They had been working on redecorating the room for a while, but they weren’t quite sure how to finish it. So, the couple turned to a designer who quickly transformed the room into the sophisticated retreat they wanted with simple, yet effective, interior design changes.
Who lives here: Jeff Newbern IV and Gretchen Wigand, and their Persian cat, Winnie
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Size: 192 square feet (18 square meters), in addition to a 72-square-foot (6.7-square-meter) sitting area
Designer: Leslie Cotter Dorazil, owner of Leslie Cotter Interiors
The house was built in 1900 and later turned into a duplex. When Newbern and Wigand purchased the property in 2015, the previous owners had been in the process of converting it back into a single-family home. Because they arrived as it was being remodeled, the couple took the opportunity to customize the house, and brought in interior designer Leslie Cotter Dorazil to make the house feel like home, room by room.
Before. Wigand had already started redesigning the bedroom and purchased pieces for the space. Cotter Dorazil’s task was to refine and complete the cosmetic changes that Wigand had started.
“Gretchen has a great grasp on interior trends and some really striking pieces to work with” Cotter Dorazil says. “I wanted to incorporate the right touches to celebrate those pieces and unify the space.”
Cotter Dorazil’s goal for decorating this space was to match the level of sophistication she and Wigand had achieved in other areas of the home. She did that by keying in on a few areas, such as the wall above the bed, and curating the couple’s belongings.
“I have several other pieces of feather art,” Wigand says. “Maybe I was a bird in my past life.”
Cotter Dorazil says the framed artwork perfectly complements the colors of the headboard. “I love the exaggerated cream mat in contrast with the dark gray behind it,” she says.
The repetition of brass frames provides nice lines on the prominent wall and also leads the eye from the bed up the wall to the ceiling.
To find the perfect furniture pieces, Wigand and Cotter Dorazil shopped at two local stores, Scout on Market and Market on National.
Mirror. Wigand felt that the old mirror was too dainty for the room, so Cotter Dorazil searched for a mirror with more of an edge. She chose this one for its larger size and octagonal shape. It also has beveled edges with an antique finish and gold flecks along the perimeter.
Headboard and lumbar pillows: custom, Bernhardt Furniture; ombre velvet pillows: Kevin O’Brien Studio; navy velvet pillow fabric: Villa Nova Brae Ink, The Romo Group; mirror: Caracole; vases: West Elm; dresser: Caracole
Layered windows. The designerloves to layer window treatments. The curtains are the main source of light control in the bedroom, but they had been cumbersome to operate. The designer made the curtain panels stationary, inserting crinoline in the tops and plastic “S” bands in the hems to define the folds. Then, for light and privacy control, she installed woven wood blinds.
Lighting. The pendant light accentuates the 12-foot-high ceilings and helps ground the sitting area, Cotter Dorazil says. The light’s rounded bulbs give a modern twist to the classic lantern silhouette, and the chrome finish on the frame reflects natural light from the windows.
Plant. “Having a living plant in your space adds vibrancy and freshness,” Cotter Dorazilsays. The important part of maintaining a plant in your home is that you assess the room’s lighting and then choose a plant that thrives in that light level.
You should also think about how the plant fits into the room itself. Because of the tall ceilings in the bedroom, a tree looks more proportional than a short potted plant. In this case, a fiddle leaf fig worked in the room.
The final design of the bedroom and sitting area contains a variety of styles with the contemporary pendant light, the midcentury leather chair and the eclectic stump side table.
“The most interesting spaces to me are rooms that cross over style genres and combine unexpected elements,” Cotter Dorazil says. “This design captures traditional, transitional, modern and midcentury styles.”