Soothing Colors & Textures Make This Vancouver Home A Calming Retreat
The owners of this West Coast home, Lisa and Scot, both have demanding jobs in banking and finance and craved a tranquil environment where they could unplug and unwind. Designers Cathy Radcliffe and Teigan Jorgensen took their cues for the interior from the 12-year-old Craftsman-style house’s architecture, as well as the Vancouver landscape. Shades of blue and green appear throughout, along with leafy patterns and natural wood tones. “We wanted it to be like a big comfy sweater,” says Cathy, who also layered in relaxed textures and finishes.
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An undulating bleached-oak coffee table loosens up the living room and evokes Vancouver’s ocean shoreline. The designers chose modern pieces such as the Carl Hansen armchairs and the Platner chair, both in sumptuous textures, to create a contemporary yet classic look with an approachable feel. Wool rugs in grey hues and plush furnishings such as the down-filled Montauk sofa upholstered in a polyester fabric that feels like a short-pile velvet, amp up the snuggle factor. “This is the most-used room in our house,” says Lisa. “We hang out here as a family, dog included, with our feet up on the coffee table to watch TV and catch up.”
For Lisa, seating in the living room was an important consideration. “I wanted to have lots of room for people to sit,” she says. “We can easily fit 10-plus friends or family in here without feeling jammed.”
“We tend to like a relaxed, layered, somewhat imperfect look,” says Cathy (shown). “Our goal is for the decorating to endure — nothing needs to be changed out over time.”
The entryway’s rustic table was one of the first pieces chosen for the house. A modern Cassina stool is a striking counterpoint. “This furniture pairing is symbolic of the family moving from a contemporary space to embrace a more cozy space — it signals the merging of two styles,” says Teigan.
Placing the desk in the center of Lisa’s home office frees up space for shelving and a sitting area. Lisa instantly fell in love with the dimensional rug and the blue Saarinen Executive chair that accent the glass-topped desk.
The David Wilson painting of Vancouver’s Burrard Bridge was a gift from Scot to Lisa and has pride of place in the kitchen. “We didn’t want anything distracting from it,” says Teigan. The view is the same one the couple had at their first apartment together.
The kitchen was completely reconfigured with 16-foot-wide folding doors to open up the back of the house. Above the Silestone-topped island, a mobile-style pendant strikes a playful note. “Contemporary lighting adds a sculptural beauty to any aesthetic,” says Cathy.
A showstopping Lacanche range was the jumping-off point for the whole kitchen. The designers mixed sleek, flat-front cabinetry with custom millwork, and layered the look with different countertop materials for visual interest. “We felt a darker counter on the island was needed to complement and anchor the other dark, tonal elements,” says Cathy.
The Carrara marble-topped dining table’s traditional turned legs are actually made of china, for a unique twist on a classic look. The home’s original wide-plank fir floors were sanded down to remove a reddish hue, then coated with a sealer to prevent reddening over time.
Reminiscent of the subdued palettes seen in Nordic design, the home’s color scheme works equally well in Vancouver. In the master bedroom, tonal wallpaper adds a hit of pattern and highlights the unusual ceiling line.
In the principal bathroom, the original vanity was revived with a marble top and a coat of soft, watery blue paint that picks up on the patchwork floor tile. For chilly mornings, a towel warmer is arm’s length from the shower.
In daughter Reilly’s bedroom, a forest scene enhances a feeling of being nestled in the treetops. “A wall mural is an impactful way to enliven a room, especially if you don’t have a lot of art to display,” says Teigan.