Mary Patton Mixes Modern and Traditional Elements in Houston

Southern Home sat down with designer Mary Patton of Mary Patton Design to chat about one of her latest projects located in Houston, Texas.

Photography: Molly Culver

What was the original ask from the clients?

The clients built a beautiful house in Houston and wanted us to add personal details and unique elements to make this feel like a home.

How did you achieve this? 

We really focused on mixing old and new elements, along with high and low details to achieve the perfect balance of luxury and function. The clients wanted the design to be classic with a modern twist. They wanted to stay in a neutral palette but then have fun with color.

Unique Features:

The couple has two boys, so we created a uber-feminine planning center for the wife. It’s a room just for her located off the kitchen. We painted the whole thing top to bottom in Farrow & Ball Calamine pink, selected unique hardware for the cabinets, did a soft window treatment using a whimsical Pierre Frey fabric, and created a custom desk chair. We partnered with Carla Valencia, a local artist, to personalize the vintage chair after re-upholstering it in a blue Schumacher velvet.

What is your favorite space in the home?

My favorite room is the dining room. We used Segretto finishes to paint a silver floral mural and mixed it with Tom Dixon lighting. The room is a stunning blend of masculine and feminine, modern and traditional.

Mary Patton


Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton

Mary Patton









For the patio area, do you have any tips that readers can implement for fall and winter? How can they still enjoy this space?

We added heat lamps and a cute basket for outdoor throw blankets! These are easy details that anyone can add to their outdoor space for a fall refresh.

In the boys’ room, there is a beautiful green built-in with a nook and desk. Do you recommend built-ins for extra storage? If so, why?

I think they are nice for kids’ rooms. It’s a way to store books and toys neatly and adds a custom feeling to the room.

Can you talk about the gallery wall over the two brown chairs? How can readers perfect a gallery wall?

The gallery wall actually consists of framed records. I love the symmetrical look, but I also like gallery walls that are mixed and matched.

What is behind the bed’s headboard? Patterned wallpaper? Can you explain why you implemented that?

It is a Schumacher wallpaper! Rather than doing the entire room, we opted to do the back of the shelves and behind the headboard. I think it feels younger and more casual than doing the whole room.

For the bathrooms, how can readers refresh their own spaces for fall and winter and create a spa-like environment at home? 

I love updating bath linens, candles, and hand soaps seasonally.

For the breakfast nook and kitchen, can you share some details? For readers who prefer more informal dining spaces, what should they consider?  

Since the house was so large, we had room to do both. I love a formal dining room for more formal events and hosting. However, the dining/breakfast nook is a great spot for everyday use. It is more intimate and functions well for your typical family life. If you can only choose one room in your home for an eating area, I definitely suggest going for a formal dining room.

Can you walk us through the home office? Tips for readers who want to refresh their home office for working from home?

This home office is a dedicated spot for the mom. We went with a super girly aesthetic and selected special details and finishes. Since we’re all using our work from home spaces, more than ever before, I recommend dedicating time to keeping it organized and special to your needs. The space should feel clean and uncluttered, and it should include elements that not only fit with your home style, but can also accommodate inspiring details that spark productivity.

Top tips for renovating your home on a budget?

The power of paint! Also, simple white subway tile is an inexpensive classic and looks good in any bathroom.

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