Here, she explains how the project came together and some of the key design elements she used to design it.
“Every designer knows that it’s much easier to create a lovely living room from scratch, choosing each separate piece with a careful eye, rather than crafting a room already filled with much-loved family pieces coupled with new, designer choices. It’s easier, but the spirit of the family and a little of the room’s soul is lost when a room is filled with everything new. That’s why I enjoy using family pieces, when possible, in furnishing a living room.
This living room of an Eastover family works cleverly in several ways. First, it’s a welcoming, cozy place for the family to curl up, reading, talking, and playing. Second, it’s a charming place to entertain, with prized pieces by prominent glassmaker Duncan McLellan and potter Ben Owen, among others. At the core of the room is the hearth, which features a 1965 oil painting done by the homeowner’s father; a striking piece which incorporates deep blue green, earthy tones of cream, gray, brick red, sandy brown and a delicious, Mediterranean orange. These tones pull together the otherwise disparate color elements of the room, including the sandy brown sofa and its homemade red quilt, the beautifully faded childhood trunk from my client (now serving as a coffee table), the blues and greens of a rustic ‘cloud’ garden stool and the gray sheepskin in the spaniel’s basket by the fireplace.
The antique carpet and drapes reinforce the warmth and welcome in the room, while the silvery cigar table and the mercury glass and hammered silver lamps provide a cool, modern counterpoint. At every turn, there’s a reminder of family – the father’s bronzed baby shoes are perched on top of a small stack of the mother’s Beatrix Potter books, reminding children that parents were small once too. A stash of legos is found in pottery bowls stacked in a family wagon from long ago, which now serves handily as a side table.
Easily repeating elements, I brought in a weathered gray mirror from Vagabond Vintage to echo the color of the 1940s marble of the fireplace and reinforce the circle elements found in the drapery and vibrant McClellan bowl. Built-in shelves, original to the house, give each piece its own space. It’s truly special to capture and celebrate the family’s spirit using evocative things next to new, and providing a warm and welcoming living room for the family that lives there.”
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