DESIGN by PAMELA COOPER
PHOTOGRAPHY by VIC WAHBY
TEXT by MARISA SANDORA CARR
It’s not every day that a client is willing to embrace color and pattern the way Gina Lyons does. So when she enlisted Pamela Cooper of Cooper Interiors in Watchung for her home renovation project, Cooper was thrilled. “The majority of my customers want gray and white, so this was so much fun to do,” Cooper recalls.
Lyons’ three-bedroom home in Far Hills, built in 1934, reminded Cooper of an English cottage with small but cozy rooms and plenty of character including original hardwood flooring and arches. Knowing that Lyons loved color and pattern, Cooper ran with an English cottage design featuring floral and chintz-style patterns and lots of pink and green, which are Lyons’ favorite colors.
To that end, Cooper chose a green and pink hydrangea wallpaper from Schumacher as the jumping off point for the dining room, and Lyons loved it.
“It definitely makes a statement when you walk into the room,” she says. “Many people have commented on how pretty it is and how nice it is to see color.”
Cooper used coordinating materials for the custom upholstered dining chairs and a wing chair that Lyons’ mother had given her, tucking it into a corner of the room. A cheerful raspberry and white trellis-patterned broadloom carpet from The Rug Company was cut to fit and also used on the stairs. The Bermex dining table features a mossy green top, and even the white linen window treatments sport green decorative tape. “It’s such a happy space,” says Cooper.
Colors abound in the kitchen as well, where a buttery yellow was used on custom beadboard cabinets from Ingrained Cabinetry in another nod to English cottage charm. Simple Shaker-style cabinets in white were chosen for the uppers in an effort not to overwhelm the small space, says Cooper. A gray backsplash “neutralizes all of that yellow and gives it some pattern and happy informality,” she says. “There wasn’t much room for the backsplash, but it gives the room a lot of impact.” White quartz countertops with gray veining coordinate nicely.
The footprint of the kitchen was kept intact, although they eliminated a window in order to gain more upper cabinets and moved a door so they could create a small pantry for more storage. They also added a small island and replaced all the appliances with new ones from Frigidaire, which is much-appreciated by Lyons, who loves to cook and bake and works at a bakery. “I spend so much time in the kitchen, and I love the way it turned out,” she says. “It’s just so functional and beautiful.”
Upstairs, a guest room was transformed with colorful blue wallpaper from Schumacher. “Because the wallpaper is so bold, everything else had to be quiet,” says Cooper, who dressed the bed in a beautiful white coverlet with a blue scallop trim. A small chair found at an antique store was reupholstered in blue linen and proved to be the perfect size for the intimate space, which can only be described as charming. “I wanted it to be a beautiful guest room that people would be happy to walk into,” says Lyons. “I just had my parents stay here, and they loved it.”