This home is subtle, layered and very comfortable,” designer Andrea Goldman says about the space that she created for a Winnetka couple and their three young children. Goldman hadn’t yet stepped foot into the design business when she first met the owners at a cocktail party hosted in her house. Impressed by the home’s de´cor, the wife asked Goldman if she would consider helping her decorate the couple’s newly purchased abode. “I told her that I wouldn’t even know how to begin designing somebody else’s house,” Goldman explains. “She said she knew that I could do it and that we’d figure it out together.”
According to the owners, Goldman’s casual yet sophisticated style was just the kind of feeling they envisioned for their New England Shingle-style home, which reminds them of their summer vacations in Nantucket.
“Andrea has this great ability to put things together in a way that’s so comfortable you never want to leave,” explains the wife, adding that she and Goldman share a love of indoor-outdoor living. “We’re both very drawn to the ocean, and this house lends itself to more of a coastal feel.”
Indeed, the spacious first-floor living areas feature French doors that open to a large shared patio overlooking the third tee of a golf course where the husband and children regularly play. Raw teak tables from Restoration Hardware and sofas from Janus et Cie covered in outdoor linen create a comfortable conversation area that would look equally at home indoors. “I treated the family room and patio like one big space,” says Goldman, who used a mix of pieces including an armoire from Pagoda Red, chandelier from Jayson Home and a petrified wood side table to blur the lines between inside and out. “Nothing is too forced or too fussy.”
The home’s palette, which includes contemporary pieces alongside Asian furnishings and fine fabrics placed next to textured organic elements, can be found in different measures throughout the house. In the cozy library, Goldman covered the walls, millwork and original built-in knotty pine cabinetry with a navy blue lacquer by Benjamin Moore and arranged the shelving with a carefully selected assemblage of photos, Asian pottery and rustic planters. “I love bringing the outdoors inside,” Goldman says. “It’s much more interesting to have raw cut branches with a few blossoms than having three times as many flowers in a vase.”
Although Goldman designed the home so that pieces could be moved seamlessly from room to room, each space nevertheless has its own unique character. For example, in the master bedroom, Goldman created an elegant space with reflective elements that include a pair of mercury glass table lamps from Circa Lighting. An Asian bench at the foot of the bed plays a supporting role against the prominent Phillip Jeffries wallcovering distinguished by a grid of hand-applied silver dots. “Wallcoverings are a great way to layer in texture or a bit of pattern,” Goldman says. The designer flipped the script in the dining room, coating all four walls with grass-cloth wallcovering in an Asian toile pattern. A light fixture made of glass globes that resemble floating bubbles adds a touch of whimsy to the space. “I don’t really adhere to a particular style,” the designer explains. “If my eye tells me that it works, I usually don’t think too much about it.”
The wife is so happy with the result that she already asked Goldman to decorate a future addition to the house. “This home is fresh but classic, and I think that’s a hard look to pull off,” the wife says. “Andrea has the perfect formula for every space, and the result is always fabulous.”