A 1930 colonial in Ridgewood, N.J., is reenvisioned in clean, modern style.
The owners of a near-century-old, center-hall colonial in Ridgewood, N.J., had already chosen furniture for their move to Manhattan. Then came the pandemic. Their choice to stay in their suburban home of 14 years entailed a bit of mental recalibration, and that, in turn, led to a complete renovation-from fireplaces to doorknobs.
Enter a team that included principal designer Carol-Ann Baum of CAB Lifestyle Designs, Safavieh designer Lorraine Gordon, and general contractor Donna Bello of Re-Furbit.
Thanks to their decision to trade traditional décor for timeless elegance, this couple with two grown children need never regret leaving city lights behind.
Literally every surface was installed new or refinished. The vision started with a palette of "elevated neutrals" for walls and furniture—grays and taupes, all soft and soothing. "The homeowner wanted everything to be calming and sophisticated, and nothing too glam," recalls Baum.
The quiet palette was paired with mixed metals—polished nickel and gold. Select doors were painted in Benjamin Moore’s Black Iron and trim work in Decorator’s White to create visual layers.
Textural interest was added to each room via subtle, sophisticated wallpapers. In the living room, the walls shimmer with a Scalamandré silver vinyl, while the main bedroom gets a soft touch from a Phillip Jeffries linen weave.
When it came to selecting fabrics, performance—call it dog friendliness—was key. In the family room, for instance, a silky gray velvet was selected for the bench-seat sofa, and a textured chenille for the club chairs.
The sunroom is bright and inviting, with refurbished antique French doors on three walls. Unlike typical sunrooms, however, this space has a dark floor and predominantly dark furniture.
In the dining room, a polished-nickel-and-glass chandelier presides over a custom-finish wood table. The designers worked to include standout pieces that bring fashion as well as function, such as the sideboard, which glistens with a silver, plaster-like texture.
For the master bedroom, commissions included a custom headboard in taupe antique velvet (at 350 lbs., it took an entire delivery crew to wrestle it up the stairs). It’s paired with a many-drawer gentleman’s chest.
"We redesigned the house so that every room is comfortable and usable for every day," says the homeowner. The Big Apple, where the couple first lived after getting married, will have to wait, but perhaps not forever, she hints. "When the time is right, there will be another exciting design project to dive into."