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Urban edge redecoration by Buckingham Interiors

Remodel by Julia Buckingham Edelmann

A country interior gives way to a more sophisticated modern look in this home -- one that better reflects the personalities of the new owners.

No matter whether you have recently moved into a new house, or are simply in need of change, the transforming power of a cleverly redecorated interior cannot be underestimated.

For the new owners of this house, Marie Tillman and Joe Shenton, it was the layout and flow that appealed, along with the space outdoors, which was ideal for a family with four children, and another on the way.

The country-themed interior, on the other hand, was not so compelling. With its gold walls, exposed brown beams and red-lacquered shelving units, the living area summed up everything they didn't want, says Julia Buckingham Edelmann, the interior designer commissioned to transform the space.

"Having worked with Marie on the couple's former apartment I was well aware of her tastes, which were more urban and sophisticated," Edelmann says. "We collaborated on every aspect the design was a meeting of minds, which always makes a project run more smoothly. We both knew we had to get rid of the country colors and the beadboard wainscoting on every wall. It was important that her modern furniture pieces could work in the new interior."

The solution involved a complete change of color, in varying shades of gray and charcoal. In the entry, this was sharpened to include crisp white and black accents on the railings, stair treads and picture frames.

Sitting area in modern urban interior chair, furniture, home, interior design, living room, room, shelf, shelving, table, window, gray
Sitting area in modern urban interior

A softer look prevails in the living room, where the gold walls were repainted gray, and the bookcases were painted in a darker charcoal shade that offsets the colorful spines and collected objects.

"We also made significant changes where the bookcase meets an existing bar," says Edelmann. "I extended the millwork along the top and bottom of the bar so it is more integrated visually. And we added mirror tiles to the back to introduce a little more urban glamour."

The furnishings reflect a far more sophisticated look, and include Modernist chrome furniture by Milo Baughman.

Edelmann added Caracole wing chairs, creating a second, intimate seating area away from the fireplace and the reupholstered sofas.

"There are also textural, organic elements in evidence throughout the interior, often in the form of accessories and tables," says the designer. "These add visual warmth and ensure the interior is not too predictable. I love a disparity something a little unexpected."

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Urban edge redecoration by Buckingham Interiors

In the formal dining room, a dramatic peacock Lee Jofa wallpaper fulfills this role. Formerly devoid of all decoration, this room is now vibrant, with turquoise tones picked out in the accessories as well as the wallpaper. A Modernist light fixture is the piéce de resistance.

"While the wallpaper is inherently traditional, it does have a modern twist, especially teamed with the light fixture."

The kitchen also has had a complete makeover, with the cabinetry and island countertop painted in fresh white and taupe, respectively. Here again, light fittings create a real talking point.

Credit list

Interior designer
Julia Buckingham Edelmann, Buckingham Interiors + Design (Chicago)
Dining room wallcovering
Lee Jofa Byron
Great room lighting
Waterloo chandelier,
Kitchen backsplash
Calacatta marble
Oven
Wolf
Master bedroom wallcovering
Romo Mark Alexander in Srinagar Chalk
Paints and varnishes
Farrow & Ball in Hardwick White, Pavillion Gray and Stony Ground
Entry lighting
Spellbound chandelier, Currey & Co
Great room furniture
Equus coffee table; Forest Park side table; Silver Cooper side table from Arteriors; Caracole wing chairs upholstered in Donghia Bergamo and Castel fabrics; TCS tub chairs upholstered in Lee Jofa Threads fabric; antique bench
Countertops
Calacatta on perimeter; painted wood
Master bedroom
Viola Iron and Ivory beaded chandelier from Arteriors
Powder room wallcovering
Phillip Jeffries Chain Link in Metallic Silver on Ivory Manila Hemp

Story by: Trendsideas

Photography by: Eric Hausman

30 Apr, 2014

We know the Specialists

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