"Sure, a beige sofa with bright pillows is great," says designer Karen Bow. "But going beyond the expected is better. Why not make your home truly yours? Be brave! Start with something you love and build." Which is exactly what these homeowners did. Their key piece? A robin's egg blue rug in the dining room, which set off a symphony of blues that weave their way throughout the home in fresh fashion.
Even the home's blue-gray exterior hints at what's inside. The neutral with colorful undertones is a subtle approach to an exterior hue that's anything but cookie-cutter beige.
Dramatic black plays a supporting role in the home's design, giving a sophisticated edge to traditional farmhouse bones, a dynamic that plays out on the black balusters on the stairway.
Beige and white coincide harmoniously in the living room. Like the hints of black, white offers a cool sophisticate, while beige warms up the space and exudes an inviting air. Blue goes rich and deep, appearing in shades of pool and teal in select places.
Traditional Windsor-inspired chairs are black, rather than the typical wood tone, supporting the "hint of black" initiative in the home's design. The clean-lined white modern dining table advances the twist. Black-and-white curtains stand out against white walls and the robin's egg blue inspired the use of blue accessories across the table.
In the breakfast area, turquoise blue mirrors from a local vintage shop and wishbone chairs painted blue put a fresh spin on the familiar. Above the table, a traditionally-shaped chandelier gets a modern update, thanks to a chrome finish.
Amidst white cabinets, plenty of natural light and shiny stainless-steel finishes, wenge wood on the island top continues the thread of black in the airy kitchen. A pale blue backsplash is subtle, which helps it blend with the ethereal cast of the kitchen while carrying the home's signature color into the space. "Everyone loves a white kitchen. Begin there and then throw in a surprise -- even if it's just a hint of color in the backsplash tile," Bow says.
Blue takes a different turn in the butler's pantry and goes electric for strong impact in the small space. Both the back of the glass counter and the backsplash were painted blue and shimmery wallpaper picks up on the bar's silver accents.
Blue goes on a slight hiatus in the office, appearing in a medium tone on the rug and pillow. But handsome built-ins, a unique x-base desk, and an oversize desk lamp ensure the room isn't lacking for personality.
Varying intensities takes an accent color to the next level. In the master bedroom, whisper soft French blue on the tray ceiling and flooring becomes topaz blue on the lamps. The same white-beige dynamic from the living room plays out in the space. Natural materials -- from the wood bedframe to the grasscloth wallpaper -- exude spalike serenity.
Midcentury chairs introduce a bit of glam to the serene master bedroom. and natural stone brings rich sand tones to the fireplace surround.
White walls stand back for a parade of fun accents and patterns in this teen's bedroom. Bow's secret to mixing patterns? Keep them all in a fairly narrow palette, such as the blue and purple patterns here.
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