Savoir faire: A Francophile’s Buckhead home reflects a world of travels

From the Right Bank blogger Ally Kim shows off her love of French antiques and modern style
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Ally Kim
Photograph by Anthony-Masterson

“Paris is always a good idea” Audrey Hepburn famously said in the movie Sabrina, and Ally Kim must have been channeling that philosophy when she launched her circa-2009 blog, From the Right Bank. Back then Ally had recently moved from Le Rive Droite to San Francisco, and she wanted to chronicle her decorating journey and to find like-minded souls in her new city. “I didn’t know anyone on the West Coast, and I wanted to connect with people to talk about design,” Ally says. “My blog was like Pinterest before Pinterest existed.”

A year later, Ally brought her popular blog with her to Atlanta, where her love for French antiques and modern style merged harmoni­ously in a traditional Buckhead house. Here, her collection of antique and contemporary furniture, accessories, and art is a testament to her globe-trotting lifestyle.

“I don’t like a busy bedroom,” says the homeowner, whose master suite features a subdued blue-and-white scheme. Vintage bedside lamps are from Italy.
“I don’t like a busy bedroom,” says the homeowner, whose master suite features a subdued blue-and-white scheme. Vintage bedside lamps are from Italy.

Photograph by Anthony-Masterson

There was no remodeling to tackle as the house was new, but Ally began by painting all of the first-floor walls white. “I think there are two types of people in the world: white-wall and not-white-wall people,” Ally says. “And I’m definitely a white-wall person. It’s so clean and modern.” Ally jokes that she has “design attention deficit disorder,” so a neutral backdrop enables her to easily switch out furnishings and accessories.

And oh, the treasures she has to switch out. Years of trolling Paris flea markets combined with a keen eye for bargains add up to a striking design story. The light gray dining room includes a round Kartell table purchased in France, two different styles of dining chairs, and a collection of black-and-white photography Ally and her husband have assembled over the years.

Ally Kim
“Our leanings are toward modern, but I appreciate the formality of Atlanta’s traditional homes,” says Ally, whose education in art and photography along with a lifetime of travel helped hone her keen eye. Judges paneling and high ceilings help define the living room, with its Baccarat chandelier, Lee Industries leather sofa, and vintage leopard chairs and coffee table.

Photograph by Anthony-Masterson

An antique Baccarat chandelier from the Kims’ Paris apartment was rewired for U.S. electrical standards and now lights up the living room. In that room you’ll also find Ally’s often-photographed leopard-print Milo Baughman–style Parsons chairs (a favorite with blog devotees). She discovered them in the lobby of an auto repair shop—covered in unattractive fabric but with good bones—so she made the stunned mechanic an offer and had them recovered in leopard. “I know they’re a ‘thing’ now. You can Google leopard Parsons chairs, but mine were an original at the time,” she notes.

Ally’s recent travels to London, Seoul, Sri Lanka, Berlin, and, of course, Paris continue to guide the next phase of her creative journey. “I want to document the never-ending decorating of my house and share ideas with other design obsessives,” she writes. Have passport, will inspire.

To follow Ally’s journey, visit fromtherightbank.com.

Pro Resources
Dining room
table: Kartell, kartell.com. Dining room paint: “Bunny Gray,” Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com. Living room sofa: Lee Industries, leeindustries.com. Orange chair/ottoman: Ligne Roset, ligne-roset.com. Laundry room wallpaper: “Brazilliance,” Dorothy Draper, dorothydraperfw.com. Guest room wallpaper: “C’est Magnifique,” Anthropologie, anthropologie.com. Hall wallpaper: “Zebras,” Scalamandre, scalamandre.com.

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