When a family of four had to take dinner in shifts due to their eat-in kitchen in Oceanside being a two-seater, they knew it was time to reevaluate their home’s layout. A tiny, unheated sun porch at the back of the house felt like wasted space to the growing family that needed a more practical application for their room with a garden view.
Taking her cue from the floor plan’s original purpose, designer Marlaina Teich decided to reflect the beauty outside on the walls inside. Yet she knew it was important not to go overboard. “The wallpaper was a huge jumping-off point for me because of the large scale flowers and the shades of blue,” said the Bellmore-based designer. “But I knew it would be a lot for them. We did wainscoting so it wouldn’t be as overwhelming to have so much pattern on the walls.”
The scale of the space also played into the decorating decisions. Although the room was extended a few feet, it was still quite long and narrow. In order to keep it from feeling cramped, Teich sought out bright, reflective materials for the furnishings and accessories. The white lacquered table catches the sunlight from three walls of windows and the neutral tones of the chair upholstery prevents the dining set from feeling too heavy. Even small details like the silver starburst mirror and crystal-tipped curtain rods were chosen to add a certain sparkle. “I wanted the room to feel open. That was the objective with the chandelier…With everything shining though, the light was just bouncing. When you walk into the room it’s shimmering.”
To balance all of that shine, Teich incorporated plenty of rougher textures as well. The burlapesque fabric on the dining chairs pairs with the rustic wood legs and trim on the table for a charming mash-up of old and new. “If everything is all slick, is that really that exciting? I think it’s more exciting when you mix the different materials,” Teich said. Even the glass door cabinet has a weathered, distressed frame, carrying the concept to the other end of the room.
But it’s the vignette tucked away by the entrance that immediately sets the tone. A marble-topped console table is home to a golden Greek key lamp with drum shade, a framed Monet print and a large black and white portrait. The mix of clean lines, geometrics and a touch of metallic offsets the painterly walls to modernize the look…a tactic applied throughout. “I didn’t want the room to go so sweet,” Teich explained. “Even the husband loves the room because the floral is tempered with the straight lines of the table and china closet and there’s so much woodwork.”