October 23, 2015
One might assume that the many pieces of art from the Bau-Xi and Windsor galleries would serve as the main conversation pieces in the display homes at Colborne Lane in Coquitlam.
But Polygon Homes’ show suites are so full of unique and interesting decor pieces, the artwork is not so much the superstar as it is a complement to the personality that designer Celia Dawson has created.
In one townhome’s open-concept dining and living room, eyes are drawn to the character of the furnishings. For instance, square living room chairs that look as if they could envelop a visitor, a sizable standing lamp that reaches far into the living space, a dining room chandelier that’s a cluster of globe-shaped reflective bulbs, its light bouncing off the wall mirror.
Finding furnishings that are interesting and unique on their own — then combining them in one room so well that one piece doesn’t dominate — is an art in itself. Dawson, Polygon’s senior vice-president of interior design, says there is no formula behind this; it is, however, all about personal taste, and the homeowner’s trust in his or her own esthetic judgment.
“When designing a room and sourcing a room, select pieces that seem to speak to you,” she says.
Follow your tastes, and then subtract: less is more, she stresses.
It’s tempting to bring in a standout piece — that unique new or refurbished item that may not harmonize with other pieces in the room. Dawson advises homeowners and designers to step back from the room and consider how each piece of furniture relates to its neighbour.
“If you find a statement piece of furniture, art or lighting, it’s best to let them ‘breathe’ and not have too much competition in the room, otherwise your room will come across too busy and cluttered.”
In a white kitchen with a sleek and modern character, sculptural kitchen island chairs take on a Z-shape, a style that stands out from the otherwise sleek cabinetry and finishes.
In another kitchen dominated by dark wood veneer cabinetry, shape adds character as well, particularly in the onion-shaped pendant lamps hanging over the large island. With so many great light fixture designs in the marketplace, creative homeowners have plenty of retail resources, Dawson says.
“Lighting fixtures create fantastic memory points. Finding the perfect one to complement a room is like curating art. Pieces have to ‘speak’ to each other and balance each other,” she says. “Sourcing light fixtures is fun today; there are so many creative designs and styles to choose from.”