Roy and Karen Nance love color. So, when they built their current home nine years ago, they incorporated vibrant color with the use of paint, original art and decor.
In the Thistleton neighborhood, tucked in between Collins Lane and Louisville Road, the brick, three bedroom, two and a half bath home was the first house in 25 years to be built in the well-established subdivision, according to Roy.
Designed for family comfort
The Nances previously lived just a few blocks from where they now live. “We knew we wanted to stay close and wanted everything on one floor that we would need,” Karen explained.
Both Roy and Karen agree that building their first home came with challenges, but they enjoyed the process. “We’d never built a home before this one, but my father was a builder and I’d been around construction my whole life,” Roy says. “Don Werner built the house for us and he was great to work with.
“Karen picked out all of the colors,” Roy remarked. “When we were building, the style was neutrals — like gray and beige. That just wasn’t us,” he said. “We like color.”
The arch in the front dining room window was the inspiration for other arch details found in their home. “We saw this window in the plan and I really liked that architectural feature so we decided to carry it through to things like the fireplace and door openings,” he commented.
A gurgling fountain beside the home’s curved sidewalk leads to a beautiful stained glass front door. Just inside is an open living area, dining room, library, family room, kitchen and eating area.
The spacious main floor with its high ceilings still has a warm and cozy feeling because of the comfortable furnishings and eclectic artwork. Several heirlooms, some dating back to the 1830s, hold a special place in each room.
In the master suite off of the living area, the couple has chosen a soothing soft blue pallet. Framed botanical prints hang above the bed. Upstairs, a bonus room and a computer nook provide a nice space for Roy to work and for the grandchildren to play when they come for a visit.
Flowers create beauty inside and out
Both Roy and Karen enjoy flowers and plants. “I do the thinking of what I want planted and Roy does all the work!” Karen said, laughing. “Really, I do have some great helpers come in and work in the yard.”
The back porch is a favorite spot in the early morning. “Roy loves to spend some time in the mornings on the porch in the spring and fall, especially,” she said. Wisteria vines twist and turn to form an arch beside the porch. He added, “We had wisteria and viburnum at our house on Leawood and wanted them here, too, because they smell so good! I really enjoy it out here.”
Karen grows various flowers that she and others cut and use in arrangements when in season. “The hydrangeas are beautiful and bloom throughout the summer,” Karen said. “Friends come and ask if they can cut flowers from the yard for church arrangements or for other occasions.”
Flowers aren’t limited to the outside yard, though. Florals of some kind are a part of the design in most of the rooms. It’s almost as if the color scheme of the house is inspired by flowers — spring greens, yellows and blues.
For Karen, her love of flowers began at a very young age. “When I was a child, we had a tulip poplar tree and I have always thought they have the most beautiful blossoms,” she said. “I would make corsages out of them. I’ve just always enjoyed flowers. It makes me happy.”
Art adds eclectic vibe
Hanging above the fireplace in the main living area is a large contemporary art piece showcasing most of the colors used in their home. “We started talking to the Atlanta artist who did the painting and really like it,” Roy explained. There are local works of art, like the boldly-colored paintings of Frankfort artist and neighbor Emily Pitts. “We really don’t have a certain style,” Karen said. “When we see something we really like, we get it.”
The kitchen has cherry cabinets built by a southern Indiana Amish company and is adorned with various types of rooster art. Above the counter there is a wide opening into the living area. “We entertain family and friends quite a bit, so this way I can still be a part of the gathering when I’m working in the kitchen,” Karen said. “And I just like roosters — so when people give me a rooster, this is usually where it ends up.”
Family, friends make home
Roy and Karen came to Frankfort 40 years ago for Roy’s new job as the minister of music at First United Methodist Church. Karen started the First Care program at the church and worked there for 28 years. Both have retired — sort of. “I still play the 8:30 and the 11 a.m. services,” Roy said. “I get eight Sundays off a year.” Karen, who is serving as the Garden Club of Frankfort’s president, said, “I think Roy’s busier now ‘retired’ than when he was working!”
Roy, who grew up in Glasgow, and Karen, from Louisville, call Frankfort home. “Our children, Adam and Amy, grew up here and all six of our grandchildren are here,” Karen said.
“You’re within easy driving distance of the bigger cities to go to concerts or ballgames,” Roy commented. “And I like the size of Frankfort. It’s just really a nice place to live.”
Roy and Karen Nance’s home and garden will be featured as part of the Home and Garden Tour from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. June 8.
Home and Garden Tour details
The Living in History Garden Club of Frankfort Home and Garden Tour is set for 10 a.m.-4 p.m. June 8. Tickets are $15 for the tour and $15 for the luncheon. Tickets for the Home and Garden Tour will be available on the day of the tour at any participating home. Tickets for the luncheon will be sold at Wilson Nurseries. For a description of each home on the tour, visit www.frankthemagazine.com.The homes on the tour are:
• The Nance Home
106 Thistle Road
522 Logan St.
• Burch Home
220 Crown Point Drive
• Dickinson Home
239 Crown Point Drive
• Wingate Home
212 Washington St.
• Woman’s Club of Frankfort and Lilian Lindsey Garden
200 Washington St.
• Paul Sawyier Public Library
319 Wapping St. (no ticket needed)
• Wilsons Nurseries, Butterfly House
3690 East-West Connector