Southern New Hampshire Cape

For this living room project, the client expressed the desire keep the original footprint of the room, as well as traditional-looking wainscoting and the existing fireplace and surround, but to update the room, to create a contemporary feel for entertaining. The house itself is a 1970’s rendition of a classic Cape style house, including a white marble fireplace surround, built from aged and new marble. Thom Glynn of Eye Catching Designs and I collaborated on this project.

Our response to the challenge of creating a contemporary feel, while maintaining the traditional elements of room, was to focus on the dynamic contrast created by those traditional and contemporary elements, when placed together. To that end, the contrasts included: a deep blue-green wall color, with bright white trim; collectible furniture that included a vintage 1960’s marble-topped coffee table, an early 1900’s side table, new unembellished upholstered sofa and lounge chair, as well as tufted armless lounge chairs. Artwork was chosen with the same contrasts in mind, including a 1960’s original oil painting of the ocean over the fireplace, against more graphic pieces in the rest of the room.

Lighting is very important to both of us, so recessed ceiling fixtures and dimmers were added. Decorative lighting was chosen with the theme of dynamic contrasts in mind, as well, and the range included sconces with shades over the fireplace having a more traditional sensibility, to a Georg Kovacs chrome arced floor lamp, evoking the 1960’s.

Thom and I received the 2010 Living Spaces Award from the IFDA, New England Chapter, for this living room design.

Contractor, Design Partners, Vendors:

Photos by Malcolm Fitzgerald.