Designer Christine Turknett shares how she plans to incorporate key design principles such as balance into Project House Austin.
Balance is crucial to an effective room design. And to ensure the success of Project House Austin, designer Christine Turknett, principal at Breathe Design Studio, is dreaming up the details while the home is still in the process of being built by builder Michael Wray, owner and founder of MidCentury Custom Homes, LLC. Christine’s take on Mid Century Modern style will include just the right balance of color, pattern and shape. “Rooms are like a capsule wardrobe; you want everything to work together,” she says.
Playing with Pattern and Color in Project House Austin
Project House Austin is made up of two spaces: the main house and the casita. “We gave them different identities but overlapped them with an aesthetic tie,” says Christine.
The casita will have a retro feel, complete with period colors and iconic mid mod furniture. “It’s a more playful space,” Christine says. Using orange, robin’s egg-blue, yellow and turquoise as the base palette, they plan to balance the room with classic dark wood tones.
The colors in the main house are similar to the casita but with muted tones and Scandinavian-inspired furniture. You’ll find mint, teal, blue and green with some yellow and pink, but the wood tones will be lighter. “We wanted to create a serene, peaceful sanctuary inspired by the mid century but with a different mood,” says Christine.
Christine’s plan for pattern in the main living room is to go neutral. The rug is a graphic, large-scale print in black, white and tan. The furniture will be neutral, and she’ll include color with a pink chair. “If you go neutral on the patterns, you can have fun in the rest of the room,” she says.
Creating a Cohesive, Balanced Look
Christine has a formula to make any space look complete. “To make a room visually dynamic, think about incorporating five different elements: print or pattern, texture, color, shine or metallic and something living like greenery.”
You begin with the big-ticket items, such as furniture, and work your way down to décor details. You can choose pieces with a bold pattern or color, but it’s wise to go neutral for a long-lasting investment. “We physically interact with our homes through our furniture,” says John Sanders, CEO of Kardiel. “It determines the level of comfort and inspires the direction of the décor.”
Next, choose one dominant pattern in each room so nothing is competing. For a large impact, you can add patterned wallpaper. “Wallpaper can replace artwork in the sense that it brings something lively and full of personality to your wall,” says Lauren Love, designer and co-founder of Abnormals Anonymous. “You should trust how the design makes you feel and not worry whether or not the color or design works perfectly.”
Rugs are also a strategic place for patterns and fun colors. “Pattern is a foundational canvas to a room,” says James Pope, general manager at FLOR. “Since pattern on a sofa or chair can be overwhelming, having a patterned rug helps lift up the room if you want neutral furnishings.” Follow these tips, and each space in your home will be well-rounded and complete.
Design Peeks: Pieces for Balance in Project House Austin
Here are the wallpaper designs we plan to include in the Project House from our sponsor, Abnormals Anonymous.
Flashdance in Navy, abnormalsanonymous.com.
Shattered in Atomic 29, abnormalsanonymous.com.
These are a few of the rug designs we’ll be including in the Project House from our sponsor, FLOR.
Lunaire carpet tile in Bone, flor.com.
Heavy Metal carpet tile in Flint/Gold, flor.com.
Haywood carpet tile in Flint, flor.com.
Here are a few furniture pieces that will appear in the Project House from our sponsor, Kardiel.
Thrive extendable dining table, kardiel.com.
Berki 2-piece dining chair, kardiel.com.
Womb fabric chair and ottoman in Merigold Velvet, kardiel.com.
Read more about Christine’s priority for balance, about Project House Austin, and glean ideas for yourself along the way with Tips for Creating a Custom Build Budget and Breathe Design Studio: Signature Style.