Three showhouse rooms where the sunny color shines
Whether light and lemony or gold and glamorous, yellow lightens the mood--here are three showhouse rooms where the sunny color shines.
Pasadena Showcase House of Design Pasadena, California
Dark wood trim that is a hallmark of Tudor design prompted designer Julie Kays to look to the light to brighten this home office. Soft yellow walls, painted trees and birds that adorn the perimeter of the ceiling, and a hand-blocked statement fabric combine to create a space where work and pleasure mix.
There were two sets of windows, but their dark wood framing seemed to dim the natural light of the room, explains Kays. "I used yellow because it reflects light instead of absorbing it. And the color changed the room's personality to a happier one."
Atop a yellow-and-cream Mahal rug covering dark wood floors, Kays repurposed a Chinese library table into a desk. The silhouette of the black-painted desk pops against the luminous window background. Pale gray linen dresses the hostess chair placed at the desk.
In the interest of keeping the room sophisticated and not too spirited, gray was folded into the scheme to temper the yellow hues. "Yellow can be too cheery," Kays says.
Design: Julie Kays, Julie Kays Design, 841 Muskingum Ave., Pacific Palisades, CA 90272; 310/877-8296, juliekaysdesign.com .
Photography: Michael Garland
Produced by Darra Baker
A close look at the windows' panel and valance.
The same yellow-and-gray blocked linen used for the panel-and-valance treatment at the windows also upholsters an English-style armchair positioned in front of a collection of framed intaglios. A leopard-patterned gray velvet covers the ottoman.
A detail of the wonderful painted ceiling by Nigel Cooper.
Sources for the entire room:
Wall paint ("Madera" #DEC728, flat finish): Dunn-Edwards, 888/337-2468, dunnedwards.com.
Decorative painting: Nigel Cooper, 626/234-8555.
Lounge chair (#1442-01); desk chair ("Hostess Chair" #3914-01): Lee Industries, 800/892-7150, leeindustries.com.
Ottoman ("Lowell" #1782-29): Hickory Chair, 800/349-4579, hickorychair.com.
Drapery and lounge-chair fabric ("Katsugi"/Gold & Mushroom #2620934); drapery trim ("Gweneth Linen"/Hyacinth #50973); trim on lounge chair ("Cabana Braid"/Sand Dune #63133); drapery sheers ("Nils"/Natural #1538011); ottoman fabric ("Nakuru Linen Velvet"/Pewter #64730); Becarre linen desk-chair fabric ("Olivier Epingle"/Oatmeal #51434): Schumacher, 800/523-1200, fschumacher.com.
Accent pillow on lounge chair: Appliqué Artistry, 415/453-6762, appliqueartistry.com. Art (antique Intaglio collection): Julie Kays Design, 310/877-8296, juliekaysdesign.com. Framing: Vandeuren Archival Framing, 323/874-0008, vandeuren.com. Sconces flanking art ("San Gimignano Bell Sconce," with custom parchment shades); sconces by window ("Botticelli Sconce," with custom parchment shades): Dagmar, 310/385-0116, dagmardesign.com. Reading light by lounge chair ("Studio Adjustable Light Floor Lamp"/Hand-Rubbed Antique Brass #91025, by Visual Comfort): Circa Lighting, 877/762-2323, circalighting.com.
Acrylic side table ("Moderne Side table" #SAH8521): Schumacher, 800/523-1200, fschumacher.com.
Area rug ("Mehal" #15308): Nasim Carpets, 310/657-4924, nasimcarpets.us.
Library table ("Whims Library Table" #MT-03): John Hall Designs, 805/981-1166, johnhalldesigns.com.
Books (antique vellum and custom book collection): Juniper Books, 303/946-1494.
Table lamp ("Acacia Table Lamp" #6023TL): Fuse Lighting, 310/652-2411, fuselighting.com. Available through Thomas Lavin, 310/278-2456, thomaslavin.com.
Window treatment fabrication and installation: Valley Drapery & Upholstery, 818/892-7744, valleydrapery.com.
DC Design House
Designer Barry Dixon listens to a room's visual suggestions before moving forward with a design. In this conservatory, an existing limestone fireplace and extraordinary garden views inspired him to create an earthy gray and stone palette. The hushed neutrals showcase the uncommonly pretty architectural details, including the paneling, moldings, and windows.
For an accent color, Dixon introduced bright yellow. "We needed a color to ignite the room with warmth and sparkle," he says. "I chose an acid yellow with a really kinetic, lively quality."
Known for his ability to seamlessly incorporate opposing styles, Dixon layered indoor and outdoor, old and new to validate the room's purpose as a transitional space between the home's interiors and its gardens. A 19th-century zinc chandelier hangs over a seating area featuring a pair of armchairs slipcovered in a geometric pattern that alternates varying shades of yellow with gray. Nailheads in a Greek motif adorn a round ottoman covered in a pale lemon-colored fabric.
Design: Barry Dixon, Barry Dixon Inc., Elway Hall, 8394 Elway Lane, Warrenton, VA 20186; 540/341-8501, barrydixon.com .
Photography: Gordon Beall
Produced by Eileen A. Deymier
Sofa ("Marche" #BD302); pair of upholstered chairs ("Middleburg" #BD200); round ottoman ("Dana" #BD226-0): Barry Dixon Collection through Tomlinson/Erwin-Lambeth, 336/889-2960, tomlinsonerwinlambeth.com.
Sofa fabric ("Panda"/Candy #5009001); chair fabric ("Ishtar"/Yellow #5007501); chair trim ("Bolo"/Honeyopal #5001303); drapery ("Papillon"/Lemon #5007101); drapery trim ("Jodhpurs"); sheer drapery ("Eternity Sheer"/White, Off White #5002901): Barry Dixon Collection, Vervain, 800/611-8686, vervain.com.
Fluted round end tables (with painted faux finish): DHS Designs, 410/827-8167, dhsdesigns.com.
Terra-cotta table lamps with custom silk shades; porcelain eagle in window (from Italy); cocktail table (from Marrakesh); round table with metal base (antique); leather chair (antique); pair of fretwork screens (antique): Barry Dixon Inc., 540/341-8501, barrydixon.com.
Zinc chandeliers (antique): Côte Jardin, 800/505-3067, cotejardinantiques.com.
Paint ("London Stone" #6): Farrow & Ball, 888/511-1121, farrow-ball.com.
Lacquered ceiling: Warnock Studios, warnockstudios.com.
In a corner, a collection of 10 art pieces titled Memories of France, by Paule Marrot, hang on either side of a table lamp made of antique iron chain.
Asian console half table (custom, "Toscana"/Marche Gray): Amy Howard Collection, 901/547-1448, amyhowardcollection.com.
Large iron table (antique); small chair with books; engravings (antique): Barry Dixon Inc., 540/341-8501, barrydixon.com.
Wing chair ("Norma Chair with Dressmaker Skirt" #BD209): Barry Dixon Collection through Tomlinson/Erwin-Lambeth, 336/889-2960, tomlinsonerwinlambeth.com. Column: designer's collection.
A different type of chain was used for a similar lamp, this time floor-height, that stands next to the fireplace, where a vibrant yellow glass vase shines on the mantel.
Chair and ottoman ("Susan" chair and ottoman #BD213): Barry Dixon Collection through Tomlinson/Erwin-Lambeth, 336/889-2960, tomlinsonerwinlambeth.com.
Chair fabric ("Crop Art Circles"/Honeyopal #5006002); welt ("Bosal"/Honeyopal #5001503); trim ("Lancing"/Rattan #5000303): Barry Dixon Collection, Vervain, 800/611-8686, vervain.com.
Set of 12 figurines on mantel (Zodiac figures from the Han dynasty); upholstered screen (custom); iron standing lamp; fireplace screen (custom); pair of large jars (Moroccan): Barry Dixon Inc., 540/341-8501, barrydixon.com.
Ceramic stool ("Celestial Cloud"): Grace Li Designs/Hampton Antiques, 404/352-0733, gracelidesigns.com.
DC Design House
Designer Camille Saum loves the look of fanned-out paint decks. With those in mind, she chose yellow, gold, and cream--hues that were new to her palette--to create this dining room. "Color is a primary element of my designs," says Saum. "Some designers have palettes that are their hallmarks, but I like to use the unfamiliar. Colors react differently to a space, so you can never treat them the same way."
Saum nodded to formality with a polished decor in a classical arrangement. But she gave the design a playful kick, extending an invitation for all occasions, from fancy to fun. The floor, painted in a yellow-and-white checkerboard pattern, set the tone for other spirited elements in the room. One is an antiqued mirror topping a round table skirted in moss-colored polyester with a lustrous sheen that exudes a luxurious feeling. Hand-painted porcelain dinnerware and glassware in amber and yellow mark the tablescape.
Classic dining chairs fashionably pair floral linen on chair-back insets with snappy taxi-colored vinyl resembling patent leather on their fronts and on the seat cushions.
Design: Camille Saum, Camille Saum Interior Design, LLC, 4949 St. Elmo Ave., Suite 200A, Bethesda, MD 20814; 301/657-9817, camillesaum.com .
Photography: Gordon Beall
Produced by Eileen A. Deymier
A pine china cabinet grew to what Saum calls the "perfect height" via a platform painted to match the cabinet. Inside the glass-paneled piece, shiny green paint provides a brilliant contrasting background.
Sources for the entire room:
Wall paint ("Light Gray" #17); ceiling paint ("Dutch Pink" #62); floor paints ("Babouche" #223 and "Pointing" #2003): Farrow & Ball, 888/511-1121, farrow-ball.com.
Table top (antique mirror, custom); hanging lantern ("Palissy Lantern" #10-00210-3008): Niermann Weeks, 212/319-7979, niermannweeks.com.
Dining chairs (#1124): Karges & Caron, 828/635-0086, kargescaron.com.
Fabric on chair front and seat ("Glassed"/Sol #VK11-18): Valtekz, 866/794-7979, valtekz.com.
Chair-back fabric ("Avebury Floral Vine"/Citrine #174521); table-skirt fabric ("Giordano Taffeta"/Topaz #63938); drapery ("Giordano Taffeta"/Chartreuse #63955); drapery flange ("Giordano"/Topaz): Schumacher, 800/523-1200, fschumacher.com. Drapery and table-skirt fabrication: Design Logistics, 301/585-1719.
Display cabinet (antique): The Great British Pine Mine, 301/493-2565, pinemine.com. Accessories in display cabinet; chartreuse plates on wall (by Anna Weatherley): Neiman Marcus, neimanmarcus.com.
Some glass pieces in display cabinet: Maurine Littleton Gallery, 202/333-9307, littletongallery.com.
Ceramic pieces: Cross McKenzie Gallery, 202/337-7970.
China ("Boulle," over-size service plate, 2011 Collection by Bernardaud); highball and double old-fashioned glassware ("Pebbles"/Eldor, by Moser); small bowls ("Bar Bowl"/Topaz, by Moser); flatware ("Perles" by Sambonet): Consider It Done Boutique, 301/654-8690.
Napkins ("Chinese Fret"): Dransfield & Ross, 212/741-7278, dransfieldandross.biz. Available through Gore Dean, 410/464-1790, goredean.com. Centerpiece: Pier 1 Imports, pier1.com.
Bamboo heater cover: Tom Salter, Stonehenge Building, 717/515-5467, stonehengebuilding.org.
Faux finishing on floors and display cabinet: Ali Nassiri, Atelier Artists, 301/294-4808, atelierartists.com.