A Fairfield County Shoreline Home Awash in Blues and Greens

Inspired by the nearby shoreline, this home is awash in blues and greens

Custom Built Fairfield County Home

Certain architectural details, like the house’s turret with its copper bell roof, conjure up an image of a formal interior. Custom built by architect Robert Storm and Bluewater Home Builders, the house is anything but. “The clients found a terrific parcel of land, and they wanted to build their dream home,” says Darren Andreoli of Bluewater Home Builders. Bluewater introduced them to Robin Liotta of HB Home Interior Design to help round out their vision for the inside: transitional, not super modern, and anything but boring.

Family Room with Osborne & Little floral fabric drapes and Ikat rug“I was able to start at the very beginning, and this client was so open to using these wonderful colors and pushing the envelope a little bit,” says Liotta. “I don’t get that opportunity all the time.” The designer set the tone with an atypical—at least for this neck of the woods—front door. Painted in a high gloss navy, it has more of a Euro vibe—not the stained wood often seen at this type of house. Once inside, though, it’s the double-height family room that really shows off Liotta’s colorful and powerful point of view. “We were inspired by the grays and blues of the nearby water, and it just took off from there,” says Liotta. A custom navy Ikat rug covers the floor, and curtains in a dramatic blue and green floral print starting from the second level—a good 25 feet of fabric—add a theatrical note.

“It’s the first thing you see when you walk in, and it is a ‘wow’ moment,” explains Liotta. A large sectional is upholstered in a kid-friendly neutral indoor/outdoor fabric, which balances the more colorful accents like the faux-leather, lime-green Bunny Williams’ Tray Chic ottoman. These workhorse fabrics weren’t chosen for decorative reasons alone. “There is not a place in the house where the children can’t be,” notes Liotta. “This entire house was driven by the clients’ needs as a whole.”

Pendants by HB Home Interior Design hang above an oversized kitchen island

Off the family room, the breakfast room has small-scale blues and greens, tempering the larger prints in the family room. The banquette is covered in a blue that resembles shagreen, but is actually vinyl (yet another kid-friendly touch). Throughout, moments of calm balance out some of Liotta’s more outside-the-box choices, creating a colorful but cozy environment. In the sunroom, Cole & Son’s Woods wallpaper creates a serene backdrop for furniture upholstered in a woven and nubby linen. Tie-dyed pillows add a shot of color, and a metal and glass coffee table, a hard edge. “I love layering hard and soft elements,” says Liotta. “It adds another level of interest. I like doing things that are a bit unexpected.”

One of these unexpected elements appears in the purple dining room. Silvers are layered with lavenders accented with pops of bright purple. But the real surprise is the mirrored paneling—a risk that resulted in a serene but jewel box-like space that is filled with light. “We took the concept and made it work for the room,” says Andreoli. “It came out terrific, and the mirrors lend themselves to other design features in the home.”
“It’s important to me that the clients walk in and feel like it is their house,” says Liotta. “Bluewater and I work so well together and were able to bring the clients’ vision to life and make their home a little different from what you might expect. Trust really empowers the creative process and gives you the confidence to say: I’m going to do this in purple!”

A version of this article appeared in the February 2014 issue of Connecticut Cottages & Gardens with the headline: Water Colors.