McCann Design Group decorates a second home for a young family to enjoy Palm Beach life, both inside and out.
The client’s only request was the Quadrille/China Seas Arbre de Matisse Reverse in jungle green. Since the kitchen is one large open space, the green color was carried throughout with the Paris Ceramics backsplash and lighting from The Urban Electric Co. Vintage Hermès place mats pop against the foliage of the wallpaper.
For a young active family from New Jersey, having a second home in Palm Beach was all about living outside. The beautiful plantation-style home on the North End of the island certainly presented them a taste of the outdoors, with a cozy green backyard and a swimming pool graciously positioned at the back of the house easily accessed by a wall of French doors that open up to reveal the best of Palm Beach life. The wife, a fan of Hive Home, Gift & Garden and McCann Design Group, fell in love with many of the stores’ design vignettes, making her choice to work with the McCann team an easy one.
The Christopher Farr Cloth parrot fabric adds a touch of whimsy and playfulness while being grounded by a perennial solid on the sectional.
“This was a dream job,” smiles Sara McCann, the owner and founder of McCann Design Group (mccanndesigngroup.com) and Hive Home, Gift & Garden, (hivepalmbeach.com) located in West Palm Beach. She worked alongside McCann designer Jenna Conte Olin for this project.
The foyer opens directly into the living room. There once was an exterior awning blocking a lot of light from the south-facing French doors. The awning was removed, and the ceiling was painted a high-gloss paint to reflect as much light as possible within the space. A clean-line O. Henry House sofa and Christopher Spitzmiller lamps add subtle details in the lively room.
“This client was so excited to spend time in Palm Beach during her children’s school vacations and was eager to create a space where they could all be together as a family and enjoy each other’s company,” says McCann. “As we walked through our store together and she knew so many of our fabrics and vendors, we both knew we were speaking the same language. When a client is this excited, the process is always fun.”
The client fell in love with the color and pattern of the Galbraith & Paul fabric on the headboard. The pale blue was carried throughout the room against a backdrop of Phillip Jeffries white grass cloth.
The entire design project turned into a happy collaboration. For the young family, who have two boys and one girl, the idea was to address their needs, giving them areas that worked as a family unit while also providing a space for private time. “This client had a couple of specifics she wanted us to incorporate into the design space, but she had a real appreciation of our aesthetic for this project and had seen many of our completed projects online that spoke to her. Walking through the front door of this home and seeing the reflection of the pool immediately gave us the idea of adding a high-gloss paint treatment to the living room ceiling in a blue color, so when you’re looking outside at the pool, you feel the continuation. This home also made her feel different than her home in New Jersey, so we wanted to create a sea-glassy room of colors with pops of blue to really highlight the reflection of the water.”
The his and hers closets were reworked into one large dressing room. The light from the neighboring bathroom spills into the room, creating a playful effect on the full-mirrored closet doors. The Jamie Dietrich flokati ottoman softens the space.
The McCann team got to work pulling fabrics, wallpapers and a few trims that would speak to their client. “Each room has a jumping-off point,” explains McCann. “So whether it is a favorite piece of art, fabric or carpet, we begin from some item. Then, we gather things around that favorite item and develop the story from there. When we meet with the client in person or on FaceTime, we try to encourage them to pull things out they don’t like, point out what they do like, and we develop it from there and work it all into a floor plan.” The Florida climate also plays a big role in developing decorating schemes, and every interior designer is aware of it. The heat and sunshine are a consideration, so light fabrics and colors usually fill many Palm Beach homes. McCann notes, “No one wants to live in their grandmother’s or mother’s house, so we try and stay away from a lot of heavy trims and keep things simple and light. We used a cotton brush trim on the oversize chairs in the living room [and] brushed trim on seat cushions in the den, but added French piping to pillows to keep things clean and crisp.”
The buzzword at the moment in design is performance fabrics, which are perfect for addressing the Florida weather year-round. Whether people are red wine drinkers or just worried about their children in wet bathing suits, performance fabrics are resistant to most wear and tear. “No one needs to worry as much with performance fabrics,” smiles the designer. “And, besides,” she giggles, “sometime adults are messier than children.”
Photography by: Nickolas Sargent