Source: Make it Better Magazine By: Kristina Tober
Design ideas to steal from Lake Forest Showhouse
Thirty interior and landscape designers reimagined the 1929 mansion owned by late “Home Alone” filmmaker John Hughes for the biennial Lake Forest Showhouse and Gardens, which benefits Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital and the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago. Designed by Chicago architect Edwin Hill Clark, the 21-room, 2-acre property served as home and office for Hughes until his death in 2009.
Designers played with the home’s Tudor pedigree and Hughes’ place (“Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and others) in Hollywood. The showhouse is open through May 17. Looking for the newest design trends, Crain’s got a preview last week.
Whimsy A bust of of a cow’s head in white plaster is in the black-and-white study by Sweet Peas Design in Libertyville. An oversized, live, green Dr. Seuss-worthy chandelier centers a garden room by Michael del Piero Good Design in Chicago. A 300-pound loose shag rug, in bright white, anchors a teen retreat by Winnetka’s Courage & Co.
Bright lights We saw oversized, unique and exquisite pendants everywhere: A wrought-iron chandelier outlined in crystal beads centers the dining room. In the family dining area, a chandelier by Serip Organic Lighting is a waterfall of hand-blown glass. A slender coat room, by Midnight Sun in Mundelein, holds a 36-inch light dome designed by Marcel Wanders, with a bronze finish and white ceramic interior cast with a cascade of flowers.
’70s redux Far out! Influences from that bygone decade include a plaid-covered indoor swing in the teen retreat, a round-cornered gold-sheen Parson’s table in the entry and a white shearling-topped lucite bench in the garden room. More shag, Lucite, fuschia and layered prints complete a teen girl’s bedroom by Jeannie Balsam in Winnetka.
Animal instincts As in prints, furs, hides, horns on chairs, walls, tables, pillows. An upper hall becomes a handsome work space, with a leather-wrapped desk and a copper leather tub chair, by Loren Reid Seaman in Arlington Heights. Pink leather seats and shearling backs on hand-carved side chairs are in the master bedroom, a study in pale glamor by Kim Scodro Interiors in Chicago.
In an unexpectedly light and airy man cave, Chicago designer Mikel Welch set throw pillows, woven in dark leather, on pale linen sofas. “I wanted a room women would be comfortable in, too,” Welch says.
Shine Riffing on the home’s original dark wood, Lake Forest designer Shelley Johnstone Paschke used a high-gloss chocolate-brown paint for an entry ceiling. Walls in a guest bedroom shimmer from a silver and beige foil grasscloth, a touch of Hollywood glamor by Lawrence Boeder Interior Design in Chicago. Original pantry cabinetry was repurposed with a deep sheen by Wiley Designs in Highland Park, using Farrow & Ball’s Drawing Room Blue.
Color Speaking of blue, we found it in every shade, from the sky-blue entry hall to the dining room’s cobalt-blue cowhide rug to the black-blue fringed linen wallpaper in the men’s reprieve, outfitted by Highland Park’s Randy Heller of Pure & Simple Interior Design. “I tried to be respectful of the home,” Heller says. “It’s a 1929 Tudor, but it doesn’t feel 1929.” Known for her reds, Alessandra Branca used coral for pop in a living room of white, chocolate brown and gray. In a jewel-like family dining room by Lori Lennon & Associates in Lake Forest, taupe silk drapes are embroidered with orange-red lilies.
Texture Sisal remains big: blonde in the entry and bordered in velvet up its stairs, chocolate brown fastened with rivets on a back stairway, the floor of a mod dressing room for a girl. “It’s fresh and young,” designer Paschke says. In the garden room, batik-patterned raised plaster walls. In a Christopher Peacock kitchen, unfinished ash cabinetry is in the mix of smooth taupes and white, and reclaimed oak floors are left weathered.
Outside In In the great room by Scott Arthur Yerkey Design in Palm Desert, Calif., the wallpaper features a forest of outlined trees, the ceiling features wallpaper with bumblebees, pillows and chairs are mutely colored by woodland birds. In an enchanting dining room by Soledad Zitzewitz Interiors in Lake Bluff, the walls are papered with a hand-printed mural of London’s Kew Gardens from the 1920s. Cole & Sons wallpaper features monkeys at play in an ancient coliseum, which wraps a back hall and stairs by Sarah Whit.