Monday, April 18, 2011

Jane's House: The Study

Today we're kicking off the design of Jane's house with her study, which will be in a 12' x 11' bedroom on the second floor of their new home. The room itself is fairly standard, though there is a lovely large West-facing window that we'll be playing up with some wonderful draperies. As this room will be primarily Jane's, we decided to go for a slightly more feminine look and play up the traditional-meets-bohemian look that feels just a bit English: think prep meets paisley. It's warm and comfortable, but still a little bit dressed up. Jane also requested a warmer color palette, professing a love for golds, oranges and reds. Of course, P.W. has declared an affinity for blues and grays, meaning that (as is so often the case), the decorator must put on her mediator cap and find a way to make both parties happy.

So where to begin? Well, I always like to find a rug or a fabric that really ties a room together; something that combines all the colors of the room into one fantastic print. From there, you can simply pull out wall colors and accent colors with ease. While I found this rug actually midway through the design process, I immediately knew it was the perfect piece to pull what had been disparate pieces together into a coherent design. Aside from the great color palette of sage green, orange, red-orange and slate blue, the large-scale floral pattern with its slightly raised pile reminds me of crewel work, lending it the sort of traditional-meets-bohemian vibe that I was going for. What makes this even better: at $329 (less a 25% discount we scored thanks to Horchow's frequent sales) for a 5' x 8', the rug is a good buy.

Next up are the fabric selections. Since Jane is a fan of warmer, earthier tones, I decided to pull out the rich orange in the rug as the primary accent color, with warm shades of chocolate brown and sand to keep the room grounded. The Moroccan-style tile print of the draperies is open, airy and fairly neutral, but still interesting. We'll pick up on the more exotic prints with an ikat print in two colorways of coral and sand. The bolder coral will go on the desk chair, while both colors will be made into throw pillows for the daybed (the one existing piece that's going into the room). Finally, a simple sand and chocolate ticking stripe will add a masculine, geometric touch to the space as another print for the pillows. Besides, I'm of the opinion that a room is never truly finished without some sort of stripe.

To balance the warm tones of all the fabrics, I decided to pull out the slate blue in the rug for the wall color (Benjamin Moore's Santorini Blue). Not only does the contrast of cooler walls with warmer fabrics and furniture create a more interesting room, but it also serves another key purpose: it brings in P.W.'s beloved blue-gray, ensuring his tastes are reflected in the room as well. Now that we've selected the color palette and fabrics, it's time to pull everything together:

As I noted, the only existing furniture we're working with is the West Elm daybed. We'll keep with the chocolate brown finish for the other major furniture pieces as well, selecting clean, modern furniture with simple lines and smaller foot prints to suit the dimensions of the room. Jane originally was attracted to a sawhorse-style desk she saw in a Ballard Designs catalogue; however, P.W. requested a glass-top desk, so we found this one on sale at Pottery Barn for under $300 that combines the glass-top with the open, sawhorse-style that Jane was so attracted to in the other piece. I opted for a simple Parsons-style chair (with slightly flared front legs, which lends it a bit more grace and femininity) upholstered in a vivid orange ikat -- just as comfortable, and infinitely more attractive than an ugly office chair. 

To make up for the lack of storage, I selected a small filing cabinet from West Elm (that can also pull double duty as a side table) and some West Elm woven storage boxes in creams and slate blues add texture and are pretty enough to leave out. On the other side of the daybed, a vibrant orange table adds interest and color and breaks up all the dark brown furniture. A vintage-style task lamp from Pottery Barn adds a bit of antique flavor and interest.

Source List:
Firenze Embroidered Panel in Chocolate (Ballard Designs)
Malabar Fabric in Sand and Coral (Ballard Designs)
Ticking Stripe in Chocolate/Cream (Mod Green Pod)
Woven Storage Boxes (West Elm)
Modular File Cabinet (West Elm)
Upholstered Couture Chair in Malabar Coral (Ballard Designs)
Photographer's Task Table Lamp (Pottery Barn)
Ava Desk (Pottery Barn)
Martini Side Table in Persimmon (West Elm)
Vanessa Rug (Horchow)
Santorini Blue by Benjamin Moore

Of course, I'll post pictures once the room is finished (should be sometime in June), but in the meantime we'll continue to search for a few fun accessories and art to really make the space sing.


Unknown said...

Love this, your sis is a lucky gal! Can't wait to see how it all comes together.

Laura@JourneyChic said...

The rug is so pretty, and you've done a great job mixing patterns. I love that coral ikat on the chair.

Hyphen Interiors said...

Great job. I like the design board. Loving the industrial lamp. Just wanted to say hi. Saw you comment on karamay's blog and I was like, hey, that's Averill. Yours was THE first design blog I ever read. Seems like I found it when searching for something on google. That was maybe a couple of years ago... when you just got your house! I wasn't an avid reader. I bookmarked it and checked to see what you were up to about once a month. I loved seeing your rooms come together - the family room is one I remember in particular. I never commented, I don't think... as I didn't know back then how awesome it was for people to get comments and know who is reading the blog. Well, about 6 months ago, I explored a ton of new design blogs and go really into reading them daily! Like... way too many... and they were now on my RSS feed. And, two months ago (almost) I started my own blog! It was your blog that was the beginning!! Thanks!

Christy said...

So freaking fabulous - love it all! Can't wait to see the photos this summer!!! You really do have exquisite taste Averill!

Nichole@40daysof said...

I love This - especially the chair fabric.

Sarah said...

Just saw that you are going to be helping your sister and her husband with their house! How fun!!! And will definitely make for a great blog series:) You did a wonderful job combining both their different color palettes. Sigh...I've been eying those Ballard drapes forever, love them!! Great mix of prints/patterns. Can't wait to see it done and what you are doing for the other rooms!

Susan @ Real Girl Designs said...

You are so talented - I like the way that you have pulled everything together! I can't wait to see your finish!

Connie @ SogniESorrisi said...

Love this colour scheme! The hard thing for me is when I know what I want in my head but have a hard time finding a fabric/rug to match.

I'm looking forward to what else you cook up for your sister. We're moving in soon and pretty much starting from scratch -- its both daunting and exciting.

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