Thompson House on Next Home Tour
Nestled in a setting of lush greenery in Southern Pines is the elegant vintage home of Don Thompson, retired banker, who rescued and renovated the house in 1996. It will be an interesting feature of the 15th annual "Kitchens and Moore" tour of six private homes Thursday, Sept. 11.
The tour is sponsored by the Moore County Extension and Community Association, Inc. to benefit the Boys and Girls Homes of North Carolina, 4-H Clubs and other youth programs.
Other homes on the tour include those of Ron and Barbara Archbold, National Golf Club; Joyce White, Village of Pinehurst; James and Cecelia Obi, Pinewild Country Club; Steve and Nan Moore, Pinewild; and J.J. and Nancy Jackson, Fairwoods on Seven.
A native of Southern Pines, Thompson began a banking career in 1972 in Atlanta, Ga., and Richmond, Va., which he pursued until his retirement in 1998. He still spends time in his home there, enjoying being near his daughter, Caroline, her husband, and their nine-month-old son. Always retaining his Southern Pines roots, he owned local real estate and visited family and friends here as often as possible.
A serious runner, Thompson was exercising in the neighborhood one January morning in 1996 when he saw that this house, built by a now deceased Chicago couple in 1964, was for sale. He immediately contacted the Realtor, visited the house and purchased it the same day. The fact that his sister's brother in-law, E.J. Austin, of the well-known Austin and Faulk Architectural firm, had been the architect, gave the house special meaning.
However, a rude awakening came when Thompson realized the tremendous amount of restoration the house needed and that he could not be constantly on-site. In a quandary, he consulted friends and relatives who unanimously recommended Denis McCullough, a local woman accomplished in general contracting, interior design and furniture design. Though, even at that time, she commuted weekly between Southern Pines and High Point in her demanding business, she undertook the challenge and in September 1997, Thompson moved in.
The one-story red brick house with white trim is designed with two parallel wings that extend from the front of the house to outline a courtyard distinguished by a wide brick walkway. A deteriorating cedar shake roof has been replaced by attractive architectural shingles. The glass front door is now framed by panels with colorful stained glass creations and invites guests to enter from the shady veranda.
In the entry foyer are two lighted closets, replacing a bar. An impressive round table in the center is joined by a chest in similar design. Walls throughout have been given new life with faux painting by artist, Cathy Hansley. Fresh designs, in shades ranging from light cream to a warm yellow in the kitchen, splash patches of light throughout the once dark house. The decoration on the deep tray ceiling in the living room and the huge diamond design on the walls of the dining room are especially notable.
All flooring is refinished golden oak discovered when outdated carpeting was removed or ceramic tile that was added. Oriental carpets lend their rich colors and warmth to tile and wood. The custom-built windows and doors are original as is the rich cherry paneling and shelving in the study. This room was lightened and expanded by lifting and shaping a white ceiling into a tray design. Additional light is added by the owner's favorite lamp with its colorful Tiffany-style stained glass shade. Pastel carpet and furniture patterns go well with a leather lounge chair.
The focus of the huge living room, just off the foyer, is a striking white marble fireplace. Above it is an engaging portrait of Thompson's 13-year-old son, Christopher. Built-in white shelving houses pictures and a collection of Herend blue and white porcelain. Several colorful guitars stand to one side. Thompson is studying guitar with popular local musician, Baxter Clement. The upholstered pieces, including two "one and one-half" chairs in deep eggplant shade, are large and inviting. Handsome pieces of dark wood furniture with white marble tops give the scene an appropriate masculine touch.
For formal entertaining, the dining room is richly furnished with a long center table of glass panels set in mahogany. A breakfront is aglow with Waterford and Baccarat crystal. The chandelier with large prisms and black shaded lights was procured from a fashionable New York apartment. The walls are faux painted in an outstanding diamond pattern.
The over-sized kitchen in blue, white and yellow, is arranged for convenience and boasts new custom cabinetry, white Corian counter tops, and all new stainless steel appliances. A breakfast area is bright with yellow and white furniture. A double Dutch door speaks of the original vintage of the house as does the cobalt blue tiled back splash. The yellow faux painted walls resemble stucco. A Baker's Rack holds an array of family pictures, including that of the grandson.
Original French doors open to a porch with inviting swing and table where one can enjoy morning coffee. A second larger screened porch on the rear of the house is furnished with blue wicker pieces for comfortable entertaining. All rooms at the rear of the house capture a view of the inviting oval pool and brick pool house with its own bar and full bath. Both were added in 1999. A generous brick patio and handsome brick walls encircle the scene.
Hallways in the wings of the house are light and airy with large windows on one side. The inside walls are delightfully decorated with row upon row of framed prints by North Carolina artist Bob Timberlake. Roman shades and plantation blinds are used at some windows. The three bedrooms, each of which has a full bath, are tastefully decorated. A wall of glass brick allows natural light into one bath. The master bedroom features two Italian inlaid armoires. The fourth bedroom became a convenient laundry/computer room during the renovation. A full bath off the kitchen is decorated with wallpaper featuring cats in honor of Libby, the feline resident of the home.
The garage reveals its own surprises. The walls of a small room-sized closet are used to display Christopher's collection of model planes, mounted as if in flight. A commercial jewelry display cabinet with glass sides is filled with our host's model car collection. A shiny 1999 Harley-Davidson motorcycle stands between his other 'toys" -- a Corvette and a Porsche.
During the tour, Sally Thomas and Earlene Frye, hostesses, and their committee will welcome guests to the Thompson home. Refreshments will be served on the patio. Event chairman Carolyn Register has announced that tickets, recipes, and programs with directions will be available for $15 in advance and for $20 the day of the tour at The Village Chapel and at each house.
Tickets are currently on sale at Phoenix Fashions, Seven Lakes (673-5998); The Faded Rose, Pinehurst, (215-0505); Daphne's Hallmark, Southern Pines, (692-7333); Gap Creek Candle Company, Southern Pines , (695-0029); and the Cooperative Extension Service, Carthage, (947-3188).
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