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A Mississippi Home That Gave New Life to an Old Farmhouse

by Quelcy Kogel

When I was young, I had a spiral-bound notebook containing all my future house dreams. There was a picture of a new-build mansion, pages dedicated to each room, and collages of details — analog Pinterest, if you will. Though my taste has definitely matured, I still wish I could sketch out my dreams, collage some pieces together, and then transform them into a reality. That’s exactly what Natalie and Tim Hamm did (and coincidentally, their home is pretty darn close to my dream home!).

When Tim and Natalie Hamm were a young married couple, necessity led to creativity, Natalie says. “With an empty home and a growing family, I began designing pieces of furniture that Tim could build to furnish our 1,200-square-foot rental. We both enjoyed it so much, it inspired our business —  Hammmade Furniture.” At the time, Tim was studying engineering at University of Mississippi, but once he graduated, the couple decided to pursue their dream of owning their own furniture business full-time.

By then, they had grown to a family of six, so the idea of more space — and, in particular, remodeling a home — became more appealing. “[Remodeling an old home is] similar to what we do with furniture. We’d get calls to tear down old barns, churches and homes. We were fascinated by the beauty of these old structures and the thought of saving what seemed long gone and giving it a second chance.”

They purchased 70 acres in the country to build a workshop to expand Hammmade, and in 2014, they got word that a house built in the 1800s was being torn down to expand church property. “We spent days trying to figure out a way to move it on our land. It wasn’t possible, so we decided to salvage everything possible from trim, to shiplap and flooring, to build a farmhouse on our land.” Natalie drew her dream plans on a sheet of paper, and Tim made the more official plans on Google SketchUp. Then they spent the next year building their new farmhouse in Oxford, MS. Natalie looks back, “It’s been an exciting process, and it makes us appreciate every step 100 times more.” —Quelcy

Photography by Ashleigh Coleman

Image Above: The Hamm farmhouse proved to be a family effort. Natalie didn’t want the TV to be the focal point of the living room, so they built a reclaimed shiplap cabinet to hide it when not in use. She designed the coffee table, and Tim built it. She designed the pendant, and her son Brooks helped her to build it. All the window trim was salvaged from the 1800s home.

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Natalie and Tim’s goal in building their home was “to build a modern farmhouse that could be easily mistaken for a farmhouse built in the 1800s; simple with old character that would accommodate many kids!”

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The front porch features one of Hammmade Furniture’s signature products — the swing bed — overlooking the countryside and making for a very inviting entrance.

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The entryway was the catalyst for the entire home design. Natalie schemed a space that would serve as a dogtrot/entry, a gallery for art and a space to display the reclaimed shiplap, transoms, and doors from the 1800s home. Tim collected buckeyes from his grandmother’s property for the light fixture, and he built the entry table with reclaimed table legs as the base and a reclaimed door for the surface.

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The living room gallery wall features portraits of the kids in painted frames, as well as a painting by Natalie.

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The large window above the farm sink was a way to tie the interior to the large trees and creek that surround the Hamm home. With 10-foot ceilings on the main floor, they had plenty of room for glass cabinets to accent the kitchen and display their collections.

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Tim and Natalie Hamm with their children Skylar, Brooks, Levi and Luke. Natalie says, “At times the most challenging part of our home can be getting a project going. I’ll draw something out, but Tim is meticulous. He spends days thinking before he starts. It’s a great quality, though. Everything is built to last. I get impatient and excited. I’ve learned to quit asking how long something will take. Like I tell my kids when we’re on a trip, we’ll get there when we get there! I’m learning there really is no rush, and I think Tim has known that all along!”

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Tim built the 9-foot farm table and buffet that define the dining room. Natalie collected the chairs from antique stores and Amazon and then spray-painted the set to match.

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The dining room light fixture is one of Natalie’s recent DIY projects made from suede string and an antique tractor steering wheel.

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The dining room buffet. Natalie recalls the very early days of construction when they moved into their unfinished farmhouse. They didn’t have cabinets, a kitchen sink, flooring or interior doors. “I remember being so excited to have our friends over for dinner in our new home. It was worth washing all the dishes in the tub.”

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Tim and Natalie’s master bedroom takes advantage of the main floor’s high ceilings, made even more dramatic by the eaves of the roof and reclaimed shiplap from the 1800s home they salvaged. The double doors and 7-foot windows fill the space with soft, natural light.

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Tim built the master bedroom headboard, and they used antique dressers from yard sales as their side tables.

 

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Skylar’s third-story room really shows off the drama of the eaves of the roof line. Natalie was inspired by a wallpaper that was sold out at Anthropologie, so she decided to hand paint her walls. The bed was a Craigslist score they painted.

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Skylar’s window seating is actually a clever maneuver by Natalie and Tim to cover air ducts, but the extra ledge works well as a space for Skylar to read and play by the window.

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“Every year for Skylar’s birthday, we make a homemade gift. One year it was the teepee we made with reclaimed wood and drop cloths.”

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Brooks and Levi’s room is in the basement, but Tim and Natalie included as many windows as possible to fill their space with natural light. Their beds were a gift from a Hammmade customer, and the accent pendants were a flea market find. Above each boy’s bed is a vintage-inspired poster featuring a place where they’ve traveled.

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The boys’ bedside table features objects they have collected from their land. Natalie says, “We love the history of our land. We planted a garden this year and found Native American artifacts. We want to incorporate the history of our land in our home by framing the artifacts. The kids bring in moths and butterflies often, so we’ve started a framed collection [in the living room].”

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The design gene is strong in the Hamm family. Oldest son Luke chose the dark navy paint color for his basement room. They found the spindle bed at an auction, and the longhorns were passed down from his great grandfather.

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The back porch features a table the Hamms reclaimed from a factory. With pristine settings like this, it’s easy to see why their land appealed to them.

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“We are incredibly thankful that what started as a dream became a reality. We’re also thankful that our entire family is able to learn from the process.”

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SOURCE LIST

All art is by Natalie and furniture by Tim.

Front Porch
Fan – Home Depot
Basket – HomeGoods
Cushions and pillows -Hammmade Furniture
Throw – Target
Side table – TJ Maxx

Entry
Rug – Rugs USA
Apothecary jar – Marshalls

Living Room 
Paint – “alabaster” by Sherwin-Williams (throughout the entire house)
Rug – Rugs USA
Wingback chairs – Joss and Main
Pillows – IKEA and Tuesday Morning
Frames – Walls
Side table – TJ Maxx

Dining Room
Buffet- painted “Kendall
Charcoal” by Benjamin Moore
Chairs – Amazon and antique store
Cake Plate – TJ Maxx
Frames – Walls
Plates- Williams Sonoma
Pitcher- Peters Pottery

Kitchen
Cabinets painted basic white oil paint from Home Depot
Farm Sink – eBay
Cabinetry hardware – Lowe’s
Pendant – Lowe’s
Faucet – Overstock
Pottery- Pablo Sierra
Wooden spoons – handmade by the Hamm boys
Rug- Kaya Kilims

Master Bedroom 
Headboard- “Kendall Charcoal” from Benjamin Moore
Duvet – handmade by Tim’s mother
Curtains – drop cloths from Lowe’s
Curtain rods – IKEA and Lowe’s
Rug – Loloi Rugs
White pillows – IKEA
Navy pillows – TJ Maxx

Skylar’s Room
Colored pillows – Anthropologie
White pillows – IKEA
Curtains – Overstock
Rug – Rugs USA
Baskets – Tuesday Morning

Luke’s room
Wall paint – “Hale Navy” by Benjamin Moore
Light – Target
Pillows – TJ Maxx

Brooks and Levi’s Room
Posters- Anderson Design Group
Light blue pillows – Pottery Barn
Aztec pillow – Humble Hilo
Navy and white pillow – Premier Prints
Throws – Target

Back Porch
Majority found antiquing
Chairs – Amazon
Throw – Target

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Comments

  • Absolutely stunning. I love the idea of building an “old” house with salvaged pieces. I’m an old-house-or-no-house kind of girl, but I think I could make room in my life for a jewel like this. I really love how modest the home looks considering that it comfortably houses six people. Way to be so thoughtful about how to use your space. Okay one more comment, and I will stop gushing. I swear I can hear the cicadas from that dreamy back porch!

  • Lovely house, inspiring ideas. What is the name of the purple berries in the last photo? They are an amazing color.

  • I’ve followed DesignSponge for so long that I’ve lost count of how long and this is by far my favorite home i’ve ever seen pictured. Every single room is pinnable. Lovely. Just lovely.

  • I like that the design of this home appears very deliberate yet it stays so quietly calm and slightly elegant in a salvage -ey way. So many of the homes lately on DS seem to have a busy vibe and I find my eyes desperately searching for a place to land – also it looks so crisp and clean which can be tricky with crags list finds and reclaims . What a lovely place to live , work and grow for this beautiful family.

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