“Home Town” stars Erin and Ben Napier have just aired their Season 5 finale, and the house they renovate shows off their signature Southern style like no other before.
In the episode “Grand Style,” Erin and Ben meet with Cindy Marek, who knows she’ll need a big house for her visiting kids and grandkids. She ends up buying a four-bedroom, four-bathroom house for $300,000 that has plenty of space—it just doesn’t have much personality.
Erin and Ben need to give this house a massive makeover, but only have $100,000 for renovations. In the end, though, the Napiers only spend $75,000 of their reno budget, and the house has Southern charm in spades. Here’s how they freshen up this home’s interior, which might inspire you to try a few new upgrades (and paint colors!) in your own home, too.
‘Haint blue’ can help keep spirits away
When Marek first sees the house she ends up buying, she gushes over the front porch. So, of course Erin and Ben want to give it some serious Southern charm.
They add a porch swing and, to finish it off, paint the ceiling a color we’d wager that many people haven’t heard of before, unless they’re from the South. It’s called “haint blue”—a variation on the word “haunt” that’s believed to keep away spirits.
“You’ve got to have a haint-blue ceiling,” Ben says. “If you live in a grand Southern home, it’s sort of required.”
In addition to keeping ghosts away, haint blue adds a subtle splash of color to this porch in a surprising place that you might not even notice, unless you look up.
The right wallpaper pattern can feel fresh and fun
It seems wallpaper has come full circle!
At the beginning of the renovation, Erin knows that Marek will want some wallpaper in her home’s entryway; she just isn’t a fan of the peach wallpaper currently in the space. So, she asks Marek’s nephew Adam to design a custom wallpaper with adorable little trees.
“It’s really going from a very formal and stuffy space to feeling playful and whimsical and colorful,” Erin says. “And I think it’ll make her smile every time she walks in the door.”
While wallpaper can feel old and formal, a unique design and a bright color can keep it feeling youthful. As it turns out, this wallpaper is mature enough for Marek, but it will also be youthful enough to impress her grandkids, too.
Tongue-and-groove paneling adds character
This old house comes with tongue-and-groove paneling in the dining room—and Marek loves it! However, the wood tone clashes with the darker wood flooring, so Erin decides to paint the walls blue.
When the paint is finished, Erin is impressed with the vibe in the dining room. The paneling gives this room lots of personality, while paint on a basic wall might have looked too plain or formal.
“It’s a really nice contrast—of formal and kind of rustic,” she says.
A copper hood vent can be aged to look amazing
In the kitchen, Erin wants to make a statement with a copper hood vent.
So, she orders a custom copper piece, aged perfectly to give the kitchen a classic feel.
“Copper is such a cool metal,” Erin says, adding that “different wools or chemicals or substances change the color and the texture of the metal.”
While it only takes heat and some dish soap to age this copper, the look really elevates the style of this kitchen. The aged copper has a dark, earthy color that Erin and Marek love.
“It looks like woodworking, but it’s metal,” Erin points out.
Add windows to let in more light and a nice view
While the aged hood vent looks great, Erin and Ben know that even the best kitchen upgrades can’t compare to the beauty of nature. While this kitchen starts off awkward and closed-off, Erin and Ben decide to open up the layout and add some large windows to the back wall, giving the kitchen a perfect view of the backyard.
“So now, Cee Cee can sit in her kitchen, and keep an eye on them grandkids,” Ben says.