Some houses just have a cool vibe….. like this chalet in the woods owned by my clients Lisa and Stuart (here’s a “before shot”)…..

It was cozy and inviting….. All it needed was a little updating, to make it “lighter and brighter” (Lisa).  Her only directive:  to “banish the brown”.  My clients were laid back, lovely and gracious.  My definition of their “style”:  “relaxed elegance”.  So we endeavored to to take their living spaces from “cozy” to “relaxed elegance”.  And here’s what we did…..

…..Painted the window frames pale blue-green, to lighten them up and help connect the cozy indoors with the fairy woodland outdoors…..

…..Traded the grass cloth shades for sheer linen ones, which let the light and views in…..

…..Changed the now well-worn chair fabrics to a creamy, nubby off-white, complimented by a soft turquoise throw pillow – the better to read by the fire…..

…..Replaced the oversized sofa (that came with the house) with a more standard sized one, to provide a little more room.  And of course took the opportunity to update the fabrics…..

…..gray-blue-greens, complimented by soft corals…..

Behind the sofa is a little wine bar (that goes with the wine cellar – not shown!) that looked like a little piece of Provence.  It was originally brown wood like the window frames.  We repainted it with the same soft blue-green, and subtly distressed it…..

Beyond the wine bar lies the kitchen.  It was Stuart’s idea to carry the colors into there (you know you’re doing well as a designer when the husband gets in on the action….. 🙂

(Here’s a before shot – with the original avocado green cabinets…..)

…..We kept the deep green for the “back side” of the open shelves (Lisa’s idea), and painted the rest a pale green, a shade darker than the windows and wine bar…..

…..Love the painted ceramic pulls Lisa found to go with the new look…..

And here is the other side of the kitchen – with, of course, the perfect island/bar to sit and perch with a glass of Chardonnay and watch the birds outside (is this not the coolest house?  Can you see the fairy woodland outside?)….. Love the “cork” lampshades they found for the chandelier…..

…..All of a sudden this little nook invites you to sit and stay for awhile…..

…..And a view from the kitchen bar back to the living room…..

Ready for your wine tasting?  Now that’s what I call relaxed elegance…..



photography by Ashley Segroves


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