I recently under took the challenge of transforming a tiny entrance area into a grand statement that would hint at the drama that awaited within.
Instead of choosing the expected path of neutral tones, combined with uneventful mirroring etc, the clients and I decided on a William Morris style wallpaper in tones of pink, creams and grey that we applied above the wainscotting. I then repeated these dramatic colours in a raised silk velvet, that was methodically upholstered to the wall below.
Upholstering walls with fabric, is an excruciating and painstaking process and almost a lost art, however we have been fortunate to have built a lifetime alliance with one of Toronto’s best upholsterers. Applying fabric to walls was quite common in the earliest history of interior design and is thought to be the forerunner to wallpaper. Next, we simplified the colour scheme and commissioned a beautiful custom ‘Arbus’ designed area rug from Weavers Art in Toronto. We selected the carpet pattern for the elegant way that it bordered the entrance , almost like a natural stencil.
Once this framework was established, I scoured my sources and came up with the antique and vintage accent pieces that doubled down on the drama; We framed an early 20th century patinated iron Oscar Bach console and mirror, with a pair of antique Baques crystal sconces. I then sourced a fantastic mid century lucite rocking chair and had it upholstered in pink Italian silk velvet , then topped it all off with and an early 20th century Murano glass standing lamp.
Normally this might be considered to be a bit over the top ,especially for such a small space, but because the colour tones were carefully respected, and due to both the functionality and stunning uniqueness of the accent pieces, it had the effect of dazzling the eye, drawing it far beyond the borders of the limiting dimensions and into the imagination.
And besides…. our clients absolutely loved it!
And in the end,that’s all that really matters.