This Light-Filled Tennessee Dream Home Was 40 Years in the Making
For four decades, Dorinda Smith designed her future dream home in her head. She always knew that one day she’d retire, return to her family’s land in Tennessee — where her ancestors had been since 1792, before Tennessee was even a state — and build a spacious home for throwing large family parties. “It was kind of my happy place,” she says. “When things got stressed, every night before sleep I would think about different rooms, the design features, what I wanted it to look like, the parties we would have, all that.”
In 2016, she and husband Brant kickstarted that dream from Virginia, where they had lived and worked for 30 years. The couple searched Houzz for design professionals in Franklin, Tennessee, and found Noble Johnson Architects and interior designer Sarah Ashley to see their plans to completion, collaborating along the way using Houzz ideabooks. Working with the Smiths and builder Adam Forte, the design team created a whitewashed brick home that centers around a large, light-filled great room that’s comfortable and durable enough to host 100 people.