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A Family Affair

The McCollums’ home has massive curbside appeal with its French Country/Acadian style influences.

Schacht McCollum has a keen eye for detail when it comes to his family’s home.
After all, he’s the builder.

There’s not much chance that Kaye and Schacht McCollum will disagree on their preference of home. No, they’re pretty much in sync when it comes to design aesthetics. And that’s a good thing, seeing as he is the builder.

“We’ve lived in four houses that he’s built, and I can honestly say they’ve all been wonderful because they’re so personalized. He’s just so good at what he does and he has such good taste,” gushes Kaye. “And it just so happens that it coincides with my design taste as well!”

The McCollum family is delighted with their latest home, a French Country/Acadian style beauty that McCollum Custom Homes built after Schacht snapped up the property a few years ago. And if they peer out their front windows, they can see across to a former homestead that Schacht built for his family several years prior.

“We lived in the house across the street first, then two blocks this way and two blocks that way,” Schacht says, motioning. “It’s like we came full-circle. Now we’re just steps away from that first house.”

The goal for their current home was simple. They wanted a comfortable, spacious environment that would accommodate this busy family of five. Both have ties to Louisiana, so the Acadian “A. Hays Town style” that revolutionized southern architecture was in their vocabulary.

“Schacht was born in Louisiana and grew up in Texas. I was born in Texas and grew up in Louisiana,” explains Kaye. “We both love that Hays Town interior brick and all the warm accents that go with that style.”

The 5,500-square-foot house reflects this influence with brick archways and accent pieces announcing certain rooms. “More formal rooms like the front living area have wood casings at their entrance and the more casual areas get a accent of brick,” Schacht explains.

Warm hickory floors and rustic wood beams add to this Acadian effect. And lighting in this home is exquisite with several chandeliers coming from Julie Neill Design in New Orleans.

The more formal spaces are to the front, the casual areas to the back. But everywhere, an interesting mix of textures and a soothing palette that is easy on the eye. Tone-on-tone layering of fabrics, rugs and draperies give the house a substantive feel.

Decorator Crystal Lazo of Crystal Lazo Interiors helped with some design choices, such as draperies and wallpaper. The wallpaper in the dining room is especially stunning with a washed stencil that was handpainted onto it by Amanda Dixon of Dixon Design.

“It’s mainly Schacht that pulls it all together, but Crystal really helped on some of the surfaces and tiles and draperies,” says Kaye. “I just love that it came together the way it did!”

Kaye has a keen eye as well, having final say when it came down to some tile choices, for example. “It’s nice that Schacht can present me with choices that will work and then I just tell him which I prefer.”

Visitors to the home feel its warmth. Eyes follow from the front door clear through to the den, compliments of a grand hallway. And to either side of this foyer in front are the living room and dining room.

“The living room is just the right size… not too big, not too small,” says Schacht who especially values a couple of sentimental art pieces in this space — on one wall, a portrait that his uncle painted years ago as a young college student; on an adjacent wall, a painting of the old family farm.

The dining room to the right of the entry is inviting with its stenciled wallpaper and a brick wall archway that leads to a combination butler’s pantry and bar. The dining table from Meredith O’Donnell and chairs from Laurie’s Antiques set the stage for dinner parties. Wood artisan Simon Parada built the buffet.

A walk down the hallway leads to the family’s central hangout, a den that manages multiple seating without looking at all cramped or cluttered. Upholstered seating in a myriad of fabrics look great together with a mix of warm wood pieces. A bank of French doors looks out to the porch and pool/pergola area where the brick accents tie the outside to the inside.

The kitchen is both beautiful and functional with a large island providing extra seating. “You can’t say we lack for places to eat!” says Kaye. A copper range hood hovers over a Wolf range. A mural of vintage tiles from Chateau Domingue provides the perfect visual in this kitchen that has a mix of dark wood and creamy washed cabinetry.

Next to the kitchen is a spacious breakfast room with a large built-in cabinet that can hold a multitude of kitchen accessories and knick-knacks. “I didn’t want glass on its cabinet fronts. I wanted it built with chicken wire so I could use curtains instead. It warms up the piece even more and I can hide a bunch of stuff in there that I don’t necessarily want to be seen!” explains Kaye. “I didn’t want to necessarily just have to have pretty items in there!”

The master bedroom is accessed through a hallway off the den. It’s a vision in Benjamin Moore Hindenburg Gray paint with rustic wood beams converging overhead. A unique Julie Neill chandelier complements the room décor. A custom bed is peppered with pillows, some of which Kaye purchased at Round Top. “They are 18th century table runners that were made into pillows,” she explains. “I just had to have them!”

This house doesn’t lack for space. Their children each have their own rooms upstairs as well as use of their dad’s office. “I like having an office, but they are welcome to use it as much as they want,” says Schacht of the masculine- looking space with brick accents and wood floors. “They’re at the project age in school and this space would be great for that.”

An especially popular area in this home is the gameroom. All manner of activities take place here from pool and air hockey to shuffle board and playing with the Wii video system. Movie viewing is popular too.

The parents have a place to unwind too, with a tucked-away exercise room that is accessed through one of their closets off of the master bedroom.

The house appears to have it all. And they aren’t talking of moving any time soon.

“I want to stay here a good long while,” says Kaye of her family’s moves from house to house, loving them all. “It’s such a privilege to be able to live in these wonderful houses that he’s built,” she says. “And there is always such personalized detail for our family. We’re very lucky.”

Text by Cathy Gordon

Pictures by Bookwalter Photography

Builder: Schacht McCollum

The McCollum family: Schacht and Kaye with children (left to right) Sam, Kat and Emily.

Warm inviting wallpaper with hand-painted stencil (Amanda Dixon of Dixon Design) gives this dining room verve. The archway defined in brick pays homage to the couple’s Louisiana roots. “I love the Hays Town look,” says Schacht of the revered Louisiana architect. Table by Meredith O’Donnell; chairs by Laurie’s Antiques. Crystal Lazo of Crystal Lazo Interiors helped with the wallpaper and drapery choices.

A cheery breakfast area overlooks the backyard and pool. G&J table and chairs mix with a built-in cabinet that has been given a distressed, whitewashed look. Curtains by Crystal Lazo Interiors

An Acadian influence is clearly seen in the den, accented in wood beams and a wall of brick. A suite of French doors guarantee easy access as well as excellent views of the porch and pool. Artist David Harouni of New Orleans did the painting above the fireplace

The family does not lack for areas in which to eat thanks to this oversized island in beautiful granite with a greenish tint. A copper range hood hovers over a Wolf range. A mural made up of vintage tiles from Chateau Domingue is the perfect accent piece for this space.

A nifty combo — one half, bar, the other half butler’s pantry — reveals an assemblage of brick, honed granite, vintage tiles and distressed cabinetry.

A warm, inviting mix of furnishings share space with a grand piano in the living room. Sofa from Louis Shanks. The portrait on the far wall, a favorite of the family’s, was done by Schacht’s uncle as a young college student. The adjacent painting is of the old family farm.

The master bathroom is a lesson in understated elegance.

A gorgeous master bedroom in Benjamin Moore’s Hindenburg Gray paint has a dramatic, yet organic flair with rustic wood beams overhead. The exquisite chandelier and mirror are from Julie Neill.

The upstairs gameroom plays host to a number of activities including air hockey, shuffleboard and pool.

Schacht’s upstairs office doubles as project-central for their three school-age children. Artist Lee Jamison of Dodge, TX, did the painting of one of the family’s past homes.

The brick accents carry through to the outside as well. Furniture from Smith & Hawken rests pretty under a beefy pergola.

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