Being in the business we love to check out other examples of high end interior design. When you visit a model home, sit down for minute, just stop ,and look around, it’s really not your home, it’s like the home of that perfect friend of yours, you know the one, you go over to their house and need to maybe sit up a bit straighter than you would normally, you may furtively look around for a safe table to put your drink on, and the art - it’s hopefully tasteful- but definitely lacking an edge.
Please note, this is not because the model home ‘stagers” as they’re known in the industry, are not doing their job well - far from it! They have the difficult task to create a home environment where everybody - literally the entire public, can quickly run through and see themselves living in the space. These designers need a specific talent to boil down interior design to simple elements of style - add a strong dash of popular current trends and finally serve it up to please the biggest client base - yes, everybody! This is most certainly not an easy task - and as most people realize - it’s also not real life.
Designing for a newly built home seems so simple – the paint is fresh and perfect, new cabinets and up to date countertops and appliances all contribute to what should be a slam dunk to an easy, perfect interior. What could go wrong? But, the trick is, with everything sooo perfect, if one isn’t careful, you could end up with the dreaded “model home” feel- too generic, too cold- too…, well, too perfect! And, what’s wrong, you may ask, with a Model Home?
Yes, almost everyone loves most model homes - who wouldn’t?
Well executed interior design and renovation will offer a sensitive mix of materials and textures which all can play the biggest role in giving a newly built home that indeterminate, elusive warmth and welcoming feeling. Carefully selected choices in interior furnishings, art and accessories can make all that perfect, shiny new home- still feel perfect, but also feel livable, personal, and comfortable.
Above: We created this mix of textures and colors specifically for our clients and their family. The blend fabrics, leather, bronze, the owners own antique items and the heavily textured original painting we found for them all serve to soften this space and invite relaxation. Our clients helped select the final textured fabric of the sofa and they loved the leather chair and coffee table when we presented them for their approval. The room has so much neutral going on that we purposely selected the strong, deep red hued rug which gives so much life and personality to this space and our clients were thrilled as they feel personally connected to this room, and from the knowledge that it was created with them in mind.
The above photo from a different project shows what was a perfect new secondary sitting room. (or upstairs, additional sitting room? ) These client’s directive for the overall feel of what they wanted was a “modern and minimal” look first and foremost, but they also looked to us make certain that their new urban styled environment was tempered with moments of warmth, spaces that were livable and comfortable. We started with crisp white walls and a wonderful muted tile floor- but - it definitely was a very white box. We brought in a media cabinet made from paint washed, reclaimed wood and a pair of bamboo ottomans which not only make great tables and footrests but they add significantly to the natural textures going on. The neutral sofa in a textured oatmeal color and armchair are practical, very comfortable and provide a needed quiet visual moment from the rest of the excitement in this space, and finally- the absolutely show stopping color and pattern from the hand dyed natural jute rug which gives this space a life and warmth that is undeniable.
Full service interior design, done well, can give the new homeowner a highly personalized environment specifically suited to their needs- whether for a family, a single executive or empty nesters. There is really no one size fits all approach to residential interior design. Unless you’re a Stepford Wife.