Darius Rucker, the Hootie & the Blowfish lead singer, says he has long been intrigued with the historic Charleston, South Carolina, mansion he’s reviving in Rucker’s Reno, a new show from The Design Network. “It’s such a visual landmark, and I was always drawn to the house when I was driving by,” says Rucker, who was born in Charleston. However, his project represents something deeper than just a pretty house.
Architecture in the American South has a complicated history. “This is an antebellum property that was totally reimagined for the 21st century—and it’s now a place of comfort, community, and healing for my family, friends, and me,” the three-time Grammy winner says of the dwelling, which was originally built in 1803. “To take something that was once a painful reminder of that history and then turn it into someplace that people who look like me can be really proud of—that’s what this project was all about.”
Rucker worked with Charleston-based interior designer Betsy Berry, of B. Berry Interiors, on the renovation. The pair share six things they learned in the process of modernizing a historic home.
Rucker and Berry admire the polished nickel fixtures in the kitchen—a timeless staple.
Bring in the experts
As a musician, Rucker, is used to being creative, so when it came to the renovation he started dreaming big. He also realized that his ideas needed guidance from someone who understood if the preservation and modernization was logistically possible. “It was crucial that I had the input of a truly incredible team all the way through this process,” Rucker says.
The aged finish of the wallpaper balances the modern geometry of the furniture in the music room.
Employ original details as a blueprint
The moldings, doors, and hardware tell the narrative of a space, subtly suggesting what you can do with the decor. “Try not to think that you’re confined by the age of the architecture and, instead, implement how you want to live [with it],” Berry says. To prove her point, Berry replaced an overly ornate mantel that went all the way up to the ceiling molding with an antique mirror. “It looks like it was always there,” she says.