Visit singer-songwriter Chris Tomlin’s cabin in Tennessee

Caroline Allison

Sometimes a house moves you to tears in all the best possible ways. At least that was the case for Chris and Lauren Tomlin, who say they literally cried when they spotted a pre-Civil War cabin while out for a drive in the countryside around Franklin, Tennessee. The thing is, it wasn’t for sale. So the couple left a note in the mailbox, and a few months later it was theirs. They’re likely to have a sense of the words: Chris is a Grammy-winning Christian singer-songwriter, after all, whose latest album, Chris Tomlin and Friends, includes guest appearances from Thomas Rhett and Florida Georgia Line . Fittingly, history buff Chris named his property Peacefield, inspired by the name John Adams gave to his historic Massachusetts home in the 1700s.

Once the family got used to the property — which was built around a roughly hewn pre-Civil War settler log cabin — they hired architect Wade Weissmann to modernize it in a way which seemed anything but modern. “Wade specializes in maintaining the integrity of older homes,” Lauren says, adding that he’s kept her “on track.” “At one point I wanted to do a vaulted ceiling and he was like, ‘That’s great, but it’s going to look like an add-on. “”

Lauren also invoked the talents of Nashville designer Rachel Halvorson. “Rachel has an incredible ability to blend the old with the new,” Lauren says. This mix is ​​best showcased against a backdrop of neutrals, which Rachel says is key to a country house. “There’s a sense of ease in homes like this – fussy patterns and bright colors don’t really work because they can be distracting,” she says. The finished project feels like a giant expiration for the busy family of five (which includes daughters Ashlyn, Madi and Elle). “I used to laugh when Lauren and Chris told me the property moved them to tears,” says Rachel, “but now I get it. The fullness you feel when you are there is nothing less than spiritual.

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Wooded refuge

“I feel like I’m stepping back in time in this room,” Lauren says of the wood plank bookcase. “The original builder collected scraps from all around Nashville, including an old train depot, to put the house together.”

RELATED: 6 Best Places to Find or Buy Reclaimed Wood Near You

Shelves that tell a story

The library’s collection of books includes an assortment of early hymns inspired by Chris’s work as a worship leader.

Practical but pretty

“If you live in the countryside, you’re probably not the type of person to freak out if a little mud gets on your furniture,” says Rachel. She still chose performance fabrics for the neutral upholstery, just in case.

Where old meets new

“I freaked out at first when I saw the size of the island, but that’s all we need,” Lauren says of the centerpiece topped with durable Taj Mahal quartzite and equipped with stealth storage underneath. A generous six-foot-wide handcrafted light fixture hangs above and complements the iron hardware of the cabinetry. The adjacent log wall of the original settler’s cabin beautifully connects the new to the old.

Have the look:
Cabinet color: Pleasant Gray by Sherwin-Williams
Wall color: Benjamin Moore’s Blanc de Chine
Cabinet hardware: by Rocky Mountain Hardware
Lamp: by Low Country Originals

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nature palette

Lauren and Chris Tomlin’s screened porch features a custom shade of green on the trim. “I consider green a neutral,” says interior designer Rachel Halvorson, noting that a country home’s color palette should be earth-bound. (Some of her favorite shades include Farrow & Ball’s Lichen and Benjamin Moore’s Winterwood.) The woven dining chair echoes the stone tones.

Have the look:

Dining room chair:
Arbor of Janus and Co.

Sentimental antiques

Filled with vintage china, the hutch in the dining room is just one of many heirlooms that bring soul to this room, which showcases the original cabin’s log walls. The antique table is surrounded by chairs covered in slipcovers from the former Tomlin home. A vintage Oushak rug adds softness to the more rustic setting.

Have the look:
China: Wedgwood’s “Appledore”

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What is that? What is it worth? Carved wooden mirror

Reviewer Marsha Dixey says this room in Tomlin’s dining room is in the style of Victorian Black Forest furniture. In Europe, intricate carvings, usually depicting animals or vegetation, were a symbol of wealth. Today, the largest and most intricate mirrors (not pictured) can be valued at up to $7,000.

Airy white bedding

The soft green iron bed in daughter Ashlyn’s bedroom came with the house, and you can see the same serene approach to the linens on it as you do in the master bedroom.

Have the look:
Bed: for similar, try Wayfair’s Eberhart Low Profile Bed

Retreat with a view

A deep soaking tub provides a dreamy place to get away from it all in the spacious bathroom next to the cabin’s master bedroom.

A tribute to the past

The master bedroom features plaster walls that mimic an original plaster treatment at home. The exaggerated velvet headboard and fabric headband in the space have been passed down from previous owners, and the bed is covered in simple but elegant ruffled bedding.

Have the look:
Bedding: by Matteo

Closet or Designer Studio?

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