Color ideas from a playful house
Kim Clements and Joe Schneider’s living room finds harmony by combining a mishmash of patterns, offbeat accessories, and colors galore. The pair, who met in architecture school, took advantage of every inch of real estate by reimagining how rooms could be used.
The result? A small home that feels spacious, rooms that welcome all ages, and a color palette inspired by childhood.
Design Joe Schneider and Kim Clements, J.A.S. Design-Build, Seattle (jasdesignbuild.com or 206/547-6242)
“We didn’t have any kids when we first bought here,” says Joe Schneider of the Arts and Crafts home he and his wife, Kim Clements, began renovating about eight years ago.
To accomodate their growing family, they turned a guest room into a combination sleeping alcove, library nook, and mudroom, and integrated a play corner into the dining room.
The dining room table is made with wood recycled from a bowling alley. Schneider and Clements like to scour industrial-equipment distributors, eBay, and Seattle salvage yards for treasures.
“Our rule of thumb?” says Schneider. “If you use it more than once a week, have it out. If you use it a few times a month, stick it in a cabinet. Once or twice a year? It belongs in the basement.”
The polka-dot lampshade by Seattle artist Jil Smith (insatiablestudios.com) and a painting Clements picked up at a yard sale for $10 are playful but not cloyingly childish.
Choose one dynamic base color “Look for a color that functions in different ways under different light, and use it liberally,” Clements says. Her blue-green-gray wall color (Russian Olive by C2) is used throughout the house but looks distinct in every room.
Use bold color in small splashes “I love Pratt & Lambert Castilian Gold,” Clements says. “But it would be too much to use everywhere. I used it on the kitchen island. It’s like the saffron in a rice dish―it adds a little spice.” She also likes a little red in every room.
“We hang out in here quite a bit,” she says. “And this is also a place where I like to come for the quiet. Nobody finds me on the first holler, although they might find me on the third or fourth.”
“Every three weeks, it looks like a bomb went off in here, but once everybody’s on board with the bin and tray system, it works great,” Schneider says.
Kid storage tip: In the battle between closet and floor, floor usually wins. Go for hooks―they’re just too easy not to use.
“The orange towels are from the woman in the Wallace and Gromit movies who looks like a carrot,” she confides. “The point is to draw inspiration from whatever, and loosen up about it.”