An Interview & House Tour with Aly Smith
If you've been a Home Town fan for a while or binged the series recently, you'll notice that most of the homeowners are friends with Erin and Ben and with one another. You'll also see a few of those familiar faces when you visit Laurel Mercantile or Scotsman General Store on any given day. In fact, many of its employees have been on the show. Including Ebonee from the Johnikin House, Kendall from the Simoneau House, and Brooke from the Davis-Jefcoat House seen on the latest and fifth season.
Way back when Home Town was still growing in popularity during the second season, Erin and Ben were granted the opportunity to renovate Aly and Jordan Smith's new home. Many may remember the Italianate mansion and Aly and Jordan's down-to-earth demeanor and complete trust in the Napiers' design abilities. Their episode told the love story of how Jordan and Aly met at the University of Mississippi when she was a student, and he was a cheerleader. Jordan went to college with the Napiers, and Erin even designed their wedding invitations.
What wasn't fully explained in the Smith House episode is that Aly has been the longest-standing employee at Laurel Mercantile Co. Since the beginning, she has led the team working as the store manager, organizer, product curator, window decorator, office caterer, and an assortment of other titles that have led to the success of our store. You can find her in the background doing the tasks needed to pull off a successful event, helping a customer or meeting an impossible deadline. She's as humble as they come, so we take every chance to brag on her when we can. Obviously, we're big fans.
It's been almost four years since Aly and Jordan's episode aired, and Aly is still leading the Laurel Mercantile team. We reached out to see how she and her home have changed since then. Naturally, she invited us in for a look around. Let's take a tour!
"This house was built in 1940 and is unlike any other house we’ve seen in Laurel. I will admit it was hard to see past the pink brick exterior and very red interior, but I trusted Erin’s vision for it. We also have an amazing live oak in front of our house and I begged them to not trim too much away because it really is stunning." — Aly
"When we first saw the house, I hated the brick. I begged Erin and Ben to lime wash our house, but it just didn't fit into our budget. I never doubted Erin, I just couldn't see see past the white trim enough to envision the outcome. She picked the most perfect trim color that made the red brick look less pink and more rich. I’m still so happy with the way it turned out." — Aly
*SW 7062 Rock Bottom
"Since we were on the second season of Home Town, we’d already gotten to see them design and renovate 11 homes. It was incredibly easy to turn the keys over and not have to worry about what was happening at our house for 8 weeks. I think we were surprised by everything."
"While from the outside our house looks larger, it’s incredibly cozy on the inside. I typically love an open floor plan, but we love the walls in our house. Each room has a purpose and is special in it’s own way."
"I remember when this runner was shipped to the Mercantile during renovations. I immediately text Erin that I couldn't live without it! She said" Sorry! I bought that for my house." You can imagine my surprise when we walked into our house for the first time. It is still one of my favorite things in our house."
"Erin has a really cool way of finding out what you like without just asking what your favorite colors are. We filled out a questionnaire and it had things like: What is your favorite childhood memory? Favorite books? Favorite music and band? Favorite movies and why? She does ask colors that you like and dislike but that isn’t the only driving factor."
"Although we kept a couple of pieces of furniture in our house from the reveal, most of the things in our house now are vintage or hand-me-downs. I think hand-me-downs can still be beautiful though."
"I’ve gotten to see first-hand how hard Ben, Randy, and our woodshop team work on the builds and the products we sell. The lamps were so special to me, because I've spent so much time talking with people from all over the country about how important it is that our products are made in the USA. You forget that real people make these products, but the lamps reminded me that there is nothing like knowing who made what’s in your home and the thought that went into each design."
"The pennants are an ode to places we've been together. Some old, some new. The Tennessee and Mississippi wooden pieces are special to us. We're both from Mississippi, but we spent our first years of marriage together in Tennessee. There is a little star where Dyersburg sits on the TN map. It's another small town we got to love before living here. I love that our house tells our story. I think the best houses always do."
"I loved our dining room color enough to paint our bedroom the same color. We also used it for the trim color in our guest bath upstairs and the main color of our half bath downstairs. It’s called Randolph Grey and it’s maybe the greatest paint color of all time."
"Our house didn't have a style before. While we are big Ole Miss fans, red walls are not my idea of relaxing. I’d rather wear my red (and blue) than stare at it all day. Erin has this innate ability to read people's minds sometimes. I never talked to her about my love of colored trim, but that was what she chose. I really gave her full design freedom other than saying not a huge amount of bright colors. I love a home that feels like it hugs you when you walk inside and I definitely feel like ours does that for us."
"I have a very collected style, so it’s a little all over the place. I definitely find things that I love aesthetically, but I also like to have things on our walls that mean something to us."
"We're pretty eclectic with our wall art if you haven't already noticed. I found this old South MS fair poster at a flea market that is similar to the one Mallorie has and framed that, we have an old hand-painted metal welding sign that is a nod to Jordan’s dad who is a welder, I have maps of places we’ve travelled or lived that we love, and a framed hymn that was played at our wedding and given to me by a bridesmaid.
While I always aim for everything to feel cohesive, my main goal is for it to reflect our life together. A house can belong to anybody, a home is a very personal thing."
"This room was the biggest surprise. Everything was so unexpected. The built-in under the stove is functional but beautiful. We also use the boards for cutting boards and then we’ll throw them back up there."
"I try to keep fresh flowers in our kitchen to make it feel like it did on reveal day every day."
"This is our main landing spot for Jordan, I and our pups. You'll find boots, treats and an assortment of things around here."
"I like to think the style of our home honors the original builders and all the owners who’ve come before us while also feeling like us. It’s nerve wracking to know you are completely changing somebody’s history. Red paint doesn’t make sense for us, but the previous owners loved it enough to use it in almost every room. We’ve actually had a few previous owners or their children reach out to us since the show aired. It's been fun to learn how each family lived in the space and used rooms for such different purposes. It's even more fun to discover how this house is becoming more like us everyday."
Thanks for stopping by Aly and Jordan's gorgeous home. Be sure to come by Laurel Mercantile Co. and say hello! Shop Aly's home collection here.
P.S. — Let your kiddos enjoy coloring their own version of The Smith House from Erin's Sketchbook Coloring Book. Click below to download your free coloring sheet!