sofa is custom made for the room to fit in the wall niche. Itís
also deeper than a standard-size sofa to accommodate two people
lying down for watching TV, reading or cozying up.
Photo by David Bader
In this very
traditional house off of Lake Drive in Milwaukee, Peabodyís
Interiors designer Josť Carlino infuses bold color into the library
with bright red walls and a crisp color scheme.
to all of us. Itís daring," Carlino says. "You really feel
like you are in a red cocoon."
Though it took a
bit of convincing for the homeowners to take the risk, they liked it
so much, Carlino says, that red is also being integrated into other
areas of the "mostly white" house. "We did a red cork
floor in the kitchen as sort of a starting point of what we may do in
the room. It keeps a balance from one side of the house to the
down the design concept for the familyís main gathering place.
M: What did this
room have to be for the client?
JC: It was a
very comfortable library where the family always sat to watch TV and
where they entertained. It was yellow pine paneled and í70s
furniture. The need was to be more comfortable and up to date. I
wanted to give her a warm, cozy room in which to curl up in.
M: Lacquered red
walls? Very bold.
JC: I floated
the idea of painting it red. Itís the clientís favorite color. She
likes bright primary colors. She was very nervous about painting the
woodwook, which everyone always thinks is a sin. After a year of
talking about it, she pulled out a room from Town and Country
magazine, a red library, which had been done by one of my first
assistants. We decided to lacquer the walls to give the illusion of
making the room bigger.
M: What is the
back story on the Lon Michels painting?
JC: The client
and I went to a gallery opening at Tory Folliard Gallery the year
before. We met Lon and both fell in love with it. She kept looking at
it, and I said, ĎWhy donít you just try it in the room?í It was
as if it was just painted for the space. As soon as it got on the wall
it was perfection.
M: What story
does the lighting tell in the room?
Interestingly, the track lighting was there. It is not something I
would ever work with, but in the interest of not creating an entire
huge redo of the house, we kept it. It enhanced the art and the red
walls. The ambient lighting is more eye level. The fireplace (on the
opposite wall) also adds to the warmth.
M: There is a
lot to look at in this room, but it
doesnít seem overwhelming.
probably because of the very simple color palette: red, black and
white. The large black sofa against red walls gives your eye a
respite; the large coffee table with not a lot on it also gives your
eye a place to rest.
M: From a
textbook design standpoint, why does this room work?
JC: Itís a
symmetrical room. We did a very classical, proper floor plan with a
sofa, pair of chairs and club chairs. We played with the scale of the
furniture in this very small room to make it feel bigger and more
inviting. The Josef Hoffmann arm chairs are very small but comfortable
and look sculptural. Instead of a skirt on the sofa, I opted to do a
nailhead design along its base and sides, which gives it more of an
open view. We kept the color palette very bold with just three colors
and played with texture and scale of patterns. The window treatment is
done in red-glazed linen so it appears to blend in with the walls and
to give you a sense of more space. We opted to carpet the room in a
black and white fretwork pattern to expand the floor space instead of
using an area rug.