By Carmen Cristo
Kris Dillard and husband, Tom, have spent the last several years splitting their time between Greenwood and Oxford. They were long-time Delta residents until their adult daughters settled in Oxford and their son, Thomas, received a baseball scholarship from Ole Miss. The Dillards were never strangers to the college town. Thomas’ grandfather had played football at the university himself. After a few years of renting and traveling back-and-forth, the Dillards’ home-away-from-home has finally become permanent in a brand new house in the country club subdivision.
In their newly empty nest, the Dillards wanted plenty of room to entertain their family. Their daughters, Katie and Rachel, along with their spouses and children, stop by often. They picked a house plan that emphasized the common areas and had everything on one level with the exception of the bonus room upstairs, that will double as a guest bedroom should any of their children move to a different city.
Downstairs, there are three bedrooms—a master suite, Thomas’ room and a guest room for company.
There are three bathrooms in the 2,500 sq. ft. home.
If you ask Kris what her style is, she will tell you it is whatever she likes. The exterior of the home is classic with french influence. She added a touch of rustic with the light-hued brick and wood accents. The interior features large windows, casting natural light onto the light and airy color palette. The décor is comfortable and distinctly southern with modern touches like glass terrariums and gold light fixtures. Much of it came from their previous home, but new furniture was purchased at local shops on the square, like Jones at Home, Something Southern and Stash.
The common area is open-concept, with an easy flow between the eat-in kitchen and the den. The furniture in the den centers around the fireplace, flanked on each side by built-ins. The kitchen is Kris’ favorite room. Pristine white cabinets reach up to the ceiling. The chevron tile backsplash adds texture to the monochromatic room. A dark grey island sits in the middle as the perfect spot for the couple to enjoy dinner when they aren’t having company. The dining area is designed for a growing family like the Dillards. Eight chairs line the wooden table, which can be expanded by leaves to hold 16.
“I didn’t want a lot of wasted space,” said Kris. “I wanted one big area where the whole family could be. I didn’t want a formal dining room—we’ve had that, we didn’t use it. I wanted it to be a casual, comfortable house. I think our kitchen and den area fits that.”
The bathrooms are sleek and minimalistic, with silver fixtures, marble surfaces and clean lines.
Tom’s favorite part of their new home can’t be found inside. The Dillards have two outdoor entertaining spaces—the screened-in patio right off the back and the brick fireplace behind the house. Both of these spots will eventually have mounted televisions for enjoying the very few games that the Dillards don’t attend.
Between their sons games and their life that is still in Greenwood, the couple does a lot of traveling. In many ways, their new house is just home-base for their busy and full lives. Whether they’re tailgating at the grove, attending Thomas’ baseball games or visiting their grandchildren, they will just be miles away. For them, home is not a place on a map or a beautiful house, but where their family is near.
“We were gone this past weekend. When we came in on Sunday, Tom said, ‘I love how this feels like home now,’” Kris said. “We were in our other home in Greenwood almost 20 years. It was the only house Thomas knew, so it’s been different, but it’s been a great adjustment because we love Oxford.”