Along a tree-lined street in the Mount Hope section of Providence, you’ll find a multi-family property typical of the neighborhood. However, step inside, and the term “typical” quickly dissipates. After all, this is the abode of Jen Booth and Pierre Ford, both longtime fixtures in the Providence art scene. For the last 25 years, the husband-and-wife team have collaborated as decorative painters, muralists, and color consultants, and Jen is a member at the AS220 Community Printshop.
“This house had good bones but needed cosmetic renovating from top to bottom. It had drop ceilings, popcorn ceilings, fake wood and tile paneling, and generations of layering over wood floors,” says Jen. “We had the patience and know-how to take on the renovations.” And they did.
With the sweat equity behind them, the duo set their sights on decorating. Soon, the entryway was treated to an ancient Egyptian makeover, a decade in the making. Says Jen, “None of our customers ever commissioned us to do an Egyptian mural, so we decided to paint one for ourselves.” Striving for accuracy, they contacted the Archaeology department at Brown, and two grad students visited to provide feedback on the hieroglyphics.
The home is filled with distinctive accents like a life-size cutout of their beloved cat Louise adorning a kitchen cabinet and a light fixture constructed from a kitchen supply store colander. Other bespoke touches include a coffee table made to spec by a sculptor they met through The Steel Yard, and their couch was reupholstered by Kreatelier.
As artists, color plays a key role in design choices. “We feel colors should reflect the function of the room as well as the desired mood,” Jen notes. The C2 Green Tea paint hue used in the kitchen was actually named by the couple in a contest held at Adler’s Design Center & Hardware. “We want our home to be appealing aesthetically with artistic touches and ancestral antiques but at the same time, a place you feel comfortable plopping down anywhere,” says Jen.
When describing their collective style, Jen uses terms like comfortable and eclectic elegance. The things in the home that make her most happy are the greenhouse window in the pantry, the entryway mural, ultramarine tiles on the bathroom floor, and a bay window with a view of North Burial Ground. The duo’s latest endeavor is a home organizing business (@homemadeorganizing).