This Home Brims With Color and Character
A classic Greenwich home boasts a rich and unique palette.
When a young couple with children moved back to the States from London pre-pandemic, they bought a classic stone Colonial in the Belle Haven section of Greenwich, a waterfront community with a friendly neighborhood vibe. However, when it came time to conceive a plan for the inside, classic was the farthest thing from their minds. They turned to onetime Greenwich resident and now Toronto–based designer Anne Hepfer, whose work they had long admired. “They are a young, hip, fashion-forward couple, and they really wanted something energized and fun,” says Hepfer. “They felt like a lot of homes in Connecticut are too much of the same. They wanted someone who could think outside the box.”
Thinking outside the box is Hepfer’s specialty. She is known for her ability to combine color, pattern and texture in artful—and unexpected—ways to create specific moods in different rooms. To that end, “the big focus was on creating something really special and meaningful to their family,” she says. “They wanted it to be very comfortable and colorful. Dressy enough but not to the point where you can’t put your feet up on anything.”
The house, which was built in 2011, had good bones. After some updating— including a new kitchen and new bathrooms—Hepfer turned her attention to the interiors. First up, the octagonal-shaped entry foyer with its double-height ceiling and spiral staircase. “We needed something whimsical and reflective of nature to bring the outside in,” she says. A custom de Gournay wallpaper, with tropical plants and flowering trees hand-painted on a crackled silver leaf, infuses the space with elegance while still feeling fresh and modern. To make it even more personal, the initials of every family member were painted into the scenery.
That set the tone for the rest of the house, where recurring motifs and colors fluidly transition from one room to the next. The mood turns from reflective to playful in the dining room, where two-tone chairs in persimmon and royal blue velvet and a marine-blue lacquered spool-style table evoke the colors of the Amalfi Coast. The inset lazy Susan is “fun and conducive to conversation,” says the designer. The white silver-flecked cork walls showcase one of the couple’s favorite works of art by Yosuke Takeda.
In the kitchen, the designer swapped out the original wood floors for marble tiles done in a classic Roman rhomboid pattern. “The design is centuries old but it looks so modern,” Hepfer says. “It’s a great way to add energy to a floor and give the kitchen a little zip.” As do diner-style swivel stools upholstered in an orange tangelo faux leather from Kravet. For the sun-drenched family room, Hepfer introduced a mix of blues and corals that riff off the breakfast nook with its orange banquette. “There are something like nine different patterns in this space. Somehow it just works,” she adds.
Slightly more formal but no less inviting, the living room is a play on contrasting shapes. A curved emerald-green velvet sofa grounds a seating area in front of the fireplace. The black lines of the Serge Mouille light fixture, and the Roman shades edged with black trim accentuate the fragmented design of the rug, which Hepfer based on a Moroccan pattern and enlarged to scale.
The designer carried the colors into the snug library, with its black-lacquered walls and millwork. “I love black because it’s so reflective, it makes a smaller space feel bigger,” she says. A custom hand-knotted rug with a swirl of green pays homage to Hepfer’s favorite semi-precious stone—malachite. The needlepoint throw pillows on the white linen sofa are a nod to her former hometown.“We had needlepoint pillows made in green and white and black, which is a very modern and contemporary pattern. I think of it as preppy goes wild.”
The print version of this article appeared with the headline: Colorful Character.