A Brick Colonial Home with New-Traditional Style

This Minnesota home's original wallpapered halls are at the heart of its youthful decor.

Out with the old is often the mantra for remodeling dated homes, so it's refreshing when a piece of the past gets preserved. In an ivy-covered 1938 brick colonial in Edina, MN, that bit of salvageable history was the blue-and-white floral wallpaper in the foyer. The pattern fit Lou and Lindsay DiLorenzo's new-traditional style and reminded them of their childhood homes. Rather than stripping it (as they did with the rest of the worn or painted-over papers), the couple used it as a launching pad for decorating post-renovation. The paper's palette informed choices like the dark blue wing-back chairs in the living room and lighter touches throughout the house. But that thread to the past is balanced with vibrant accents that give the place a youthful energy.

To warm the blue-and-white scheme, designer Brooke Voss helped Lindsay work in coral accents—a more traditional color than hot pink but more playful than red. Voss placed garden stools in the foyer and had living room pillows upholstered in a fabric Lindsay remembers from her childhood home. A faux bamboo table in brass mimics the geometry of the mirror with added glam.

Colorful mementos, like the red Fu lion bookends from Hong Kong and the kids' framed artwork, animate bookshelves in the white living room. A highlighter-yellow side table rounds out the primary colors energizing the living room. Pillows in a mix of patterns, colors, and textures accent the white sofa.

White cabinetry, tile, and counters, plus a royal blue range and accents, carry the color scheme into the kitchen. Open cabinets let Lindsay show off her pretty white plates and trendy copper pans. All the colors of the kitchen are pulled together in the runner that grounds the space while creating a warm walkway. 

Lindsay and Lou wanted their kitchen to feel like it was transplanted from a Parisian apartment. They got the effect with countertop-to-ceiling white subway tile and a collection of copper pots they were finally able to pull out of storage. Blue and white dish towels give the perfect touch of vintage.

Tucked in the space between the kitchen and dining room is a little nook for perusing recipes and studying spelling words. To make the area feel like a seamless extension of the kitchen, Lindsay used the same countertops and backsplash. Adjustable shelves above the desk space make room for cook books, while base cabinets hide office supplies below.

Architect Andrea Swan helped the couple rethink their floor plan, opening the previously cramped kitchen to a new family room carved from the old garage. Living in the space for a year before remodeling also changed Lindsay's thoughts on storage. "I changed everything to open shelving," she says. "I didn't think I was that modern or organized before."

6 Comments

  1. Open shelving in the kitchen- ugh!
    No matter how fastidious you are, it’s a trap for grease and dust.

    1. We have only a few cabinets that are open. Its such a pleasure to just reach up and get a glass without opening a door. But packaged goods need a door, unless they can be stored in jars.

    2. Very true, but I've been around long enough to know that these decor tips are meant to be pretty photos, not normal, everyday usage.

    3. You are so right. Just like beautiful plants shown in a corner where no plant would ever dwell. The ideas sometimes serve the camera more than the consumer.

  2. absolutely LOVE the wallpaper... and the open shelves... I am considering a total remodel of my 70's kitchen and will start by removing the overhead cabinet doors to see if i can live with open shelvinng. LOL. beautiful house!

  3. After the ordeal of removing wallpaper, I said never again. But lately I’m feeling inspired to wallpaper my entryway. Never say never! I love the entryway wallpaper and the blue stove! Beautiful home.

  4. I am so over white!!

  5. BHG is trying to bring back wallpaper. Are they tired of promoting paint?

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