Mardi on!

By Donna Benton

A belly full of kicked-up crawfish étouffée, a soulful jazzy tune echoing from an alleyway, a laissez-faire parade of characters down a brick-paved sidewalk.

Photos by Makenzie Evans

The sights and sounds of New Orleans’ historic French Quarter will leave its deep-rooted imprint on your soul. Whether you are a foodie, a history buff or you are just out for a good time, The Big Easy has a distinctive vibe that is hard to shake. So much so for this homeowner that he brought that New Orleans jive and soul into his home in Conway’s historic district.

Vintage sketches of great delta bluesmen pay homage to the New Orleans theme and to the homeowner’s extensive music collection housed in the built-in record cabinets below.

Being a Louisiana girl born and raised, it wasn’t hard to conjure up a little Cajun magic when called to collaborate with Niki Thompson of Storybook Homes on this French Quarter revival right here in Old Conway. Niki is renowned in these parts for rescuing aging historic homes and this one turned out to be a prize!

Of course, the kitchen is ground zero for any South Louisiana home. Red brick walls and black iron lighting are just the right touch. If you can’t scratch up a pot of jambalaya in this kitchen that’ll make ya wanna slap yo’ mamma, then you are doing something wrong! A mix of antique and mid-century modern furniture gives the home a comfortable, historic vibe without making it look too much like grandma’s house. 

Off-the-rack dining chairs get kicked up a notch with blue velvet and silk. Some may think of silk and velvet as pretentious and fancy but they sure add a punch of swank to a rustic room.

Leather, live-edge cypress wood tables and rustic velvet give the living and dining area a classic vintage atmosphere like you might find in a French Quarter bar. The owner’s extensive record collection is housed in built-in cabinets and is perfect for setting the scene with a jazz session or a wailing zydeco tune.

Black and gold filigree wallpaper and an antique tub and vanity take the boudoir up to top-notch. And when the party’s over, soft linen bedding, black velvet curtains, silver embossed wallpaper and a copper tub make the master suite the perfect place to crash. Laissez les bon temps rouler—“Let the good times roll!”

Donna Benton
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