Photography: Tracey Ayton
Look-at-me patterns bring bold exuberance to this 1960s Vancouver home that's fun, but not overdone.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | GOLD BARSTOOLS, SALT AND PEPPER SHAKERS, CB2. Summer Garden by Kitty McCall WALLPAPER, Milton & King. COUNTERTOP, Caesarstone. LIGHTING FIXTURES, Schoolhouse. Marble ROLLING PIN, CAKE STAND, Rentfluff. FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS, Stong’s Market. Turquoise KETTLE (on stove), HomeSense. PAINT COLOUR, Light Pistachio 2034-60 (island); Wickham Gray HC-171 (main cabinetry); Benjamin Moore.
“Working with colour and pattern is a balancing act,” says designer Cara Hansen of Triple Dot Design Studio in Vancouver. “It’s picking one showstopper colour and arranging the rest of the room to bring it out and complement it.” Cara’s client, an artist, fell in love with this Kitty McCall wallpaper, and the 11-foot kitchen island, which is visible from the adjacent living room, was the ideal place for it. Pretty mint paint further highlights the island against the rest of the cabinetry, which is finished in soft grey.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | DESIGN, Triple Dot Design. CONTRACTOR, Level One Construction. Brushed gold CABINETRY PULLS, Richelieu Hardware. Champagne Bronze FAUCETS, Delta. BACKSPLASH TILES, Centura. SMALL MILK JUG, WHITE CANISTERS, Rentfluff. CUTTING BOARDS, Chapters Indigo. GLASS, Dougherty Glass Works.
Gold hardware and fixtures also play a feature role, not just in the kitchen, but throughout the home – gold even makes an appearance in the powder-coated gold staircase in the front hall. “Gold is definitely having a moment,” says Cara, “but to differentiate it from the tacky gold fixtures of the ’90s, we went with a brushed finish, which is softer and brings the look up to date.” With a brushed gold finish, stick to one or two brands to minimize slight variations in tone between manufacturers.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | Infinity Round MIRROR, CB2. LIGHT SCONCES, West Elm. PAINT, Cool Aqua 2056-40 (cabinetry); White Heron OC-57 (wall); Benjamin Moore.
By the Sea
Where it’s not alive with colour, most of the home is painted pure white so that its walls work almost like an art gallery for the vibrant “moments” throughout. In the main family bathroom, a jolt of Caribbean blue among the gleaming white tile brightens up the morning routine without sacrificing the room’s serene, uncluttered feeling.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | Brushed gold FAUCETS, SHOWER FIXTURES, Riobel. COMMODE, Toto USA. CABINETRY HARDWARE, CB2. PENNY TILE FLOORING, SUBWAY WALL TILES, Centura. HERRINGBONE INSET TILES, Ann Sacks.
Unlike the kitchen, where the wallpaper mural demands attention, there’s room for a subtler touch in the main bath, where grey-tinted grout brings out the pattern of subway tiles and the herringbone-patterned shower inset. The shower and basin fixtures are simple and modern in design; the brushed gold finish is the only statement necessary.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | Infinity Round MIRROR, CB2. LIGHTING SCONCES, West Elm. Midnight Flyers by Katerhees WALLPAPER, Spoonflower. Brushed gold FAUCETS, Riobel. COUNTERTOP, Caesarstone. Undermount BASIN, American Standard.
The ensuite to the primary bedroom – the parents’ private enclave – was a chance to really have some fun with art and colour. Wallpaper as vibrant as this ’60s-inspired moth pattern needs little embellishment. But just as elsewhere, Cara says, the trick with such a standout element is balance and cohesiveness: painting the cabinet the same vermilion plucked from the pattern helps ground the design, while the white countertop is strictly a background player; stick-shaped lighting sconces and mirror are kept simple.
Photography: Tracey Ayton | CABINETRY HARDWARE, CB2. PENNY TILE FLOORING, Centura. PAINT, Tangerine Dream 2012-30 (cabinetry), Benjamin Moore.
The Beat Goes On
The mod wallpaper is a perfect complement to the ensuite’s pared-down 1960s architecture, which was another element the homeowners wanted to bring out in the renovation. Unfussy details, such as plain tapered cabinet legs, penny tile flooring, plank-style baseboards and cylindrical cabinet pulls, not only suit the time period but are elegant in their simplicity.