-day hustle and bustle on the job site was managed beautifully by Danny. He and his crew were always willing to change gears at a moment’s notice. They were there late into the night and many weekends to get things done. The quality of work is always important, and that’s something that’s easily seen at the house. But, the positive attitude, patience, and jovial approach is what made the project enjoyable.
The window treatments were a substantial contribution to the overall design, too. Tammy Jamison at Draperies by Lucinda came through beautifully. We’ve worked together for years, and I couldn’t be happier with how every single piece turned out. She’s always so gracious no matter how complicated and crazy the things I ask her to make are!
My assistant, Lena Long, came in about half-way through the project. She was the artist behind the technical drawings and the quiet force behind execution and install. Willing to do anything and everything that was necessary to push the project to the finish line, she was and is my designer in shining armor.
We worked locally with Kenny + Co and Stone Resource for tile, Sprintz Furniture, Pre to Post Modern, Relic Home, Apple and Oak and Damico Frame & Art among other resources. Ebay and Etsy were valuable resources as were several other antique and vintage stores around the country. We incorporated pieces from West Elm, Pottery Barn and other big box stores, and sourced wallcoverings both nationally and internationally.
"Room to Run" en suite bathroom "AFTER" . . .
KASEY: Finally, what do you think guests will like the most about Buffalo Soul and why?
MISTI: First and foremost the guests will like the people behind Buffalo Soul. You all have a combination of gifts that authentically connect to people and make them feel at ease and at home. Secondly, there’s so much attention to detail from the snacks in the kitchen, to the books in each room, to the sheets on each bed…every element you can think of to facilitate comfort, convenience, ambiance and entertainment is included in the Buffalo Soul experience. There’s really nothing NOT to like about Buffalo Soul…
To see more of Misti's work visit http://www.designhivenashville.co
All of our "AFTER" photos by Paige Rumor, http://www.paigerumore.com